I could hear the instructions being repeated again – slip down this boulder, walk across that rock, climb the third boulder and slide down and walk across the vertical wall into the shallow end of the stream. Looks easy ? Definitely not, especially when you have just gained the knowledge that the pool is around 10 – 15 ft deep near the boulders and adding the height of the boulders it would be a free fall of 30 ft to the bottom of the Dead-end pool ! Whoever thought of this appropriate name – Dead-end pool ; and why would they use the redundant words ‘dead’ and ‘end’ in the same name to extinguish even the faint glimmer of hope that a first timer would have of crossing the pool alive !! Phew, what had I got myself into ?!
A few hours back I was lazing in the safe and warm confines of my home, sipping a hot coffee and enjoying the monsoons ! But now I was out in wild in an adventurous trek !
“SLIDE” ! Somebody said this rather urgently, breaking my flashback bubble in its infancy !!
I took a deep breath and started my slide… somebody held my hand and in that few seconds of unaided drop my heart jumped out a thousand times. My foot hit something hard, i looked down to see myself on the next boulder. A couple of steps and I started my upward slide on the next boulder. Mid way through the climb somebody extended a hand and helped. Once atop this boulder it was a slide down again. Then I walked a few steps on a gorge wall and stepped down into the shallow end of the pool. I had crossed the Dead-End pool; and I was alive !!
I walked a few more steps in the stream and stood on solid ground. A tiny water falls trickled by the rocks. The gorge ahead narrowed down once again after having been broadened by the pool. Here it truly looked like the walls could cave in any moment ! It was an amazing sight, worth the risk of crossing the Dead-End pool.
We played in the stream and the waterfalls. It was ice cold but that hardly deterred me from getting soaked. I was brimming with happiness.