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Proceeding towards Hemkunt Sahib.....

Rishikesh. On their way comes the historical city of Dehradoon. This city was founded by Baba Ram Rai son of Guru Har Rai Sahib Ji. The Guru had deserted

Baba Ram Rai due to his misinterpretation of the Gurbani. Baba Ram Rai also showed some miracles to Aurangzeb. King Aurangzeb gave him four villages in the Doon area as a reward. When the Guru Har Rai Ji and Sikhs decided not to see his face, he went to Srinagar Garwaal and became a great friend of Raja Fateh Chand. Due to his miracle powers Raja Fateh Chand annexed some territory of Raja Medani Prakash. He had many followers known as Masands. As Baba had no issue to inherit his property so Masands were trying their best to occupy the Dera. Baba Ram Rai shifted to Dehradoon. There he was cremated alive while in deep meditation. When his wife Panjab Kaur complained about this to Guru Gobind Singh he went to Dehradoon and gave severe punishment to the guilty Masands.

So many pilgrims also stay at Dehradoon and visit all the historical places.

From Dehradoon they reach Rishikesh. Rishikesh is considered to be a very holy place of Hindus. It is situated at a distance of 24 kilometers form Hardwar. Here the Sikh devotees had built a very beautiful Gurdwara where langar and tea is served day and night. Here pilgrims from all sides get together. There are also many temples and Dharamshalas, so the pilgrims do not face any difficulty in getting accommodation for night stay. Being a historical place there are many important spots to see. Near Rishikesh there is a Swarg Ashram. This Ashram had been serving the people since long. Near Swarg Ashram there is situated a very beautiful place known as Lakshman Jhula. This Jhula is just a bridge across the river, The sight of the temple and bridge is worth seeing. It becomes difficult to leave that place easily. Then comes Devprayag. This prayag is situated at the confluence of Bhagirthi and Alknanda rivers.

From Rishikesh at a distance of 110 kilometers comes the city of Srinagar. Some pilgrims also stay at Srinagar and visit the important historical places. It is also said that Gurdwara of Srinagar possesses two copies of handwritten Guru Granth Sahib. From Srinagar the pilgrims set out for Joshi Math. Many beautiful places come in their way. There also come many prayags in the way, where confluence of rivers presents beautiful scenery.


From Rishikesh pilgrims start their journey for Joshi Math. This city is 170 k.m. away from Rishikesh. In the way come many beautiful Prayags. The second important Prayag is known as Rudar Prayag. This Prayag is confluence of Alaknanda and Mandakani rivers. There is also situated a historical temple of Saint Rudar Nath. The travellers, who have to go to Kedar Nath, that place is very important for them. From here a road along Mandakani river goes upto Kedar Nath. Kedar Nath is about 54 miles from this Prayag. From Rudar Prayag the travelers reach Gauchar. Gauchar has been now converted into a very important place. Here the central government has formed four helipads for the journey of the VIP's and ministers. From Rudar Prayag we reach Karan Prayag. This place is confluence of river Alknanda and Pindar Ganga. The water of these rivers is very pure and through it we can see even the smallest particles. The small coloured: pebbles look like gems and jewels..

After enjoying the confluence of Karan Prayag the pilgrims reach village Chamoli. This place is junction of two roads coming from Kedar Nath..

Enjoying the natural scenes of the mountains and rivers we reach Joshi Math. The Hemkunt-Trust has built a very beautiful Gurdwara there. This Gurdwara provides all types of facilities to the pilgrims. It is also said that there are many old manuscripts in the possession of this Gurdwara. In this Gurdwara the holy Dasam Granth Sahib is also enshrined for the study of the pilgrims. There is also a large Dharmsala in this city. Thousands of travelers can stay in this Dharmsala. This Dharmsala is known as 'Kali Kambli' Dharmsala.

Joshi Math is one of the four important Maths of Shankracharia. It is a well-known historical city. Badri Nath is considered to be the highest sacred place. When due to severe cold weather, it becomes difficult to stay there, then the residents of Badri Nath climb down to Joshi Math. There are many old temples in this city. The Naths bring with them idols of the Badri Nath temple and worship those here. There is also an old path which connects Joshi Math with Mansarovar and Kailaslh Parbat. Tapo-ban is only eight miles away from this city. There is also an old tree near the cave of Shankracharya. It is believed that the life of this tree is more than 25000 years.

