First Monsoon Trek- Kurinjal

Posted: August 17, 2018 in Trails I explored
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Local trek though I was super excited for my first monsoon trek.

So what, it was just another place in Karnataka, I was looking forward to get drenched in rain and walk. Did anyone mentioned leeches until then? no, never. One look at their crawling body and I went crazy. “Never ever again I am going to trek in monsoon” I vowed and nature was my witness.

Lush greenery was mocking when we were screaming and running away from the blood sucking leeches.

They are just amateur weekend fun seekers, not trekkers. Dont judge them by their umbrellas

We could see and feel the wrath of mother nature

We walked pulling the creep leeches from our shoes.

The unseen life beyond the oblivion.

Kurinjal peakWindy though we walked carefully, holding the grass, rock for support

May be I will trek the place again to see the real face masked behind this rock

Never ending search.

Strangers we meet on the trail, never remain strangers.

The crazy descend begins.

Mind blowing isnt it.

Legend says, on full moon day when moon dances in the sky casting his spell on earth, unseen women dance on the roof of this broken house. (See I am good at making stories)

Climbing any tough peak is no big deal for these code writing nerds

Where men follow a girl with umbrella it becomes legendary.

Yes, we did it. We survived the leech bites, crazy wind and slippery rocks

Kalu, Belli, Julie and Jimmy. The shop keeper totally has 6 dogs and he doesnt mind having more.

Kalu seemed very sleepy. I was very much tempted to put one dog in my bag and take it home.

Belli giving mental support for the distress trekkers beaten by leeches.

Spectacular view in the evening.

Small, old house of Shankarnna was filled with joy, laughter and happiness that evening. His down to earth attitude, rich sense of humor made me feel at home.

No I didnt sleep till 8 like other ladies, Sankanranna’s song to his buffaloes was my alarm at that day. Up at 6.30, I was singing the same buffalo song whole day.  He reminded me of my neighbor Duggapanna who used to and still wrap a piece of cloth round his waist. As a kid I always wonder what we will see if Dugapannas piece of cloth drops but to my disappointment, the tiny knot held on to its life and I never got to see the unseen.

Daasu

Shankarannas humble adobe

Dalia

My cute, button like, small but smart guide Sristi. Even though she looks small, tiny-winy, she is in 6th standard. One look at her and you will fall in love with her.

Some advice from Shankarnna to build some abs and 6 packs

Saying hi to God like always in style

The cute little friend we met on the way back home.

Its easy trek or rather I would say easy walk except for the steep, windy peak. If you are visiting Kurinjal in monsoon be ready for leeches, no I didnt like them so as other fellow trekkers but that’s what make the trek more memorable? But there is different joy walking in rain enjoying it, feeling it singing song you never learnt from any movies. Shankarnna who provides the shelter and food for the trekkers is an awesome guy. Farmer though his sense of humor is intact, super cool guy. If you want to get away from your annoying, stressing job,pack your bags and hop on  hashitenerary (http://hashitinerary.com/) because it is totally worth it.

PatarNachauni

The famous dancer from the mountains.

One last time when our bagged were waiting for the mules

Perfect farewell gift by Mohith.

When he danced with his heart even the mountains gaped at his moves in silence

He had all the trekkers glued to his sleazy moves

They cook food, boil the water, wash the utensils , in one word they take care of us with smile on their face.

Morning talks, I am gonna miss the most

We would have parted our ways but they will be remembered for their service.

Burnt face, limping walk, dirt accumulated body and priceless experience

Not Poop!!!Dirt in your nails is last thing you have to worry.

Hope one day I can trek like them, fast, firm, fearless and passionate.

They may not be trekkers but they had time of their life. Singing, shouting, eating fefda. By the end of the trek I started “cho’ing” every sentence. “Kemcho, maja marcho” was my classic. You can imagine the impact they had on me.

Bedni Bugyal

One look around and your spirits are lifted up to the sky by the colorful flowers

Bedni Bugyal

Be a man or woman its your passion matters and not the gender.

“Careful Madam” is all they said when I was descending. Unlike city men they didnt ask my name, phone number, age, status rather they smiled and waved. They didnt walk they ran like a carefree deer.

Rhododendron break, I gulped three glass of juice shamelessly. Thirstier than the black crow  from my 1st book I was.

