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Mushkpuri is a 9400+ ft height mountain in the Donga Gali – Nathia Gali of District Abbottabad. It is the second highest peak in the Galiyat Region after Miranjani (9872 Ft.). The peak can be referred as Mushkpuri or Mukshpuri or Mukeshpuri. There are two tracks leading up to the summit, one from Donga Gali, which is steep and the other from Nathia Gali, which is rather easy and lengthy. You can reach the summit in around 3 hours from both the tracks. The peak can be visited round the year. In winter, there is ice along the tracks, so you should take the necessary precautions. This post is a travel guide for anyone planning to hike on Mushkpuri and contains critical information such as mushkpuri top track distance or distance of mushkpuri from Lahore or Islamabad etc.
Islamabad to Mushkpuri
You can reach the peak easily on a metaled road from Islamabad, Pakistan. If you are planning to go on your own vehicle, just go towards Murree from Islamabad on Murree Highway. Take a left towards the Murree City after you reach the Satra Meel round about. Satra Meel is the starting point of Murree Expressway (or Murree Motorway). After 20 – 30 minutes drive you will come across another turn, one is going towards Muzaffarabad and the other towards Abbottabad. You should turn left towards Abbottabad. The road would take you across different Gali’s like Bansura Gali, Khaira Gali, Ghora Gali and after a 20 – 30 minutes drive, you will reach the Donga Gali. Nathia Gali will be reach after few minutes from Donga Gali.
You can reach Mushkpuri while availing local transport also. Local wagons usually takes around 3 hours from Pir-wadahi bus station at Rawalpindi to reach Donga Gali. You can either access wagons towards Kalabagh or towards Khaira Gali from Pir-wadahi. The wagon towards Kalabagh would take you to Donga Gali as well as Nathia Gali. The wagon towards Khaira Gali would take you to Khaira Gali. After Khaira Gali, you can take a ride on pickups to either Donga or Nathia Gali. Pickups usually takes 15 minutes from Khaira to Donga Gali. Local transport from rawalpindi to Murree is available after every 30 minutes. Pickups from Murree city to Donga Gali & to Nathia Gali are available after every 10 minutes. You can also avail custom hired Suzuki Bolan & Pickups from Murree City to the Donga Gali.
Hiking to the Mushkpuri Top
I usually prefer Donga Gali Track, as the track is comparatively adventurous than the Nathia Gali Track. Both of the tracks are safe for families and children alike. The Mushkpuri Peak is situated within the Ayubia National Park. The Donga Gali Track is around 2.5 Km and it takes around 2 hours 30 mins to cover the track. The Nathia Gali Track is 4 Km in length and it usually takes around 3 hours 15 minutes to reach the summit. KPK Tourist Police covers the trek for the safety of the tourists. The police is rather helpful in providing details and helping the tourists with whatever they can. They once carried our bags across the track, while I was summitting Miranjani Peak with a friend.
You can witness Ayubia National Park along the tracks. Ayubia National Park is a protected area of 3312 Hectares Declared in 1984 and is named after President Ayub Khan of Pakistan. A bird sanctuary is developed along the Donga Gali Track. From the summit point, you can see Bagh District of AJK, Murree City and Islamabad City.
A full tank in your car can take you to Mushkpuri from Islamabad & back to Islamabad. The local wagons take PKR 200 from Pir-wadahi to Kalabagh & PKR 140 to Khaira Gali and pickups from Khaira Gali would take PKR 20 from Khaira Gali to Donga Gali.
Only great hotel at the Nathia as well as at Donga Gali is Amore Hotel at Donga Gali. The building & furniture are great. Amore hotel is a bit pricy as compared to other hotels due to the facilities. There are many hotels in the area. You can find a room in the area in between PKR 1500 to PKR 15000, according to the faciities.
A hiking tour to the Mushkpuri Peak can be managed in a day from either Islamabad or Lahore.
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