A place where at every step you take produces a crunching sound of dry reddish-yellow leaves. A trail that requires you to climb and jump across the big boulders. A walk along side a stream so clear that its pebble bed coloured in multiple shades of greenish-yellow shined brightly under the clear sky. This sounds like but is not a scene picked up from a story tale. There actually exists a place that’s in complete seclusion nesting amidst flora and fauna, providing a relaxing sensation and can bring even Einstein’s mind to the state of peace. So would you want to get on this journey with me and know about how to reach Bhalu Gaad Waterfall and when is the best time to visit.
Wondering why the name Bhalu Gaad? Now talking in terms of kumaoni language i.e their local language, ‘Bhalu’ means Bear and ‘Gaad’ means streams of water. Since you walk along a stream and the area was once home to Bears its named ‘Bhalu Gaad’.
The discovery of Bhalu Gaad Waterfall
Well, yes… for me it was kind of discovery in itself. I couldn’t and for that matter no one in my group could have imagined that their exits a trail that can be titled as a journey to the another world. There was a complete flip in the aura of the environment. Discovery of the hidden gems is one of the benefits of travelling with the locals or with a person who knows every nook of the place in and around. And we were lucky we had the team of Nainital Cottages to show us hidden gems of Mukteshwar in & around.
First step on the trail
The car stopped and there seemed no possibility of a trail to exist.
The moment we got down of our cars, we were like What! Are you kidding.. There can’t be a trail here and that too leading to a waterfall.
To my amazement, there were in-fact two trails. Believe me or not but it’s not easy to make out where the path would lead to as there exists no sign boards. This is good to some extent as it would keep the place less touristy.
And, then we stepped further into the forest…
An easy hike to Bhalu Gaad Waterfall
Whenever there is a hike involved in any itinerary, then the very first concerns that flow across our minds is How Difficult Is It? Is it a good idea to take along kids? And much more…
Just to answer all your worries in one line.. The trail to Bhalu Gaad waterfall is pretty easy and a very casual hike.
But, not to forget there will be stream crossings, rock climbing like activities involved be prepared for it. And just like for any other hikes, be prepared for the unforeseen situations. Talking about the steepness of the trail, it is very much flat and you would be walking in the valley along the stream.
Words won’t do justice to it so without wasting any more words and your precious time in describing its mesmerizing beauty let me show you how you can reach there…And, whatever time you saved on reading can be put to use in packing your bags.
Reaching Bhalu Gaad Waterfall
The most convenient way to reach here is by road. Mukteshwar is well-connected to cities like Delhi, Dehradun at about 6-8hrs of drive. Regular buses and trains ply to Haldwani which is 2.5hrs and you could easily hire a cab from here.
To reach Bhalu Gaad you will have to drive to Dhari village which is at 7km from Mukteshwar towards Haldwani. This is the point where the trek starts from and it takes around 45 min. to reach the fall.
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Words of wisdom from my experience and research
- There could be an entry fee of 10rs during peak season.
- I visited the fall in the month on November when there were no tourists and hence no stalls but during summers it is frequented by the locals. So, you may or may not find tea stalls near and on the way to the fall depending upon the time you make a visit. Also, you may find life jackets available on rent.
- The monsoon period though increases the beauty but along with it comes factors like slippery rocks, increased flows and more. It is advisable to be prepared for the same. But, since the water gets muddy during monsoons, that crystal clear water with glittering pebble bed won’t be visible.
- Based on a recent incident I would suggest to avoid swimming if you are an amateur specially in rainy days when the flow is high. Also, if you chose to swim then avoid getting just below the fall. As fascinating as it sounds it’s equally risky as with heavy flow comes the boulders that could hit your head any moment… Enjoy but responsibly.
- I am not sure if proper changing rooms are available so its suggested to wear dry pants and t-shirts that dry off quickly.
- Give yourself an easy 3 hours to trek and completely enjoy the nature without any hustle.
- PARKING- now since there is no designated parking from where the trek starts so please be sure to park your cars on the roadside but without obstructing the way.
- At last, Bhalu Gaad Waterfall WELCOMES you with open arms but not your GARBAGE. So, be responsible to bring it all back and dispose properly. I am sure you would not accept others to make your house a dump yard so you shouldn’t do that too.
As the name suggests, this place definitely has low identity on the touristic trail yet. And through your vivid description , i could literally feel, how awesome it would have been for you to experience the natural beauty of the place. Great post !
Yess… though I have read reviews of people saying that it is visited by locals and few tourists as well but I was lucky to see it in complete isolation…Hence would suggest winters to be the beat time to visit…. Glad that you liked it
Jumping across boulders? Wow! Still, it’s very beautiful and good thing you warned folks about falling boulders from beneath the falls. No one thinks of that.
Yes, people actually just want to enjoy the thrills without taking precautions…
That looks like an awesome place and loved the rocky trek too. I have read enough about Mukteshwar to know that its a must see place when nearby. Thanks for the info. very helpful!
Yes its a very beautiful place and feel free to ping me if you plan your trip and need any help for the same
I always feel a bit wary when trials are hard to find so it’s good that you found the one to the waterfall in the end. It looks incredibly pretty and peaceful x
Yes, as i said we local people with us who knew all about it so we didn’t have any trouble
Wow! This is such a beautiful treasure that is worth the hike and the trip. Would love to visit someday. Will make sure to visit during the monsoon period too.