Small place though but the lunch they served was delicious.

Spelling who cares when you can smell the food

Wan Village starts from here. Last, final stretch of our trek. Last day trek 15KM in one shot!!!!

Mayank with his sister Gauri on the way back from school

When I asked their permission to click picture they were all happy and smiles. Its almost wise to ask their permission before clicking their picture. We trek, explore their place and intrude their privacy. Most of the aged people doesnt like to be clicked.

didi, Chocolate” is all they ask

Nothing can compete with priceless nature

Wan Village, its pretty, peaceful and soothing.

Yeah we did it without braking bones or mule ride.

Thank you Trek The Himalayas, you have been a good companion and organizer

I was limping, had blisters when I reached the Wan Village from where we had to Travel to Lohajung by Jeep. I was happy to be back to civilization, warm bath, good food. I was and still mesmerized by the people from mountains, they dont have wants like us, they have just basic needs. Their beyond worth innocence makes you question about your way of living. They might be poor but its their purity in nature makes them millionaire.

After one day when I landed in Bangalore I was missing the mountains, The Himalays, the wind, the cold weather, the trail, the dirt, the mules, people from mountain, my trek mates, guides. I am glad mountains called me and I went to them.

Feel free to drop me a mail if you need any tips on “Things to carry on Roopkund trek(Summer)”. I may not be a professional trekker yet but i am sure I will be one soon. my email id lobosylvia@gmail.com

Some Tips who never shares:

-Tie your hair, last thing you want to do is un-knot is your hair in the wind

-Pack Skinnies, very usefull.

-Pick the right trekking shoes. Remember they have to be spacious, comfortable and relaxing like your underwear .

-Make sure nails are trimmed.

-Go With a open mind.

-Carry stationeries, sweets, you can give it to Wan Village Kids.

-Be nice to guides, organizers and people you meet on trek.

-Respect the nature, the mountains and dont litter.

-What to pack, what not to pack, Google can tell you better than me 🙂

Read below to know how the journey started

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/02/mountains-are-calling-day1-rishikesh/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/03/mountains-are-calling-day1-rishikesh-to-lohajung/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/05/mountains-are-calling-day3lohajung-to-didnavillage/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/10/mountains-are-calling-day4didnavillage-to-alibugyal/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/18/mountains-are-calling-day5alibugyal-to-patarnachauni/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/26/mountains-are-calling-day6patarnachauni-to-bhagwabasa/

https://snlworld.com/2018/07/07/mountains-are-calling-daybhagwabasa-to-roopkund-to-patarnachauni/

 

EPIC journey ends here

Posted: July 29, 2018 in My Silly thoughts

Even though  I was inside my sleeping bag at 7, turning, slipping, rarely I could sleep, the excitement, nervousness, not to forget the crazy wind and cold was keeping me awake. Did I tell you what is the most difficult task when you are on trek?getting into the sleeping ,sleeping in it and getting out of it when it is freezing cold outside. When you turn, the sleeping bag slips and again you have to adjust yourself in the right place. How I hated the sleeping bag but hey thats the only thing kept me warm, I had issues with it but yeah, I learned to compromise. One among the many lessons learnt on the mountains.

I was up at 1;30, before the wake up call. It was bone chilling outside the tent. Some trekkers were already on their way to the summit, could see the train of head lamps moving. With head lamps on I struggled to find a spot to water, not even the mountains could have seen me in that pitch dark.

I drank some water , may be little bit more I wanted the Fu***** oxygen level to be pumping high in body. I ate the maggi they served, I went for the second serve thinking I need the all energy this tiny lifeless thread could give. With harness, gaiters, woolen glause  and snow spikes I felt like an astronaut getting ready for the rocket launch in Mars. I was saying my prayers drinking water. I didnt had the energy to empty my bladder before we leave with all the new fancy accessories on. Man oh Man; slippery trail, melting ice, non stop commands from mountaineers not to stop and the annoying head lamp, yeah we were on. I dont know what had gotten into me, I walked and walked, never stopping like a woman who is possessed.

It wasnt easy especially to walk on the ice as it was our first time. The sun was just rising up and we were late. you see you have to reach the summit before 7 and leave around 8, before the sun rises because ice melts and trail becomes slippery. As we were late technical team ordered us to speed up.Couple of our trek mates couldnt go further and went back. I felt bad for them but I was glad I was not one among them. On the way we could see one girl, victim of ACM with a guide. It is very common but it scares the shit out of you.

