Visible from Shimla and facing Mashobra, is the Shali peak.
At 3,200m this is the highest in Shimla's vicinity. The summit presents an
unimpaired view of the area around and holds an ancient temple dedicated
to the Goddess Bhimkali. A wealth of herbs encircle the peak, and local
belief maintains that breathing their air in early summer or autumn can
cure chronic ailments. Interestingly, spring is not advised as it is
believed that the fumes of fresh shoots emerging from the soil can render
a person unconscious. The stout shrub sat berwa that grows in the local
area was once used by the local area was once used by the local Kolis to
make a kind of papyrus.
Drive upto Mashobra and walk down to the glade of Sipur. Carry on 8-km through picturesque woods, fields and orchards to the village of Thaila. Cross Nauti stream that races through a deep gorge. Here begins the 6-km climb to the hamlet of Kuthnol. Then is the final 6-km ascent to the peak.
A thick forest lies on the northern face of the Shali hill. An additional hike may be made to the adjacent 'Choti' or small Shali and the lake of Karyali. Camp overnight at Shali or at Kuthnol.
Alternatively, drive upto the village of Gulthani that lies about 8-km short of the peak and walk the rest of the way. This route is via Mashobra, Baldian and Thaila.