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Chiranbal,a place at par with Gulmarg and Pahalgam

A place with lush green meadows, dense forests, a bubbling river and an exceptionally stunning waterfall

Post by on Sunday, July 31, 2022

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Amongmany beautiful places in Kashmir, Gulmarg and Pahalgam are the famous ones. But the unexplored places in Kashmir that haven’t caught the attention of people are abundant, among them, Chiranbal is one. Though the trekkers are seen going there, it hasn’t been given much hype and attention it deserves. Chiranbal is the largest sub-alpine meadow in Kashmir.
Chiranbal, a 30 km distance from the district headquarters of Kulgam lies in the north of town. People usually go to Aharbal waterfall, which is also a tourist destination in the Kulgam district, but, Chiranbal falls 15 kilometres from here. A vehicle that takes a Manzgam route and then reaches Hallan – the final point for vehicles. A trekking and hiking journey starts from this point.
 The name ‘Chiranbal’ is the combination of two Kashmiri words – Chir which means baby lamb and Bal which means place.
The place has mostly been popular among shepherds, who take their cattle in the summer season to Chiranbal for grazing purposes. The pastoralists on a move from Jammu planes to high elevations of Kashmir would find this a place perfect for themselves in many ways – an escape from the scorching heat, availability of grass in plenty and a stream for survival.
The river that flows through the meadow known as Zajinar river which exceptionally gives it all the charm and bobbing waters are mostly liked by night campers. They erect their tents alongside the river and relax the moments by its sounding and gushing water.
POTENTIAL BASE FOR MORE MEADOWS AND ALPINE LAKES 
Chiranbal has great potential for fishing, rafting, and photography. Also, the district admin is planning to hold a horse-riding race in the vast meadows of Chiranbal.
The mountain range Brahma Sakli peaks overlooks the whole Chiranbal and from here travellers can go further in their adventurous places and beautiful alpine lakes like, Bramsar, Chirsar, Duitsar, and Inderser. This place is the base camp for other trekking places/meadows like Zajmargh, Kadalibal, Hakwass and Kongwattan. Moreover, the famous Kousarnag is behind the mountain that overlooks Chiranbal.
In the summer season, this place remains quite busy with pastoralists and trekkers and there is no fear of being alone on this route. Nomads would put up stalls on the way and would sell many things in the dense forests.
Chiranbal is such a vast meadow and has been divided into two parts, Haer (upper) and Boun (lower) Chiranbal. A stretch between haer and boun Chiranbal is about 1 kilometre through a thick forest.
CHIRANBAL (PAENZKOT) WATERFALL
In upper Chiranbal a virgin waterfall is as stunning as the Aharbal waterfall. Located on the Nallah Zajinar, which is said to be the main source of the Veshow river that flows through the centre of Kulgam. A waterfall is located at an altitude of 2595m Above sea level, on one side of the corner of upper Chiranbal. This is an ideal place to visit during the peak of the summer season. This fascinating waterfall on the Paenzkot gorge is edged by dense forests on both sides which gives it an extraordinary image.
 
ALTERNATIVE TO PLACES LIKE PAHALGAM AND GULMARG
Chiranbal can be an alternative place, and some steps can give it a large boost.
It has come to the fore that a lot of lumbering of wood log on the platform vehicles remains occupying the route on the Chiranbal meadows.
Baba Methesir, a notch trekker while speaking to Rising Kashmir said, “I haven’t seen as much lumbering of timber taking places anywhere as it happens there.”
If this takes a back seat and avoids non-stop lumbering, this will be a kind approach towards this place, trekker said.
Road connectivity is only upto Halan village from there onwards the adventurers take the uphill route towards Chiranbal. Though inside the forests a way that is the terrain and is commutable to 4×4 and platforms vehicles.
If a road is made through to Chiranbal by not diluting the natural and forest beauty it will attract a lot of people. A road through the forest with sides covered with pine trees and beatified will be another feather in the cap of Chiranbal.   
Moreover, if the tourism department makes some campsites, and promotes eco-tourism and huts for a night’s stay it will surely be an alternative to Pahalgam and Gulmargh-like places.
Furthermore, district administration Kulgam is keen to explore and develop Chiranbal. Infect admin is scheduled to hold some tourism festival there to promote the virgin meadows. A number of cultural programme, sports events and other things are being reviewed to boost this tourist place.
Trek Route
The trek route that adventurous people take is Hallen to Manzgam to Chiranbal which runs through the compartment number V-34, V-28, and V-15 of Manzgam Block in Veshew Range. It is one of the largest, most picturesque and most fascinating pasture land in Kulgam Forest Division, reads a pamphlet from J&K Forest Department.
A trek starts from Manzgam and ends at Chiranbal at a length of four kilometres. The duration that this trek can normally take is about 2-3 hours. During this trip, if one has to capture him/herself in a frame he/she must choose the picturesque location of Bon Chiranbal. However, the only shelter on this route is at the starting point – A forest hut of block officer's.
Notably, “Kulgam Forest Division has taken an initiative for developing Manzgam-Hallan to Chiranbal route as an eco-trekking trail for adventure trekkers, tourism lovers, wildlife enthusiasts, etc,” says Syed Wasim, DFO Kulgam.
 

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