The Great Himalayan Expedition-2
A not so cozy sleep, no warm clothing, just a muffler wrapping the neck..i woke up breathing like a dragon! the temperature had fallen and it had started to get cold and moist. Fresh air so pure to breathe made me feel like i was choking! Hey c'mon where do we usually get to breathe such pure air here?
I got out of my tent for more dragon breathes and managed to freshen up in the cold. I still get excited exhaling cold air which makes me feel like like a dragon! Just non smoker things i tell you lol. It does take some time for the cold surroundings to sink in and let the body get used to. I love the cold and it hardly took me some time to acclimatize. Due to this, i was not layering up a lot unlike others dressing up as Eskimos! I had to hear a lot about about my clothing style and was forced to stay warm and start sweating!!
One thing i learnt from my trip to the mountains was discipline. It was a fixed schedule for every activity and things had to be completed within that span of time
7:00-8:00 AM breakfast
12:30-14: 00 PM Lunch
17:30 PM Snacks/soup
19:00-20:00 Dinner with hot chocolate
20:30 hit the sack
It looks like a lot of food and you might want to eat it all. But trust me, you wont even feel hungry and thirsty. The fresh air kept me full!
The whistle blew to wake all the sleepy heads to get ready for the day. A quick 30mins jog and warmup followed by some breakfast, we were all ready for the day 2 of acclimatization. I packed my bag light and hit the road to kickstart the trek. As i walked along the road, i saw trees loaded with cherries and all other berries. the pahadis take pleasure to pluck them fresh and share it with one to taste. I was lucky enough to get them to taste. It was an easy road until we reached a dense land with no path. We had to make our own path and get off the hill to reach the mighty flowing river Beas.
A huge bridge across the river lets one cross over and reach other villages. I wish we never ever crossed that bridge cos 'never miss a leg day' started with a whole 500 odd fleet of steep steps. This was the starting point of today's trail. It was through a small village called Shuru.
The trail was slightly tougher than earlier with narrow ridges, slippery paths, walking through valleys and muddy paths. It was very important to not lose focus and concentration during the trek as its not just about you but also others. Others life is also at stake along with yours. So best practice is to follow the safety guidelines. We passed through Shuru village and post some crawling and slipping, finally managed to reach the end of the trail. It was a huge place surrounded by coniferous trees and the glistening snowclad himalayas! The view was perfect for a postcard. Without wasting time I clicked a lot of pictures and moved forward to join the rest.
It was already lunch time and the 90 odd mins of trek exhausted us. We had to head back to the basecamp for lunch and none of us were willing to leave immediately. All of us sat in a circle and began to sing and introduce themselves. It was my turn too and I ended up saying i am a senior software engineer and from that sec till the last day my name was SSE!!
A quick rejuvenating session helped refresh ourselves and ward off the fatigue. We started our steep descent to reach the basecamp and ended up slipping and falling. I slid down the muddy paths and somehow managed to hit the road again. On my way back i noticed a lot of small quaint pizzerias close to my campsite. They were lit with fairy lights and it was so exquisite and beautiful. I was strictly prohibited from eating pizzas or any junk to avoid a bad stomach during high altitude trek. Such disappointment!
I skipped lunch as the appetite loss had started to kick in. It was already evening and i grabbed my cup of soup and sat outside the tent enjoying the views wondering would there be snowfall throughout my trail! there was a cloud burst and it started to rain. My first himalayan rain..nothing special about it...Run to the tent and get into the sleeping bag!!
I spent sometime playing uno cards with the other kids for a while and then dinner was served. I am this joey doesnt share his food kinds and also not comfortable sharing cutlery and plates with others..somehow been used to this since childhood! But guess what the mountains did to me...1 plate, filled with food, 3 people digging in in-order to avoid washing plates in the cold! we took turns washing plates from that day and none of us ate separately in one plate!!
The mountains are so unpredictable and deceiving..one can never know what's next. if you ever thought mood swings are difficult to handle, then i suggest go on a trek and try predicting what happens next!!
The night was no more young, i had to zip up the tent and sleep. 3 new friends made, new bonds and gossips,1 big tent, an uneven floor, sliding into the cold sleeping bag, i called it a night..
End of day 4..