Har Ki Doon Trek Day-3

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 Har Ki Doon Trek – Day -3 – Deep Into the Wilderness

We woke up to the sound of birds at about 05:00 am fresh and filled with energy. I went out brushed my teeth in the cold water, a difficult thing to do. I went to the forest with an axe, a bottle of water and some toilet paper.

Completely fresh, I washed my face and head in the running water of the river with a face-wash which I asked from Mountain Man.  It was a cold but refreshing feeling. We did some stretching exercises in the morning to gear up for the coming day. Before breakfast, we were advised to empty out tents, pack sleeping backs and submit carry mats. On the whole trek, my objective was to get ready for walking as early as possible and emptying out the tent was the first and last thing to be able to do so. We were served breakfast of cheela and daliya which I ate sumptuously considering their high fiber, high carbohydrate and fat content. We got ready for the trek and moved on towards our next camp site.

Moving On Towards the Next Camp Site - Har Ki Doon
Moving On Towards the Next Camp Site – Har Ki Doon
Seema Village -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Seema Village — Har Ki Doon Trek

By the time I was writing the day’s first entry it was 09:30 am and we had covered approximately one kilometers by-passing Osla village and reaching Osla Guest House which is situated at 2769 meters (9000 feet approx) above MSL. Surrounding peaks are beautiful. And even the peaks close to us were seen covered with snow. Fortunately, I was not having any breathing problem, but my backpack was giving extreme pain in my right shoulder. I adjusted my backpack straps in which Gajji also helped me and things were much better now. It became comfortable then and I followed the same arrangement for the whole trek.

Osla Guest House -- Har Ki Doon Trek

When we move forward, on the point of crossing the river, there is a hanging bridge. One has to cross the river for Har-Ki Doon. For other expeditions to Bandarpunch range, Black peak, Bali pass and further to Yamunotri one has to go straight ahead without crossing the bridge.

Bridge after Osla Village - Har Ki Doon Trek
Bridge after Osla Village – Har Ki Doon Trek

Here we cross the river, and suddenly climb becomes riskier and steeper. When this stretch of about two kilometers was over we enter into a wheat field. There is this agricultural field whose one side the mountain is rising much higher and we have the idea that we have to climb further. On the other side there is this valley in which river is flowing. The view is amazing. While coming back from the same route from the top we see wind moving grass in such a way that it forms beautiful aurora like patters of green shades.

Wheat Fields --- Har Ki Doon Trek
Wheat Fields — Har Ki Doon Trek

Mules took another path up in the mountains as they would have damaged the crops in the field. But, the comfort was short lived and we again pulled ourselves up the mountains. Gajji was true to his words that today’s climb will be tough and it was. Fortunately, the distance was less though it was evenly tiring. On a decent near a stream there was a concrete bridge, a tea/maggi shop. We stopped here and had our packet lunch. It contained two chapattis and fried lady-finger. The lunch was limited as we were informed that the camp site is nearby. By this time we all understood that the term ‘nearby’ by these guides means at-least two to four kilometers although they make it sound like its just a few hundred meters. So, considering this I ordered a Maggi too which cost Rs 30 only. The Businessman informed that Maggis are quite famous and their prices are directly proportional to the altitude. During his YHAI National Trek to Sar Pass, he had the opportunity to have a Maggi plate in Rs 100.

After, giving rest to our muscles and lungs, we started the much steeper climb again. This must have been a hundred meters climb but quite steep. Climbing it must have been the most difficult part of the trek. But, the reward was incomparable. As soon as we reach the top, it opens up in a meadow and about hundred meters flat we can see our tents waiting for us.

Our Camp Site - Har Ki Doon Trek

I was too tired to walk and walked real slow to avoid unnecessary exhaustion. Most of our group was ahead of me, some had even put their bags in their tents and some enjoying the scenery sitting on a big rock at the edge of the mountain. Few were behind me. As soon as I reached the base camp, I was first fascinated by the natural beauty. There is this deep valley, in the North we see fresh snow-covered peaks and forests of pine trees. Far away in East we see a full range of high peaks including Black peak and Banderpunch range. Gajji told that a team has gone for an expedition at Black Peak. He himself has summited Black Peak twice. In West direction, from where we came, it was worthwhile to wait for the sunset and see how it looks in the Himalayas. Behind us, in South direction, we see hills from where the path leads closer to Har-Ki Doon, our next day trek. The beauty was transcendental.

