The holy town of Bageshwar situated at the confluence of Sarayu, Gomti and Bhagirathi rivers is revered by all and deemed as the land of Lord Sadashiva. This sacrosanct place is said to liberate one from the bondage of birth and death and is venerated in the Puranas. Bageshwar is nestled amidst the Bhileshwar and Nileshwar mountains on its east and west side respectively, Suraj Kund on the north and Agni Kund on the south. This great place was traversed by Jagadguru Adi Shankaracharya who spent a lot of time in meditation in various locations on His way to the Himalayas.
Dev Bhoomi Uttarakhand is a mysterious place full of secrets and unexplored gateways to the Himalayas and Kailash Manosarovar. This place is a matter of great fascination for archaeologists, naturalists, historians, paleontologists, geologists, architects as well as theologists who are flummoxed by the wealth of natural resources.
Located about 8 kms from Bageshwar is the relatively unknown Gauri Udiyar. Udiyar means a small cave where tigers and other wild animals reside in Kumaoni language. As the name suggests, this cave has a temple of Gauri Mata and Lord Shiva.
Situated in the beauteous Kumaon division, this temple actually has many formations of Lord Shiva that are ancient. There is no information about its origin or when it was discovered or how old it really is but locals say that the temple is of ancient times.
It is said that the natural formations of Lord Shiva have fresh cold water coming out of them in summers and hot water coming out of them in winters! Locals say that there is a legend milk used to manifest from these formations in the earlier days.
This is a large natural cave measuring about 20 x 95 square metres located in the midst of stunning natural beauty. It is believed that Dev Shilpi Vishwakarma (Divine architect, sculptor and master of arts) has created this masterpiece. Another legend says that all the gods and goddesses rested (stayed) here during the marriage of Lord Shiva and Parvati Devi.
There is a picture of the divine marriage along with doli, wedding gifts and other finely crafted artistic ware. There is a very narrow cave which is supposed to lead to Kailash Parvat.
This sacred place has a natural kund that has hot water in winters and cold water in summers! Locals say that saints and yogis from across the country stay in this mystical place and meditate for many years immersed in the radiance of Lord Shiva and Parvati Devi.
Written by Lakshmi Subramanian
* Photos are only symbolic (Taken from public domain/internet and any copyright infringement is unintentional and regrettable)