Pune to Vaishno Devi – Jammu Chapter I

This article is part 6 of 10 in the series "Vaishno Devi Trip 2014"

< Read previous chapter of the trip – Punjab Chapter

Pathankot to Katra 08 March 2014Jammu Chapter – Summary

Destinations: Pathankot > Samba > Jammu > Baba Dhansar > Katra > Vaishno Devi > Katra > Amar Palace – Jammu > Pathankot

Day 7 : 8th March 2016

Gujarat, Rajasthan, Punjab.. so far so good! We were enjoying different colors and flavours of India. This morning was special, it was a day to reach to our final destination, a point of U turn for home – Vaishno Devi!

Rain had refreshed the atmosphere around. I did the same with my lovely machine. almost for an hour, I was washing and oiling 🙂

It's a bath time..

It’s a bath time..

As we were moving towards the border, first view of Himalayas was getting mightier. Everything was just amazing.. Himalayas, people around and their amazing vehicles.

We were silent for a while! Appa was entering in the heaven on the earth for the first and I remained nostalgic with the memories of my first visit to Jammu. Sumedh was with me on that crazy ride to Vaishno Devi & Shimla. Sumedh was so excited at the Jammu border saying that “We may never come again like this”..and my answer was “Never say Never again..you never know!”… And here I was again on bike, at the same spot. Though the bike and pillion were different, that feeling and pride was the same..no it was jumped up high!! Second time Pune to Jammu on motorbike..wowwww!!

Pune to Jammu on Royal Enfield..a pride moment!

Pune to Jammu on Royal Enfield..a pride moment!

Lot have changed from last trip. Jammu entry point now has new toll gate but old one is still standing aside. After few kms run, we had wonderful breakfast at a Vaishno Dhaba. I must mention about the mighty Hanuman statue on the left side of the highway. The muscular Hanumanji are standing still. Hey Bajrangbali.. do save our heaven from the devil of terrorism!

Kathua, Samba, Jammu.. we were cruising on the beautiful highway. Though the highway was under construction at many points, it was still a raceway.

Welcome to Holy Town Katra

Welcome to Holy Town Katra

With lot of breaks on the way, we finally reached the holy town of Katra, a home of Mata Vaishno Devi around 12 pm. While having photo shoot, we offered our prayers to the holy mountain of the devi. Appa was eager to reach the mountaintop but I said “No”.

It was a sunny hot day and it wouldn’t have been good idea to climb 12 kms during day. Somewhere I had read about a small holy place near the town..Baba Dhansar. Without stopping in the town, we moved toward the recently added attraction in our list.

On the way, we stopped at a grocery store for water. Can you believe that we left all our bags with that unknown guy for safe keeping only on one line from his mouth – just leave them here and enjoy the darshan of Baba? Yes. We did it..!

Road to Baba Dhansar from Katra is curvy and beautiful. Once you turn for Baba Dhansar, you have to drive down via a ghat section. Trust me..you will love that road as we did!

After resting the bike at parking point and having cold drinks, we took stairs to further go down. A group of monkeys welcomed us!

The campus in front of main gate was clean for sure. There were few tourists around. The moment we passed through the metal gate, we were mesmerized. It was enchanting, beautiful, mysterious and untouched. Water drop from green hill side in the pond, a small waterfall in the corner and all this covered with big trees..calm, cool and relaxing. After enjoying the surrounding, we had darshan of Baba Dhansar and the shiva linga in the cave near the pond.

Baba Dhansar-The holy Pond

Baba Dhansar-The holy Pond

Other side of the pond is full of idols of snake. We relaxed for a while in that calm environment. We were so happy that we added such an amazing place on our trip map.

Read more about Baba Dhansar

We headed back and picked up our baggages from the unknown friend. It took a while to find a safe place to park the bike until we get back from Vaishno Devi temple and we found the safest. For Rs.100, we got a place in Police Station for the parking.. unbelievable..uh? Ha ha..that’s the truth! It was 6 pm by the time we had our food and dropped backs in the locker room.

Pune to Jammu on motorbike and now chanting Jai Mata Di..! Cool. We were ready all gears.. Jai Mata Di on forehead, a stick and bag full water. Lightened hill was looking enchanting. At the grand entrance gate, we felt blessed. Once you cross the pony place and the market, you start getting the real feel of the yatra. Hundreds of devotees enchanting Jai Mata di, songs played in the shops.. an atmosphere filled with goddess’s praises.

Santosh Unecha at mother's gate

Santosh Unecha at mother’s gate

We forgot the fatigue of all day drive and were climbing up up. Katra town was looking like a bunch of star in that cold night. Sips of tea-coffee, snacks..we kept walking. It was getting chiller. Sanjhi chhat, Hathi Matha..we were cruising KMs, this time on our feet. Those drummers on the way were keeping everyone motivated. They built new shortcuts via tunnels at some places. We were exhausted around 3 am. Even I took a quick nap in a tempo. When it started drizzling, temperature dropped almost to zero. Ohhh. In that killing cold, we somehow found a place in Bhakt Nivas for couple of hours.

Read Further….

Read next chapter of the trip – Jammu Chapter II >

Keep Reading Pune to Vaishno Devi on motorbike trip story:

  1. The Beginning
  2. Gujarat Chapter – Swaminarayan Temple Bharuch, Gandhinagar, Shamlaji Temple
  3. Rajasthan Chapter I – Shrinathji Temple Nathdwara, Charbhuja Temple Garbhor, Kumbhalgarh
  4. Rajasthan Chapter II – Ajmer Sharif Dargah, Pushkar, Merta City,Karni Mata temple Deshnok, Bikaner
  5. Punjab Chapter – Firozpur, Harike Barrage, Golden Temple of Amritsar
  6. Vaishno Devi (Jammu) Chapter I (You are here)– Baba Dhansar, Vaishno Devi, Amar Palace Jammu
  7. Himachal Chapter I – Pathankot War Memorials, McLeod Ganj, St John in Wilderness, Dharamsala,
  8. Himachal Chapter II – Dharamsala, Chamundi Temple, Baijnath, Kangra, Jwalaji, Chintpurni Mata
  9. Haryana Chapter – Kurukshetra, Panipat
  10. Uttar Pradesh Chapter – Vrindavan, Mathura, Agra
  11. Madhya Pradesh Chapter – Gwalior Fort, Indore
Series Navigation<< Pune to Vaishno Devi – Punjab ChapterPune to Vaishno Devi – Jammu Chapter II >>

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