“Located 2387 meters above the sea level, surrounded by lush forests, offering 300 degree view of mighty Himalayan peaks, is the waterhole where Devas (Indian Gods) bathed and mighty Pandavas quenched their thirst.”

The day started with boys going for biking and parents for witnessing lord’s see-off to kedarnath from his summer home in ukhimath. Then we checked out of GMVN guest house at 11:00 AM. and drove to Sari village, which is 18 km from Ukhimath. We reached there in an hour. We would leave the car here at Sari and trek 3 kms of incline to deoria taal.

The trek path has a sharp incline but we were not in any hurry since we would camp at Devariya tal for the night. We stopped at a few spots on the trek to enjoy the scenery. Moving slightly higher, you get glorious views of Sari Village underneath and Chandrashila Peak across.

Our Guide, Hirachand Negi – a local from Sari Village, narrated folk lore about Devariya Tal. These stories date back to the age of Hindu Epic Mahabharat. He also narrated his encounters with Wild Bears and Leopards on this trek and around Devariya Tal.

Nervously, we longed to sight some wild beasts but only the lower occupants of food chain were gracious enough to share company.

We reached the taal by 2:30 PM. The trek had left us exhausted but the scene at the tal was relaxing. The weather was pleasant too. We ordered snacks from the tea stall there and absorbed the beauty of the place in our hearts and in my camera.

We would be staying overnight in these tents and have dinner at one of the stall. The food was cooked on wood and had the fresh rustic taste.

Our guide handed us solar lanterns, there’s no electricity there, and advised us to not to venture out at night. We were at the fringes of one of the biggest bio-reserve in Himalayas and wild animals know no boundaries. It is common for deer and their hunters to wander here for water – so were we told. Hence, once inside the tents at 9:00 PM, we came out just before the day break.

After tea, we started back for Sari village to continue our journey to Kedarnath.

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