My Journey to RARA Lake


“There are moments in life when breathing makes real sense; rest of the time people just breathe to kill their time. One of such moments arrive during the thrill of travelling, no matter where, how or why. Recently, I, along with my classmates travelled to Karnali region of our country and its heart, Rara national park and believe me, it was one of the most awesome weeks of my life. The joy of travelling the Karnali region made me forgot everything else.

I wanted to explore Karnali, which I did, so far I could, to make my conscience aware of the country I am living in and the lives of my fellow countrymen in those hinterland devoid of the blessings of 21st century technologies. I realized, staring from the window sea of our vehicle when it made seemingly impossible twists in every mind boggling corners of intricate Karnali Highway, that it’s not the fear of death that keeps us breathing rather it’s the pure joy that arrives out of living.

After the arduous yet adventurous ride of around 900 km, we reached the Rara Lake situated at 2990 m above the sea level during the dusk of third day and wow, the scene of sunset and the sound of tides she made relieved me from the physical tiredness resulted out of continuous 10 – 12 hours ride per day. The next 24 hours of my life at Rara Lake has taught me more than my 16 years of schooling and has taken me into my personal inward journey to seek happiness and the meaning of living. The joy of watching serene and calm Rara Lake early in the morning is unparalleled and the awe of watching it roar after noon beats every possible thrills.

Watching the grandeur of Rara alone seemed lacking, so I, along with few friends decided to go for boating. As we waited for the boat to arrive on station, few of us decided to swim in it. There’s adrenaline rushing in the body on seeing the magnanimous crystal clear lake and the inability to resist the temptation was high. What we didn’t realize was the naivete of ours in swimming. One of my friends, as a result of this, drowned and I, being near to him went to pull him out. The next two minutes inside the Rara lake, struggling for the catch of breath seemed eternity to me and the experience is so vivid till now, that I get shivered just remembering it. I don’t know how, but we made it out.

I had never imagined to go through such unexpected situations in Rara but life is so damn unpredictable that our plan holds no sway in front of it. There are so many places on the road to Rara that seems utterly dangerous to travel on local bus, still hundreds of people commute to their homes from Kathmandu. The rugged and breath taking hills of Kalikot reminded me that, there so many things that could go wrong and cause accident but people are still living there. It made me realized, now back at home, after traveling around 180km to the mid-west of my country that anything that doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. Also, staring at the immense Rara Lake reminded me of the transiency of human life and the need of exploring the nature before we get old. It’s not just because travelling is fun, which it is, but during travelling, we get to meet unexpected travelers (which I did), we get to feel the grandeur of nature, to some extent and above all, travelling makes our life worth living. ” – (Binod Dahal, 2)

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