Muguthang

An insight into the nomadic tribe at Muguthang

Author: TG Contributor
Date: 2020-10-19

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Muguthang is located at a distance of 19 km from Chopta Valley in North Sikkim district of Sikkim state. It is a small hamlet on the bank of River Naku Chhu. It is the mountain valley situated at an elevation of 14,850 feet and can be reached by trekking from the Chopta Valley. This valley is normally uninhabitable except for some occasional settlements by Tibetan nomads for grazing their Yaks.

The local nomadic tribe of Muguthang is called Dokpa. One can get an insight about the lifestyle of Dokpas here. Presently nine families of Dokpas are residing there. Mostly the head of the family stays in Muguthang while the children study in Gangtok and other urban areas. Yaks are the fundamental part of their lives. The benefits of products like hard cheese (churpi), meat and butter gives them some earnings. Yak dung is used as fuel for cooking food and fodder and also heating their homes.

Muguthang

Muguthang

They also cultivate potatoes and locally called ‘Rai Saag’ for self consumption during the summer times. They then store the potatoes inside pits dug on the ground to consume during winters. When there is scarcity of grass due to snowfall the nettles that grow there are cut, collected and dried during the summer to feed the yaks by mixing it with flour during the winters. This place is also popular for the annual Yak race which takes place during the festival of Drukpa Teshi.


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