Thursday, July 29, 2010

Siran and Kunhar are well known rivers of the district. The Siran issues from Panjool and flows through the western plain of Pakhli. Two canals have been taken out from the Siran river, the upper Siran canal at Dharial and lower Siran canal at Shinkiari. From Pakhli the Siran runs into the Tanawal hills and joins the Indus at Tarbela in the north west. Its total course is between 70 to 80 miles, and it irrigates 6,273 acres of land. The Kunhar bursts out the from the Lulusar at the head of Kaghan valley and after a turbulent course of 110 miles falls in the river Jhelum at Pattan. Since the land upon its bank is little level therefore, its water is not used for irrigation purposes. Some other notable bourn and nallas which flow in district Mansehra are Pootkatha (Mansehra), Nadi Unhar (Shergarh), Butkus (joins the Siran near Icharian), Ichar and a small Siran stream that flows in Batagram and joins the river Indus near Thakot.

The natural scenery and climate of Mansehra has a great attraction for the tourists. Low and bare hills that fringe the level tracts have attraction of their own, Panoramic view of widespread plain and invigorating fresh air in all seasons and the higher hill with pine covered slopes, the snow capped peaks of Kaghan, Bhogarmang, Koush, Allai and the regions beyond the mountains are torrents and water-falls. The peaceful lakes of Kaghan, the villages perched on almost inaccessible heights and the green valleys are appealing to the lovers of beauty. These lovers of beauty rejoice when the walk on mountain erects and see the mists sweeping up. They can listen to the roars of water from behind the great grey curtain, and look at the torrent at their feet tumbling over the rocks down gully and glen. The stillness of the dawn, of noon and of evening as well as the winds pure and austere are really most enchanting for the lovers of beauty.

8 miles on the western slopes of Kaghan is Kamalban, a heavily populated forest of black bears and leopards, which do incalculable harm to the crops and young trees. Killing a bear is a big game and you'll get reward for shooting down a bear from forest officer as well as from the peasants. Besides these you'll be able to find Muskdeer, thar and goral, Chikore and Himalayan pheasants all over the valley. And if you'll go a little higher you'll be able to find red bear, snow leopard and ibex and occasionally a snow partridge or Ram Chikore or Murgh-I-Zarrin.

There are many valleys in Mansehra among which the Kaghan valley, Konsh valley, Agror valley, Bhogarmang valley and Pakhal valley are most popular. These large valleys have taken together, produced holiday resorts such as the Kaghan valley. This particularly earned the reputation of having the most enchanting tourists resorts of Pakistan. Agror is a small valley lying at the foot of Black Mountain and is separated from Pakhli by the ridge of Tanglai. Konsh and Bhogarmang are also famous valleys.

"Ansoo" and "Sat Sri Mala" lakes were discovered just two years back. You can see few photos of these lakes at some general stors in Naran. One has to go through camping and trekking to reach these destinations. You would also need guards and tourist guides with you because these lakes are in far off, deserted and dangerous areas. Ansoo lake is in shape of eye and most of its water is freezed but a portion of it looks like "tear" from far off place. Ansoo means tear so thats why this lake has been named as Ansoo lake. My cousin went there last year at they had to reach at a peak 14,000 (4,267 m) feet above sea level to just view this lake. It took them six hour to reach that peak from where one can view Ansoo lake. According to my cousin lake was not visible because of heavy fog and snow all around. He recommened that no one should plan a trip to Ansoo lake atleast because its just waste of time. Another lake about which I came to know is "Sat Sri Mala". These are seven different lakes in steps. Water from each lake falls in the next one so thats why named it Sat Sri Mala. "Sat" means seven in local language.

The main asset of the disputed territories of Jammu and Kashmir is their natural beauty - unfortunately, Pakistan's 16km (10mi) security zone means most of the truly scenic parts are now off limits. What's left is Neelum Valley, famous for fishing and trekking, Jhelum Valley, site of hill stations and more good walks, and forested highlands to the south. However, even these areas may be out of bounds, depending on the fluctuating political climate; make sure to check restrictions before you travel.
There are flights daily from Islamabad into Muzaffarabad and Rawalakot. Crossings into Muzaffarabad by land are restricted to Bararkot in Manshera, or Kohala in Murree. You can enter Rawalakot by bus or wagon from Rawalpindi. Other more direct routes are off limits to foreigners as they run close to the government research centre in the Punjab.

Sri and Paya are one of the most beautiful places I have ever visited. From Shogran you can hire jeep by paying Rs.600 ($10 appox) and after one hour of extra bumpy ride you would be at top of Paya. You would be given one hour time to stay at Paya. On your way back to Shogran, just after five minutes of ride on your jeep you would find yourself at a really lovely place named Sri. There is small green colored forest rest house in Sri where you can sit and view this amaizing place. Mostly this place is covered with thick clouds but the view is simply awesome and out of this world. There is small but very beautiful lake at Sri that you can check in this photograph with tip. You would be given just 15 minutes by jeep driver to enjoy breath taking views of Sri so do not forget to store these lovely views in your camera just like I did!
Directions: On your way back to Shogran, just after five minutes of ride on your jeep you would reach Sri and its lovely lake.