Our Camp Site -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Our Camp Site — Har Ki Doon Trek
Following Day Morning at our Camp Site -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Following Day Morning at our Camp Site — Har Ki Doon Trek

I came to senses when I started feeling sudden surge of cold and headache. The feeling of cold when we stop moving is most evident in Himalayas then at any other place and it’s quite sudden. When you are walking everything in fine, as you stop you start feeling cold. I had to wear one jacket, one fleece, two t-shirts, gloves, cap and woolen muffler to feel comfortably warm. But, there seemed no cure for headache. This was the time I thought I will return back. I don’t want to face this again. I am not fit for cold and heights. Since, it had started raining by then, we three – me, Mountain Man, Business Man were in tent and I told them about my condition. They sympathized. It was late afternoon and I was in my sleeping bag with all my clothes on.  They were discussing about much difficult treks and I was feeling like let me go from here. I thought I had made a mistake coming here. Outside, the rain had stopped and people came out to discuss mountaineering and trekking. I could overhear them discussing mountain accidents and related movies like Vertical Limit, 127 hours and Into This Air. I was much afraid then. The same discussion was going on in our tent. Then the point came up that only those who have strong will to live, survive in the mountains. It was a very important realization to me. I decided to complete the trek first.

I remember our Ground Co-ordinator telling the formula of 1-1-1 to check if one has headache due to Acute Mountain Sickness or just due to dehydration. The formula is taking one Dispirin with one Liter of water and waiting for one hour. If the headache diminishes, it was only dehydration and if persists there is a possibility of Acute Mountain Sickness.I will see two days later in Hata Valley, the highest point of our trek at Har Ki Doon that Mary suffered severe headache when we were in snow. She asked for Dispirin but none of us took it along as we had to come back to our camp by afternoon. Fortunately, Consultant had Crocin which she took with ample amount of water as was advised by Professor. She starts feeling confortable by the time she reached back to the camp.

When I was eating Maggi near the stream and the concrete bridge, Gajji informed that we will be served Pulao when we reach the camp site. But, a very unexpected thing happened. Some mules did not stop at the designated location of our camp site. They moved ahead much near to Har Ki Doon at higher heights. Due to this logistical problem, to our disappointment we were served Maggi again when we reached the camp with no sign of Pulao in dinner also.

Me, Professor, Jain, Mountain Man and Curator watched sunset and clicked some really beautiful photographs of that evening. Professor had brought his tripod which will prove to be very useful in low light photography. He and Mary told they have purchased this tripod especially for this trip.  I saw a very small Buddhist shrine made up of carved wood and coins inserted by devotees in the cracks of the wood. You can see coins of 10 paise and 20 paise in these cracks. There is no deity or symbol in the shrine but a blue colored flag depicting the figure of Buddha meditating with sutras written in unknown language are present. The staff boys told that the shrine is present here from the time even before their grandfathers.

Small Buddhist Shrine -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Small Buddhist Shrine — Har Ki Doon Trek
Himalayan Ranges Visible from Our Camp Site -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Himalayan Ranges Visible from Our Camp Site — Har Ki Doon Trek
Our Tents at Camp Site -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Our Tents at Camp Site — Har Ki Doon Trek
Setting Sun -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Setting Sun — Har Ki Doon Trek

I was back in my spirits. In the evening, Gajji asked if anyone had any medical problem. I informed him about mine to which he replied remove all your excess clothes and feel comfortable in the weather. He gave example of Mountain Man who was wearing only the basic clothing. I felt confident and removed excess clothes. Later during discussion with Doctor about my fear of cold and about my condition, he said Cold won’t kill you just wear what you feel confident in. He himself always wears a balaclava and socks as he himself is quite sensitive to cold but is not afraid.

Raindrops on Our Tents -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Raindrops on Our Tents — Har Ki Doon Trek
Professor taking photograph of the Sun Set -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Professor taking photograph of the Sun Set — Har Ki Doon Trek
Himalayan Ranges Visible from Our Camp Site -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Kaala Nag (Black Peak) and Bandarpoonch Range Visible from Har Ki Doon Trek

We were served tea, snacks and tomato soup. Tonight, the dinner was Lauki (Bottle Gourd) sabzi, chapattis, dal and rice served with sweet dish of Sevaiya. The food tasted delicious. Considering the cold and tiredness, I don’t remember any bonfire lit or games played.