Even though I am a photo freak I didnt take my phone out, It was cold and I let others take picture for a change and enjoyed my walk. My bladder was already on red signal and that was my another worry.

The famous Roopkund. We couldnt go down, our technical team let us as it was already 8. The Kund has its own history filled with adventure

Yes I did it, I did it, I did it…..

There I was at the top, summit and I was going crazy not with joy but with tension. My bladder was at the edge with its siren on. I searched around desperately, walked around and then found a place but men were there talking. I wouldnt have done this but like a small kid I lifted my hand and showed my small pinky finger. They just walked away giving me my most needed privacy. Was I shamed hell na, I was proud because I peed on the summit, yes, I did it:)and I still cant stop talking about it.

Some wanted their lone time in the Kund.

People were going bonkers at the summit.

This guy stripped (only shirt) to make his achievement more memorable. He had taken dip in the icy cold water on Chadhar Trek. Some hard core adventurer he is, glad I met him.

When you want trek, trek with Trek the Himalayas(TTH). They organize the things very nicely.

Sun was dancing high in the sky and we started our journey back. We walked and walked it took us some time to understand how much we had walked in the dawn. Ice was melting, sun was mocking and we were tired but we had go on. Couple of minutes break, “Little bit more, come on up on your feet” orders and we were back on our feet.

The great Pushkargi, should see the man trek. He never stops unless to its required. He is man of adventure and down to earth.

oh Yeah DSLRS were everywhere so as the creative photographers. Wonder how they carried them, the trail, the back pack on your back and this extra weight. May be passion is all you need.

Getting the gear ready for the return journey

We were back at the base camp around lunch time, all i wanted was to lie down and rest but they didnt let me. I wasnt feeling all that great but yeah i had long distance to cover. I started walking, ahead of everyone. I wanted a long, very long break.

Mules tail captivated me, its hair was so straight and sexy, I always craved to have such lovely hair.I was soo tempted to touch it, “will kick you if you touch” warning stopped me there.

Base camp

Maggi point at Bhagwabasa

Base camp is busy as any other market which is lively through out the day

Bhagwabasa

This gentleman is unstoppable, hard core trekker and yeah he is reason many could make it to the summit. He is the motivator.

Making memories and capturing it forever.

My sun pooped face

I made couple of good friends who walked at a great speed. Most of them had done couple of famous treks and me, the country village girl had nothing to boast about until then.

It was unfortunate to be on mule on that trail. If you are not keeping well then you dont have any other option you just have to be on mules back and remember your grandfather while bile rises in your mouth.

They are ones who makes out journey most memorable, their graceful walk, jingling sound made by their bell around their neck, not to forget their dry dung scattered all over the mountains, their hard work for which they will never get credit. They are the true unsung heroes of the mountains.

The guy has no fear, doesnt feel cold, doesnt care about the wind.

Finally we were back at PatarNachauni at 3. I slept for a while. As next day was the last day of our trek we were allowed to sleep and do whatever we liked but we couldnt as it was cold and windy. There were the other trekkers who were lost seeing out happy smiling faces. We easily could recognize the scared worried look as we were in their place few days back. We had the same viva like how it was, how many made it, is it snowing….We ensured them everything will be alright like how the previous group ensured us. When you are in mountains that is what you have to do, be always encouraging and supportive.

When the twinkling stars were dancing in the sky I was sleeping . For the first time I had peaceful sleep except for the occasional barks of Blacky.

 

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/02/mountains-are-calling-day1-rishikesh/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/03/mountains-are-calling-day1-rishikesh-to-lohajung/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/05/mountains-are-calling-day3lohajung-to-didnavillage/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/10/mountains-are-calling-day4didnavillage-to-alibugyal/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/18/mountains-are-calling-day5alibugyal-to-patarnachauni/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/26/mountains-are-calling-day6patarnachauni-to-bhagwabasa/

 

To be continued…

Can find only in the busy streets of Bangalore

It says “SEX, now that we have got your attention, Book mini trucks online”. what a way to catch anybody’s eye

When I got up at 5AM, my usual, it was really cold outside. One of the main reason I used to get up early is so that I can finish my nature call with sound/without sound, without audience. I tried but didnt know to be the carefree child again who doesn’t care about her surroundings. No I didnt brush my teeth or wash my face, or tushie, mouth freshener and wet tissues were very handy. My nails were already dirty with mud making their home in them, did I care hell no. Summit was all I cared. The trek was short distance but difficult one, steep ascend was the big challenge. Pata Nachauni to Bhagwabasa via Kalu Vinayak 4KM distance 14029ft above sea level, challenging trek.

