Envis Centre, Ministry of Environment & Forest, Govt. of India

Printed Date: Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Manimahesh Kailash peak







Manimahesh Kailash peak is also known as Chamba Kailash. It is located in Bhamour sub division of Chambha district in the state of Himachal Pradesh and is about 26km from Bhamour in the Budhil valley. It towers over Manimahesh Lake and forms the watershed of the Bhudil valley which forms a part of mid Himalayan range. Numerous streams rise from this peak. The Manimahesh Ganga River originates from this lake and joins the Bhudil River on its left flank. Another stream the Dhancho rises from the snowy ranges of the southern flank of the peak and flows on northward direction. The Siv Korotar stream rises from the foot of the peak and joins the Androl River. The Gauri stream from Gaurikund also joins the Androl River. All these streams constitute the Dhancho nala that ultimately joins the Bhudhil River. The Bhudil River is venerated by the local community. All the streams are linked to legend and the annual pilgrimage.




This peak plays an important role in the religious life of the people of Himachal Pradesh. In the month of Bhadon on the eighth day of the new moon a fair is held near the lake that attracts thousands of pilgrims. It is commonly believed that Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati take bath in the lake. On this occasion, lakhs of people from all over the country take bath here. The devotees also believe that the bad weather covering the peak with clouds is the manifestation of the displeasure of the God. The devotees believe that they can view the peak only if the God wishes them to do so.






Numerous legends and stories surround this peak. In one popular legend, Lord Shiva created Manimahesh after he married Goddess Parvati who is worshipped as Matha Girija. The rock formation in the form of Shivling is considered to be a manifestation of Lord Shiva. The snowfield at the base of the mountain is called Shiva’s Chaugan (play field).




It is also believed that Manimahesh Kailash is invincible as no one has so far scaled it, in spite of claims to the contrary and the fact that much taller peaks have been scaled, including Mount Everest. According to one legend, a local tribesman, a Gaddi, tried to climb along with a herd of sheep and is believed to have been turned into stone along with his sheep. The series of minor peaks around the principal peak are believed to be the remnants of the shepherd and his sheep.