I’ve first heard the name of Tinap Saitar from fellow travelers. Upon looking at the picture for the first time, it appeared to be different from other water falls of Bandarban. A bit wild. The picture was taken from some valley; I’ve seen one Jhiri break up in the middle and whirl into another Jhiri. It was a once in a lifetime view, at least in Bandarban I haven’t seen anything like it. I later came to know the Jhiri is called Paindu Jhiri, it started from Ruma and went to Roangchori.
I’ve heard so much about Tinap Saitar in the last three years. The waterfall ended in Paindu Jhiri, hence making it very difficult to go down. Risky as well. All these intensified the desire to climb down. Anyway, September 2016. We’re gonna enter Roangchori for the first time; of course to head to Tinap Saitar.
To go to Tinap Saitar we need to go to Ronin para, from Roangchori Bajar, which is approximately 8-9 hours walk. We reached Ronin para just after dusk. We’ve heard from a local tribal guy that he went to Tinap Saitar to hunt bears.
At the dawn, we started to Tinap from Ronin para.
Patches of cloud in the trial could not attract our attention; our eyes were seeking that magnificent beauty. After an arduous walk, when I first saw the wild beauty in my own eyes, I forgot every pain I’ve faced in the way. When I looked down, it felt like I’m on Amazon.
There was a steep slope which went down without anything to grab. So we had to grapple down, as there wasn’t anything to cling on to.
We rappelled down to Paindu Jhiri, there, another Jhiri met with Paindu Jhiri. We drank some water from where the two Jhiris met and went through. Paindu Jhiri is unlike any other Jhiri. We realized this necessitates the different approach to the trail.
The trail was lavish. We were frightened inside, also the allure of the dream was too much to pass up. Whenever we hear a sound, we were thinking it was a bear!
We found some giant sized crab while walking forward and bagged them quickly for dinner.
1.30 PM, it’s been 4-5 hours but we still haven’t found the water. It felt like we were walking through the Amazon. The sunshine was not passing through.
At last, the trail ends. We finally get to see the Tinap Satar. It stands just opposite of big boulders. We were teeming with joy, everything that we did so far, feels so justified.
We could not talk for 10 minutes, we were speechless watching the beauty. But we could not stay there for long, it was more than 5, since we had to go back before nightfall, and that happens around 7, we started backtracking.
Our return to civilization was rushed, there was the fear of unknown. Maybe fear can give people strength beyond normal. We finished 3 hours trekking in 2 hours on our return home.
When I was grappling up, it was around 6. Loose rocks were scuffling down the slope, we were constantly in the woe of getting dislodged. But thankfully nothing like that happened. When the last 3 of us climbed up, the last bit of sunlight was not there anymore.
It was 9 PM when we finally return from Tinap Saitar. Before sleeping that night, the famous line from Gabriel Garcia Marquez was iterating through my mind – “It’s not the amount of time you lived that matters, it’s the experience you gathered.”
And I was definitely richer in that regard.