Snow Trek to Jogini Waterfalls
Updated: May 24, 2020
Jogini Waterfalls is considered as a short hike near Manali, but this is a “Summer Quote”. As we visited this wonderful waterfalls today in the morning, we realized the easiness of the trek literally converted into tricky and slippery snow trek and we had to struggle a lot for that.
We set off in a car from our base camp, which is at Naggar & arrived at Bahang Village road head near around 11:15 AM. The last week was rainy and the area was full with fresh snow. The reflection and radiation of the sun at such altitude become irritating in no time, but it is so beautiful to see wide landscapes and being photographer and nature lover, it is exciting indeed.
The prime motive of our visit to this waterfall is to shoot and produce a kind of video blog and promote it among the young people, so that they get inspiration to explore such places. We were a group of 5 people: me, Sagar — our senior instructor, Sonuji — our local campsite manager, Jaydeep and Hiren (photographers). Sonuji and Sagar are professional trekkers and they are quite habituated to climb and trek at high altitude in any conditions but both of our artists were new to this kind of treks and we had to take care of them during the trek. We were climbing with 3 medium to large sized bags carrying camera, lens and other technical equipment and the planning was to climb and descend back in 3–4 hours, which went wrong and it happened to be a wonderful expedition.
India is blessed with an incredible gift by the mother nature and that is the Himalayas! The 3500 km long range of mountains offers a large range of diversity to this mainland. Weather, traditions, landscapes, flora, fauna, people, food… every thing changes but it is still standing tall… the mighty Himalayas!
Sometimes I feel Himalayas as wonderland. There are so many things which are amazingly different. Jogini waterfall is one of these amusements in Himalayas. When I googles a little, I came to know that the source of Jogini Falls is the famous Bhrigu Lake. As it is the destination for our summer trekking camps, I have been there more than 7 times and I really enjoy the calm nature there. The water overflowing from Bhrigu Lake, eventually flows downwards towards Manali and some other streams also join this flow and just before joining the Beas River, the stream jumps off from a huge rock cliff near Vashisth Hot Water Spring. This offers a majestic appearance to all who visit Manali and can be seen from kilometres away. I suppose it is more than 1500 feet where the falls happen and there are 3 platforms of it.
Manali is called “Valley of Gods” and one reason behind it is its awesome nature. It is hard to believe for many visitors that just 1 km from this freezing cold waterfall, there is an another surprise: a hot water spring!
We started walking gradually towards the falls and passed through Bahang Village. The whole village seemed busy as it was a sunny sky after almost a week and everyone was in hurry to wash their cloths and dry them up under harsh sun. The snow was everywhere and children were enjoying snow slides on the sloppy RCC roads. Blankets and carpets were hanging on walls and it was like everyone was taking sunbath, a much awaited experience!
As we left the village behind us, the gradient raised eventually and we found ourselves hiking on snow slopes. At a place, we had to cross the stream using the local wooden bridge and that was a scary adventure. The narrow wooden plank was full with packed snow and tough to walk on. I was first to walk and rest followed. Some of us really walked with 4 legs to stay safe. But that was a funny and thrilling experience.
It was winter and most of the water sources in uphills were frozen and hence the flow was just half in the comparison of summer days but though it was gushing and roaring. We managed to reach close to the place where the mist was welcoming and water splashing on rocks was like a roar. The stream was frozen from above and subsurface water was flowing, so we had to take care of actual flow and thin layers of frozen ice.
Approaching the waterfall from that close is definitely a risk as the rocks keep falling with time and today it was risky due to snow slabs were collapsing with the falls. Near the falls, there is a large cave, may be due to erosion by the water, I went into it and enjoyed the falls from the different angle too.
People visit hill stations like Manali in the month of summer, but I personally feel that the real beauty of hill station can be experienced only when it is totally covered with fresh snow and the sun is shining. Being a part of Invincible, I have got opportunities when I lost myself in the right direction. Today it was a big day for all of us, as we could feel the mountains in an untouched way. We are also going to make a documentary/vlog on our visit. Hope that will inspire you to meet Jogini!
When we started hiking in a spiral way, the mountain was on our right and deep valley on the left. As the trail was full with 2 feet snow, we struggled to take steps and often lost balance and managed it. It is absolutely awesome when you touch the top most point and you come to know that you are the only few who dared and reached!
The best part of having Jaydip & Hiren in team is that they are creative and enthusiastic. They keep the atmosphere live and I never found them blank minded. Initially I had many doubts about their adaptability and performance at such wild places, but they look at the problem with a positive perspective and do not loose their focus. Anyways, shooting and cinematography at 8500+ feet are all about making memories and I am sure none of us will ever forget these magical moments of fun, sweat, thrill and adventures.