Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary is an unusual one as it was created to preserve ‘Yeti’, the abominable Snowman known as ‘Migoi’ by the locals. There are no scientific proofs confirming the presence of this mythical creature that walks on two feet like humans and is tall and shaggy. There are many folklores and urban legends about this creature in the local Bhutanese people who insist that there have been many sightings of Migoi in this region. Migoi is known for its phenomenal strength, magical powers such as the ability to become invisible and knowing how to walk backwards to fool any trackers. The luxuriant deciduous forests of Sakteng are believed to be the home of these creatures.
These forests have not yet been explored fully because entry of foreigners in this region is restricted and locals do not venture too far into the jungles. Situated in the easternmost part of the Kingdom, Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary was declared a protected area in 2003, making it the newest protected area if Bhutan. It sprawls across 650 sq. km, covering amazing biodiversity and variety of intact Himalayan terrestrial ecosystems such as alpine meadows, temperate forests and warm broadleaf forests. Keep your camera handy in the sanctuary, so that you are ready to click, in case you spot a Yeti. Isolated nomadic tribes live in this sanctuary such as Brokpas. These indigenous tribal people are often reticent and unwilling to interact with the outsiders.
The isolation of the place has preserved several life forms in their original shapes and sizes and there are thick carpets of rhododendrons found here. You can spot snow leopards, red pandas, Himalayan black bear, barking deer and Himalayan red fox here. Aerial fauna and birds include the hoary-bellied Himalayan squirrel, Assamese macaw, blood pheasant, grey backed shrike, grey-headed woodpecker, common hoopoe, rufous-vented tit and dark breasted rosefinch. Besides the conifers, plant life and flora of Sakteng wildlife sanctuary includes rare blue poppies, Bhutan’s national flowers; primulas and gentiana that burst into riot of colors in Spring. Many plants such as cordyceps are of medicinal value.