Sunday, 3 July 2016

The Himalayan Trek - the beginning

Soar like an eagle
Walk on the cool grass
Breathe the crisp air
Drink the Himalayan water

These 4 Lines sums up Sar pass

Did we fly like an eagle not really but those dizzy heights felt like one. A journey like no other, a trek like no other.

A mistaken journey landed us in one of the most fun trip I have taken.

As I geared for the journey to Sar Pass, with words of wisdom from the internet, anticipation creating a riot within myself. Excitement, fear intermingled together, I traveled via  Delhi, an overnight buses from Delhi to Bhuntur and local buses from there on to Kasol, dropped me to the base camp.
As we overlooked the base Camp at Kasol, the fear returned to what have I done. Dreading the many stairs to the base camp, we braved ourselves with huge bags to reach the base camp. The roar of Parvati river was astounding.

At the base camp, post our registration we were alloted tents. I have never done camping or stayed in a tent so this was a novel experience. Our tent had 9 girls including myself and I looked around speculatively on how to fit in, we were in for a bigger surprise.
After we had settled in, orientation was held by the field director. I need to commend the field director as he has to keep repeating the same  text day in and day out for each group, talk about monotony. YHAI is known for arranging scrumptious meals and this trek was no different with stringent time schedule. A camp fire performance and hot bournvita later we packed ourselves in our sleeping bags. I now know what a larva feels like. All tied up and cant move much.

At 5.30 am, a whistle woke us up for tea. Do you know the feeling of sleeping on a hard ground and woken mid sleep, thats how i felt with each and every muscle creaking. Dragging our feet, we got ready for the morning exercises, running and stretching and behaving like stroke victims. We were happy to be back at 8 for some breakfast, only to leave at 830 for a walk in the park. Now this is not your regular park walk, imagine 2 kms of uphill walking on narrow path with pebbles all over and altitude.

This walk was no mean feat, as I was breathless after 500m on the incline. Making me realise how out of shape, I was heaving my way through when we finally reached the river, our break point. The alluring Parvati river was a nice place to bask in. We were given an hour to explore the area. The warm sun with the calming sound of the running water had me lazing like a cat, content. 

We returned to the base camp around around noon for another round of orientation and preparation for our campfire performance. Our group put up a stellar performance and were literally crowned the best campfire of the year (conditions applied as there were other groups after us too).  A special mention to JD, he rocked the performance with his mange meri baro act. Imagine a professional body builder enacting the role of the heroine and dance word for word. It was a laugh riot with Zingat played as a group performance. It was an amazing prelude to the coming days ahead.

For the next day, rappelling and rock climbing were scheduled as part of the acclimatization exercise. However we still had one important step before that and it was morning exercises. Dragging our feet along with the next batch we ran and stretched. After breakfast, all of us marched for rappelling and I like a good citizen sat at the back, content under the warm sun. I managed to skip rappelling and rock climbing as it wasn't compulsory and didn't believe gravity or height was working in my favor. 

The guys attempted rock climbing, some clinging like spiderman and others moving like it was a daily commute. My gold seat ensured me a viewing as well as some time to bond with nature as we were leaving for our trek the next day.

Back at the camp, all of us were busy weighing and repacking our bags for the trek. We were asked to carry only essentials and that was a dilemma one can do without. One of the girls actually emptied after the tooth paste to reduce weight and all the girls managed to carry a decent weight. The guys were another story with some carrying bags weighing 10 kgs. We all prepared ourselves for the long journey ahead...


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