Gupha Pokhari, I know this name is not a new name to many of us. Many of us know Gupha Pokhari as a beautiful destination to visit but it is not that much easier to reach there because of extreme roads. This article will be equally useful to those people who are seeking to go to this naturally rich place for the first time. In this blog, I will share the routes, foods and hotels, road conditions, major attractions and obviously my own experience. (For video, please click this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l3TEQ8ZHYJA&t=333s)
Generally, Gupha Pokhari is a dream destination for many riders and travel enthusiasts. For riders, it offers adventurous routes that include vareities of roads: pitch roads, wavy roads, gravel, off-roads, muddy roads and sometimes no roads, which means you may have to keep your bikes at a place and hike to reach the destination. Roads beyond Deurali Basantapur are completely offroads, so riding an adventure tourer motorcycle would be a much better option. You can take your standard street bikes too but it will be way difficult for you to control in such roads, as your bike are not made for riding on such roads.
Talking about the history and location of Gupha Pokhari, it was named Gupha Pokhari (Cave Pond) in the 20th century by priests who used to mediate in that place. It is located at the altitude of 2,890 meters (9,480fts) from the sea level in Sankhuwasabha district, and now Sankhuwasabha municipality. The best time to visit Gupha Pokhari is from Asoj (October) to Baisakh (April), as we must avoid the rainy season because of heavy landslides during this period.
It was another Saturday, and I had been planning this ride for long. The day before the ride, I prepared the luggage and all the necessary materials. Even though it was my very first ride to Gupha Pokhari, I was quite confident that I would be making home safely just in the same day. However, I was mentally prepared that if something happens along the way, it would be okay for me to stay overnight and return home the next day. On that riding day, I woke up early in the morning, 5 AM and started my ride sharply at 6 AM just having a cup of warm water only.
For the first time in my life, I thanked to weather forecasters of Nepal, as the day went very well without raining at all as they predicted. Also, for the first time in almost 8 months, I got a chance to cross the Bhedetar boarder to Dhankuta after a long lockdown because of Covid-19. The mixture of happiness and nostalgia along the beautiful Dharan – Dhankuta highway helped me to reach Hile for breakfast at 8:30 AM. After spending 30 minutes at that hotel, I kicked off my journey from Hile to Gupha Pokhari. Hile to Basantapur to Tinjure Area roads were very familiar to me. However, I was novice to Chauki Bazaar to Gupha Pokhari roads, as for the first time I was going to be riding there. Along the way, we get plenty of beautiful small places such as Sidhuwa Bazaar, Chitre, Basantapur, Tinjure Area and the last bazaar before the Gupha Pokhari, Mangalbare. From Deuarali to Gupha Pokhari, all roads are off-roads and very dangerous, so a high level of riding skills is required. A beautiful Makalu mountains range can be seen from Hile to all the way Gupha Pokhari. Sometimes, I used to forget to concentrate on the roads because of beautiful sight of mountains that we can see along the way.
After a hectic continuous ride of 6 hours, I reached the one of the most beautiful places of Sankhuwasabha and Eastern Nepal, Gupha Pokhari: at the top of the hills, surrounded by other beautiful hills, there is a small pond, having shadows of hills and trees, but I missed the most stunning shadow of Makalu Mountain on the pond because of clouds. Gupha Pokhari is also a gateway to some of the beautiful nearby places and districts such as Taplejung. In a clear sky, we can clearly spot two stunning mountains Makalu and Kumbhakarna from Gupha Pokhari.
Talking about hotels, well, there are around 20 to 30 houses and each has facilities such as lodging and fooding to the visitors. However, we strongly recommend for booking a hotel prior the visit if you are staying overnight there.
Lastly, I safely arrived home by 8 pm on the same day.
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