After the adventurous stay inside, we made our way out of the forest and had our lunch at Ramnagar. We then started our journey towards Mukteshwar, which was about 6 hours drive away. Mukteshwar is located past Nainital at a higher altitude than it and we drove past it on our way. It was about 8 in the night when we reached our hotel – The Trishul Orchard Resort. By then we were too tired so we had our dinner and slept.
Next day, we had lots of time to spend at leisure as there were not many things to do in Mukteshwar. The town gets its name from the famous Shiva temple situated at the highest point of the town. Close to it lie the overhanging cliffs, locally called Chauli-ki-Jali used for adventure sports like rock climbing and rappelling. You will get excellent views of the valley and a 180 degree view of the captivating snow capped mountain ranges of Himalayas. The second highest mountain-peak of India, Nanda Devi, is also visible from there. The other ranges one can see from there are Neelkantha, Trishul, Nanadaghunti, and the Panchuli Group.
After half a day outing, we were back at our resort. The property itself is situated in a very good location with very good views of sunrise and sunset. You could also see the Himalayan mountain ranges from there and Nepal seems a stone throw away. They also arrange for night treks and cycling expeditions around. The owners said it generally starts snowing from the second week of Jan over there, but we slept praying it would happen that night.
They say god does listen sometimes and he definitely did that day for us. When I woke up in the middle of the night, the wind was howling a lot and I could feel that it was unusually cold. I then realized that it was snowing outside. I immediately woke my wife up and we went out daring the extreme cold and started playing with snow. It was really a dream come true for us as it was our first experience with snow. We went back to sleep after a while not knowing if it would be snowing in the morning as well. As we woke up in the morning, it was indeed still snowing. When we were up in the night, we really could not see the beauty of the snow beyond the few yards which were visible in the night. In the morning sunlight, the view of the whole region covered with snow was indeed spectacular. After breakfast, we started descending to our next stop – Bhimtal.