As we were getting ready so as the enthusiastic people who made the summit. On public demand Mohith, the killer dancer showed his moves. Sia’s Cheap trills were making the surrounding groovy, It was nothing less than a party, people were smiling, cheering Mohith , nothing could stop him nor the wind neither the cold,how I loved the mountains. One more talent rusting except for the occasional praises or whistles. 

Mohith getting ready for the flip

He had trekkers glued to him.

It was crazy ascend. The narrow trail, people, mule ascending and descending, mind blowing view, cold wind.

Santy finished his summit and met us on his way back. As I said earlier nothing could stop him. I had tried to bribe him with biscuit, the first day we met but he dint fall for that trick.

Shivas temple,Kalu Vinayak. Trekkers on their way to base camp blow the conches shouting lord Shivas name in the silence of the mountain for the well being of the trekkers and their journey.

“Bolo har har mahadev ki” and people shout with joy “JAIIIIIII”gulping the tea or coffee or Maggi they ordered.

Trishul

You have to love the nature and should have the invite from the mountain for the holy journey. It has been life changing for many.

It is super crowded, maggi points on either side, Shivas temple, killer view and those fancy DSLR guys blocking path, photo bombing every single click. It was annoying but kind of nice and soothing, such a crowd at high altitude.

Have to be ready for the unseen journey ahead. Our super guide Mahi.

The lady is on a mission.

Cold or hot, windy or rainy, Mules will never stop. With the jingling bell around their neck they walk gracefully carrying the burden of the people they never met.

You have to be there physically to enjoy the view and feel the wind. Totally worth it.

Usually trekkers who aren’t keeping well are sent back on mules back. This guy seems to be alright but it pretty bad to go back on mules back. It makes you recall all your sin and tummy goes for merry go round before you puke.

Trishul,view from base camp Bhagwabasa.

You are surrounded by the mountains, they are everywhere, north, south, east, west.

That is India Hikes dry toilet.

We reached around 1.00AM to the base camp Bhagwabasa. After having the delicious lunch i went to doze in my camp. The chilly wind was giving me hard time. Drinking water was ok but peeing in the dry toilet was bit annoying so we used the wilderness and watered the green patch of grass. How I envied men then.

We had our soup, oxygen and heart beat level check followed by “do’s and donts on big day” by technical team. Luckily all my trek mates passed the oxygen level test, hardest test, harder than IAS, to clear when you are above 14000ft sea level. It was fascinating to see technical team, explain. They were fearless like the White Walkers. Krishna alias Kris, Vijay explanation had everyone’s ears.

Snow spikes, gaiters, safety harness with detailed walk through with trail by the  technical team at the base camp.

Did I tell you mountain men are good looking :). They might have unshaven beard or you know jungle type look but they are handsome in their own mountainy way. (No, sorry I didnt find anyone there if you are curious, my eyes were only for the Roopkund)

Wearing gaiters, spikes, safety harness and walking was a tiring job for first timers.

That is Vijay, the mountaineer. He has his team, they dont need anything they just run on the snow and sloppy areas and yell at us “Daro Mat”(dont be scared).

We had our dinner at 7 and went to sleep early as next day was the big day. Finally we were going to the summit, to see the Roopkund. Wake up call was at 2.00 AM in the morning. Final journey was at 3.30AM, the challenging ,adrenaline pumping journey

“I will walk, I will walk, with all my will, I will walk with all my strength, I will walk and complete this journey, I will walk and nothing gonna stop me” I was determined. It is all mind game, you should have the determination, the will and nothing can stop you.

The killer view from the base camp.