So, I gave a thought to how my body was behaving in such situation. I had some breathlessness in the last two kilometers of ascent on the first day of trek. Today, also the last kilometer gave me some breathlessness to which Grillinctus is a constant partner. But, now the breathlessness part is completely gone.

Har Ki Doon Trek Day-2

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Har Ki Doon Trek – First Steps

I guess I had a sleep of four-five hours last night. In the morning we got ready for the trek and currently we are waiting for The Invisible to come and brief us. Me, Jain and Musician had some extra time in the early morning after getting ready to roam around Sankri and click some photographs.

Hotel Swargarohini, Har Ki Doon Road, Sankri
Hotel Swargarohini, Har Ki Doon Road, Sankri
A temple in Sankri
A temple in Sankri
Public School in Sankri
Public School in Sankri
Sankri Village
Sankri Village
Mynah Bird at Sankri
Mynah Bird at Sankri
At a Restaurant in Sankri
At a Restaurant in Sankri

When we returned back to the Guest House, we met the Invisible and he taught us how to tie our bootlaces, to wear socks, to avoid and treat blisters, to take rest with the backpack on our backs, to hang our cameras correctly and to wear our backpacks efficiently. They were very basic but important things to save us from complicated situations we may have to face during the trek.

We left Sankri in the morning at about 08:00 am in another batch of Boleros. It was an eleven kilometers ride to Taluka. The road is dangerous to ride upon and at a couple of places we had to cross running water streams flowing on the road itself.

We were all excited with the adventurous spirit these roads filled in us. In my vehicle, the others co-passengers  were Mountain Man, Jain, Businessman, Curator, Consultant and Student.

The trek was to be started from Taluka village. We put our backpacks on our shoulders, trekking poles in our hands and water bottles in the net pockets of our bags. The Invisible arranged his team of staff. He again briefed us all about the start and congratulated us. He informed that today’s trek will be approximately eleven kilometers and everyday we have to try our best to reach the next camp by 12:00 Noon and latest by 02:00 PM maximum. Although, he said our trek leaders will ensure that no one is left behind and they will be willing to move at zero speed, if needed. We started at about 08:30 AM.

Taluka Village -- Starting Point of Har Ki Doon Trek
Taluka Village — Starting Point of Har Ki Doon Trek
GMVN Guest House at Taluka -- Har Ki Doon Trek
GMVN Guest House at Taluka — Har Ki Doon Trek
The First Steps -- Leaving for Har Ki Doon
The First Steps — Leaving for Har Ki Doon

This was the first time we were seeing Himalayan landscape from so close. We could just stretch our hands and touch the flowing water, rounded boulders, pluck a flower, feel the rough bark of a pine tree, hear the music of stream, feel the alien freshness of the air and taste the sweet Himalayan water directly from a spring flowing nearby.

Beautiful Landscape at the Beginning of the Har Ki Doon Trek
Beautiful Landscape at the Beginning of the Har Ki Doon Trek
Wooden Bridge -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Wooden Bridge — Har Ki Doon Trek
Ascending on a Trail -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Ascending on a Trail — Har Ki Doon Trek
Crossing the River -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Crossing the River — Har Ki Doon Trek
Lush Green Dense Forest -- Har Ki Doon Trek
Lush Green Dense Forest — Har Ki Doon Trek

As soon as we get down from the village on the trekking trail we could see the amazing view of river Supin flow in between the valley. Our most part of trek will be this valley and this river will accompany us upto Har Ki Doon.

In addition to the river, everyone would agree for the most part of the trek, the view of snow-capped mountains, azure sky, blue green water and the scattered log houses of the natives in the lush green surroundings remain consistent throughout the trek, which in fact is inspiring.

There was light drizzling in the beginning of the trek, to which I took out my Quechua poncho which will remain highly accessible thing in my bag.

The guides and the staff accompanying us were supportive in nature and loved to share about the valley and were enthusiastic to know about us as well. As soon as we left the village, it was expected for all of us to wonder how the people in these villages access education and health facilities. The obvious answer was either they have to walk up to Sankri or to hop on a mule in case someone is really serious. Life is difficult in the interiors of Himalayas.

In between we stopped at a tea shop, where we were served packet lunch comprising of Aaloo paranthas. Since, I was quite hungry I ate the lunch immediately. We filled our water bottles from a pipe arranged in such a way to collect running water from a nearby stream and with its outlet near the tea shop. Gajji informed that he has just completed Advanced Mountaineering Course at NIM, Uttarkashi. Me and Jain asked him tips for our BMC program at HMI to which he told if we are physically fit and learn all the knots correctly it’s easy to pass it with A-grade. Although, we were more worried to complete the course in the first place.

