To resume my narration of exciting and challenging Arunachal Pradesh: After a leisurely breakfast which we helped cook with renewed vigor and enthusiasm, we set out on a hike. Luckily the weather cleared up somewhat, though hovering clouds pregnant with rain could be seen as we crossed the rolling valleys. We had to be extremely cautious as we negotiated the edgy hanging bridge which seemed rather precariously perched over the swirling waters below. The melting winter snow made the current strong as both rivers joined at this junction. It was, however, so exciting!
The forests were subtropical and we passed by more hanging bridges and opium farms. We noticed bamboo poles adorned with eggshells and bones erected outside the houses and they seemed to emanate an eerie spell-our imagination running wild with rampant fears in our subconscious-we discovered in due course that they were there to ward off the evil eye-it left us with a sense of Dejavue! But the atmosphere was such that I could not help being fanciful-there were wild stray horses who appeared to be fleeting spirits of the mountains? Or was it only my vivid imagination rearing its head again I wonder!
Now to get back to practicality, when we reached the border Kibithu, we could glimpse Chinese territory. We also crossed the River Sar Ti on our way back. Government houses for tourists were available at the junction where the Sar Ti joins the Lohit. In those days, these did not even have basic bedding or furniture, so we pitched our tent near the river and had an awesome time. The setting seemed cut out of a picturesque scene-a clean, sandy beach interspersed with therapeutic and invigorating hot springs. The distant peaks of the mountains were a dominating presence in the landscape and made for a colorful terrain. The place is a must visit and you are bound to fall in love with this quaint and beautiful part of the world!
Across the River Sar Ti was the Dong Valley. The small, pristine valley in Anjaw district is a haven of blissful serenity and is strategically located in the eastern most part of our country at the point where it merges with China and Myanmar. Hence, it experiences the first rays as the sun rises every morning. This is a sight etched on my mind with its spectacular view of the snow-capped mountains and the mesmerizing blue pine forests as the exotic backdrop. We enjoyed our stay here-leisurely strolling in the wilderness finding an inner peace desperately sought after by most town people. Visiting the Dong Valley was rather the icing on the cake in this excerpt of my visit to Arunachal Pradesh.
According to the Northeast Today, a few like-minded professionals from the media along with the artistically oriented members of the Mosera Narrative, Guwahati and the Youth Pathshala Foundation (YPF) set off on a journey to spread colors of joy in the Dong Valley. The objective was to introduce their maiden "Rainbow Village" project in an effort to promote "Eco- tourism, responsible travel and the essence of Incredible India". Reading about the project, I felt sure that it would attract the media, tourists and nature enthusiasts to visit the exotic, virgin "Valley of the East".
Those of you thriving on adventure and exciting treks must visit Arunachal Pradesh. You must take some state of the art camping gear and set out during the summer months of April and May which enjoy good weather at this time to this awesome location. Also please get proper training in the ethics of camping as it was a battle of wits against the elements in this harsh terrain. On our way back, lashing rains and flooded streets stalled us. Finally we reached Walong and freshened up at the lone guest house. Though it was somewhat dangerous, I thoroughly enjoyed myself and took in deep gulps of the fresh air with the smell of the soil and the rain. It was the onset of the inevitable hard summer season of the mountains.
Steeped in ancient legends and beliefs, mysticism and rich history, this vibrant state is an interesting choice for the adventurous and nature enthusiasts as well as history buffs!
Photo credits: Banner Left – kickstarter.com; Banner Center – thrillophilia.com; Banner Right – theholidayindia.com.
To resume my narration of exciting and challenging Arunachal Pradesh: After a leisurely breakfast which we helped cook with renewed vigor and enthusiasm, we set out on a hike. Luckily the weather cleared up somewhat, though hovering clouds pregnant with rain could be seen as we crossed the rolling valleys. We had to be extremely cautious as we n
What to read next