Widely known as ‘The Land of Gods’, Himachal is decorated with enchanting landscapes, adventure avenues and a hint of gypsy culture. Blessed with nature’s bounty, this Himalayan state offers an ultimate escape from the hullabaloos of urban madness and pollution. A paradise for adventure enthusiasts, Himachal is an ideal destination for high altitude treks to glacial lakes.
Located at an elevation of 14,100 ft above sea level, Bhrigu Lake is one of the offbeat and high altitude trek in the majestic Garhwal Himalayas. Cradled in the scenic beauty of Manali, the trekking trail passes through virgin forests over lush green meadows with breathtaking vistas of snow-peaked mountains. This Himalayan lake is named after the highly revered sage in Hindu mythology i.e. Maharishi Bhrigu. He was the author of ‘Bhrigu Samhita’ and also one of the seven great sages also known as Saptarishis.
Also See: A Perfect Himalayan Escapade To Manali
Old Manali Trail
We boarded the Volvo bus from Vidhan Sabha (Delhi) and after an overnight journey reached Manali in noon. Adorned with the beautiful sights of mountains all around and Beas river flowing down, Manali is the most loved hill retreat. We checked in at D’ Country Villa Homestay (Old Manali) situated uphill at 2 kms from Mall Road in utmost tranquility. It is always amazing to meet some new people and know their stories.
Old Manali is a quaint little settlement in the Kullu District and has a gypsy appeal to it. There are various famous and less known places in and around Old Manali that one must visit. The most revered Goddess of Dhungri village i.e. Hidimba Devi and Manu Temple are first on this list. Both the shrines are ancient and visited by the people with utmost faith. Manali is named after Maharishi Manu itself, who is believed to be the creator of human race. A small and easy trek to Jogni Waterfall is a good option if you love adventure and going for a high altitude trek. Basically, it helps you to acclimatize for your next day’s high altitude expedition. Also, take a walk amidst numerous apple and apricot farms located in the Old Manali village.
What about spending a leisure-filled evening along riverside? Head out towards the famous cafes and restaurants in Old Manali situated on the banks of Manaslu River. These cosy hangout spots serve various cuisines such as Italian, Chinese, Continental and even Indian. You can even choose so eat at an open air cafe for an unmatchable experience. The cool mountain breeze and the sound of pristine Manaslu River flowing along will refresh your soul. It is far better than chilling at a cafe or a bar in metro cities like Delhi. Some of the best cafes in Old Manali are Cafe 1947, Lazy Dog Lounge, People’s Cafe, Kathmandu Cafe, and Shesh Besh to name a few.
Secluded from the main town, Old Manali is where you can feel the hippie culture in its full glory. Set in the surreal environment, this little gem of Manali will give you the perfect Himalayan vibes.
Trek From Gulaba
Distance From Gulaba To Rola Khuli: 7 kms (3-4 hrs)
After breakfast we met our trek guide from Kothi village who gave us all the necessary instructions for Bhrigu Lake trek. As per the itinerary, we headed towards chaudah mod (14th curve) near Gulaba in a cab, located 22 kms from Manali on the way to Rohtang Pass. The route from Manali to Gulaba is dotted with traditional homes, quaint villages, stunning views of snow-clad peaks and deep valleys.
This moderate level Himalayan trek begins from Gulaba and can be done by a beginner as well. The trail passes through towering oak & cedar trees over lush green meadows. While trekking I was mesmerized by the fascinating Dhauladhar and Pir Panjal ranges in the backdrop. The beautiful Solang Valley can also be seen while hiking up. This journey becomes even more exciting with like-minded people.
The best thing about Bhrigu Lake trek is walking over virgin and lush meadows spread like an endless carpet. With deep blue sky above and grassland below, the landscape kept changing as we moved ahead. While trekking you will come across few horses and local shepherds known as Gaddis, grazing their sheep in open pastures.
Initially, the trail is a steep ascent and then gradual ascent till Rola Khuli campsite crossing two nallahs or water streams in between. The path is narrow and rugged at few places that makes trekking experience overwhelming and thrilling.
Camping At Rola Khuli
Set in the scenic alpine meadow, Rola Khuli acts as a base camp for Bhrigu Lake, nestled at an elevation of 12,500 ft above sea level. Located at 7 kms from Gulaba, Rola Khuli offers fabulous views of majestic Himalayas. Chor nallah, a small water stream flows across the camping ground suitable for drinking and washing dishes. The water is fresh but damn freezing!
Relish upon a plate of hot Maggi along with tea, play with the Gaddi dogs at campsite and just relax in such a pleasent weather. From the campsite you can see the snow-clad peaks of soaring high Himalayas romancing with clouds. As the day came to an end, the sky turned crimson and grey. It was amazing to see the charisma of nature in its full form. At night, the weather turns really cold so do carry warm jackets & wears and enjoy the bonfire where you can be joined by other travellers as well. Spend a memorable night under zillion stars!
After having dinner, I went to the cooks at the campsite and thanked them for the scrumptious meal they cooked for everyone in such a challenging environment. We went back to our camps as we had to wake up early for the final summit to Bhrigu Lake.
Trek To Bhrigu Lake
Distance From Rola Khuli To Bhrigu Lake: 4 kms (2-3 hrs)
Since you have to cover a lot of distance today, therefore wake up early and quickly leave for Bhrigu Lake after breakfast. This sacred glacial lake is situated at a distance of 4 kms from Rola Khuli base camp. Initially, the trail is a bit steep and stony but the captivating surroundings and fresh mountain breeze encouraged us to move ahead.
Trek to Bhrigu Lake gives you an awesome opportunity to see nature in its rawest form. The charming landscape can’t be described simply in words. It is blissful to see the crimson sunrays kissing the snow-peaked Himalayas from such a great height. You will be spellbound by the enchanting vistas of virgin mountains.
The last half of the trail is completely rugged and steep, thus a bit challenging as well. This entire trail is adorned with boulders or stones which are a bit slippery but thanks to our trek guide who helped us out in completing this thrilling trek to Bhrigu Lake. It is advisable to hike carefully and don’t be in a hurry!
Holiness Of Bhrigu Lake
Nestled at an elevation of 14,100 ft above sea level, the scenic oval shaped Bhrigu Lake is considered very pious especially by the natives of Kullu region. It is believed that Maharishi Bhrigu meditated here many years ago. Also, many Gods of Kullu Valley have dipped in this glacial lake, thus making it highly sacred. The locals believe that due to this divinity the lake never freezes completely. You can see few beautiful lotuses along the lake as a symbol of faith.
Blessed with serenity all around, relaxing and enjoying the beauty of sunrays falling on crystal clear waters of the lake, a perfect break from mundane lifestyle. The morning cool breeze and the enchanting Himalayan landscapes will heal all our tiredness.
Located in the eastern part of Rohtang Pass, Bhrigu Lake is an ultimate destination to see the grandeur of notable Himalayan peaks like Hanuman Tibba, Pir-Panjal ranges, Friendship Peak and Solang Valley. Seek blessings from the holy glacial lake, capture some amazing moments and return to Rola Khuli campsite for the final descent. You can also choose to trek down towards Vashisht via Pandu Ropa but the trail is quite steep and slippery at few places.
So, on your next trip to Manali experience the beauty of sacred Bhrigu Lake in utmost tranquility and get rejuvenated in the laps of nature.
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