About Kedarnath Temple
Kedarnath is one of the twelve jyotirlingam of Lord Shiva. There are total twelve jyotirlingam, also called the power vortex and Kedarnath is one of the most sacred among them and is considered a must visit pilgrimage among the Hindu and the Shiva followers. The kedarnath is located in the snow laden mountains of Himalayas, on the banks of river Mandakini. Due to non-motor able roads, the temple is accessible for only 4-5 months in a year. According to Hindi calendar from the month of Vaisakha to Ashwin, devotes can visit the temple and for the rest of the months the temperature is so cold and is covered with dense snow, making it in accessible.
Kedarnath is located in Garhwal area of Uttarakhand in the Himalayan region and is situated at an altitude of 3550 meters. There are various stories related with the temple and the place and has been mentioned numerous times in the Hindu mythology and their scriptures. The main two stories are, one related to Pandavas and the other related to Lord Shiva (which is discussed in the topic below in detail). One can book seat in pooja ceremony which is performed twice, one in the early morning and the other in the evening, through online website and by paying a nominal fee either through bank DD or online transfer.
During the month of Karthik (mid October and November) due to snowfall, the idol of Lord Kedar is brought out of the temple after a ceremony called â€œNanda Deepaâ€. The temple is probably closed for the winters. In the months of Karthik to vaishakh, the idol is shifted to Urvi math, located deep in the valley. Devotes come from different partsof world to visit this place after making an arduous journey, which also includes a 14-15 km of trek or mule and donkey ride to reach this place. There is also a recent addition of helicopter service for the one who could not take the difficult path, but still want to pay a visit to Lord Shiva at Kedarnath. The place is connected with Gaurikund, which in turn is connected to roads with rest of the famous cities and has public as well as private transportation. There are also good vegetarian restaurants and the place has all the amenities of doctor, clinic and basic necessities in case of an emergency.
To reach kedarnath one has to cross the holy cities of Gaurikund, Triyugi Narayan, Sonprayag, Devprayag and Rishikesh. Therefore, people utilise the tour package which has got access to all these holy places. Haridwar which is also considered to be the gateway to heaven, comes while travelling to Kedarnath. To reach kedarnath the nearest motor able place is Gaurikund, where there are hotels and Inns for accommodation, and after resting there the devote have to take a difficult path to reach the main temple of lord Kedareshwar. Although, the roads are not accessible but people use mules and donkeys and sometimes carriages or palki to reach the place. During the path, there are small resting places at regular intervals for people to rest. The language the people speak there is either Gharwali or Hindi.
After reaching the place, people take dip in the Gaurikund and this place is revered in to the Hindu mythology because this is the place where Lord Shiva cut the head of Ganesha. The hot spring bath at Gaurikund rejuvenates the devotes. Apart from the main temple of Kedarnath there are other famous places to visit like Gaurikund, Vasuki Tal, Chopta and Sonprayag, where one can take an entire package and travel the place in a week time.