Yes its truly a treasure… Visit during monsoon and i m sure it will be a great experience though to see it in seclusion you will have to visit in winters only.
This is just pure nature in first hand feel. I love the place as detailed by you. I will want to experience the swim close to the waterfall by the way.
Do swim, its very refreshing but be wary
Wow! That’s a beautiful travelogue.The words that you have chosen to explain the whole travel journey to Bhalu Gaad makes me want to go there right now. Loved reading this post! Keep writing .I take time and read blogs of other bloggers only during the weekends that’s how I stumbled upon yours. Will definitely follow your travelogues.Shared this one on pinterest and G+, hope that helps spread this beautiful travelogue.
Thank u for such appreciation.. such words keep us motivated to write more. Hope you get to visit this place soon and I would be happy if you need any help in planning your trip
Thank you so much.Yes i do hope i get to visit this place someday 🙂
Wow what a truly gorgeous place to visit. It looks incredible and definitely somewhere I would love to visit. I would probably go in the fall too when it is much quieter.
Yeah you should, fall is the time when the water is crystal clear
I love the kind of hikes which end up at a waterfall. This looks like a beautiful and fun trail out there. Thanks for all the great tips here.
India is full of hidden gems that it would take a lifetime to visit. This looks like a very peaceful spot. Nice video!
Yeah… I don’t think one can ever say that they have checked off every nook
This hike looks absolutely beautiful! Adding it to my list!
Looks like such an amazing place, I would love to visit here one day, it looks very relaxing for sure.
Yes its a very charming and peaceful place specially if visited during off-season
Looks like a beautiful waterfall. I’m glad you made a mention of taking your trash out. I have been on too many trails with trash left by tourist/visitors. I normally bring an extra bag just to pack out other people’s trash.
Yes, i feel pity when I see all the garbage loitering around and ruining the beauty. Good, that you bring it back and our nation needs more people with a mentality like yours.
That walkway up to the falls look so neat! We have many waterfalls here in our country but the path can be steep. This one is nice. I would like to drop by here someday. 😀
Yes, i also like such hikes that are not tiring but relaxing. By the way which country do you reside in?
Uttarakhand has so much to offer. Would love to explore Bhalu Gaad waterfall sometime for sure. Truly, amazing, and incredible India. 🙂
Very true, Uttarakhand is still a very untouched place and offers immense beauty.
I love reading about out of the way places like this. I look forward to reading more of your posts – keep up the good work!
Thank you so much for the appreciation. Looking forward to keep your interests in my future posts till then enjoy the other existing ones.
Added on my future trips 🙂
Your most welcome to come and visit this and many places around
The name Bhalu Gaad itself makes the waterfall doubly attractive I guess. Looks like a pretty hike that I could try. However, I have always wondered why the Indian government charges such dismal entry fee at most of our tourist locations. Might as well charge more and care more!
I don’t think its the government that charges the fee but the locals… Though at the tie I visited that is in the month of November, there was no fee no stalls etc.. only us.
That looks like such a serene place! That trail is something; I went to Mukteshwar when I was a little child and I remember I loved it so much! We stayed at this guest house where they had a view point with some British era history to it, can’t remember now, but it was just splendid!
That’s great. Childhood memories are best to relinquish. The guest house you talking about is making me inquisitive only if you could figure out which one where it was.
From the name, to the hike and to the experience, Bhalu Gaad Waterfall looks like a great experience. We were lucky to spot a Bhalu in Kanha Wildlife Sanctuary. But a place named after them is something. Thanks for those words of wisdom! We would definitely plan for a bit more than 3 hours for the hike.. 😉 as during our Gangotri trek when some said 2-3 hours, we took eight.. haha!
Hahah…. I agree, sometimes the nature gets so captivating that we are surrendered to it completely and the time flows way past our plans.
We love to find waterfalls on our hikes, and this looks like a great one! Very helpful information on how to find it, and the video you included is really cool too.
I have been to uttarakhand several times but never heard of this place. Seems like a hidden gem. Will seek out on my next trip. Thanks for sharing.
Yeah, i live nearby but still was unaware of this place until now. Enjoy your time here on your next visit
Oh, I think every person loves waterfalls, who doesn\t? Small, big ones, they are all charming and worth visiting.
Yes everyone loves them specially when it had such a beautiful route to reach
Love waterfalls anywhere and this one sound magical. Very cool video!
You are right. The trail looks doable, even for seasonal hikers. Do bears still roaming the region?
I don’t think bears still exists and for if they do then I was lucky not to have a one to one with them
Uttarakhand is rich in Natural Beauty. Specially Mukteshor is a famous religious and tourist place. The previous year I have visited Blalu gaad and it was really awesome. Thanks for sharing such a beautiful story. Your blog inspires me to visit Bhalu Gaad waterfall again and again. Keep inspiring and keep moving thanks
Yes, it is a wonderful experience being there. Glad that you liked it. Keep following for more such stories.
My kids will love the rocky terrain and I guess they can have the additional (or imaginary) thrill of having the threat of bears around 😉
Yeah I am sure they would love it.. and also zip zap zoom splashing all through as they cross those streams