If you say that all mountains look the same, and the mountains of Jibhi are no different, then you and I are different.
Well, I get that a lot, as a mountain lover, I surely see that each mountain has a unique beauty. I mean you could say that every city is the same, in one way or the other. At the same, every different city has its uniqueness. That’s why we travel right?
It had been a while since my last trip to the mountains, and that was nearly 2 years ago. With the pandemic going on, I restricted traveling as much I could. After the 2nd dose of vaccination, I felt a little more confident to make it this time.
In addition, I had a bunch of enthusiasts that added the extra fuel to the fire. It doesn’t take much to convince me to go to the mountains, my year is usually filled with 2 trips at least. This was the longest that I had refrained and I could sense that it was getting too much.
I had read about Jibhi more than a few times, how it was a quaint and a quiet village compared to a lot of other commercial hill stations. We just randomly chose Jibhi, not much research went into finding the things to do or the places to stay at.
We commonly believed that it was the best thing to do and keep things refreshing for us.
What was so different about Jibhi?
One of the first things that we noticed is that once on the way to Jibhi, the entire road trip was filled with magnificent views. The air was cooler and moist which was incredibly refreshing after leaving Delhi that was so heated up.
The small village-town is situated at the bottom of the valley with the river flowing. The river was much like a stream but with good water flow after the monsoon, the sound of the river all day long was simply out of a world experience.
The kind of places that I usually care to visit is those that are not fully occupied by tourists. I mean, yes, we were tourists too but I guess we all tend to get as far away from each other as possible.
You can imagine that living in a city like Delhi, at times you ought to get tired of constant human interaction. At least, I do, everyone is built differently. I personally prefer the quiet, more of nature and less of artificial noise.
Jibhi offered us just that, we could peacefully walk around or visit cafes and restaurants, where not many people were chattering constantly.
We had no specific plans to follow or an itinerary. That also gave us the freedom to do whatever we wanted to do. The idea was to take a trip, relax and take it all in. At least, as much as we could.
If you had nothing to do, just a little hike down the river and sitting by it would easily take hours from your day. I find that looking at the water flowing carelessly and with all the force in itself is just therapeutic.
You know you are in the right place when it feels good to be there. I felt, Happier, perhaps!
Is there anything to do in Jibhi?
There’s always something to do if you choose to. There are plenty of temples to visit, waterfall, amazing cafes, day hikes, camping, etc.
I drew a conclusion that it is best suited for someone that is really looking to get away from all the chaos. Considering the new trend of workation is picking up, Jibhi can be the perfect spot. I mean, if your work requires a high-speed internet connection then you might want to rethink it.
I designed, web pages and worked on CMS without much trouble for the most part with just the mobile network. The WiFi at the hostel or the cafes wasn’t much stronger than the cell phone 4G.
We didn’t exactly sit around the river for all the days we stayed. Not knowing what to do, we reached out to a couple of locals and some folks from Delhi that were living there for a few months.
We ended up shortlisting a couple of places. One was the notoriously famous Sarloskar Lake and another was the Jibhi waterfall.
The waterfall visit came down first on the list considering that it was much closer and was at a walkable distance. Isn’t that really cool, a waterfall in walking distance.
Of course, the walking distance could mean different for everyone. Walking slow, one could actually get there in less than 30 mins. One of our friends’ moms who was much older than the rest of us, easily made it.
I think that waterfall was the only crowded place that I had noticed. The path was man-made and well defined and easy for even older folks to walk. When you get closer to the fall, the entire surrounding is covered in moss and greenery. Along with a little bit of rain, and the water diffused from the fall, the air around was colder. The water was even colder.
Just being in presence of nature, was soothing for me. I quickly failed to notice the people around us and quickly got as close to the waterfall as possible.
Behind that little stone wall close to the fall, there’s a little pond that you can get into. We quickly got in there, knee-deep and the water falling almost 2 feet away. I had to turn towards the fall and feel the water sprinkling on my face, remove all the fatigue (we had been walking all day), and fill me with more energy to go around for the rest of the day.
The Sarloskar Lake
This one kept us contemplating. Mixed responses from people about the 5 km hike and its intensity. We also had one person that was older and another one who had a twisted ankle. After an intense dorm room conversation, everyone unanimously agreed to go for the hike.
Yes, we left on time in the morning.
We were at a slightly higher altitude than where we were staying, we could feel that in the cold air. It seemed like it was going to rain but apparently didn’t besides a mild drizzle.
I got to admit that the trail was the most peaceful part of the entire hike. For the most part, it was fairly easy except for some sections that were fairly steep. Anyone with average fitness can easily make it.
The trail was moist but not wet, the air was cooler with enough moisture and the only thing that we could see was trees, ferns, moss, and clouds in the distance. Everyone picked up their pace, some stayed together, some headed faster and some followed each other.
We were mesmerized by the beauty, and I think party because we had been couped up in our homes for a much longer period of time.
After our unhealthy lungs and legs gave up, we finally made it to the lake. I’d have to say this with a lot of pain that the lake was as pristine as I had hoped. Nonetheless, it was an incredible experience to be in the middle of nowhere.
I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.—John Burroughs
We stopped by to have a little snack, we had burnt so many calories going towards the lake that the snacks turned into a meal. Of course, a horrible idea when you have to hike back.
The hike on the way back was a killer, especially with our stomachs full, it took more strength from us. With incredible effort, we finally made it back. The champion of the hike was my friend’s mom, who had managed to reach back a lot sooner than we did.
Now it seems ironic that we were concerned if she’d be able to make it to the lake. Of course, another friend with the twisted ankle managed to pull through the entire hike and back. We all made it, somehow, at least in one peace.
The Last-Minute Change
As a group, we were scheduled to leave the next day and decided to celebrate a little in the evening. A scrumptious dinner along with the local wine. We had an incredible time, spoke for hours, the mild sound of the river flowing, man, you can’t ask for more.
After every trip, I become more like a child that is asked to come back home from an amusement park. So, I made a last-minute decision to stay back for another week by myself and everyone decided to leave. I had the liberty of working from anywhere, which gave me an advantage in this situation.
Hadn’t planned to do anything at all, just going back and forth the river to the hostel and to local cafes. Just being there was good enough for me. Like I said, I time and again prefer to get away from the chaos and need to cool down the mental traffic.
Worked a little, walked a little, ate a lot more, and met a few new people that traveled from different places. Everyone reached there with one sole purpose, “to be away in nature”.
It wasn’t the peak season, to be honest, the chances of being left alone were higher, especially after the weekend was over.
End of Trip
No amount of days is good enough when you are on vacation or workation, whatever you call it. But then I thought it was time to pack and head back home after another extended week.
There’s everything refreshing about Jibhi, it was simply a great experience. It has everything thing that you can ask for, the quiet, plenty of nature, just quaint.
If you ever plan to make that trip, then don’t think twice, go for it, I promise that you won’t regret it. Here’s the map in case you want to leave now. Click here!