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Old Abandoned Trail of Ghandruk Village

Ghandruk has become one of the popular and easy travel destinations in Nepal. Mount Everest is famous worldwide and EBC trek is something which everybody wants to travel. But if you ask any youth of Nepal about traveling and trekking, every single person will say, the first name Ghandruk, Poonhill and, ABC. There are several reasons behind this. The first and foremost thing is that you can reach Ghadruk by bus. Yes, you don't need to walk much. Second, even if you think of walking from Nayapool the trail is easy. It will take you a maximum of 5 hours even for the slow walkers. 

Pokhara personally is my best hangout destination. Walking around the streets of Pokhara, boating at the lake gives so much joy. Pokhara is known as the major tourist attraction point of Nepal for so many reasons. Ghandruk, on the other hand, is promoted as one of the tourism attraction points for home stay facility and watching the mountain range.

The Abandoned Trails

For several other reasons, Ghandruk is very much popular. But let's talk about these old abandoned trails. I have a sweet memory of walking at these trails back in 2015 with my friends Bishwas, Dkesh, and Sagar. Yes like many other youths mine first trekking was also to Ghandruk-Ghorepani-Poonhill. Sadly we couldn't make it to Poonhill and I haven't still been there. And we also took a bus to some point in order to reach Ghandruk in a single day from Kathmandu. Back then these trails used to be a popular walking route to reach several destinations such as Poonhill, ABC, Austrian Camp, etc. There used to be lots of national and international tourists walking at these trails. there were a couple of hotels and tea houses that always had guests in their courtyard.

Last year in October while heading to Khopra, I walked that trail. This time I walked all the way from Nayapool. Till I reached Ghandruk, I got to relive those memories of 2015. But something was different. The trail wasn't like it was before. It was not sharing the vibes of walking on trekking. The trail felt like it was abandoned. During the whole trail, we barely saw tourists. We saw only a couple of teams walking there. The stone-paved stairs had green grass growing on the stairs. The hotels were closed. Those which were open also didn't have many tourists. The suspension bridge also looked rusty and old.

New Road as the Easy Alternative

Back in 2015, we had to walk about an hour to reach Ghandruk. All the rest of the destination was covered on the bus. But now the road construction was going on rapidly and almost 90-95 percentage of construction is done. The bus reaches even closer to Ghandruk. Due to this reason, every tourist chose to take a bus then walking from Nayapool. But not everyone chose that alternative. Some people chose to walk from Nayapool and enjoy the scenery of the paddy field till Ghandruk. But with the construction of road all the mortars, big stones and cut down trees had made the old trails look so abandoned.

Development Comes With a Cost!

This has not only affected the trail but also the locals whose economy was dependent on tourists who visited their hotels. Now the hotel owners are either moving to Pokhara for a better alternative or moving upward to Ghandruk for starting their business. While connecting roads to a tourism destination is a good thing. This enables us to visit many destinations in a shorter time. 

The locals are paying a cost because now they have to migrate to earning money. The environment itself is paying a greater cost. First, the old trails are damaged. Now that area is an abandoned place that will not be reused for any good purpose. Second, the destruction of land, forest, and natural resources such as streams is a serious issue. It will first make those beautiful hills look ugly. Also, there are higher chances of landslide and soil erosion in those areas which are not good in the near future. There are fewer bright sides while there is an equally negative aspect of such kind of development. Yes Development comes with a cost.

Story Written by the author of thequickblog.com

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