Badrekoot, Gogaldour and Khahal
By Ahmad Kashmiri:
Tangmarg is famous for its natural beauty with Gulmarg figuring in the list of health resorts of international repute, the two more explored destinations here are Drang and Ninglinalah locally called as “Yechhe Voug” and “Sranz” respectively. There has been the gossip of tourist recognition for some other spots like Gogaldara, Badrekoot and Chake-Fraste Reshi as well in Tangmarg area.
The recognition of such spots on the tourism map and the development of infrastructure thereof may be a distant dream but for last few years these spots which are situated in the southern area of Tangmarg and most of them fall on a single track, have been witnessing the local school children of Tangmarg and Khag areas coming for picnics. The track is not a busy one so could people travel on it or tread onto its peripheries thus most people even from Tangmarg region have not visited the place.
Pertinent to mention here that my teacher who being only a few kilometers distant from Badrekoot once lamented that he had never been to Badrekoot in his lifetime. Even the majority of those who have traveled to these spots have not been the visitors of the peripheries and the interiors but to the roadside villages and habitations. Anyway, one gets deeply drawn into the magnanimity of these places in the very first glance. The main places of Charisma in the region include Badrekoot, Khahal, Mauchyaur, Anzvour and Gogaldara.
Topping them all, KHAHAL, remains the resting place with peace, tranquility and taste granting magnitude. It was only two years back when I happened to visit this place, my mother would tell me about in my childhood, yes that is about KHAHAL, where the people of her times in summer would go to collect “Kokarneej” a medicinal herb perhaps used as a cuisine as well.
Badrekoot: This is the last ‘Revenue Village’ in the south-west uphills of Tangmarg. It is full of marvelous beauty and greenery. The Macadamized road connectivity extends from Druroo village on Srinagar Gulmarg Highway. It is about 40 kms distant from Summer Capital Srinagar.
The scenic starts from Shrai Village with Shrai Bridge on Nallah Ferozpora as the longest bridge in the region. The villages ahead on the roadside are Kulhama, Darhama Chandil-Wanigam and the Gudara habitation. The travel itself is splendorous as covered with lush green forests. Gudara is a neighboring habitation where one can enjoy the top view of Darekaechh, Mauenchkhoud and Zandpaal habitations.
Badrekoot has been enlisted as a model village as well. Returning from the track the visitor students stop here to purchase child articles from a few shops in the village giving them their due.
KHAHAL: Some 5 kms ahead of Badrekoot is situated a habitation named
Ringawali also called as Brarikhoud. Before reaching there a stream is sighted and it is this place where a seemingly common passage leads to the most splendorous destination of this region-KHAHAL. Khahal, as I wrote, is not the lone unexplored or least-trodden place in the region, but when analyzed on core fronts of a prospects health resort, KHAHAL, a union of valleys and down-dale hillocks, for its grandeur, charisma and peace granting should be placed at the top of the list of unexplored health resorts.
Khahal is blessed with green meadows and lush green forests, highland pastures and a stream in the middle. The meadows with backed forest mountains give an end look but reaching the end another meadow opens and so on till you reach, Mauchyaur, an uphill meadow known more as a base-pasture and first destination of a shepherdess.
The natural sloppy and smooth dimensions of this place add to its catchy magnanimity. Though the tractor-plowed beds in a way add to the beauty of the place the ploughed stretches make a visitor think about the preservation of the place apprehending the greed of man could be a threat to the place.
The excessive ploughs of the meadows give a deserted look, which needs to be taken care of, baring its ownership nature, as a proprietary land of locals or a forest land. In the midst of Khahal valley flows a water stream thus filling the void of an essential need. The apprehended extinction of pastures is but a side effect of the place possible to be developed as a tourist destination in the future.
Gogaldour: Gogaldour is the terminal village of District Baramulla, capped with lush green forest mountains all around its frontier touches Poshkar area of Budgam. Laboratory tests conducted by experts have revealed that the water of the springs here is very beneficial for health as it is naturally fluoridated to the desired level. Its topography is down-dale oriented. But the problem persists here of the road that has been rendered incomplete, unmacadamized just by the distance of a kilometer or so.
Anzvour: The famous place in Gogaldour, as a picnic spot is “ANZVOUR”,
a picturesque vast valley located aside the village. Visitors rest here for a forenoon picnic tea and enjoy playing cricket and other games. Here too ploughing of abstract meadows presents an unpleasant look.
A villager told this author that the government has told them that there will be no state-owned construction done in Gogaldara but villagers will be allowed to raise their own infrastructure required for the purpose. Nevertheless, all these spots in the region are ideal for tented stay. In the upper reaches of this region, the ideal places for adventurers and truckers are Nukadpal, Pehjan, Dendvour, Dehrin and Danwas, etc.
Nukadpal: Locally called as Nakvaerpal, with its unique features, is said to be the historic rock atop the mountain, having a hole in it where till yesteryears a ring too had been tied to the hole and it is said that in ancient times some Reshi had tied his boat with it when all over the valley there was water only.
Least-trodden spots: The elegance of the region with places as health-resort-prospects does not end here but on either side of the region there are more spots as well. Starting from Chake-Fraste-Reshi, the areas of Gangibaba, Gaenwaen, Mauenchkhoud, Zandpaal and Darekaechh are no less important but perhaps most ignored and least trodden. Darekaechh, a village of poor Gujjars bears importance of what could be termed as social tourism as well.
Gar-Chham: This place harbors unique picturesque with waterfalls having electricity generation potential. Batnag spring is yet another place worth to visit and a stream, Haechyaur, known for prompt floods flows from this place between two hillocks.
Patchevan: Situated in the southeast of Darakassi village, this picnic spot is bestowed with lush green trees and springs the lifestyles and habitation infrastructure of these people is very interesting and attention worthy. Unfortunately, this habitation has been ignored by the successive ruling regimes of contemporary times letting them live a real BPL life.
Gangibaba: This article will remain incomplete if I will not talk of the saint Gangi Baba( RA), on whose name the Gani Baba village is popular near Chandil Wnigam, People general call this saint Gani Baba, but Syed Hissamul Haque Rufai says that his actual name is Gangi Baba for his hairs had been curly.
The saint has built a Masjid at the place and pilgrims pray there. The saint is very popular in the whole region of Bangil(Tangmarg) for he in his times has constructed hundreds of small bridges and culverts in the area and has dug the water springs by his spiritual power.
(With inputs from M Ashraf Najar)
(Author can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)