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/02/mountains-are-calling-day1-rishikesh/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/03/mountains-are-calling-day1-rishikesh-to-lohajung/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/05/mountains-are-calling-day3lohajung-to-didnavillage/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/10/mountains-are-calling-day4didnavillage-to-alibugyal/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/18/mountains-are-calling-day5alibugyal-to-patarnachauni/

 

To be continued

When I got up at 5AM, my usual time, it was quiet outside except for the jingling sound made by the mules and the mountain dogs. Looked like wind was finally gone to sleep after a long night shift along with the moon. I tried washing my face with water and my fingers froze, water was icy cold.

With sun already up, it was a pleasant morning, surrounded by the mountains. The more you looked at them the more you feel the pull, wondering how different the life would be there.

People with basic needs, smile on their face never have wants. You ought to meet the men in the mountains.The men you meet, you can literally have a conversation. No they dont send a friend request in FB, no they dont ask your phone number or comment on your marital status or physical appearance. The men are real gentleman who advises you to be careful on sloppy area and enquirers how your trek has been so far. No they dont stare at breast while talking, they look at your face.  I think first time in my life I loved conversing with men without fearing for my safety. They may not be educated but they know how to respect women better than the educated men.

Looked like Santy didnt move from his place.

Smiling faces and hard working guys who makes your delicious meal ready.

Little bit of stretching and little bit of brushing in the morning.

Showering in the sun rays early morning.

After having our breakfast we started our trek to Patar Nachauni via Bedni Bugyal and Ghora Lotani, 7KM trek. A pleasant trek with beautiful meadow and scenery around you wont realize when you reached your destination.

And the trek begins

Santy tagged along

Looks like mountains are Lord Shiva’s favorite place, you can find his temple everywhere.

Its just mind blowing view everywhere.

Nothing stops you. Trail itself is motivating. 

Colors of the nature are soothing. Purple

Blue

Yellow and many more

Bedni Bugyal. India Hikes Camp site

Different kinds of flowers

Gaurav bhayya can be India’s next top model

Bedni Bugyal. You find so many trekkers on the way, some with walking poles and some with fancy DSLR

The unstoppable’s

Road is wide and sometimes that one companion only you need.

Bedni Bugyal

Sometimes he leads you and sometimes he follows you. You may stop but he never stops.

When cricket bug bites your bum you suffer from cricket fever at the altitude of 12000ft

The mind blowing view at Ghora Lotani

Ghora Lotani

Ghora Lotani

Ghora Lotani

Yeah, those are our toilets. Luckily those werent giving you creeps like the previous one. The yellow one was really comforting, you could squat and think of anything under the blue sky.

Yeah, yeah, we did it!!

I am just a nameless professional photographer.

Walking, absorbing the surrounding, by the time we reached Patar Nachauni it was 1PM. We were tired and hungry. Lunch was served with broad smiling faces. Trust me the people you find in mountains are really really nice.

Its here I learnt to sun bath lying on the grass. Finally i understood what those firang’s do lying half naked under the sun. Only difference was i was clothes head to toe, except for my face. Hot though but it was soothing in the cold weather.

Dayalji posing with DSLR expert, hard core trekker and guy with killer looks. Ohh Yeah, the boiled eggs saved all the non vegetarians.

They dont have 5 stars hotel at Patanaturi, they have maggi points.

Acclimatization to the near by hill where you get network (finally one chance to communicate with outside world) and back yo campsite, hot soup followed by oxygen and heart beat level check, then followed by early dinner at 7PM. We were almost fallen into a daily routine without our knowledge. It is so true we humans get used to any situation or circumstance in no time. The only difference that was the people who did the summit were back. There was million dollar smile and that un-explanatory satisfaction on their face, they were full of life and tips. I remembered the the practical viva scene. Hows it?how many made it?anyone backed out?does it snow there?. The personal gyan and motivational tips we got made us imagine to be that person next who made it to the summit.

Will I make it?or will I be the person to go back without making it to the summit?will I be a loser?how to take in if i dont make it to the summit?should I repeat the trek until i make it to the summit? no i wont be the loser if I dont make it to the summit or will I be? my head was finally a globe and questions were turning around it like crazy.

I said my prayers to the almighty and went to bed being bit more nervous than before.

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/02/mountains-are-calling-day1-rishikesh/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/03/mountains-are-calling-day1-rishikesh-to-lohajung/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/05/mountains-are-calling-day3lohajung-to-didnavillage/

https://snlworld.com/2018/06/10/mountains-are-calling-day4didnavillage-to-alibugyal/

To Be Continued…