About a year ago, I was quite averse to the idea of going on a trek. In a conversation with a close friend, I was introduced to Nag Tibba, also called the Serpent’s Mountain. At 9,915 feet, this scenic trekking route seems like quite a challenge. However, that’s not the case. It’s a relatively easy trek, and I’d be glad to give you a brief about my journey in this Nag Tibba trek blog.
Considering the staggering height, Nag Tibba is one of the highest peaks in Garhwal. When you reach the top, you’ll be left spellbound with mesmerizing views of Gangotri, Bandarpunch, Srikanth, Kedarnath and Swargarohini peaks. Without any major obstacles or challenges, the journey was a breeze, and ensured that I developed interest in the world of trekking and backpacking.
Here’s My Nag Tibba Trek Blog
The total distance of the trek is about 8 km. That’s a bit more than several famous treks, such as Triund. The trek starts from Pantwari, a small village surrounded by lush dense forests. I was surprised to know that Pantwari is easily accessible by road from Dehradun and Mussoorie. Since I had booked a two-night stay in Mussoorie, my journey started from there.
If you’re planning a Nag Tibba trekking adventure from Delhi or other major north Indian cities, it’s better to reach Dehradun, and catch a bus or a Jeep to Pantwari. Over the years, Nag Tibba trek has gained tremendous popularity, and has become an ideal weekend getaway from several north Indian cities.
Reach Pantwari via Banasari
To start my trip for Mussoorie, I had reached Dehradun railway station. It was easy to book a bus or a cab to Mussoorie Bus Stand or Hill Depot. As it goes with most trips to the mountains, it’s better to start the journey early in the morning. Within a few minutes, I was able to book a bus to Mussoorie.
Complete Nag Tibba VLOG by fellow Trekkers
Please note – You can also take a cab, and buses keep plying between Dehradun and Mussoorie on regular intervals. After a two-night stay in Mussoorie, I was ready for the amazing trek. From Hill Depot, it’s easy to catch a bus for Nainbagh, about 30 km from the popular hill station. Depending on your budget, you can even take a shared Jeep.
Several trekkers who aren’t interested in the ‘road trip’ take a taxi from Hill Depot. I did the same. A taxi doesn’t take much time to drop you in Pantwari. Though the distance between Mussoorie and Pantwari is 56 km, you won’t feel any discomfort. Lush valleys and views of several mountain ranges will keep you occupied. To start Nag Tibba trek, I started for Pantwari around 7 AM, and reached the scenic village around 11 AM.
Since I had booked a taxi, I had the liberty to take multiple halts. On the way, I stopped at a few tea and fast food shops. Delicious homemade parathas and maggi kept me company throughout the journey. I even got lunch packed from one of the shops, and asked the driver to stop for a few minutes at a scenic location on the road. Within a few minutes, I had already started experiencing an enriching trip. That’s what motivated me to write this Nag Tibba trek blog.
Once you’ve reached Pantwari, it’s time to leave for Nag Tibba. You can consider a suitable time to start the trek, or camp overnight near the forest. If you’re carrying a good amount of backpacks and trekking equipment, it’s better to hire a mule. It’s always better to hire an experienced and a seasoned guide to accompany you for Nag Tibba trekking. With a professional, you’re able to gain insight about weather, terrain and culture.
When you start the trek, you need to stay on the village’s main road. In about 100 metres, take a right, which takes you deep within the village. A short, 50 metre ascend takes you to a cemented gate. The sign clearly says, ‘Gramsabha Banasari’. As the name suggests, it’s the entry point for another beautiful village called Banasari. Your true Nag Tibba trekking experience starts from this point.
Take a deep breath before you start Nag Tibba trek. It’s going to be a mesmerizing and an unforgettable journey. On crossing the cemented gate, you’ll see two small temples. One of the temples is dedicated to Maa Bhavani. The other, according to legends, is dedicated to Nag Devta (Serpent God). Locals believe that the Serpent God protects local cattle from snake bites, and hence, offer prayers in this temple on a regular basis. Keep reading this Nag Tibba trek blog to know more.
