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Bugyal, when literally translated, means meadow. A Bugyal is high altitude grassland that makes for an excellent grazing ground. These Bugyals remain covered with snow in the winter months but come to life with colors at the advent of summer season. Here are some of the most beautiful Bugyals in the state of Uttarakhand in India –
1. Bedni Bugyal – Situated at the border of Garhwal and Kumaon in the Chamoli district of Uttarakhand, Bedni Bugyal offers the majestic views of the Trishul Parbat. It is situated at an altitude of 11,000 feet. The trek to Bedni starts from Loharjung and is ranked easy on the difficulty level, since one mostly passes through villages to reach this lush meadow. On route to Bedni, Wan is the last village that you cross; it is also the last point where you could get accommodation.
Bedni Bugyal is a part of the Roopkund Trek itinerary too. So to witness the verdancy of this meadow, you could either choose the easy trek to Bedni or go further up to Roopkund which is at a height of 15,600 feet.The route to Bedni Bugyal is through exquisitely beautiful forests of rhododendron and oak. It is a perfect campsite and the Bedni Kund offers the most riveting reflection of the Trishul Peak.
2. Dayara Bugyal – Dayara Bugyal is a full-fledged 7 days trek that again is rated easy. At an altitude of 12,000 feet, Dayara is easily among the top 2 most beautiful high altitude meadows in the Himalayas. It is breathtakingly serene and looks like the most ideal setting for a fairytale. It can be reached from Haridwar via Barsu, and Barnala meadows are where Dayara begins. It is a moderate 5 kms trek from Barnala to Dayara through dense forests.
Vast stretches of lush green captivate your senses from the word go! The end of the climb gives way to undulating meadows with the Himalayas making for the perfect backdrop. From the top one can get mesmerizing views of the Gangotri I, II, III, Srikanth, Rudregaira, Black Peak and many other unnamed Himalayan peaks. The highest point of the Dayara Bugyal Trek is Bakaria Top that offers 360 degree panoramic views of the Greater Himalayas.
3. Panwali Bugyals – Located between Gangotri and Kedarnath, Panwali Bugyals are at heights ranging from 9,000 feet to 13,000 feet. These refreshing grasslands lie on the old pilgrim trail from Gangotri to Kedarnath and hence can be reached from both the sides. For those taking the Gangotri route the starting point is Mala which is 2 kms from Bhatwari. While traveling from the other side, the starting point is Triyuginarain. The nearest railhead is at Rishikesh from where there is a road travel of 154 kms to Ghuttu.
The arrival of summer dots these Bugyals with a plethora of colors owing to the blooming of flowers and herbs. These Bugyals are a part of the Panwali Kantha Trek.