In the main Bazaar Gurdwara Dusht Daman is situated. This Gurdwara was constructed in the supervision of Sant Thandi Singh. It was got completed in 1966. Later on the Hemkunt-Trust built the residential buildings. In Gurdwara Dushat Daman, the travellers are provided all types of facilities. The pilgrims stay there at night and next day early in the morning start their journey towards Gobind Ghat. In the way, comes Vishnu Prayag where river Akalnanda and Vishnu Ganga confluence. This is fifth and last Prayag. When we go further we see a mountain of great height. On one side of the mountain there is Lakshmi Temple and on the other side there is a pond of very hot water. 

There are also temples of Nar Singh, Bhagwati, Durga Dass Dev and Jaiteshwar god. As we continue our journey we feel fascinated to see the natural beauty all around. Though the tiresome journey overpowers our physical calibre, but the divine message of the celestial power solaces us so much that we forget all types of fatigues.

We remember and praise the supreme Lord for His wonderful creation. We realize that we should not forget him, who has given us the life to see such beautiful spots. There, the holy Baani of Jaap Sahib revolves in our minds and we recite it again and again.


After staying for a night at Joshi Math, the Pilgrims start for the next halt of Gobind Ghat.

From Joshi Math to Gobind Ghat the Pilgrims travel in buses ,cars ,scooters. This journey is about 25 miles. Gobind Ghat is situated at an altitude of 6000 feet. above sea level. A very beautiful Gurdwara had been built there.

Gobind Ghat is also a confluence of Akalnanda and Hem Ganga. The water of Hem Ganga comes down from Hemkunt Sarovar. From Gobind Ghat one road leads to Hemkunt Sahib and the other to the historical temple of Badri Nath

This Gurdwara was built under the supervision of Havaldar Modan Singh in 1944-45 A.D. There is also a big Hall for the purpose of Langar. The next journey from Gobind Ghat to Gobind Dham has to be completed by foot, so the travellers deposit their heavy luggage in this Gurdwara. They take with them umbrellas, a special type of stick and some medicines and edible things. The distance between Gobind Ghat and Gobind Dham is 12 Kilometers. Though obviously this distance does not seem so lengthy. But this distance is more arduous and tiresome. The old men, women and children who cannot, climb or walk engage ponies, palanquins and other carriers.

Those pilgrims who had not brought with them empty bottles to bring back the Amrit of the Hemkunt Sarovar, take such needful things from the Gurdwara.

The atmosphere of this area is very pleasant and pilgrims can visit this place from the months of April to November. Many pilgrims also visit other holy and historical places. Some travellers visit the world famous valley of flowers and others pay homage to the historical temple of Badri Nath and other temples of their choice. Such pilgrims are also welcomed at Gurdwara Gobind Ghat and they enjoy the available facilities without any distinction. Even the local people take the facility of the free kitchen. In the beginning those people were allergesic towards the Sikhs. They were afraid that their properties and fields might be usurped by the Sikhs forcibly. But now they feel very happy and welcome pilgrims amicably.

The Sikh pilgrims had provided them many types of employments and they earn a lot during the season.

When we start our journey from Gobind Ghat towards Gobind Dham, we have to cross the river Alaknanda. In earlier days there were no means to cross the river. The devotees were crossing the river by tying thick ropes. But that was very difficult and dangerous. After sometime a bridge was made by tying wooden planks with thick and strong ropes. But women, children and old men did not dare to cross that bridge. That bridge shook so violently that the pilgrims had to be very cautious to step further. But now the Hemkunt-Trust had constructed a very solid concrete bridge. Now this bridge connects Gobind Ghat with the valley of Lok Pal.

After crossing the bridge the people continue their journey while chanting hymns of Gurus. They also chant hymns in praise of Guru Gobind Singh and Lok Pal Dushat Daman Ji.

There are small shops at every beautiful scenic spot. Travellers rest there and enjoy the tea and other edible things. As they have to reach Gobind Dham in eight or nine hours, so they travel at their will without much haste.

There are two villages that come in the way. There is one village known as Bhaundar. On the right side of this village flows a small rivulet. If we travel along this river we reach Haathi Parbat, Ghora Parbat and Kaag Bhasund Parbat. In the way there are also many dense jungles. We have to cross these jungles very carefully. In the early periods people have to climb up by the support of these trees. But now a smooth path has been prepared and the pilgrims do not feel much difficulty.