At a Tea Shop -- Har Ki Doon Trek
At a Tea Shop — Har Ki Doon Trek

The first day of walking in mountains, mostly ascending with a heavy backpack made us all tired and exhausted. Last two kilometers were the most difficult for me. I started feeling the gradually increasing steepness of the climb . It started becoming difficult for me to take breath normally. I feared my Bronchitis may get worse. But, nothing of this sort happened and we reached our base camp shortly. It was 04:00 PM then.

To our surprise and excitement, there were seven yellow Hillman Expedition tents shining bright in a small grazing ground by the side of the river just beside the trail. There was one big tent which served as kitchen. This is our first camp site and is known as Chilloorgar.

Tents at Chilloorgar Camp Site en route Har Ki Doon Trek
Tents at Chilloorgar Camp Site en route Har Ki Doon Trek

As soon as we reached there, we threw away our bags and grabbed carry mats to lay down. This happened when Gajji gave us call to do stretching exercise. Though difficult, we had to do it to prevent any cramps in the night or the next morning. The exercises were fun and it relaxed us a bit more.

My urge to sit down and relax was diminished and I wanted to explore the nearby surroundings. After the exercise session, we were called for Tang Orange juice. They distributed sleeping bags and carry mats to place in our tents. We three —me, Businessman and Mountain Man decided to share a tent. We arranged out bags and other things in the tents. By this time, evening snacks Aaloo Pyaz Pakori was served with tomato sauce and tea.

I was still feeling the effects of shortness of breath. So, I took Grillinctus-BM (Mucolyte and Bronchodilator) which relieved me immediately. I took rest by sleeping on a rock under the sun. As soon as the sun set down, I felt a sudden surge of cold in my body which wake me up. Me, Musician, Jain, Doctor, Topper and Adventurer joined Gajji for a short walk nearby.

We came closer to the river where it was quite violent. Topper and adventurer sat on a rock while Doctor started clicking photographs of the scenery. We asked Gajji about why people live in such remote area. Being a resident of Sankri, he replied that quite a long time back, Maoists used to come in the Mountains and kidnapped children and young men to make them soldiers. The villages had to leave their houses near the roads and easily accessible locations and had to perch in high mountains. He also shared his concern about the tough life of the people there.

River Flowing near Our First Night Camp Site in Har Ki Doon Trek
River Flowing near Our First Night Camp Site in Har Ki Doon Trek

He told us that all these trails, bridges, roads and other infrastructure were not available at the time of his grandfathers. They had to even walk up to Dehradun to bring basic requirements such as salt. One of the families in a village has a bag of salt brought from Dehradun in this way. On me asking, do they still consume it, he said they will die if they eat such an old salt. It has become poison. I don’t understand how salt can become poison, but I offered no argument.

Suddenly, he jumped close to the river and climbed a large rock swiftly. Doctor got excited too and tried the same. Although unsuccessful in the attempt, we applauded his efforts. Then, we returned to our camp site as the darkness starts settling.

In the remaining light, I write my diary entry sitting on a rock near the kitchen.

When we came back, we were served corn soup, pop-corns and tea. As the cold was growing, the warmth of corn soup was soothing.

When it became completely dark, we used torches to carry out even the smallest tasks. We had a bonfire where we played Antakshari. After which we were served dal, chawal, roti and gobhi sabzi. It tasted delicious after which I took another 10ml of cough syrup as a preventive measure. There was also sweet dish of canned fruits which they call fruit custard.  It was the first night I was sleeping in a tent and sleeping bag. I loved it and it was comfortable. In the night briefing by Gajji, we were told that next day will be a steep climb of eight kilometers. I feared it most considering my present health situation. But, it had to be done.

Har Ki Doon Trek Day-1

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Har Ki Doon Trek – Motivation and Beginning

My childhood was a to and fro shift between a town and a village. Simple life has always attracted me. My love for nature has since increased.

If you ask me what is the motivation for my trip. I would summarize in these three points:

  1. To move towards a simple life from a complex one. To learn this skill to live with limited, frugal and minimalist means.
  2. To see the great artwork of God in the form of great mountains, rivers, nature, flora and fauna.
  3. I don’t know if I have come here to test my limits or to challenge myself. But, I am sure to say that I want to know more about myself.