Village Banasari – The True Starting Point
I thought I’d explain the route in my Nag Tibba trek blog to help you plan things on your own. Once you’ve started walking on the trail, you need to keep going for about 10 minutes. You’ll see a water tank, and a narrow motorable road. From here, a clearly-marked trail will take you to the top of the mountain. After walking for a few minutes, soak in breathtaking aerial views of the scenic Pantwari village. A zig-zag trail with a few flat patches will be your friend for the next 30 minutes.
After you’ve walked on this trail for a while, you’ll notice it getting divided into two lanes. While one goes in the northern direction, the other takes you to the south. You need to take the one going in the southern direction. Within 10 minutes, you’ll cross a fodder house. In a few more minutes, you’ll start ascending a zig-zag trail on a lush mountain.
Keep walking for about 20 minutes, and you’ll arrive at a platform, which provides some much-needed shade. Nearby, there’s a water tank being fed by a pipe. It’s drinkable water, and you can fill your water bottles from the tank. A short, 10 minute rest will be enough before you start walking again. Though Nag Tibba trekking is relatively easy, this patch will require you to cross some moderate ascends.
After some time, you’ll reach another shade area. Another zig-zag trail is clearly visible near the cattle shed. This one takes you straight up the mountain. You need to ascend for about 20 minutes to reach a flat path in the south. On your left, there will be stunning views of grassy mountains and the lush Doon valley. With such scenic beauty, every step on Nag Tibba trek makes you feel much closer to nature.
Whenever I rested on the journey, I penned down a few thoughts for this Nag Tibba trek blog. At the time, I didn’t know I’d be overwhelmed by the numerous memories I built throughout the trek. On the journey, you’ll find some good rest stops, which provide you with enough shade. When temperature rises, the cool breeze from the forest will keep you company.
If you haven’t been on a lot of treks, the journey can seem tiring. You’ll simply love the first rest stop, which offers huge shade under the trees. Moreover, it also has a water source. This will keep you confident for the rest of the journey, and you have good reason to be positive. The next rest stop, Buranstikhol, offers stunning panoramic views of the mountain ranges and the valley.
If you’ve planned the trek with an experienced guide, you’ll be able to find multiple water sources without any trouble. In the mountain ranges, natural water sources are rich in essential minerals. During monsoon season, it’s even easier to find clean, drinkable water. However, before you start Nag Tibba trekking, it’s better to discuss these parameters with your guide.
The Mesmerizing Valley Views
For about 60 minutes, you need to keep walking on flat patches. With moderate ascends, these won’t cause any troubles. In some time, you’ll be surrounded by dense forests. Throughout the journey, you’ll be left mesmerized by the scenic views. When you’ve walked for a while on this trail, you’ll notice some village huts and cattle sheds. After passing the small huts on your left, you’ll reach the forest trail’s starting point.
From this point, you’ll be enjoying the dense forests, lined with Pine, Oak and Rhododendron trees. After walking for a few minutes, you’ll notice a small reservoir on the right side. Once again, this is an ideal place to get some rest. As mentioned earlier in this Nag Tibba trek blog, Pantwari is considered to be the starting point for the trek. Welcome, you’ve reached Pantwari.
Located at 1,350 metres, Pantwari is a beautiful village, which marks the beginning of a wholesome Nag Tibba trekking experience. A rocky trail will keep you company for 2.5 km. With moderate ascends, you’ll reach 2,000 metres above sea level. This stretch takes about 90 minutes to cover. I met several other trekkers on the way. Most of them told me that this stretch was the only difficult patch in the journey. On this trail, you’ll find three sources of natural water.
A Journey Through the Forest
After some time on this trail, you’ll enter the forest. With a 20 minute hike through the dense forest, you’ll reach a grassy patch, offering stunning views of the valley. In a few minutes, you’ll enter another patch of dense trees. After about 100 metres, the trail again takes you to a grassy patch, which is considered to be an ideal campsite.
According to every Nag Tibba trek blog, this route has some of the most dense forest covers in Uttarakhand. The entire trail is lined with scenic Rhododendron, Oak and Pine trees. On some of the higher branches, you’ll notice Ashwagandha, Vajradanti and other useful herbs. Some trekkers even reported encountering Himalayan Eagles, Himalayan Black Bears and Leopards.
An Amazing Camping Experience
One of the best parts of my Nag Tibba trekking experience were the friends I made. When I started the journey, I had no plans of staying overnight. During the trek, I made a few friends, who wanted to camp overnight in Kathian. One of the most scenic places I’ve ever seen, Kathian gave stunning views of the Himalayas, and was surrounded by dense forest.
