Its just mind-blowing. A 11-day trek with 6 days of sheer stress, it is one of the toughest treks organized by YHAI that puts, more than all, your will-power to test. All the open-air-camps at kasol, guna-pani, funal-pani, tila-lotni, zirimi -> (thru sarpass) -> biskeri-thatch, bhandk-thatch are really breath-taking.
My backpack slowly became 30 kilos, with all the rain, hails and the snow-fall making the 40+ km uphill trek only more strenuous. We started the trek at 6500 ft above sea level, crossed sar-pass at 13800 ft and the 6 days that passed only saw a hilly terrain with mud, rain-water or ice making it slippery, the huge valleys beneath truly scaring me away.
The organizers were good and provided us with simple food, nice guidance and the two sherpas were just awesome on the snow. I will forever cherish the memories from Tila-Lotni and Sar-pass.
And in the end, don’t forget to take a bath in the natural hot water springs at Manikaran. I missed it, but was told its a pretty good experience particularly after a 10 day trek in the cold cold hills 🙂
Few things to take care:
1. Carry a very good pair of shoes which are good for water, ice; and then multiple pairs of socks;
2. rain coat (overall) is damn necessary;
3. alkaline batteries just don’t work and so carry only rechargeables (duracell as a backup, but it gave 15 pics per set of four);
4. More than all, it is so testing and strenuous. move at a slow pace and just keep pushing yourself to reach the top everyday;
go check your guts 🙂 and enjoy the trek.
um, I don’t think a separate fitness test is necessary before you go on this trek. It is so chalked that you will have ample time to walk the distance, at an average of 6km a day. With the given backpack and a desire to finish the test, you can easily complete it.
There will be porters available in all camps, and you can give them your backpack if not able to carry it. Without a backpack, the walk is just a breeze in the hilly woods.
There will be people turning back every day, exhausted. Rain, snow and cold wave are common reasons.
Its tough for both boys and girls who do not have a willingness to complete. Its not tough for anyone who can smilingly walk the distances without cursing oneself 🙂
There were 4 girls and an old lady who completed this trek along with us.