Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary
Key information: Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary
- A variety of lovely walking in these forested mountains in the Kumaon mid-levels.
- Unspoilt and varied forests (oak to pine to rhododendron), superb views from the high ridges. Lower down, walk from village to village.
- Walkopedia rating86
- Natural interest15
- Human interest10
- Negative points0
- Total rating86
- Length: Your choice
- Maximum Altitude: 2,500m
- Level of Difficulty: Variable
This walk description page is at an early stage of development, and will be expanded over time. Your comments on this walk, your experiences and tips, and your photos are very welcome.
Binsar Nature Reserve is centred around a high (2,400m) and very steep complex of hills north of Almora, deep in the middle mountains of the Kumaon region of the Uttarakhand Himalaya.
Founded in 1988, it is largely a re-wilding of once heavily-exploited forest, and much of it, while delightful and beautiful, still does not feel primary. Yet it is home to leopard and bear and a fine selection of vegetation.
Lower down, you can wander through forest and farmland, chunks of it now abandoned but still redolent of an old way of life. Areas sometimes described as (marketed as) “Binsar” in fact extend into the cultivated Saryu and Pindar valleys and higher hills some way north of the reserve.
Higher up are rhododendron, pine and oak forests, clothed with tree ferns and other epiphytes in the upper cloud forests. At the very top is a superb ridge, accessible by metalled track, which you can walk along to Zero Point, with huge views all about, including the high, snowy Himalayas to the north on a clear day - early morning best for views.
The cooperation of villagers in protecting the area has been obtained by a visionary scheme called Village Ways, whereby they are involved and benefit: walk from village to village, stay in their guesthouses and use them as guides. The villages are charming, the people friendly but unpushy, their way of life largely intact: marvel at their terraced fields.
The walking varies from easy potters on old paths between villages (and along high ridges) to tough slogs up the high flanks. Your choice. Walkopedia thinks the sustained attraction would be the village-to-village walking. The high forests are worth a detour but not a special trip.
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Your comments on this walk, your experiences and suggestions, and your photos are very welcome. Where appropriate, you will be credited for your contribution.
Safety and problems: All walks have inherent risks and potential problems, and many of the walks featured on this website involve significant risks, dangers and problems. Problems of any sort can arise on any walk. This website does not purport to identify any (or all) actual or potential risks, dangers and problems that may relate to any particular walk.
Any person who is considering undertaking this walk should do careful research and make their own assessment of the risks, dangers and possible problems involved. They should also go to “Important information” for further important information.
Anyone planning an expedition to this place should see further important information about this walk.
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