Annual Amarnath Yatra
The Amarnath Yatra is an annual Hindu pilgrimage to the Amarnath cave in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. The cave is located at an altitude of 3,888 meters above sea level, and is considered one of the holiest shrines in Hinduism. The pilgrimage is undertaken by millions of devotees every year, who trek through the rugged terrain of the Himalayas to reach the cave. Pahalgam, a scenic town located in the Anantnag district of Jammu and Kashmir, is one of the primary starting points for the Amarnath Yatra.
Pahalgam is a beautiful town that is situated on the banks of the Lidder River. The town is surrounded by mountains, and is known for its natural beauty and scenic views. Pahalgam is also an important destination for adventure sports enthusiasts, who come here to indulge in activities such as trekking, mountaineering, and river rafting.
Amarnath Yatra Trek
The Amarnath Yatra starts from Pahalgam, and pilgrims have to trek through a rugged terrain to reach the cave. The trek to the cave is about 46 kilometers long, and takes about three to four days to complete. The trek is quite challenging, as it involves steep climbs and descents, and passes through several high-altitude passes.
The trek from Pahalgam to the Amarnath cave is divided into several stages. The first stage is from Pahalgam to Chandanwari, which is a distance of about 16 kilometers. Chandanwari is a small town located at an altitude of 2,895 meters above sea level, and is known for its scenic views and natural beauty.
The second stage of the trek is from Chandanwari to Sheshnag, which is a distance of about 12 kilometers. Sheshnag is a high-altitude campsite located at an altitude of 3,658 meters above sea level. The campsite is named after the mythical serpent Sheshnag, who is believed to have accompanied Lord Shiva to the Amarnath cave.
The third stage of the trek is from Sheshnag to Panchtarni, which is a distance of about 13 kilometers. Panchtarni is a high-altitude campsite located at an altitude of 3,657 meters above sea level. The campsite is named after the five rivers that are believed to have originated from the cave.
The final stage of the trek is from Panchtarni to the Amarnath cave, which is a distance of about six kilometers. The cave is located at an altitude of 3,888 meters above sea level, and is considered one of the holiest shrines in Hinduism. The cave is believed to house an ice stalagmite that represents Lord Shiva, and is visited by millions of devotees every year.
The Amarnath Yatra is a challenging trek, and pilgrims need to be physically fit and mentally prepared to undertake it. The trek passes through some of the most beautiful and scenic locations in the Himalayas, and offers stunning views of snow-capped mountains, glaciers, and rivers. The trek is also a great opportunity to experience the rich culture and traditions of the region, and to meet fellow pilgrims from different parts of India and the world.