Roopkund - Skeleton Lake in Himalayas

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"Roopkund famously known as the Skeleton Lake in the Himalayas. The location is uninhabited and is located at an altitude of about 5,029 metres(16,499 feet). The skeletons were discovered in 1942 by a park ranger.  In 2004, a team of Indian and European scientists visited the location to gain more information on the skeletons. The team uncovered vital clues including   jewellery, skulls, bones and a preserved body. DNA tests on the bodies revealed that there were two groups of people, a short group (probably local   porters) and a taller group who were closely related. Though the numbers were not ascertained, it is believed that three to six hundred people perished.Radiocarbon dating of the bones determined the time period to be in the 9th century. After studying fractures in the skulls, the scientists in Hyderabad and London determined that the people died not of disease, but of a sudden hailstorm. The hailstones were as large as cricket balls, and with no shelter in the open Himalayas, all of them perished. Furthermore, with the rarefied air and icy   conditions, many bodies were well preserved. With landslides in the area, some of the bodies made their way into the lake. What is not determined was where   the group was headed to. There is no historical evidence of any trade routes to Tibet in the area or any places of pilgrimage."  Source Wikepedia


28-29th May 2010 - Mumbai-Delhi-Kathgodam-Debal: 

I flew from Mumbai to Delhi on May 28th and took the overnight Ranikhet Express to Kathgodam, arriving at 6AM on 29th May. We hired an Alto taxi to Debal (Rs 3000/-). The route was: Bhimtal, Bhowali, Khairna, Almora, Kosi, Someshwar, Kausani, Garur, Baijnath, Gwaldam, Debal.

The coolness was welcome, we reached Debal by 1:30PM and checked into GMVN. Surprisingly this GMVN is at a distance of 1.5km from the market and nothing much around it. The manager was not willing to cook us a meal. So after setteling down we walked down to the market and had lunch. On the way back to GMVN, Debu our designated guide caught us and we returned back to GMVN for a chat. 
We discussed the day wise schedule, food and the cost associated with that. We finally setteled down and finzaled things. Debu left us to prepare and buy the necessary ration and make arrangemnts for our departure the next morning. 
 
The evening was spent walking around Debal town, visiting the shut temple between the fields, seeing people play carom and having hot piping tea.
 Trishul seen from Debal GMVN
 
 
 
30th May 2010 - Debal-Lohajung-Kulling-Wan:  

8am Debu arrived at GMVN and picked us up for our drive to Wan. The sumo was already loaded with the camping stuff & ration he arranged the previous evening. 
 
We had breakfast at Debal market and left for Wan.

We passed Mundoli and Lohajung and finally reached Wan (2600M) at 1:00PM - after a 3-hour drive.  We had a 15 minute climb up from Taxi drop off point to Wan-TRH. The TRH was high on a ridge surrounded by mountains and with nice views.  

At Wan TRH, we had tea followed by lunch and dinner at the front hall. Electricity came only after 7pm in Wan. The TRH had a garden and green lawns in front of it. We walked around talking to the manager and enjoying the cool wind. I guess its an ideal place for a winter break. Later in the evening 4 Kolkatta trekers were camping at Wan. Spent time talking and sharing details and past experiences with them.
                                                                                 Vultures having breakfast enroute to Wan