Feature Article: The Great Gangotri – Feeder of the Ganges

Gongotri Glacier – Great Feeder of the River Ganges

One of the great moving river bodies of the planet, the mother Ganges, is fed by the Himalayan Water Towers; glaciers that ebb slowly at greater speeds. We know the river itself but not necessarily the epic bodies that feed it. They are revered and worshiped…and they do ebb. The Gangotri is one of those feeders, lying in India’s stunning Uttarakhand State.

The article in September/October, 2017’s edition is based on a month long expedition made the end of 2016, traipsing under some of the climbing world’s great peaks: Meru, Shivling, Bhagirathi…but we went not to ascend the spires but to travel horizontally to the Gangotri glacier which acts like a great funnel that feeds the Ganges.

My feature in Outpost on one of the prime feeders of the Mother Ganges

The article focuses on the great glacier and the feeder glaciers that rest in some of the most worshipped landscapes in the Himalayas. It focuses too on a wonderful team of porters, my guru Karma who creates the pungent masala chais that feed and nourish us, and upon a space that needs a little more attention: The Third Pole, the Himalayas which feeds so very much of Asia with precious fresh water.

Glacial water that will pass beneath the Gangotri Glacier and into the Ganges River

A glacial stream within the Kirti glacier burbles its meltwater way down towards the greater Gangotri. This water will take will end up in the Ganges and in perhaps couple of days arrive to the Bay of Bengal.

Big thanks to Outpost Magazine’s editors who continue to reel me in while making everything read and look just that little bit better…and in this case plaster a huge shot myself on the cover (taken in true blue steel surroundings by great friend, Michael Kleinwort).

Enjoy the read and look forward to hearing your thoughts on water and the precious mountains.

Glacier meltwater flows towards the Gangotri Glacier

With Shivling in the background, water from the Chaturangi Glacier flows towards the Gangotri.

About JeffFuchs

Bio Having lived for most of the past decade in Asia, Fuchs’ work has centered on indigenous mountain cultures, oral histories with an obsessive interest in tea. His photos and stories have appeared on three continents in award-winning publications Kyoto Journal, TRVL, and Outpost Magazine, as well as The Spanish Expedition Society, The Earth, Silkroad Foundation, The China Post Newspaper, The Toronto Star, The South China Morning Post and Traveler amongst others. Various pieces of his work are part of private collections in Europe, North America and Asia and he serves as the Asian Editor at Large for Canada’s award-winning Outpost magazine. Fuchs is the Wild China Explorer of the Year for 2011 for sustainable exploration of the Himalayan Trade Routes. He recently completed a month long expedition a previously undocumented ancient nomadic salt route at 4,000 metres becoming the first westerner to travel the Tsa’lam ‘salt road’ through Qinghai. Fuchs has written on indigenous perspectives for UNESCO, and has having consulted for National Geographic. Fuchs is a member of the fabled Explorers Club, which supports sustainable exploration and research. Jeff has worked with schools and universities, giving talks on both the importance of oral traditions, tea and mountain cultures. He has spoken to the prestigious Spanish Geographic Society in Madrid on culture and trade through the Himalayas and his sold out talk at the Museum of Nature in Canada focused on the enduring importance of oral narratives and the Himalayan trade routes. His recently released book ‘The Ancient Tea Horse Road’ (Penguin-Viking Publishers) details his 8-month groundbreaking journey traveling and chronicling one of the world’s great trade routes, The Tea Horse Road. Fuchs is the first westerner to have completed the entire route stretching almost six thousand kilometers through the Himalayas a dozen cultures. He makes his home in ‘Shangrila’, northwestern Yunnan upon the eastern extension of the Himalayan range where tea and mountains abound; and where he leads expeditions the award winning ‘Tea Horse Road Journey’ with Wild China along portions of the Ancient Tea Horse Road. To keep fueled up for life Fuchs co-founded JalamTeas which keeps him deep in the green while high in the hills.
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