10 November 2020

Where The Wild Things Are: Wildlife Around
Rakkh Resort In Dharamshala

For millennia, the hills that surround our resort in Palampur have harbored a natural world of great magnitudes. Indeed, the mighty Himalayas support one of the world’s oldest ecosystems, from millions of years ago. Rakkh resort in Dharamshala is a part of the Indian Himachal Reserve, a popular biodiversity hotspot.

In this guide, we’d like to bring you some insights about what constitutes these mighty mountains, what great beings may have walked in the same place you’ll be trekking around in our resort in Palampur, along with a section on the current ecology that has a home in the Himalayas.

An eagle near our resort in Himachal

Image credits: Wikipedia

Chilly, young beginnings:
The vast pine and conifer forests that greet you as you enter our resort in Palampur were not always as they are today. The Himalayas are estimated to be around 50 million years old, when the tectonic plates of India and Eurasia struck together during the early days of the Earth. This is actually not very long ago when we consider the age of the earth! The Himalayas therefore are considered a young landform.
There has also been recent evidence of ice-age era fauna being a part of the Himalayan shelves as well in the neighboring regions of Tibet. For instance, remains of wooly rhinos that have been dated to be older than the ice age itself. Searching in the ice has also led us to the discovery of primitive primate remains of a species we now know as Krishnapithecus.  
The majority of the water sources in the Himalayas are glacial in nature along with some groundwater sources. Some of these glaciers are almost as old as the hills themselves! The Dhauladhars that surround Rakkh are home to Lal Dham, an important pilgrimage destination in Dharamshala for devotees of Shiva. The waters around our resort in Palampur and the water that we use in our resort all arise from a natural spring, thereby eliminating the need to use water from outside sources or tankers. The monsoons also supplement these hills for a few months in the year.

A bird at our resort in Himachal

The Land Of Pine And Flowers:
Nearly 68% of these grand mountains are covered in jungles, making them one of the richest, most green parts of India. There are an estimated 3200 species of flora including plants and trees in the Himachal and 50% of India’s endemic flora lives in the Himachal. That’s one of the highest densities of endemic populations anywhere on the planet! And what a variety it is. As you go on a trek in Dharamshala, you’ll be greeted by dog roses, pink rhododendrons that are the state flower of Himachal and maybe even chance upon a rare blue poppy neatly hiding in a crevice. And don’t be surprised if you find orchids on a village walk near Rakkh Resort in Palampur!

Himachal is also known as the fruit bowl of India. It’s always a delight when you come to our resort in Dharamshala to find a tree filled with apples or pears. Chestnuts and walnuts can be found when you wander around the places to see in Mcleodganj. 

And out of these numerous species of flora, it’s difficult to miss the friendly pine trees that proliferate everywhere around Rakkh. 16% of the Himachal region is covered in pine forest. Pines are a good source of firewood for the locals and the trees are also tapped for their resin, an important component when making turpentine. Pine trees also bring along with them a special smell which one can seldom find in the cities! There are 6 varieties of pines in the Himachal region.

A bird at our resort in Himachal
A haven for fauna:
Nearly 1200 species of fauna can be found throughout the entire Himalaya range. As stated before, the India Himachal Reserve forests are one of the richest biodiversity centers on the planet. Out of these, you can expect to find around 400 species of varied fauna around the hills of our resort in Palampur. From the apex predators like the Snow Leopard and the tiger in some cases to the resplendent Monal or the Cheer Pheasant or the Western Tragopan, there is a stark difference between the wildlife of the hills and that of the plains. A fair number of these animals and birds are under conservation programs thanks to state government and local efforts, something you can read about in our blog here.

If this guide has instilled in you a sense of awe and a thirst to learn more, you can always come down to our resort in Palampur to get a taste of the true outdoors. Rakkh resort in Palampur is surrounded by pine and conifer forests, where a good portion of the biodiversity that we’ve described lives.

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Ghamrota Village Post Office Ballah ,Tehsil Palampur, District Kangra, Jiun, Himachal Pradesh 176061