Binsar Mahadev Temple

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Bindeshwar Mahadev Temple, also known as Binsar Devta or simply Binsar, is an ancient Hindu rock temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, worshiped as Bindeshwar, a popular deity in this region. At an altitude of 2480 meters above mean sea level, it is situated in the village of Bisaona, which is located in the Chauthan region of Thalisain Block in the Pauri Garhwal district of the Indian state of Uttarakhand. This temple is located in the middle of dense forests of birch, cedar and rhododendron. The original temple structure was of great archaeological significance, but it was demolished by politicians to create a new structure. The central chamber of the temple features the idols of Ganesha, Shiva-Parvati, and Mahishasuramardini. A fair about Vaikuntha Chaturdashi is organized there every year.



It is believed That the temple was built by Maharaja Prithu in memory of his father, Bindu, in the 9th / 10th century. It is built in the Katyuri style. It was a contemporary of the Jageshwar and Adi Badri group of temples, but there is no documented history. Many rock-cut idols, shrines, and Shiva Lingams can be found within the valley where the temple is located. While many historians and researchers visited the site, no one produced accurate historical data related to the temple.



The lack of a recorded history led to the rise of legends and folklore. According to one belief, the temple was built by the Pandavas in one night while they were in exile. Another legend says that the temple was built by a king named Bindu. Alternatively, the temple may have been built by Lord Vishwakarma. A strange inscribed symbol outside the temple is said to be handwritten. The temple was shrouded in mystery. Formerly, its central room housed a circular, narrow and deep reservoir of cold water, similar to a well. This formed the main sanctuary. Many idols were kept around him. A snake was said to inhabit the reservoir. In recent times, the well was covered with flat stones. Later, the water seeped from the rocks, suggesting a reservoir underneath.



The region experiences a mild climate during the summer season with pleasant days and cool nights. The monsoon brings rain and covers the surrounding forests with mist. The rainy season brings biodiversity, enriching it with green vegetation along with ferns, mosses, lichens, fungi, birds and insects. Rock temples turn green after being covered in moss and lichens. Winter brings snow, while the daytime temperature fluctuates. The days are warm, bright and pleasant with temperatures around 15 °, while the nights are cold. The sun rises late and sets early during this period, making the weather even colder during the hours of darkness. Frosts are common during this season and snowfall ranges from 1 foot (30 cm) to 4 feet (120 cm) and more.



The temple is hidden in a small valley in the vast Dudhatoli region. The altitude of the temple complex ranges from 2480 meters (8136 feet) to 2500 meters (8202 feet). The complex is located in a meadow. The forest around the temple is one of the densest temperate forests in Uttarakhand, with cedar cedar (Cedrus deodara) as the dominant tree species, further east becoming the only tree species. The valley is dotted with multiple springs of cold water, some of which are channeled into rock formations (known as Mangārā in the Garhwali language), while others flow naturally (known as dhārā). The surrounding ridges have an average elevation of 2,700 meters (8,860 feet) with dense, mixed, and broadleaf forests, including kharsu, oaks, hornbeams, maples, rhododendrons, hazelnuts, Corylus jacquemontii, and dozens of other tree species.

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