Day trek from Dalhousie to Dainkund

Day trek from Dalhousie to Dainkund

Summary

An easy to moderate 4.5 kilometre day trek. Climb through a fir and deodar forest and walk along the Dainkund ridge. The mountain range to the North is exceptionally photogenic. This trek is child friendly, however, exercise caution at a couple of places along the Dainkund ridge. This day trek may be combined with various other treks that connect Dalhousie with Khajjiar, Jot and Chamba.

Viewpoint at Dainkund.

Trek Details

The trek starts at Alha. Alha is a village, located 6 kilometres from Dalhousie G.P.O on the Dalhousie-Khajjiar Road. It can easily be reached by bus (leaving for Khajjiar from Dalhousie) or by hitchhiking. This day trek is divided into three distinct sections: a climb through a forest, a walk along the ridge and downhill along a concrete path.

Trail from Alha.


The starting point for the trek is the viewpoint on the Dalhousie-Khajjiar Road at Alha. From the viewpoint the track veers off the metalled road and leads to a foot trail. This well marked foot trail winds uphill through a dense forest of fir and deodars. The woods, gently squeeze the trail and there will be times when you will be walking over, or between fallen trees.

The woods are pitted with small streams, however, in November these streams had dried off. The trail gains elevation for the next two kilometres and it exits the forest on a ridge near a tea shop. This shop is the right place to relax, and treat yourself to tea, namkeen Mattar (Indian fried snack) and some piping hot besan Barfi (Indian sweet made with gram flour and sugar). There is a clear one and a half kilometre trail along the ridge that leads from the shop to the viewpoint at Dainkund.  This route is frequently used by locals to visit the Pholani Devi Temple and the trail winds along the outer wall of the Air Force Station. On this one and a half kilometre stretch the elevation gained is minimal, however, the views from the ridge are mesmerising. At one end of the ridge are wooded hills that lead to Dalhousie, while on the other side the hills extend to tall snow clad mountains. At a few places the trail is squeezed between the ridge and the air force station's outer wall. Exercise caution when traversing these narrow sections, especially with children. The trail ends at a bifurcation near the Dainkund viewpoint. From Dainkund viewpoint, it is a comfortable 0.7 kilometre walk downhill to the vehicle parking lot over a concrete path.

It is believed that Dainkund (Dain = witch, kund = lake) was an abode for a powerful witch. She was slayed by an incarnation of Kali Mata that arose at the site from a stone. The locals worship this incarnation as Pholani Mata.

Pholani Mata temple at Dainkund.

Trek Summary

DIFFICULTY

Easy to Moderate

DURATION

3 hours

DISTANCE

4.5 kilometres

MAX. ELEVATION

2751 metres

START

Alha village. 6 kilometres from Dalhousie G.P.O. on the Dalhousie-Khajjiar road

FINISH

Dainkund, 5 kilometres from Lakkar Mandi

GETTING THERE

Bus / Taxi / Hitchhiking

ACCOMMODATION

Hotels for every budget are available at Dalhousie. No accomodation at Dainkund

TERRAIN

A gentle ascent over a well marked trail

WEATHER

Moderately cold, usually windy at Dainkund

route overview - Alha to Dainkund (view in google maps)

elevation graph - Alha to Dainkund (what is this?)

Essential Gear

  • Water - Water is available at the tea shop and at Polani Devi temple. Though a liter bottle may come in handy.
  • Windproof jacket - for walking along the ridge.
If you are at Dalhousie G.P.O on a Tuesday, make sure you savour the Madra Chawal at the Rehri Market near the Post Office (ask any local for directions). This roadside stall makes Madra only on Tuesdays and it is a quintessential Himachal dish that no tourist should leave without tasting.

Downloads and GPS Logs

GPS route map in .GPX and .KML format. GPX works with most GPS devices like Garmin and TomTom while KML works with Google products like Maps and Earth.

View the trekking route in Google Maps by clicking this link.

Dainkund to Khajjiar - Day Trek

Dainkund to Khajjiar - Day Trek

5 simple steps to cleaner trekking trails

5 simple steps to cleaner trekking trails