Misty Mountains - A unique stay deep in the Kumaon Himalayas
... A 1000 acres of solitude
Misty Mountains - a unique place in Kumaon Himalayas
A few days in a home amidst Himalayan Forest...
If you have ever wondered what it would be like to live in the hills, far away from it all, Misty is the place to visit. You can witness and experience mountain life in the few days that you spend in this bountiful place blessed by mother nature.
Misty Mountains Retreat is blessed to be set amidst a 1000 acres of solitude. We are surrounded by acres and acres of lush green forests and you can spend days or weeks exploring it. There are many walks within and beyond the estate from easy walks to brow-sweating hikes.
Some of the more common ones are:
1. Leopard Trail- 30 minutes round trip - It is a short 20 to 30 minutes walk that will give you an intro into the rich biodiversity of Misty. We live in the heart of a reserve forest and are blessed to share this space and its diverse flora and fauna. In a forest full of barking deers, wild boars, civet cats and pine martens, the Leopard is the queen that rules them all. Within our campus is a trail that she frequents often.
2. Jadapani Old Forest Canopy Walk- 2 hours round trip-
On the eastern flank of the Misty is a dense oak forest that extends for Kilometers till the next town of Gangolihat. In some parts the canopy is so dense that there is no undergrowth. It is surreal to walk in the shade of these mighty oaks and rhododendrons. For jungle lovers, this is an absolute delight.
3. Lamkeshwar temple hike- 3 hours round trip - This is a 3 km hike that takes you to a temple at the top of the mountain. You gain 500 meters in altitude. This is the highest point in that area and offers an astonishing 360 degrees view of mountains and valleys that we are surrounded by. Just around the temple are some really old oak trees that have been there for over 500 years! These are very rare as old oak forests have fast diminished over most parts of Himalayas. A must do while at Misty. There is much local lore attached to this temple. We keep those for evening conversations.
4. Village walk - 3 hours round trip - You can witness typical himalayan village life on this longish but easy paced walk. It will take you through Bandani, where you can also see (and/or buy) baskets made from Himalayan bamboo.
5. Sunset at the ridge- 1.5 hrs round trip hike. - The western flank of Misty is a high ridge at an altitude of 7000 ft asl. It gives you a birds eye view of the valleys around misty and we have witnessed some stunning sunsets from its perches. You can carry some tea with you and it will be an evening to remember for a lifetime.
If you want to be by yourself in the forest, we have some earmarked spaces that are easily accessible within 15-20 minutes on foot. We can pack a nice picnic for you and you can enjoy the beautiful forests at Jhaltola with your loved ones.
Kalrav is our 3000 sq ft activity centre at Misty homestay. You can play badminton, table tennis, carrom, chess or any of the many board games and just unwind with your loved ones at Kalrav. It is the hub of activity at Misty and guests love to hangout here.
We deliberately do not have any television on campus. The games at Kalrav become a huge pull, with kids as well as grown ups enjoying it to the hilt.
This is only for advanced level vacationers who have mastered the art of doing nothing. You can practice here rigorously by pursuing various well designed inactivities. This includes day dreaming on hammocks and garden chairs; holding on to a book with a genuine intention of reading it while chasing some butterfly wings with your gaze; roaming around in circles with your expensive camera strapped to your neck; having monosyllabic conversation with rank strangers and well meaning intruders; and staring into the distance with a satiated smile.
Patal Bhuvaneshwar is a cave temple about an hour from Misty Mountains Homestay.
It is an energy centre and a place of faith and worship for Shiva devotees that finds mention in Skanda Purana as well. Its also an experience as you need to climb down into a cave which is 300 ft below the ground level to reach the main temple. A must visit for people visiting this area.
At Misty homestay , we actively promote Aavni, an NGO working on alternative energy and women empowerment that has won numerous accolades and awards over the years.
They have done some remarkable work in these areas and are worth visiting for people who want to know about alternative energy or who want to pick a memento or two from their gorgeous collection of naturally dyed wool and silk products. You can see some samples at our homestay and visit the place if you are interested.
Ram Ganga is a beautiful snow fed river. You can drive right upto its beaches near Thal. You would have to cross the small town and drive up a few kilometers to find a good spot. It will be worth your while though. It is also an excellent spot for birding for water birds.
Misty Mountains Homestay at Jhaltola is blessed with a diverse and dense flora and fauna. The estate ranges from 1600 meters to 2600 meters with the Misty Mountains Homestay, at 2100 meters approx. We have photopraghed and catalogued over 130 species over the years.
Prominent amongst the resident birds are - Khalij Pheasant, Black Francolin, Hill Patridge, Grey WInged blackbirds, Rusty Cheeked and Streak breasted Scimitar babbler, Black lored, green backed and black throated tits, Stripe throated and whiskered Yuhina,Bar throated Siva and Blue Winged Siva, Shikra, Collared Owlet, Black Eagle, Chestnut crowned laughing thrush, grey headed and scaly bellied woodpecker, mountain bulbul etc..
Misty is blessed with a diverse Avi - fauna. However, it is a difficult terrain to do birding because of the foliage.
Early winters bring with it wild cherry blooms, just around Diwali. For the next month or so, it is like a birding festival. You can sit close to any wild cherry tree all day and specie after specie will just come right there. Prominent amongst these are Mrs. Goulds sunbird, Fire tailed and green tailed Sunbirds, Pink browed rosefinch etc.
Late winter brings high altitude birds down like Chestnut Thrush, Dark throated thrush, Verigated laughing thrush, spotted laughing thrush, White collared blackbird etc.
Our homestay at Jhaltola is close in proximity to Ramganga, Saryu, and Baans Pathan - a tributary of Saryu. Of these Baans Pathan is the closest and most easily accessible. Birds can be spotted here in every season. Crested Kingfisher, White throated King Fisher, Brown Dipper, Pipits, and Yellow Fantail, Little and spotted forktails are commonly seen.
You can call Kavita at +91 99103 45220 to plan your stay with us.
If you can't reach her just drop a message and she will call you back in no time.
Or you can call Madhur at +91 99270 39123.
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