After crossing the jungle, we see the building of Gurdwara Gobind Dham. All pilgrims feel relieved and they thank the Almighty for their safe journey. They feel as if they have reached their own Dham (house).

In the evening the pilgrims reach the Gurdwara Gobind Dham.This is last halt for the devotees going to Hemkunt Sahib. This is the first such a magnificent and beautiful Gurdwara to be situated at a height of ten thousand feet above the sea level. Here thousands of pilgrims can stay at night and there is no scarcity of blankets and beds. A free kitchen remains open at the service of the devotees for twenty-four hours. This beautiful Gurdwara had been constructed by the Hemkunt-Trust. The Gurdwara has been built at a very beautiful place. Here rivulet Lakshman and rivulet Pushpa meet each other. This area is called as Ghaaghria. The atmosphere of this area is very peaceful and calm.The natural beauty creates a spiritual awakening and a Divine Music of word plays within one's soul. On hearing this music the devotee finds bliss and sings the praise of God. Man forgets his worldly affairs , instead the light of Lord sparkles from his head. Here man realizes creator and His creation.

Next day early in the morning the pilgrims start for their final goal to pay homage to Hemkunt Sahib. As it is very difficult to stay at Hemkunt Sahib the pilgrims try their best to go earlier so that they might return back during that day.


The distance between Gobind Dham and Hemkunt Sahib is about six-seven kilometers. Though it is very difficult to ascend such steep heights, but the desire to see the place of dreams encourages them to climb such a difficult path.

In earlier days there was not smooth path to reach Hemkunt Sahib. So the people had to take the help of stones and brushes. But now the Hemkunt-Trust has made a smooth and regular path.

When we start to climb, it does not seem so difficult. But after half a kilometer the steep becomes so straight that we have to put great stress for a single step. But where there is a will, there is a way. The eagerness to pay homage to Guru Gobind Singh's Tapo-Bhoomi' makes all difficulties easy.

When we finish half the distance then the area of deep forests ends. Then we feel amazed to see very beautiful and attractive scenes. We see a flower named as Braham Kanwal. We know that Kanwal is a flower of water. But when we see this Kanwal of rocks, we forget about our tiredness.

In the way there are also some trees of Bhoj Patar’ When we ascend further we are wonder struck to have a glimpse of Sri Hemkunt Sahib. Sometimes we see towards the holy Sarovar and another time towards the lotus shaped Gurdwara. We feel as if we have reached the heaven.

When we are confirmed that actually we have reached Tapo-asthan of Guru Gobind Singh, we see in our imagination the true Guru Gobind Singh on all sides. We forget ourselves. We feel as if we have become dead and are lying in the lap of Sat Guru Gobind Singh Ji.

It is such a rare experience one feels in his life. . Such a scene and blissful hour never comes again.

A man realizes it again and again in his imagination, but true view of Tapo-asthan and surrounding area becomes a myth for him. A man wants again to feel such peace and tranquilly. But who knows when that hour would come again.

After reaching there the people take bath in the Sarovar and then go to the Gurdwara to pay homage to the holy Tapo-Asthan.

When we reach the holy place of Sri Hemkunt Sahib we get a glimpse of Amrit Sarovar (The pond of Nectar) the tank is situated at the height of 15210 ft. above the sea level. This Sarovar is 400 yards long and 200 yards wide. This had been surrounded by the Himalayan peaks. On its three sides the Sapt Sring (seven peaks) are shining elegantly. These peaks change their colours according to the atmospheric conditions. Some times they look snow white, some times of golden colour, sometimes of crimson red colour and sometimes brown blue colour makes them mountains of jewels and rubies. The time has so changed that these seven peaks have been tamed by the devotees of Guru Gobind Singh. Now the seven peaks are adorned with the Kesari Nishan Sahibs every year. When on bright days we see towards these peaks these Nishan Sahibs look like pencils. There was time when no human being even imagined to climb over these seven peaks. But by the Grace of the Great Guru these peaks have become just a game of mountaineering for the Sikhs of Guru Gobind Singh.

In this field the name of Sant Surat Singh is worth mentionable. He was not only a Saint but also a great warrior of possible tasks. The first peak of the left side is not only highest, but also too complicated to be climbed easily. But Sant Surat Singh thought that there was nothing impossible in the world. He planned to conquer this peak and in order to do that he took some iron hooks, chains and other necessary material to achieve the target. He was the first man to climb this peak.

