Thursday, July 17, 2014

Trek to Nag Tibba,Night 2 and after.

                After a snack of delicious hot pakoras we changed into fresh clothes and went for a stroll around ourcamp.The location of the camp was excellent.Huge tress were behind our camps and the front offered beautiful views of the village with the mountains in the background.Soon darkness was enveloping us and we made our way back to the camp.On reaching we found out that a camp fire was set up for us.we took seats around the warm and comforting fire and soon engaged in conversations,the kind of which spring up after a day of action and adventure.Only the five of us were around the fire as Mr Vinay and family retired for the night a bit early.
                Tall trees,mountains and camp fire,with these settings the conversation was begging to be taken in the right direction,the direction of scary stories and I provided the impetus by suggesting we start talking about it.Everyone readily accepted with much enthusiasm. Raja started things off by a really scary story about an incident that happened to him and one of his friend.A eerie silence followed the completion of the story and set the right mood for the rest of the night.Then I started talking about urban legends.Being a huge horror fan I had a number of stories with me.And I kept narrating one after the other.The reaction I got with the end of each story was priceless.The nooos!,the shits!,the f*** really pushed me on.I never had so much fun since the horror sessions I used to have back in my school days.I racked my brain for every horror novel or short story I had read (and I have read many) that I could remember,Ambrose Bierce,Algernon Blackwood,Conan Doyle,Edgar Allan Poe,HP Lovecraft, and others.
          Soon my stock was running out and to keep things interesting I thought up an idea.I suggested we start imagining things or run scenarios of our own.But nobody wanted to do it.Shreya especially was getting scared and requested everyone to stop.Heeding her request we started talking about other things.These were equally interesting.We discussed stuff about time travel,existence of aliens,possibilities of MH370,science fiction novels and movies and many other interesting topics.
At around 12,the fire was dying out and as we couldn't find any more dry sticks to continue it,we decided to end the discussion and tucked in for the night.
          The next day we woke up leisurely and and went for a visit to the lovely village.The village had many quaint dwellings and a beautiful temple which reminded bhanu of the watchtowers of the computer game -Age of Empires.After this visit ended it was time for our departure.We packed our stuff and departed in our tempo traveller.We reached our guest house at around 4pm and after a good conversation to keep in touch we parted ways.Bhanu and myself were headed towards Rishikesh next.

PS-We had an excellent time with GIO Adventures and the way they handled the emergency on the night of the first day when the hailstorm stuck was very good.I wont think twice which agency to choose the next time I plan to trek again.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Trek to Nag Tibba,Day 2

The morning air was cold and refreshing.We had a breakfast of bread and jam.Then we all did some stretching exercises as the pain in our legs from the previous days effort had not subsided yet.In between I heard Mr chand mentioning that we wont be going to the nag tibba summit as the weather was unpredictable and Mr Vinay and family were not willing to take any chances.I was disappointed. I badly wanted to go.Bhanu suggested that we divide the group into two groups and whoever wishes can go for the summit and the rest can stay back.Mr chand approved and soon Ishani,Raja and Shreya joined in.Mr Vinay and family stayed back and later it was decided that they would start their return journey back to the base village immediately.

The five of us with Mr chand started off for the summit at around 10am.We hiked through some beautiful surroundings.In between tall trees,on a steep gradient,we went on for two hours and finally reached the peak.My first Himalayan peak.I was very excited and happy and so was everyone.The views from the top were exquisite.There was green grass everywhere and far into the horizon a number of other peaks could be seen.Because of the bad weather we were not able to see some famous snow peaks which are usually visible from here.We sat around the Jhandi there which marks the peak and took in the atmosphere.
At the peak

The Jhandi

Only on Mr Chand's repeated urging that we started for the return.He kept telling us that we still had lots of distance to cover and the sooner we start the better it will be.In the initial plan we were supposed to move to our second campsite but due to the weather Mr chand advised we go directly to the last point of our trek,a village.We started off and within 2 hours reached our first basecamp. From here we collected our backpacks and after a brief rest started off for the village.An hour into our descent it began to rain.At first it was slow and gentle but slowly it picked up speed and lashed onto us.I thought we will be stopping but Mr chand strongly advised that it would be foolish to stop.It was important for us to reach the safety of a camp in a village.It was risky for us to get stranded in the forest with the rain and the darkness.All of us took out our rain gear and went on with the trek.It was the second best experience of the whole trek. Atleast for me.I thoroughly enjoyed walking in the mountains in the rain.To experience rain in the mountains is a very different feeling altogether.

But it did pose quite a few problems there.The trail became muddy and there was heavy chance of slipping and falling down.This further impeded our progress.Another problem was water.We had no drinking water with us.I tried to gather some water in my water bottle.I walked for 15 minutes with my water bottle with its cap open.But water didn't accumulate in that.So I abandoned the idea.I kept thinking about Bear Grylls. What he would do.I haven't watched his shows much but even then from whatever little I saw I tried hard to recollect.Nothing came to mind.After sometime Raja and myself drank water which had accumulated on a stone surface.We took breaks and sat there on the muddy trail itself whenever we got tired.We were so tired that we no longer cared about our clothes or where we sat or what we drank.We had only one thing in mind.Reach the village.We walked on on what appeared to be an endless trail.At around 5pm in the evening we finally reached the scenic village.By the time we reached everyone was drenched to the skin.Except me.My jacket served me well.Also I was the only one apart from the guide who didnt fall even once.In our camp Hot pakoras were waiting for us.It tasted heavenly.We all sat in the master tent and narrated our adventure to Mr Vinay and family.That ended our second day.For the description of the awesome campfire we had wait for the next post.