Chanshal Pass

Chanshal Pass – Pabbar Valley, Rohru

Chanshal is the highest peak of Shimla district situated at height of 4220m .It is  approx .170 KM away from Shimla but why to visit Chanshal this question arises every ones mind. The answer is quite simple as Valley is very calm & cool having tremendous scenic beauty. This pass & valley is very less travelled as it remains open from May to October only. It is not crowded by frequent travelers as other places of Himachal.  Chanshal  also have some excellent Ski slopes. Chanshal is the pass connecting the beautiful town of Rohru with the last villages of Himachal, Dodra and Kwar.

 “The mountains are calling and I must go.”
John Muir

Trip to Chanshal

Just inspired by the serene beauty of Chanshal & our friend Jaspal’s open invitation , we decided  to explore Pabbar  Chansal valley in Himachal once  again together after a span of almost 20 years. Pabbar Valley is situated in  Shimla district of  Himachal and having deep forests of deodar and oak. This valley’s scenic beauty  is still untouched. With an open invitation we were expecting more person  to come but at last we were only  4 people who were actually  going. So on 13th September three  of us started our journey from Solan & I started from Bilaspur & our meeting point was Shimla. We met there & started our journey in XUV 500 to Pabbar & Chansal valley. The road is newly built & it was fun to drive on the new  road. Jaspal  has already booked the PWD rest house at Rohru  for our stay in Rohru. Dinner was really delicious as Jaspal had brought it from his home itself.  After   dinner we enjoyed a great musical night in which Mr. Dinesh Lohia showed his vocal & instrumental talent  along with Pandit Anurag Sansalvi .

Next morning on 14th September we woke up early & after morning tea we visited the college campus of Govt. Polytechnic Rohru our alma mater  after a span of almost 20 years. Jaspal who is serving in the college as a Lecturer in Electronics is also the student of this college. We just cherished our old memories by visiting the campus. We all remembered Late Sh. Randhir Singh Thakur our Electronics instructor who inspired all of us to explore this valley by hiking and trekking. After that we got ready for our next destination Chanshal  Pass which was almost 50 Km from Rohru .

Rohru is a small town 120 Km away from Shimla which is situated along side of Pabbar river and famous for apple & trout fishing. Chandranahan lake which is considered the point of origin of the Pabbar River  lies to the north west of Rohru in Shimla district of Himachal Pradesh. It is a highly sacred lake for the people of the valley. It has a religious angle to it  that ‘Devta Shikru Maharaj’, who is the local deity of Rohru  has his  origin there and visits the lake every 8 years for some religious rituals.


On the way our most versatile member Dinesh Lohia decided to apply his fishing skills in the Pabbar river. After trying some time in cold water he successfully caught some trout fishes. Then we moved towards Chirgaon enroute Chansal. As we were dying of hunger we got our breakfast, stuffed prantha  followed by tea In Chirgaon. Then we bought some snacks & maggi & move forward to Chansal pass. Chanshal is almost 33 km away from Chirgaon. Most of the road is not in good condition & a steep ascent starts after Chirgaon .

Fishing in pabber river rohru

Thanks to the driving skills & XUV 500 owner Dinesh lohia after an hour we reached Larot village. Chanshal pass is 16 km away from the Larot village. On the way there were several apple orchards. Plucking of apples were on full pace. Road conditions were not good  due to heavy monsoon rains. At 2.30 PM we reached at  the Chanshal pass. We decided to go to highest peak of the Chanshal. We started the hike at 2.45 PM & reached on the top of the hill in around an hour. Initially I was a little  hesitant to trek but after reaching at the top the scenery was amazing, clouds were hovering around us & atmosphere was little foggy & romantic too.

Chanshal Pass

As Dinesh Lohia  had already visited the place he took us to show the Bear den on the Chanshal peak. Firstly we all got scared as there might be chance of Bear in the  den, but fortunately we didn’t got him. We all got surprised to see the Bear den which was inside a cave. As per locals Bear hibernate in this den in winter seasons when the peak is full of snow. One can see the higher peaks of Uttrakhand  & also Dodra & Kawar villages which are the last habitat village of Himachal Pradesh. From Kawar one can cross to Uttarakhand state. We had a good time enjoying the natural beauty of chanshal valley then after an Hour we started to the base again it took around 1.5 hours & we had some snacks in return journey. At 6 PM we were at the point where we had parked our XUV 500.

Chanshal Pass Bear Den

We reached back to Rohru PWD rest House  at 9 .30PM. As most of the hotel & restaurants were closed at that time we decided to prepare our meal our self. So we cooked Red Lentils (Masoor Dal),  chicken and rice. We had our dinner and everyone went to bed.

Next morning We decided to visit our college hostel to cherish our old students days. Jaspal again proved that he is a great host. We had our breakfast there with Parantha & tea. Really we were all remembering our college days. As we have to move back to our respective places and on return journey beauty of Pabbar river again  invited us to have some swimming  experience and we enjoyed swimming in the Pabbar River.

Hathkoti Temple Rohru

We paid homeage to one of the most renowned  temple of the region the Hatkoti Temple. The Hatkoti Temple is an abode of goddess Mahishasurmardini, an incarnation of goddess Durga or Parvati. The statue of the goddess is 1.2 meters in height and made of eight precious metals. In the dark sanctorum, this idol emits a glow because of its bronze make. The complex also has a separate temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. Several other idols inside these two temples stand as examples of great architectural skills.

Based on the architectural styles and design, historians conclude this temple to be built during the Gupta era. Many also believe that Pandavas built the temple while they were in their agyatwas. After that Jaspal had a surprise for us he invited us to have a lunch  at his home. We all were overwhelmed by him & his family hospitality. We had a wonderful Rajmah–Rice–Curry combination followed by the Gulab Jamun, thanks to Bhabhi ji’s great culinary skills. After taking tea time had come to say good bye to our host & best buddy Jaspal. It was  a trip which occurs once in a life time like the movie “Zindagi na milegi dobara “.

By : Sachin Bhardwaj, Himachal Pradesh


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  • Anurag Sharma
    September 22, 2019 at 3:34 pm

    Keep Himalayas awakening by sounds of your footsteps. Best wishes for your future endeavors.

    • sachin Bhardwaj
      September 30, 2019 at 12:53 pm

      Thanks, Anurag, for your invaluable feedback I will try to explore more & write more. Thanks again.

  • Anil Kumar Sharma
    September 26, 2019 at 10:17 pm

    Very well penned Dear Sachin. Old memories got rewind…. Thanks for the nice portrayal.

    • sachin Bhardwaj
      September 30, 2019 at 12:58 pm

      Thanks a lot, sir for your kind words. Your appreciation means a lot to me. Thanks again, sir.

  • Deepak Kumar
    September 27, 2019 at 7:12 am

    Keep on moving and sharing your expert openion… Fantablous

    • sachin Bhardwaj
      September 30, 2019 at 1:01 pm

      I am overwhelmed with your kind words & will try to write more . Thanks for reading the blog & for the immense support.

  • Ramneek Sharma
    September 27, 2019 at 11:30 am

    Wonderful explanation of the wonderful place…i will look forward to visit this place.

  • dinesh
    September 27, 2019 at 11:40 am

    Thanks for sharing your trip details, this place is really great point to attract tourism and govt must take some step. 20 year ago our teacher Randhir sir organised a tour to DODRA and KAWAR and that time we visited this place at that time there was no road.

  • Mohar Singh Thakur
    September 27, 2019 at 12:45 pm


  • sachin Bhardwaj
    September 30, 2019 at 12:54 pm

    Thanks for reading & encouraging me .Thanks a lot.