Here I am with Day 2 of my journey. Day 1 can be found here
Morning was nice and sunny and after a quick stroll in the market, I decided to hire a car and headed off to Chamba, since my main interest lay in getting to Bharmour. The hotel guys at McLeodganj said that they were not sure if the road to Bharmour had been opened since there had been heavy snowfall a few days back and the only way to find out was to check in Chamba. With nothing better to do, I hopped in and set off.
The usual route from McLeodganj to Chamba goes through Dalhousie and Khajjiar and saves about an hour or two of travelling but unfortunately due to the snow, the upper stretches were closed and I had to take the long route via Banikhet and Chamera Dam (which wasnt bad at all since it was extremely scenic and passed through sweeping vistas or rivers and lovely terrace farms) Not much I can comment on since I was busy enjoying the beauty all around except that the serenity was borken as we rounded a turn and came across this huge expanse of water deep below (Chamera Dam) flanked by the stunning Pir Panjal range in the far distance. As we moved further, the view got better and even form the car, low down, I could make out we had a 180+ degree Himalayan panorama all around! Its from Banikhet that one road leads up to Dalhousie but for now we would move on towards Chamba with the Himalayas pretty much keeping company almost all throughout the way.
Some Random pics enroute to Chamba
^^ A scenic pump where we stopped to fill up
^^ Terrace farming along the valleys
^^ the gorgeous Chamera dam enroute
^^ The panorama of the Pir Panjal range flanking the dam
Chamba was reached 6 hours after we left from McLeodganj. The town flanks the west bank of the river and moves horizontally along it with an imposing massif in the distance crowning the Northern end of the river.
Chamba being in a valley, was pretty warm and I immediately set about getting rid of my jacket and trying to make myself comfortable! Luckily, the hotel was not a big deal to find… just off the market, turn left by the fire station, overlooking the river, was the Chamba Guest House. As luck would have it, I had a lovely double room with a sit out running along its length, bang on top of the river with a spectacular view of the mountains…again for only Rs. 600 Add to it that the guys in the hotel were very laid back, helpful and charming…this was quite THE lucky break!
^^ My room spacious with a big bathroom, a steal for 600!
^^ The river and town spread out below with the Himalayan masiffs in the distance
^^ A closeup of the masiff seen from the terrace outside my room
^^ the lovely terrace along the outside of my room
^^ … and a royal lunch perched in front of the Himalayas
and thus ends my short account of Day 2 Day 3 is the most awesome day of my trip coming up next!