Travel Route: Kinnaur District – Rampur – Sangla – Chitkul – Kalpa
Kinnaur District and Rampur
When I look at India’s maps in the Lonely Planet book, I wonder how the landscape looks between our departure and destination points? There are endless strings of human habitation in India along the path of roads and train rails. Remnants of civilization are everywhere, and of course, the occasional obstacle or reminders of the holy – cows. And why should I wonder? This is India, where 1.4 billion people call it home. In a few days, we will reach Kinnaur with a higher elevation, 3000m and above, where I expect to see nothing but sky and earth.
Kinnaur is in the Western Himalayas and lies in the Indian State of Himachal Pradesh. The green scenery is breathtaking. The road is hair rising, and there are apple orchards all around. Local Kinnauris wear green felt Basheri hats, named after their local king. Tibetan proximity is visible in its influence on dress, architecture, and language. It is common to find images of the Buddha and other Buddhist deities side-by-side with Hindu Gods.
We stopped for a quick prayer for a good journey and offered a donation to the goddess Kali. Her skin color is black. She is known for her powers to destroy ego and sin.