My Immortal Trip of Dev Bhoomi Kedarnath

trip of Dev Bhoomi Kedarnath

Zipping up my leather jacket and sweeping the hair off my face, I made my way down the helipad where a royal blue chopper stood waiting, roaring magnificently and sending tremors through the ground. Having been made to eat light and carry extras in terms of clothing, a sense of excitement mingled with fear of disappointment about unrealistic expectations was setting in. Having buckled up, the chopper took off, as did my imagination about the place we were flying to, one of the shrines among Chota Char Dham, the divine abode of Lord Shiva: Kedarnath.

As is often said, "The journey is every bit as beautiful as the destination itself." Swathed in clouds, the ice-capped mountains that were spotted as tiny white dots in the distant horizon were now beginning to show up in all their grandeur. As we flew past the enigmatic Himalayan range, I could not help but speculate about the years of weathering that these mountains had seen, the sadhus, the saints, the mountaineers, who had traversed the rocky paths to unravel the mysteries of nature and explore beyond the known. To be in the vicinity of something so ancient, which had stood the test of age and time, was a humbling experience like no other.

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Just as my thoughts continued to race through, I happened to glance upon the river Bhagirathi, sparkling away in all its glory with the Tehri dam standing proudly on its banks. As remarkable as it is considered in terms of utility, the construction of the Tehri hydropower complex is worth a mention too. While the dam has played a pivotal role in altering the means of electricity generation and irrigation in the surrounding regions, there is always a slight worry regarding the dam among the residents nearby, more so after the disastrous floods of 2013. While gazing down, we also observed quite a noticeable movement where villagers from the surrounding regions were descending down the mountains in a procession. On enquiring, we got to know that the villagers in these regions usually have two dwellings, one on the peak and one in the valley. Being the end of October, the villagers were now making their way down to the valley where they would reside until the harsh winters subsided, giving a glimpse into the fact that living in the mountains is not as serene and lovely as our rose-tinted glasses make it out to be.

Forty minutes into the ride, I finally felt the chopper beginning to descend and land behind the temple. As forewarned, I mentally readied myself for the biting cold, waiting to hit me the minute I stepped out. However, nothing could have prepared me for what awaited outside. Standing ever so handsomely, the Kedarnath peak captivated my mind from the minute I laid my eyes upon it. In that moment, neither did I know anything, feel anything nor did I want anything else. I stood rooted to the spot, gazing at the mountains which for some reason imparted a sense of warmth and familiarity and gave me a sense of homecoming. Having had the privilege to travel around a bit, there has never been a place that has had such a profound impact, an impact so great that I teared up due to the sheer emotion. Spotted missing from the group I had come with, I was then taken to the temple premises where the puja was performed with all of us craning our necks to catch a glimpse of the Jyotirlinga. Post this, we were shown the Bheem Sila, the rock that had come down from the Kedarnath peak during the floods of 2013. Instead of ramming into the temple, it stopped short a few feet and diverted the flood of water coming its way, thereby establishing its divinity amongst the locals. It is also said that Guru Adi Shankaracharya was last seen walking towards the mountains behind the temple and was never seen after. For a guru who is considered an avatar of Lord Shiva himself, it was befitting for him to return to his abode.

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Although the Jyotirlinga was the highlight for all the tourists and devotees present there, I could not pull my gaze away from the majestic Himalayan range behind the shrine. For anyone who has read up on Lord Shiva, they would know that he is not one to be constricted within four walls.

The magnetic pull of the mountains symbolizes his presence and provides an incomparable sense of calm and tranquillity.

On reminiscing, all it seemed like was a moment. A moment with innumerable fleeting emotions. However, there never were and will never be enough words that could do justice to that moment.

"The journey here might take you a lifetime but to be here would be a lifetime in itself."

Har Har Mahadev

Written By- Haareca Chintala


I am a traveler by heart. I love to travel and visit tourist places. Travelling is my hobby and passion.

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