Day-5 Dec-24 : Balraa - Maatoli-Kaharik 3070M 15km
Though it was sunny, it was quite cold in the morning at Balraa. We sat around a wood fire warming our hands and feet. After a breakfast of sweet Suji (Kesari) we started our trek at 8:45am. It was climbing all the way past several ridges, forests and bugyals. After climbing some 430M, at 2767M light snow-fall started at 11:40am. Still we continued in the snowfall till 1:00pm when on reaching a nice bugyal at 3000M, we stopped for rest and a lunch of Maggie and tea made on open wood fire. Light snowfall was continuing.
After lunch we restarted the climb towards Maatoli top; but we soon realised we cannot reach the top in this snowfall. So when we saw a group of Shepherds' Huts at 3076M we decided to stop and stay the night in one of those. The Location was excellent with rolling hill views to the East.
The Shepards Huts where we stopped as snowfall started
It was pretty cold there around 2*C inside the hut. But Debu and the boys had gathered a lot of firewood and had a roaring fire going inside the hut. We had several rounds of tea, soup and then dinner and slept early. All of us around the fire. the fire was kept going throughout the night. Without that we would have been frozen. As outside temp was -1*C at night.
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