The Dainkund–Chowari Jot trek is an easy yet scenic day trek near Dalhousie and Chamba (H.P.). This trek follows a mule trail that links Chowari Jot near Chamba with Pholani Devi Temple at Dainkund.
It is a 5.7-kilometre-long trail with no steep incline which makes this an excellent starter trek for children.
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The most spectacular views over the easiest possible trail.
Sums up Chowari Jot – Dainkund trek for any aspiring trekker. No trail around Dalhousie and Khajjiar affords such majestic views of the Himalayas throughout the journey. Chowari Jot and Dainkund are linked via a 6-kilometre ridge that undulates between an elevation of 2450 and 2750 metres above sea level. The motorable road, on the other hand, dips down steeply to Khajjiar from Chowari Jot and then rises to Dainkund, a total distance of around 30 kilometres. Walking along this ridge provides unparalleled views of Pir Panjal and the Middle Himalayas. Locals and shepherds use this route as a faster than bus alternative to Pholani Devi temple. This trek is an excellent trail for a day out with children, family and friends.
The trail starts at the viewpoint the overlooks the car parking at Chowari Jot. From this viewpoint, the trail meanders along the various viewpoints dotted along the Chowari Jot ridge. Just after the viewpoints, the trail passes along an ugly mini concrete dam. This Frankenstein dam was created by HPTDC (Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Council) to promote tourism (sigh). After the dam, the trail follows the ridge in a northerly direction over several grassy meadows. About two kilometres from the starting point at Chowari Jot the radars at the airforce station in Dainkund are visible on the horizon. From this point onwards, the trail is dotted with numerous small ponds, shepherd shelters, viewpoints and prospective camping grounds. These ponds do not contain potable water, and they are used by shepherds for watering their livestock.
Four and a half kilometres from the start the trail meanders into a long winding left-hand turn. A small shepherd shelter along a pond immediately after this turn is the best viewpoint and picnic spot on this trail. After this shelter the trail passes through a grove of trees and emerges near the Pholani Devi temple at Dainkund. From the temple, you may choose to continue to Dalhousie, Khajjiar or on to the vehicle parking at Dainkund.
- Type - Day Trek. Easy (3-season) to moderate (winter snow).
- Difficulty - Swiss Alpine Club (SAC) Scale - T1.
- Trek Duration - 1.5 – 3 hours.
- Trek Distance - 5.7 kilometres
- Maximum Elevation - 2741 metres
- Starting Point - Chowari Jot (H.P.) car parking.
- Ending Point - Pholani Devi Temple at Dainkund (H.P.).
- How to reach Chowari Jot - Buses ply regularly to Chowari Jot, from Dalhousie, Chamba and Lahru. The last bus from Dalhousie to Chowari Jot leaves Dalhousie GPO at 1530 hours and passes through Khajjiar at 1630 hours. From Chamba bus stand the last HRTC (Himachal Roadways Transport Corporation) bus leaves for Chowari Jot at 1600 hours. Taxis can be rented from Dalhousie and Chamba
- Hotels and Stay at Chowari Jot - A small budget hotel is situated at Chowari Jot. A couple of restaurants sell simple home-cooked meals and a licensed wine shop sells Old Monk. HPTDC viewpoint shelters make excellent sheltered camping area.
- Terrain - An easy trek with no steep incline or decline over a well-defined mule trail. This trail is visible on Google Maps.
- Weather - Pleasant during the day till from March to November and very cold at night.
- Caution – No potable water along the route. Ensure that you carry adequate potable water. It can get very cold at night. If you are planning to camp overnight, make sure to carry enough warm clothes.
- One litre of water per person.
- Sunscreen and a visored cap on a sunny day.
- Cheese and a bottle of white wine with a picnic basket :).