The chains and hooks which he had installed on the rocks, had made it easy to ascend the peak.

Now-a-days the devotees of Guru Gobind Singh, who want to climb peak they, with the assistance of these hooks and chains, reach the top without much difficulty.

Those devotees who install 'Nishan Sahibs' on all the seven peaks every year, tell that there is also a small pond near the fourth peak, whose water falls into the Hemkunt Sarovar.

Near Hemkunt Sahib and even on the upper region flowers are rare. But there is a flower like the lotus grown in the rocks. This lotus flower is called Braham Kanwal. Generally the lotus flowers blooms in water, but when we see it, in the rocks, we are astonished to see such a miracle of the nature.

The lake, fed by springs and waterfalls, is cold. Until mid June, all but a narrow margin of water along the shore is covered by ice. The men bathe outside after removing their clothes beneath a shelter. For women there is a separate enclosure inside the gurdwara itself: a bath fed by water which flows from Hemkunt and then cascades down the slope toward Gobind Dham. Most enter the frigid water slowly, utter a prayer, then take a series of brisk dips before scampering back to shore. Some pause for a moment to have photos taken to preserve the event. Local youths are on hand to photograph, for a fee, those without cameras.

The water of the lake is holy water. It is referred to as amrit (nectar) or jal (holy water). Shops along the route sell plastic bottles which visitors fill when they reach Hemkunt. Later, after the congregational Ardas has been said  People like to take some  parshad (consecrated food) presented by one of the granthi, Sometimes they are given to friends and relations so that those who could not make the journey can feel a spiritual connection with the sacred place, symbolized by the material object.

Two congregational services are held daily at Gurdwara Sri Hemkunt Sahib, the first at ten o'clock and the second at one o'clock. Both centre around the Ardas (the Sikh standard prayer) and the reading of the daily hukamnama (the verse at the top of the left hand page of the Guru Granth Sahib when the book is opened at random; understood to be the command of the Guru for the day). Often, visitors who can sing kirtan seat themselves behind tabla (drums), harmonium (organs), and microphones to sing before the assembled crowd. Their music and voices are broadcast outside of the gurdwara over loudspeakers, and echo across the surface of the water and off of the surrounding rock walls. Before the group prayer, set shabads are sung by the whole of the congregation. Then the granthi takes the microphone, welcomes the congregation to Hemkunt Sahib, and explains the significance of their darshan and ishnan. He relates the story of Hemkunt as it was told in Guru Gobind Singh's autobiography. He then sings, accompanied by all, another shabad as he unfurls donated rumalas over the Guru Granth Sahib, then he moves to stand before it to begin the Ardas.

The devotees who go towards the seven peaks, they describe that there grow two other varieties of the lotus known as Shiv Kanwal and Vishnu Kanwal. Those are different in size and colour. These flowers can bear the very acute cold weather.

The atmosphere around the Hemkunt Sahib is very pleasant and charming. There grows a velvet type of grass, which makes a man very comfortable and peaceful when one sleeps on it. In the pleasant weather the pilgrims enjoy while walking on this grass.

Those people who stay at night in this valley they tell that during night very peculiar and strange sounds are heard.

Now Hemkunt Sahib is not a myth but a reality. The Hemkunt-Trust has constructed pacca roads and magnificent Gurdwaras for the help of the devotees..

 Some devotees have made it a routine to visit Hemkunt Sahib every year.Thousands of sewaks have been engaged for helping the pilgrims. The people have not to stay in costly hotels. Throughout the journey they get free accommodation and meals. 

Some people call Sri Nagar or Switzerland as the heavens on earth but if one has to see the real heaven then he must visit Hemkunt Sahib.

The Sikhs are very fortunate that they have two nectar pools to redeem their impiety. One such pool is at Amritsar. Guru Arjan Dev Ji writes, " Who takes bath in Nectar pool of Amritsar, is washed of his all types of sins and vices.”

The second such Sarovar is at Hemkunt Sahib. Those who take a dip in that Sarovar also become pure and get salvation. The perpetual wandering in eighty-four lakh species ends.

It has been seen that Amrit brought from Hemkunt Sahib never changes its colour or taste. A devotee, who even drinks few drops of it, feels hale and healthy.

Waheguru Ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fathe.