Initially, it’s excitement, an impulse; we see something, get inspired and take the first step. In my case, it’s my guilty conscience that the movie Yeh Jawani Hain Diwani ignited this spark. Within a week I had registered myself for HMI BMC 300. Then slowly I came to know that it’s not so easy. A lot of factors contribute to make a successful trek and climbing. I wanted to know about the difficulties and how to prepare to face them. It has a lot of costs associated in addition to finance.

As the date comes closer, some fear is felt because you know you are not perfect or even close to perfect. But you overcome fear thinking and believing that everything will be fine. Don’t worry, take it easy.

I remember me saying once that we dream a thousand dreams, we take action for hundred and we are able to achieve only ten. These ten dreams are what counts and make our life successful and worth living for.

Har Ki Doon Trek Day-1: Dehradun to Sankri — 25.05.2014 (Sunday)

We left Dehradun railway station at about 07:30 am. I called my family and informed them about the trip ahead and my current location. We were all really excited. At the beginning, I jumped in the middle seats of a Mahindra Bolero so there is no chance of sitting in the back side of the vehicle. There are three Mahindra Boleros for our seventeen member group. We are five in our vehicle –Doctor (50), Adventurer (16), Topper (16), Mountain Man (24) and me. So, Topper is the younger daughter of Doctor and Adventurer is a close friend of Topper. Both Adventurer and Topper have just finished ICSE tenth grade with flying colors.

In the beginning itself, I identified Doctor as a veteran and a seasoned trekker to which he agreed and informed that he has done quite many treks for our completely novice batch. Doctor also informed that since motion sickness is quite common we better take turns in sitting in the back portion of the vehicle. Nice idea. The tentative time to leave Dehradun for Sankri was 06:30 am but some members came late and we gladly waited for them. Sankri is about 185KM from Dehradun.

Har Ki Doon Trek Day-1 Dehradun to Sankri
Har Ki Doon Trek Day-1 Dehradun to Sankri

So everyone joined except Unknown who had cancelled the trip. So we were 18-1 = 17 members now. Two of us i.e. the Musician and Cinderella (both Siblings) volunteered to organize things till we reached Sankri. And they did it well.

On the way soon the mountain roads starts, we are on our way to Mussorie and see beautiful view of Dehradun spreading beyond the horizon. While coming back on the same route one of us commented that Dehradun must be a small city. To which the driver waited for this scene to show up and wittily told now see how small is Dehradun.

The first thing that stuck our brains is the fresh mountain air and the serpentine roads. As we crossed Mussorie town, the home of Ruskin Bond, we start feeling cold. Suddenly, the temperature drops to 20 degree Celsius (just a guess) in the May end. I loved the place and the sunshine there.

At about 08:45 am, we are near Kempty Falls and can see the fall from the opposite road. We stop at a restaurant and ordered Aaloo Paranthas. There was another group of trekkers who were going to Rupin Pass. They will be along with us up to Netwar from there they will divert to Rupin Pass base camp – Dhaula. This was the first time all of us were on a single table and got introduced to each other and shared those paranthas with curd. We had a good breakfast, good for some and bad for others.

As soon as we left Kempty Falls, I could see the co-passengers were feeling symptoms of motion sickness. I was proud to know that I won’t feel a thing and was completely comfortable. When I was a child I used to think that only I had motion sickness and none else. Now, I see that except me everyone else has it. Strange, isn’t it! Doctor distributed Avomine to everyone, I did not take it. Doctor informed that the worst part of trekking is to travel between the base camp and the nearest rail-head/airport. Mountain Man was the worst victim of motion sickness. This helped us as afterwards none of us had to sit in the back side. Me and Mountain Man sit in the front as the seat was modified for two to sit comfortably. And the other three were in the middle seats. We all loved this arrangement. Even though Mountain Man seemed weak and we had to stop our vehicle twice for him, he proved himself the most strongest during the trek.