After walking through the forest, you’ll reach a grassy patch. Some steps ahead, you’ll again enter the forest, only to find another grassy patch. Keep walking on this stretch for about 30 minutes, and you’ll reach a huge ground with a cemented hut-like structure. This is considered to be the Nag Tibba base, and serves as an amazing campsite for trekkers.
Setting Up at the Base
With multiple flat patches in this ground, it’s easy to set up a tent. According to seasoned trekkers, it’s better to pitch your tent on the left side of the hut-like cemented structure. If you want to fetch drinking water, you can visit the Nag Devta temple. Nearby, you’ll notice a small water body. Most trekkers on Nag Tibba trek use this water for cooking.
If you’re planning the trek in winter season, it’s essential to light a bonfire. With a reputed tour operator, you don’t have to worry about these things. In our newly-formed group, we had a seasoned trekker, who was able to manage these things without any issues. After a delicious meal, we rested under the stars, waiting for another amazing day.
Climbing the Peak
If you’ve read this Nag Tibba trek blog thoroughly, you must have noticed my emphasis on early mornings. Personally, I like to see sunrises, especially when I’m travelling in the mountains. The sounds of chirping birds felt like music to the ears, and the scenic views of the Himalayas kept my mind occupied. On the eastern side, I could see the beautiful Nag Tibba mountain. I had an early breakfast, and started the climb around 8 AM.
Once you start walking from the cemented structure, you’ll notice a rocky trail. It takes you straight up the mountain. Throughout the journey, Himalayan peaks will form the perfect backdrop. After about 100 metres, you’ll again enter the dense forest. Sounds of animals and birds will be your true friend for the day. In half an hour, you’ll reach a clearing, often covered in snow. Your Nag Tibba trekking experience will begin to get more exciting.
Since Nag Devta is worshipped by locals, you’ll meet several locals on this journey. People from small villages frequent this route to offer prayers to the Serpent God. Observing the region gives you a glimpse of the simplistic mountain lifestyle. After about 60 minutes, you’ll reach a ridge with steep falls on one side. In another 10 minutes, you’ll notice a flat path, which takes you to the summit.
About 50 metres from the flat path, you can easily notice a flag on top of Nag Tibba peak. From the summit, you can get stunning views of several Himalayan ranges. Some popular peaks include Gangotri, Kedarnath, Bandarpunch, Chanabang, Kalanag and Swargarohini. If you’re in the company of friends, don’t miss out on taking several pictures from this scenic location.
After spending a good amount of time on the peak, you can start the descend. It takes about one hour to return to the basecamp. After a light lunch, you can take some rest, before starting your journey back to Pantwari. You can easily retrace the steps. As mentioned earlier in this Nag Tibba trek blog, on your way back to Dehradun or Mussoorie, you can again take stops at a few tea or fast food shops.
What’s the Best Time to Plan a Visit?
While I went for Nag Tibba trekking in April, the months between October and March are considered to be ideal for a visit. From January to March, the entire region receives heavy snowfall. If you’re not keen about snow-trekking, you should skip these months, just like me. Unlike other treks, Nag Tibba trek is open throughout the year. However, summer season gives you a chance to view the majestic Himalayas with clear skies.
Since the region receives cool breeze throughout the year, Nag Tibba trekking has become an ideal getaway for trekkers and backpackers. During monsoon season, temperature dips sharply, and you’d encounter sudden showers. With rains, the region gets a new life, and you’re able to catch stunning views of the lush Doon valley.
If you’re looking for solitude, and don’t want the company of other trekkers, you should plan Nag Tibba trek in winter months. Considered to be one of the most amazing winter treks, the snow-clad trail takes you on a thrilling journey. Regardless of the month you choose, it’s always better to plan the trip under the supervision and guidance of an experienced guide.
I hope this Nag Tibba trek blog will be useful for trekkers and backpackers interested in planning a visit. If you’re interested in this trek, Renok Adventures would be a good choice. A lot of my friends have gone on treks and tours with Renok Adventures, and personally vouch for the amazing experiences. In fact, that’s what encouraged me to write this Nag Tibba trek blog on Renok Adventures’ portal. If you want to read another Nag Tibb trek blog, or get in touch with their team, please click here.