A picture story from Himachal Pradesh, India

Biwi wanted to go to the mountains. ‘What would we do there?’, I asked. ‘We would go someplace and then decide’, she replied. We went to Manali. It was our third wedding anniversary. We thought we would go on some sort of trekking. No trekking routes were open (late November). So we just lazied around […]

Biwi wanted to go to the mountains. ‘What would we do there?’, I asked. ‘We would go someplace and then decide’, she replied. We went to Manali. It was our third wedding anniversary. We thought we would go on some sort of trekking. No trekking routes were open (late November). So we just lazied around Manali.

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Mall Road, Manali

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Tourists enjoy snow at Gulaba, close to Manali.

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In the three days that we spent in Manali, biwi found out an operational trek that started in Mcleodganj. So we took a bus and traveled for 8 hrs and reached Mcleodganj. We walked on the streets for few days before finalizing a trekking company.

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After we finalized a company, we did some shopping and left for the trek.

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Triund was our first halt. It took us about 4 hours to reach there. ‘Triund is like a picnic spot, not even a trek’, our guide would later tell us.

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Above: Trekkers reaching Triund from Mcledoganj.

Because Mcledoganj-Triund is an easy short trek (never gets too steep), many return the same day. Some camp for the night and return. Few, like us, trek further uphill – to Indrahar pass.

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Indrahar Pass is typically a 4 day trek – two and a half days of climbing and one a half day of descent. So we had an easy first day. We had three more days to go.

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The second day was an easier shorter trek from Triund to an unnamed place between Snowline and Lahesh cave.

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Above (from left of photograph): the cook, the guide, biwi, porter 1, porter 2.
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This place was cooler than Triund. May be around 5 degrees. Our guide and his team set up some wood on fire. We heated ourselves, we ate and we slept. And we waited for the next day in anticipation. It was going to be a 5 hour climb up and 4 hour climb back, we were told. Half the tourists who try to reach Indrahar pass, give up mid-way, we were told too.

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We left for Indrahar pass early morning the next day and after a lot of steep climbing, reached the pass in about four and a half hours. ‘What has been the slowest time taken by any one to climb this?’, we asked our guide. The answer was six hours. We felt happy about our speed. ‘What has been the fastest time taken by any tourist to climb this?’, we asked our guide. Two and a half hours was the answer. Our happiness was short lived.

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Climbing down was even tougher and took almost 4 hours for us to reach back our tent. It was a mostly painful walk back. ‘This is pure unadulterated pain, climbing down’, I made a remark at one point.

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We stayed for one more day in Mcleodganj, gave rest to our tired bodies, packed our bags and returned to Delhi.

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Above: we wait for our bus back to Delhi, at Mcleodganj bus stop.

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Above: the last picture that I took during this trip; a selfie from inside the bus.

We reached Delhi early morning today. Biwi flew to Goa a short while back. I will leave for Ambala tomorrow for a wedding shoot. This was a picture story from Himachal Pradesh. Bye.

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