Itahari, Aug 15 : In this baking heat time of Nepal's southern plains, waterfalls in hills have been touristic magnets.
The rainy season has added glamour to waterfalls as they accumulate more water during this season.
In Province 1, people have been flocking to the Hyatrung waterfall of Tehrathum to enjoy its majestic beauty.
Before the local elections of 2074 BS, Hartung had the privilege of being the longest waterfall in the country.
This titular status was lost after 2074 BS. When the local government of Pachal Jharana Rural Municipality of Kalikot measured the height of the Pachal waterfall, it came to light as the longest fall. The height of Pachal was measured to be 381 meters against Hyatrung's 365 meters.
Despite being reduced to the second longest waterfall in Nepal, Hyatrung has been the longest waterfall in Province 1. Other noted taller waterfalls in Province 1 include the 300-meter-tall Fungfunge waterfall of Taplejung, the 191-meter-tall Ghorle waterfall of Sankhuwasabha, and the 130-meter-tall Pokali waterfall of Okhandhunga.
There are dozens of other waterfalls in the Province. Namaste waterfall of Bhedetar is the most popular one. Thousands of people from bordering Indian states of Bihar and West Bengal come to visit the fall.
Though Hyatrung has a great touristic value, its water volume is not so good. It does have a good volume of water even during the times of the rainy season.
Locals say the waterfall does not look like a waterfall during the dry season. According to Bhogendra Shrestha, Chief Executive Officer of Phedap Rural Municipality of which Hyatrung is a part, it has good water volume roughly from mid-April to mid-October.
Hearing lies in the borderland of Phedap ward number 4 (Sandu) and ward number 5 (Ishibu). Locals have called for their local government to put extra efforts to increase the flow of waterfall volume at any cost.
''If Hyatrung does not have enough waterfall, who is going to call it waterfall anyway'', says Tej Prashad Limbu, a local, ''We need to put more investment to that end. We can work on other facilities later on.''
Previously, Hyatrung had poor access to reach. The connectivity situation has completely changed these days. Hartung is in close proximity to Mid-Hill (Puspalal) Highway. It is just a few minutes' drives from Batase on the highway section via Sandu School.
From the Tamor corridor highway connecting Dhankuta to Taplejung, Hyatrung is just a couple of hours' drive away. Likewise, Hyatrung has close connectivity with Mechi Highway. It is just a few hours' drives from the Panchthar section of the Mechi highway as Hyatrung is close to Panchthar also.
In this way, Hyatrung is one of the most accessible waterfalls in the mid-hill zone of Province 1. The Hyatrung waterfall is just a three-hour long drive from Myanglung, the district headquarters of Tehrathum. However, for locals, it is just a matter of one and half hours on the adventurous dirt road track from Halimela to Sandu.
There are some waterfall-related accidents in Province 1. The most tragic one was recorded in the Namaste waterfall of Dhankuta in 2075 BS. A youth from Itahari named Bikram Tamang died after a rolling boulder from the Namaste waterfall hit him.
There is no such accident in Hyatrung as of now. No causalities and harm have been recorded as of now. Locals say there are no chances of stones falling in the waterfall.
Though it is known as the longest waterfall in Nepal, there has not been proper development around the waterfall. There are some facilities like a truss bridge, an indigenous Limbu-style home, and a foot track with a railing and a picnic spot and viewpoints. In addition, a long suspension bridge is in the pipeline of construction.
However, when it comes to accommodation, there is no good provision in the locality. One has to either return to Poklabang, the headquarters of Phedap Rural Municipality or has to travel all the way to Myanglung for good accommodation.
No good homestays are there for domestic and international travelers. No hotels are available as of now. People have no accommodation options. Other poor facilities in the Hyatrung way are no arrangement of signs describing the Hyatrung route. Outsiders have to repeatedly ask locals for finding the right track to travel to the waterfall.
Hospitable locals are a good help for finding a way to Hyatrung. However, locals may not readily available all the time as they are engaged most of their time in farming activities.(RSS)