Nature Walk- Bhimtal to Sattal
A few weeks ago I had a chance to explore Aamod resort in Bhimtal. The 3 days stay at the property was a peaceful break from the clamour of the city. It was also a great way to spend some precious time in the lap of nature. After participating in the in-house adventure activities and learning fishing from the neighborhood boys on the first two days, property arranged for a nature walk on the third day. We tried our best but could not wake up by as late as 8 in the morning. Blame it on the adventurous India Pakistan T20 match and the bonfire night that we had slept over. In fact to add to the twist, God had blessed us with some early morning showers too and the beautiful town in the Nainital district of Uttarakhand had turned all the more picturesque. The view from my balcony was beholding.
It was a Rainy Morning…
Bhimtal is a scenic lakeside destination and a land of many small lakes. Whenever you are there, you must walk around to explore its hidden beauties. From the postal office to a beautiful church to an idyllic Ashram, we did it all till we reached Sattal lake. Though we started our walk around 9, it was one of the days when weather was at its pleasant best and our walk came out to be the most memorable part of the trip. Our breakfast was packed and we all geared up in our track pants and woolens. To face the unexpected rains, we carried an umbrella each.
Some tips to enjoy your Nature Walk
A good way to get into the nature mood is to feel good about the whole idea of walking. The first hand learning about the flora and fauna is thrilling. While walking, it is very important to be alert about little things on the way. As one discovers the local treats, the walk becomes all the more interesting. In India, it is very common to find local temples all around the villages. And just when we spotted one such temple, opposite to it lay the famous Nal Damyanti lake. It is one of the lakes among the Saat Taal Lake Group. The first thing we noticed about the lake was that we look deep inside and it had many fishes. Second, I was happy to see that the place around the lake was neat and well-kempt. Our guide from Aamod told us that the local were trying to maintain the area. And later, he also narrated a famous mythological story in connection to the lake.
The Nal Damyanti Lake and its story
King Nal and his Queen Damyanti lived happily in a palace in the same place where the lake exists today. Queen Damyanti was very beautiful and there were many who wanted to marry her but she chose King Nal. While they were living happily, the legend says there were people who were not happy with their togetherness and thus she had started dreaming of someone asking her to enter inside her. One night when she muttered ‘Yes’, the evil spirit entered inside her and the whole palace collapse and submerged inside this lake. This is just one tale. There are many stories in connection with it. Without getting into the factual of the stories, I would say that these stories really add to the fun of the walk and make the place all the more memorable.
Have you heard about Sattal?
I didn’t know about the place before visiting Bhimtal. As the name sounds, it is made of two words Sat (Seven) and Tal (Lakes). It is famous because it is an interconnected group of seven freshwater lakes. The names of the seven lakes are Nal Damyanti Tal, Purna Tal, Garun Tal (Panna Tal), Ram Tal, Sita Tal, Laxman Tal, Sukhna Tal (Khurdariya Tal). As we arrived at this junction, we had two roads to ourselves. One which was wide and was used for vehicles and other was meant for walking. Of course there are no brownie points for guessing which way we went. We came across many patches of all stone and gravel road but our hiking shoes din’t complain. Just at the turn, we discovered a building which used to be the Postal Office of Sattal. A little further down the road we also came across a beautiful church.
Post Office and The Church
We were very keen to go inside the church but it was closed. However, we did not miss clicking pictures. The picture above makes one of my favorite pictures from the trip. I By this time, we were all warmed up and keen to continue. I could feel the fresh air right inside my lungs. The weather was very cheerful. We were a gang of four bloggers and we were having a great time. The stroll in the wilderness had really got us all talking about fitness and healthy living. But for now, it was not even half the distance done. We still had 2 more kilometers to cover. In the moments of fatigue, we reminded ourselves that we had sandwiches, packed juices and lots of water to take care.
After a few turns through kachcha road, our guide showed us the Garud lake on our right. We could not go near it but only see it from a height. The setting was beautiful. I was nature-struck at the first sight. It was two kilometers before Sattal. There were no boating facilities there. The lake looks abandoned as we could not see anyone around. Our guide did not tell us anything about it except that it gets its name from its shape. But later I have learnt that it is considered haunted. However I found it picturesque.
Ashram on our way
500 meters further we came across this gate in the middle of the road. It welcomed us into the land of God and happiness. All along the walk had been very peaceful and now the mention of Ashram added to the tranquility. We kept walking and reached the premises of the Ashram. There was pin drop silence all around. We decided to take a break and explore the Ashram. It was closed but had beautiful flowers all around the property. I clicked around fifteen twenty pictures and only then moved further. By this time we were supposed to be at the lake but we had missed our timeline. After grabbing some juices we excitedly walked to the lake.
Thankfully, I had finished my juice because soon the monkeys came pouncing on us. Just as we crossed the Ashram, the road to the lake became very narrow and we had to watch our steps while going downhill. Now, I could get the feeling that we were actually walking through forests of oak and pine trees. I would suggest that this patch should be considered for maintenance. It can be risky. This part is very famous with the bird watchers for migratory birds. Someone pointed out to a blue jay and kingfisher. And when finally we were there, it was all worth it. I would say last week of March was just the right time to be there. The spring colors and the falling of the leaves marked the season and splashed the location beautifully.
We sat down for a while, enjoyed the beauty of nature. Then we clicked some group pictures and last but not the least ate our packed breakfast at the small tea stall located on the other side of the bridge. It had been more than two hours since we had left the resort. Now was the time to make a return journey. Whenever you are Sattal, do go out for a nature walk. Trust me you will come back inspired just like me.
Thank you EscapeRoute for this lovely trip!