In 1931, Frank S. Smythe was one of the six British mountaineers who climbed Kamet Peak. On his return to the plains, he crossed the Bhyundar Pass, standing at 5,086m, “with the intention of exploring the mountainous region at the sources of the two principal tributaries of the Ganges, the Alaknanda and Gangotri rivers.” The next day, Smythe descended to “lush meadows . . . embordered amidst flowers. The Bhyundar Valley was the most beautiful valley that any of us had ever seen. We camped in it for two days and we remembered it afterwards as the Valley of Flowers” (The Valley of Flowers, Frank S. Smythe, Hodder and Stoughton, 1947).