The less trodden trail of Jumma-Dronagiri which is associated with Lord Hanuman’s search for the life-saving herb, Sanjeevni Booti has come into limelight for all good reasons. As this venerated trekking route has been declared as the trek of the year by Uttarakhand State Government for 2017. The rewarding 15 km Jumma-Dronagiri trek will be taken to the front race with the help of the locals, who are very much familiar with the region.
The Garhwal Commissioner has been nominated as the nodal officer with Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam, which is the nodal agency for this trek. In order to lure the backpackers to traverse on the elusive Garhwal Himalayas and offer livelihood opportunities to the locals, the government is promoting tourism in Dronagiri Mountains, that finds its mention in several Hindu legends. You can do this trek with GMVN that will begin from May 21 to October 21, 2017.
In the deep dark valleys of Garhwal region stands many imperial Himalayan peaks radiating their lustre with great pride but beyond the reach of the mortals, stands a lone mountain called Dronagiri. This Herculean mountain is best remembered for appearing in the epic Ramayana. It now houses the minion Droonagiri village named after the Droonagiri Parvat. The mountain is known for its medicinal herbs that can treat any disease or wound.
For those of who are not familiar with the epic, Droonagiri was the place where Lord Hanuman went to fetch the life-resurrecting herb Sanjeevni Booti for Lakshman who was severely wounded by Meghnath. Taking the advice of Sushain Vaidya (Herbalist), Lord Hanuman went to Droonagiri but failed to find the herb. Having no other option, Hanuman then lifted the herb filled mountain top of Droonagiri and flew back to Lanka. Vaidya Sushain identified the herb and was able to revive Lakshman. Overlooking the minion Dronagiri village, one can see the chopped mountain top that narrates the tale of Hanuman’s vandalism.
The natives of Dronagiri village refrain from worshipping and taking the name of Lord Hanuman as they believe that the right flank of the mountain (referred to as Parvat Dev) was chopped off by Hanuman, which their ancestors used to worship. Since the ecologically sensitive zone of this hillside was disfigured by Hanuman, nobody in the village houses the idol of Hanuman and from centuries, the villagers have expunged all the references made to Hanuman during Ramlila.
Dirt off your backpack as its time to have an exhilarating trekking expedition to Dronagiri mountain. This 15 km brisk trek to Dronagiri starts from Jumma, a tiny hamlet snuggled on the Joshimath-Malari road. The drive to Jumma allows you to pass through the tranquil banks of Dhauli Ganga. Begin your trek, by crossing the suspension bridge erected over the glittering Dhauli Ganga river. To savour a gorgeous panorama of Dronagiri peak, you need to trek 2 km further to a place called ‘Dhaar’.
A gentle climb will take you to Dhaar from where you admire a resplendent view of Dronagiri Peak. If you want to explore more, then you can trek 4 km further to Nandi Kund, revealing an awe-inspiring view of Dronagiri East, Changa Banga, Hardeol, Trishul, Kalanka and many other peaks. Tucked away at an altitude of 4,630 metres lies the Bagini Glacier located at a distance of 8 km from here. Walk barefoot on the semi-green patches, spot some high altitude animals like the musk deer, bharal, monal and make your sojourn worthwhile.
256 km Drive: Rishikesh to Joshimath
45 km Drive: Joshimath to Jumma
3 km Trek: Jumma to Ruing
8 km Trek: Ruing to Dronagiri
7 km Trek: Dronagiri to Lower Bagini
5 km Trek: Lower Bagini to Upper Bagini
12 km Trek: Upper Bagini to Dronagiri Village
5+5 km Trek: Dronagiri to Nandikund & Back
6+6 km Trek: Dronagiri to Dronagiri Parvat & Back to Dronagiri Village
Dronagiri to Malari
5 km Trek: Dronagiri to Kanarikhal
2 km Trek: Kanarikhal to Rajkharak
3 km Trek: Rajkharak to Kalla Khal
6 km Trek: Kalla Khal to Malari