Rising above 7,031 meters above sea level, Mount Saipal is the second highest mountain of the Sudurpashchim Province in far-western Nepal lead by Api (7100 m) and followed by Jethi Bahurani, Rakshya, Sunapani, Phirankov. As most of the northern area of the province still remains unexplored, these magnificent peaks are yet to be climbed. Located on Gurans Himal range – one of the sub-ranges of the Himalayas – Mt. Saipal offers abundant thrill and wilderness to adventure seekers. While the mountain may not be significant in terms of altitude, it’s difficult topography and difficult climbing route makes climbing this mountain a tricky affair for even seasoned mountaineers. The peak is located in Bajhang district – some 1,000 kilometers away from Kathmandu – and is the origination point of Seti River.
Not only the peaks, the Saipal region is rich in various cultural and natural attractions. It can also offer an adventurous trek for those who love trekking in the wilderness. While the lower area has difficult topography, which makes life difficult for local people, the alpine area is home to vast grasslands. These grasslands are rich in several medicinal herbs like Yarsagumba, Jatamasi, Padmachal, Panchaunle, SetakChini, GuchheChyau. These medicinal herbs are the source of income for many people living below alpine areas. During spring, the entire area is covered by a carpet of several wild flowers and in winter the area covered by thick coat of snow. The area is home to several wildlife species like Blue Sheep and the elusive Snow Leopard. The encounter with the beautiful flora and fauna, walking through dense forest and the untainted rivers observing beautiful rituals and festivals of the local people along with their unique songs and music will offer a 'Life time Experience' for both the climbers and trekkers around the world.
Locals of the area are mostly Hindus, while there are some followers of Buddhism as well. However, Hindu culture and tradition in this part of Nepal is different from other parts of the country. They worship Masto deity which do not have any definite form like other Hindu gods and goddesses. The social belief and lifestyles of this region is highly guided by the 'Masto'. They believe they can communicate with the deity through shamans.
Besides, Saipal as a mountain, it is also a center of civilization and religion. Myths have it that the mountain is the abode of Hindu gods and goddesses. Sapial, according to Hindu mythology, is named after Lord Bishnulike like Mt Kailash is named after Lord Shiva. In Hindu religion, there is a trinity of three gods – Brahma, the creator; Bishnu the protector; and Shiva the destroyer. Locals of the area believe that as Mt Kailash is home to Lord Shiva, Mt Saipal, in the same manner, is the residence of Lord Bishnu, who rests upon the lap of SheshNaag -- a five-headed holy Serpent God.
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