Experience Amareshwara- The Amarnath Yatra

The Amarnath Yatra

Amaranath Yatra

Sometimes you need to let go and see what happens

 

Amareshwara, A Holy shrine of Hindus is situated at an altitude of 3,888 m (12,756 ft) in Jammu and Kashmir, India. It is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The cave is about 141 km (88 mi) from Srinagar, the capital of Jammu and Kashmir via Pahalgam. The shrine is considered to be one of the holiest shrines in Hinduism. The cave is surrounded by snow capped mountains. Most of the year except for a short period of time in summer  when it is open for pilgrims, the cave itself is covered with snow. Thousands of Hindu devotees make an annual pilgrimage to the Amarnath cave on challenging mountainous terrain to see an ice stalagmite formed inside the cave.
Amarnath Yatra

The Ice Stalagmite Shiva Lingam

Amarnath Yatra

An Insane Shambhu’s Abode

Considered to be a Shiva Linga by Hindus inside the cave 40 m (130 ft) high Amarnath cave, the stalagmite is formed due to freezing of water drops that fall from the roof of the cave on to the floor and grows up vertically from the cave floor. The Cave waxes out during May to August, as snow melts in the Himalayas above the cave and the resultant water seeps into the rocks that form the cave and gradually wanes thereafter. Although there is no scientific evidence for this belief but as per the religious beliefs, it has been claimed that the lingam grows and shrinks with the phases of the moon reaching its height during the summer festival.

 

Amarnath Yatra

Mesmerizing Trek Trail

Amarnath Yatra

Full rush while Season Time

According to a Hindu legend, this is the cave where Shiva explained the secret of life and eternity to his divine consort, Parvati. Two other ice formations represent Parvati and Shiva’s son, Ganesha. To worship of the ice stalagmite Lingam is the main purpose of the annual pilgrimage to the cave.
Amarnath Yatra

An Unforgettable Dawn

The Amarnath cave has been a place of worship since times immemorial. There are references to the legendary king Aryaraja (ascribed dates 300 BCE) who used to worship a lingam formed of ice in Kashmir. The book Rajatarangini (Book VII v.183) refers to Amareshwara or Amarnath. It is believed that Queen Suryamathi in the 11th century AD gifted trishuls, banalingas and other sacred emblems to this temple. Other than this, there are further references to this pilgrimage in many other ancient texts.

Amarnath Yatra

Blossoms En-Route

 

It is believed that after the Middle Ages, this cave was forgotten by people before it was discovered by a shepherd in the 15th century once again. Another story relates to Bhrigu Muni. Long time ago it is believed that The Vale of Kashmir was submerged under water and Kashyapa Muni drained it through a series of rivers and rivulets. Therefore when the waters drained, Bhrigu Muni was the first to have Darshan of Lord Amarnath. Thereafter, when people heard of the Lingam, it became an abode of Baba Barfani for all believers and a pilgrimage which is done by lakhs of people each year.

Amarnath Yatra

one of the Largest Pilgrimage Center of Hinduism

 

The Holy Cave is a popular Yatra destination for Hindus. Pilgrims visit the holy site during the 45-day season around the festival of Shravani Mela in July–August, coinciding with the Hindu holy month of Shraavana. The beginning of the annual pilgrimage, called Amarnath Yatra is marked by ‘Pratham Pujan’ to invoke the blessings of Shri Amarnath Ji. In 2017, the Yatra would commence on 29th June to 7th August 2017.

Amarnath Yatra

Shiva’s Call to his Magnificent Abode

Amarnath Yatra

On the way at Mahagunas Top

 

Either from Srinagar or from Pahalgam, devotees travel the cave on foot. The latter journey takes approximately 5 days. There is a regular services provided from Jammu to Pahalgam and Baltal by The State Road Transport Corporation and Private Transport Operators. Privately hired taxis are also available from Jammu & Kashmir. The shortest northern route is just about 16 km long, but has a very steep gradient and is quite difficult to climb. It starts from Baltal and passes through Domial, Barari, and Sangam to reach the cave. The northern route is along the Amarnath valley and all along the route one can see the river Amaravathy (It is more like a tributary of Chenab) which originates from Amarnath Glacier.

amarnath Yatra

Route Map towards Amarnath Cave

 

Amarnath Yatra

Trek towards Shambhu

 

It is believed that Lord Shiva left Nandi, The Bull, at Pahalgam (Bail Gaon). He released the Moon from his hair (Jataon) at Chandanwari. On the banks of Lake Sheshnag, he released his snakes. At Mahagunas Parvat (Mahaganesh Mountain), he left his son Lord Ganesha. At Panjtarni, Lord Shiva left behind the five elements – Earth, Water, Air, Fire and Sky. Lord Shiva performed the Tandava Dance, as a symbol of sacrificing the earthly world. Then, finally, Lord Shiva entered the Holy Amarnath Cave along with his consort Parvati.

Amarnath Yatra

Shiva released Moon at Lake Sheshnag

 

En-route the cave, Various non-profit organizations set up food supply and resting tets called pandals which are available for free to the pilgrims. Hundreds of tents which are erected by locals can be hired for a night’s stay,  near around the shrine. Helicopter services from base camp to Panjtarni (6 km from the cave) are also available from various private operators.

Amarnath Yatra

Stay in Camps at Amarnath Cave

 

Amarnath Yatra

Royal Bhandara on your way

 

Every year, thousands of central police and state police personnel are deployed to provide security to pilgrims from potential terror threats. The forces position at various halts and also in the perimeter of the shrine.

Amarnath Yatra

Cent % Secured with our Indian Super Heroes

 

Officially, the Yatra is organised by the State Government in collaboration with the Shree Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB). The Government agencies provide necessary facilities all along the route during the Yatra period, which includes provision of ponies, supply of power, telecommunication facilities, firewood and setting up of fair price shops.

Amarnath Yatra

Enchanting Trail

Amarnath Yatra

Dollis preferred for Old ones

Amarnath Yatra

Riverside path

 

The pilgrimage was banned from 1991 to 1995 due to threats from militants. In 1996 the militants had assured that they would not interfere allowing a resumed yatra with far greater numbers than in previous years. However, unseasonal blizzards in late August of that year led to a tragedy that claimed the lives of 242 yatris, killed by exhaustion and exposure. Environmentalists have expressed concern that the number of people participating in the Amarnath Yatra is having a negative impact on the area’s ecology and some have expressed support for government regulated limits on the number of pilgrims permitted to make the trek.

Amarnath Yatra

Relax with Babaji

Amarnath /yatra

Take Helicopters up to Panchtarni

 

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