Mohan Man-Eater Trail
A trek in Corbett Bio-sphere Reserve
Duration: 05 nights and 06 days
Best Time: November to March
Tour Code: CPS-Mohan
– Varied flora and fauna
– Off the beaten track villages and sights
– Glimpse into architecture and lifestyle of rural Kumaon
– Tiger sightings at Corbett
– Quaint lodges, camping and exciting jungle stays
This forest trek takes you on the old district road that Jim Corbett once took in hunt of the legendary ‘Man-eater of Mohan’. Immortalized in his bestseller ‘Man-eaters of Kumaon’, this tiger killed many humans in the Kosi Valley until Corbett finally killed it in the summer of 1930. It’s a rare opportunity to walk through the peripheral forest of Corbett National park, where exploring on foot is not allowed in the reserve. The trail winds past old forests dominated by Sal and Ficus, evident by giant birds like Great Hornbill, Great Slaty Woodpeckers, several species of large owls and a wide array of other birds. Wild elephants and big cats also visit the area regularly. Apart from spectacular views of the icy Nanda Devi range, the hike also offers an insight into the lives of the communities who live surrounded by forests.
Day 1: Mohan – Pania Dokhan (8km); Time: 6 hours
Drive to Tiger Camp in the morning (6 hours) in a private car from Delhi. After lunch you will be transferred to Mohan. The hike takes you on the abandoned old district board road, now a fire lane, a path cleared manually to prevent forest fires from spreading. You pass a boulder-strewn stream, walk along the Kathkinaul ridge and camp for the night at an abandoned Bhotia campsite – a clearing by a broad streambed known as Pania Dokhan.
Day 2: Pania Dokhan – Baurad Nullah (8 km); Time: 5 hours
You continue towards Baurad, a pretty village set amidst a thick Sal forest and camp at the picture-perfect stream of Baurad nullah. The place finds a mention in international birdwatching itineraries and is popularly known as Forktail Stream. Apart from forktails, you can see owls, flycatchers, minivets, tisias, the brown dipper and many other species.
Day 3: Baurad Nullah – Kathkinaul (9 km); Time: 6 hours
You gain over 1000m in altitude today. After Malla Baud village you come to a water source, where Jim Corbett had an insightful conversation about the maneater with a village woman filling water. The campsite offers a spectacular view of the Kosi Valley stretching southwards, the Ramganga Valley to the north with terraced fields and mountains dominated by the icy Nanda Devi range.
Day 4: Kathkinaul – Bhakrakot (5 km); Time: 2 hours
The forest bungalow at Kathkinaul where Corbett had camped while stalking the maneater is in ruins today. If you are really serious about the Corbett legacy, you can drive from Bhakrakot to Kaladhungi to spend the night. This is where Corbett’s father worked as a Post Master and Jim spent many his childhood. It’s uncanny that it was at Kaladhungi that he shot his first leopard at the age of 13 and his last tiger at the ripe old age of 70 shortly after WW2. You can still visit the canal where he shot it, which acts as a boundary between the Corbett estate and the jungle.
Day 5: Bhakrakot – Chimta Khal – Riverine Woods Vanghat (4 km); Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Jim Corbett, known more as the slayer of man-eaters, was also a keen angler and mentions the Western Ramganga Valley, our next destination, in his story ‘The Fish of my Dreams’. The walk to Riverine Woods (Vanghat) is extremely rewarding for birdwatchers and you can see exotic forest birds like Rufous-fronted Niltava and Long-tailed Broadbills.
Day 6: Vanghat – Chaknakl chaur (4 km); Time: 2 hours
From Vanghat Mahseer Camp you follow the meandering course of the Ramganga and after a few river crossings, reach Chaknakl Chaur. This was where Corbett shot the Maneater of Mohan in 1930, bringing this legendary trek to its logical end. If you are lucky, you might encounter the Chunars, a hill tribe who carve pots out of wood.
Drive back to Delhi in the afternoon (7 hours) in a private car.
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