Deoriatal, Deoria tal or the local name Devariyatal, no matter how you spell it, this spot will always be etched as one of the prettiest campsites in my memory.
Okay let’s rewind a little bit here to give you some background on how Deoriatal happened. I was part of a “All women adventure” group of GIO (Great Indian Outdoors) for few days during my adventurous sojourns with the company last week. As soon as I joined the lovely group of eight ladies, all beginners, I was excited to embark on this journey with them.
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Trek to Deoriatal Lake
Our kick-ass all women team was ready to take on the mountains so instead of doing the drab 2 kms stretch from Sari village to Deoriatal, we decided to hike all the way from Ukhimat market, which was an additional 6 kms.
Since I had a fresh travel tattoo on my leg (which was aching and making it hard for me to walk) and I was still recovering from my Vietnamese escapades from the week before, I wasn’t quite sure if I could make it all the way.
My only real long trek experience was the awesome trek to Kheerganga which wasn’t much of a consolation as I was not sure of what to expect here at all – in terms of terrain, altitude and level of difficulty. As always my preparation and planning was poor.
Clueless and unsure, I simply knew I had to do it so I grabbed a trekking stick and embarked on my new adventure with determination. Others in the group had their own dilemmas and inhibitions but we all, as a group, decided to stop overthinking and just do it! This helped because, well, we sure did it and had a blast while we were at it!
The trek itself was full of one scenic view after the other. From snow capped mountains to paddy fields, pretty villages and dense forests, we covered all sorts of landscapes and terrains so there was never a dull moment. We paced ourselves well and took regular short breaks.
We even found a lovely spot underneath some trees and GIO team was kind enough to arrange packed lunch for us hungry, tired trekkers. Getting to enjoy homely meals under a tree where there are no shops for miles around was such a luxury in itself. As always, GIO exceeded our expectations with the quality of food.
Deoriatal – First Look
After around 4 hours of trekking, we had reached our destination – Deoriatal, standing tall at 2438 meters. Just one look at the picturesque setting made us all jump with joy. Picture this – A lovely round lake covered with forests on all sides and snowcapped mountains peeking behind it – That’s Deoriatal!
The sight infront of us was so breathtaking that we could barely contain our excitement. Next, we were taught how to pitch our Alpine tents (And yes, even use our sleeping bags). We were rewarded with pipping hot tea and Maggie for our stellar efforts.
Things to do in Deoriatal
There is a lot to do in and around your campsite in Deoriatal.
Walk around the lake –
The walk around the lake entails a short trail along the dense woods on one side and the stunning landscape with reflections of the snow capped peaks in the lake on other. This is a must-do as soon as you reach the camp or early next morning.
Take pictures –
You cannot help but click away to glory at this spectacular sight in front of you. The view will simply mesmerize you and lift your spirits instantly. The best time for photography is early morning when the sun kissed snow covered peaks reflect beautifully on the Deoriatal lake.
This is a great spot for bird watchers. You can spot some common birds like Blue Magpie, Verditer flycatcher and several tits and bulbuls.
Spot Peaks at the Watch Tower –
A small watch tower is built few meters from the campsite and you can climb up for the perfect view of the himalayan range. Deoriatal gives the best views of the Chaukhamba peak.
Further trekking –
Early next morning, you can enjoy a trek in the woods. We did a short 1.5 hour route and got back to base, however, you can also go all the way to Chopta and continue your adventure from there.
Trek to Self Discovery
Each one of us had their own reasons to do this trek and later on, I realized how important it was in further developing our confidence to trek upto Tungnath & Chandrashila. I also believe that challenging yourself and testing your limits is a long journey towards self discovery and being amidst nature is always a great way of shutting off from the bustling metropolis life most of us are stuck in!
This one trek brought out so many ‘self realization moments’ for each of us and at the end of the group’s 4 day trekking trip, everyone was happy and proud of their accomplishments with a renowned strength and belief in self. I truly believe now that trekking can be spiritual as well as uplifting in so many ways.
Tip – There is no electricity in Deoriatal so carry your power banks and charge your important gadgets (like torch & camera) beforehand. Highly advisable to simply switch off your cellphones and enjoy digital detox for a night in arms of mother nature.
Big thanks to our GIO guides – Govind and Pinki for their constant encouragement and caring attitude. They were simply awesome and managed everything to perfection.
Disclaimer – I was a guest of GIO Adventures on this 10 day adventure trek around Uttrakhand, India. Deoriatal trek was part of my itinerary and I simply loved it.