En-route Sankri, the scenery was beautiful. We stopped at many places to click photographs and admire the scenery. Doctor was sharing information about his previous treks, AMS and all other relevant/non-relevant things and we all heard him with interest. Some clicks of the mid way are shared below:

Lower Himalayas on the Way to Sankri
Lower Himalayas on the Way to Sankri
Colorful Fields on the way to Sankri
Colorful Fields on the way to Sankri
Colorful Houses on Steps in a Town on the Way to Sankri
Colorful Houses on Steps in a Town on the Way to Sankri

At Sankri

We reached Sankri at about 05:30 PM. Sankri is a small village with hotels, restaurants, grocery shops, school, temples and a beautiful cold weather. It is located in Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand. It is also within the boundaries of Govind Pashu Vihar Sanctuary/National Park. From Sankri one can first time see the scenery of snow-capped mountains calling us. This inspired us and made us more excited to reach Har Ki Doon as early as possible.

First View of Snow Capped Mountains at Sankri Har Ki Doon
First View of Snow Capped Mountains at Sankri Har Ki Doon

Indiahikes had booked GMVN guest house for us, which looks little like a hotel and more like a school dormitory. The guest house is perching on the top of a hill overlooking mountains, valley and the village. We were allotted beds in the dormitories separate for girls and boys. In my room, we were again five – me, Jain (40 years old but looks like 28), Musician (24 years), Professor (38 years) and the Businessman (26 years).

Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam GMVN Guest House at Sankri
Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam GMVN Guest House at Sankri
First Floor Gallery at GMVN Guest House Sankri
First Floor Gallery at GMVN Guest House Sankri
Beautiful Roses Planted in the front lawn of GMVN Guest House Sankri
Beautiful Roses Planted in the front lawn of GMVN Guest House Sankri

We came to know that Professor has come with his wife, Mary (34 years) leaving their two daughters – one of four years and other of eight years with their grandparents. I appreciate their courage to come to the mountains for first time in their pre-middle age.

Jain is a Jain and a strict one. He has been following diet related aspects of Jainism since last 12 years but will have to change his habits for the coming days which he was aware of and will soon return to his old habits once he goes back home. Initially, I liked him because of two reasons:

  1. I am a vegetarian and he is an inspiration to me.
  2. He is also going for Basic Mountaineering Course at HMI Darjeeling in the same Batch 303, so we were batch-mates.

Other members of our group were Curator(36), Teacher(23), Banker(25), Consultant(44), Student(14) and Actress(34). I was yet to know them.

The Briefing

In the evening at about 06:30, we first time met The Invisible (our trek coordinator). He briefed us about the next morning, coming days and motivated us to go for the trek and come back successfully. He explained humorously and sincerely about the aspects we had to take care during the trek like:

  1. Safety
  2. Time
  3. Alpine style trekking
  4. Increase in the number of domestic trekkers, previously only foreigners were into trekking.
  5. Safe use of equipment like shoes, trekking poles and backpacks.
  6. Power of nature to attract human mind. Experience it. Listen to the sounds, appreciate the beauty of nature.
  7. Supporting fellow trekkers and Indiahikes staff in their efforts.
  8. Extra dimag nahin lagana or you may cause harm to yourself or others.
  9. If anyone gets harmed or is to be sent back to the base camp, morale of whole team gets affected.
  10. There is dinner from 2000 hours to 2100 hours, then drink water and sleep well to wake up before 06:00 am to get ready by 06:30 am for morning briefing.
  11. In the trek also keep drinking water. At least 4-5 liters of water should be consumed daily.
  12. No need to carry a handbag for the trek. Backpack is fine if one is not offloading their backpacks to the mules.
  13. Compulsorily carry a poncho/raincoat, water bottles, sunscreens, pen, paper, t-shirts etc.
  14. Always get branded products for trekking. Indian Mountaineering Foundation, New Delhi sells really good products for trekking and mountaineering.
  15. He introduced us to our trek leader Gajji who had recently completed Advanced Mountaineering Course at Nehru Institute of Mountaineering, Uttarkashi. The garam khoon Gajji will lead us for the complete trek till we come back.

The briefing was over at 07:45 PM.

After his briefing, we had delicious dinner at a restaurant down the road. We were too much hungry and enjoyed the local simple food – Aaloo Sabzi, Rice, Chapatti, Dal and Soan Papdi. We kept the stuff not required to take along with us for trekking in our smaller bags to be deposited in the locker room. Even after reducing the items, I think the weight of my backpack was about twelve to fifteen kilograms.

Electricity was not available in the night till late. We had to use our torches to get our backpacks ready for the trek in the night itself as we had to leave early morning. I could not sleep well that night due to running nose and too much sweating in the blanket. This might be due to sudden change in temperature for which I was not much used to.

Whatever be the case with each one of us, I believe we were all excited about the next day.