Pangi valley in Chamba district is one of the remotest areas in the state of Himachal Pradesh. It may be rugged and poorly developed tribal region, but has an inexplicable beauty of the nature and many exciting experiences.
Pangi valley is a virgin territory, a lesser-explored region of western Himalaya. The landscape is sublime, with sights of many waterfalls dripping down the mountains, villages with terraced valleys and meandering streams feeding the rivulets.
The best way to get into Pangi valley, but still harrowing means is on a motorbike. The road to Pangi is more jagged than you think it is. In places, landslides have created crossings that are rather more exciting than one might expect and several waterfalls fall over your head to give you a bath.
Saichu, Hudan Bhatori and Sural Bhatori valleys make up Pangi. The Pangi tehsil is spread over 1,601 square kilometres with population of about 20,000. Pangi has 16 panchayats and 54 inhabited villages. The valley is mostly inhabited by Pangwal and Bhoti tribes, who are mostly Hindu with some Buddhists. People of Pangi have their own language, known as Pangwali. Besides, there is also a Pangwali monthly magazine for the natives in the valley.
The Sach Pass at an altitude of 14,500 feet (4,400 m), connects the Chamba valley with the Pangi valley, is open for vehicular traffic between during the summer months, but closed by heavy snow most of the year.
Only after recent developments and improvements to the roads, people in the valley have started to grow cash crops such as peas, apples and other fruits.
Extremely difficult terrain and climatic conditions has kept the Pangi valley in Chamba in a shadow for long. However, with efforts over the years particularly in travel and tourism (through trekking and adventure sports), there’s a silver lining.
Picture credits: HarshManRai / Twitter