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Heavenly Trek to Spiritual Tungnath to Fulfill Your Wish


Ancient temple Tungnath which fulfills your wish
Ancient temple (1000yrs old Tungnath which fulfills your wish

Which is the highest temple in the world?


Tungnath is the highest Shiva temple in the world and is one of the five and the highest Panch Kedar temples located in the mountain range of Tunganath in Rudraprayag district, in the Indian state of Uttarakhand.


There is a strong belief that if you pray here, all your wishes are fulfilled

Location


At an altitude of 3,680 m (12,073 ft), and just below the peak of Chandrashila, Tungnath temple is the highest Hindu shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is believed to be 1000 years old and is the third (Tritiya Kedar) in the pecking order of the Panch Kedars. It has a rich legend linked to the Pandavas, heroes of the Mahabharata epic.

What's the legend behind Tungnath?


Pandavas
Pandavas in search of Lord Shiva in Himalayas


The Tunganath myth is indelibly linked to the origin of the Panch Kedar temples built by the Pandavas. The legend states that sage Vyas Rishi advised the Pandavas that since they were culpable of slaying their own relatives (Kauravas, their cousins) during the Mahabharata war or Kurukshetra war, their act could be pardoned only by Lord Shiva. Consequently, the Pandavas went in search of Shiva who was avoiding them since he was convinced of the guilt of Pandavas. In order to keep away from them, Shiva took the form of a bull and went into hiding in an underground safe haven at Guptakashi, where the Pandavas chased him. But later Shiva’s body in the form of bull’s body parts rematerialized at five different locations that represent the "Panch Kedar" where Pandavas built temples of Lord Shiva at each location, to worship and venerate, seeking his pardon and blessings.

The heavenly trek

Bugyals (pastures) en route Tungnath from Chopta in evening light
Bugyals (pastures) en route Tungnath from Chopta in evening light 

Amazing trek in winter to Tungnath
Amazing Trek in winter to Tungnath


Other than being a religious destination, Tungnath is also a well known trekking destination. The 4 km (2.5 mi) trek starts from Chopta (9,600 ft (2,926 m)), the nearest place on the NH 58. Choptais 63 km (39 mi) from Rudraprayag towards Karnaprayag and is reached from Rishikesh via Devprayag, Srinagar and Rudraprayag in the state of Uttarakhand.

Easy Trek Suitable even for kids, women and physically fit elderly


Approaching Tungnath on a winter morning
Approaching Tungnath on a winter morning

Devotees visiting Tungnath during summer
Devotees visiting Tungnath during summer


Of all the Panch Kedar trek routes, the route to Tungnath is the shortest


Only 4 km (2.5 mi) from Chopta (on the Ukhimath Gopeshwar road) that can be covered in approximately 3–4 hours (depending on the trekker's physical ability).
The trek is a moderate (and sometimes steep) climb (9,600–12,000 ft (2,926–3,658 m)), the trek path is a stone paved with benches provided en route at intervals to rest and enjoy the most incredible views of the Chowkhamba, Nanda Devi, Neelkanth and Kedarnath peaks.

For physically fit and spiritually oriented travelers


I strongly recommend Panch Kedar road cum trek package or plan your own itinerary, the Tungnath being a part of this route.

Road cum trek

This is covering all five temples over a 170 km (105.6 mi) route (road cum trek length) starting from Rishikesh in the order of: Kedarnath, Tungnath, Rudranath, Madhyamaheswar and Kalpeshwar. The few pilgrims undertake this trekking pilgrimage to the shrine do so during summer months (end April or early May to September/October).

The beautiful trek of Chopta-Tungnath during winter


The stunning trek in winter to the "Lord of the peaks" or "Kingdom of Lord Shiva" starts from Chopta in Uttarakhand. 



Tungnath trail in November
Tungnath trail in November

One can reach the nearest settlement Chopta on Ukhimath-Gopeshwar road. There is a GMVN Tourist Guest House Ukhimath. Choptahas small shops and rooms available for trekkers. Though the road is right uptoChopta, on an odd winter day snow may block the road to Chopta and you may have to stay at Dugglabitha where there are a couple of resorts and camping sites.
On a sunny day in winter, it may take few hours to trek to Chopta. This place offers stunning views of Himalayan peaks - Kedar and Chaukhambha peaks.
The trail to Tungnath is five km uphill and is accessible by foot only. The trek is heavenly in winter with incredible surrounding views and awesome snow covered path and peaks.

Some precautions for winter trekkers



  1. Carry packaged food and sufficient water.
  2. Take a pair of snow-boots (or lease it from Duggalbitha).
  3. Should wear sunscreen and shades.
  4. Consider starting earlier in the day.

Airport and Rail Head


The nearest airport is Jolly Grant, Dehradun (258 km (160 mi)). The nearest railway station is at Rishikesh (241 km (150 mi))
Source


This post first appeared on An Ace Guide To Exotic Places In India, please read the originial post: here

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