Saturday, March 08, 2008
TIGER HILL FROM DARJEELING
Tiger hill is a popular sunrise point visited by large hoards of tourists. It is at a distance of 16 Km from the Mall of Darjeeling. Leisurely walking will take you to the top at 4 hours.
Start from the Mall. Take the T. N. Road passing the Darjeeling pony stable. After crossing the stable you have to take the way through Toong Soong Busty. At about 2 Km from Mall you will pass through Alubari Busty. You will reach Jorebunglow (near Ghoom) at about one and half hour. Take the Senchal road which passes through the Senchal protected forest. The Senchal road bypasses the Senchal lake which is the natural water reservoir for the supply of water to Darjeeling town. The altitude of Senchel lake and Tiger Hill are 8,163 and 8,515 feet respectively.
The protected forest houses rare animals like the Clouded Leopard and the Red Panda. Full of exotic birds. Most of the trail near the top passes through dense outgrowth of a species of very small bamboo plants. These bamboo shoots are the favourite food of the Red Panda.
The first rays of the sun shoot ahead and shed light upon the twin peaks of Kanchenjunga and gradually paint the whole of its snow body with a fiery orange colour. From Tiger Hill, just the top of Mount Everest (29,002') is visible, peeping out through two other peaks standing by its side. The peak that looks highest is that of Makalu (27,799'). These three peaks are seen to the north-west a little left of Phalut. Being farther away, Everest looks smaller than any of its two sisters, although Everest is not only higher than either of them, but the highest peak in the world. The distance in straight line of Everest from Tiger Hill is 107 miles.
There is a flat ground at the top and a very unattractive looking watch tower. The tower is made uglier by the presence of cellphone towers on the top.
Kurseong is visible to the south. In hazy distance are noticeable, like so many silver bands, the Teesta, the Mahanady, the Balasun and the Mechi rivers, meandering down to the south. Chumal Rhi mountain of Tibet which is considered by some as the most beautiful mountain in the world, is seen in the north-east, 84 miles away as the crow flies. It looks like a great rounded mass over the snowy Chola Range.