One of the most popular treks near Dehradun, Nag Tibba (Serpent’s Peak) is ideal for weekend getaway. It is best for the beginners in the trekking world and also most of the people find it refreshing from their routine work life. Nag Tibba Trek is for two days starting from Dehradun, a drive of about 85 km to Pantwari and then 4 km trek to Nag Tibba Base Camp. Nag Tibba summit is just 7 kilometres away from the base camp where you will be able to watch the never-ageing beauty of some great peaks like Swargarohini, Bandarpoonch, Kedarnath, and Gangotri. Then the descending route will be different from the ascending one. Nag tibba can be done throughout the year (when most of the treks are closed in winter due to snowfall). The best months to do Nag Tibba Trek for snow are December to March as the trails are completely snow-laden during these months.
Garhwal Himalayas are the pioneering protector of Nag Tibba and this is the highest peak in the range. The rich flora and fauna in the forests will find before reaching the peak are the main attraction that keeps trekkers come back to attend its reverberating beauty for Nag Tibba trekking.
Day 1 : Dehradun to Pantwari (4,640 ft) and trek to Campsite (7,630ft).
We will pick you up from Dehradun in the morning, starting on a 4 hour uphill drive to village Panthwari. The road passes through Mussoorie-the queen of hills, and reaches pantwari around noon.
We will have a filling lunch and after some rest, head off for the trek. The hike begins at the end of a motorable road till which we will be reached by car. Beginning on a well defined cemented path, we will find our way to a rocky trail. You will find 2-3 water points on the way.
30 minutes into the trek, you will come across a cluster of thatched roofed huts- a small village on cliffs, lined with terrace farmlands. During the harvest seasons, you will find these stretches in a wave of different shades in green and yellow. The locality of Panthwari can be seen lying down far below. Before reaching the ridge connecting the Pantwari side of the hills with Nag Tibba, you will come across ‘Goat Village’ — an interesting eco-tourism resort.
After a while, the rocky mountain trail enters a thicket of oak and rhododendron and the ascent curve almost levels out. The next landmark on the trek is an isolated hut by a stretch of farmland, from where our campsite will be another 5 minutes walk. The campsite is a small clearing with the forests for a background and the rolling abyss out front. To find clouds like smoke rising from beneath in the gulf just in front of the campsite ledge is a mesmeric experience.
We need to start early. After catching a quick breakfast, finishing by 5:00 am, we start on the hike to the top. A trail on the right of the campsite continues through a thick forest cover. With snow enveloping the path in the winters, it becomes a little challenging to locate the trail which is otherwise well defined. Within 20-30 minutes from the camp on the forest trail, you will reach two open patches of land, clearings by the forest fringes. From this point on, the trek is almost a level walk on very gentle undulations.
The Nag Tibba temple marking the base of the Nag Tibba hill is situated on the third clearing that we find on this trail. From here, on a clear sky day, the Garhwal Himalaya peaks meet the eye.
The trek continues from here into the forest on a steep incline, likely to be submerged in snow in the winter. This part of the trek really raises the bar for challenge and makes for a swashbuckling summit experience. Close to the top, the trail will turn through a ridge and finally take you to the flag marking Nag Tabbi jhandi, or summit. One possible route of descending from here is a trail passing through Devalsari village, visible on the reverse side of the mountain.
The view from the summit brings us face to face with the Garhwal Himalayas most amazing. The canvas of the sky lights up with ice capped ranges of Bandarpoonch, Gangotri, Kedarnath, Kala Nag, and more.
If the trek runs according to schedule, you can spend some time on the top, then make the way down by the same trail. Lunch will be at the camp. Panthwari will be reached by sundown and a 2-3 hour drive from there will take you to Dehradun from where you can arrange an overnight journey.
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