"Get lost in nature and you will find yourself"
And so did a group of 54 travel lovers who went on a journey to find themselves at the not so famous yet astonishingly beautiful Kareri Lake in the great Dhauladhar ranges of Himalayas.
The troop left Delhi on 18th night to reach the amazing city of Mcleodganj the next morning. Post breakfast the group left for a trek to the Kareri Village, from where the lake derives its name. Rather than ascending to the place, we had to descend to the campsite at the village which was 12 km away from the city.
Everyone started the trek with great enthusiasm, confidence and with their backpacks on, bottles filled, pockets overloaded with energy bars and ponchos ready. It was month of June and rainfall was predicted (It actually doesn't matter much in mountains which season is it to experience rains). The trail passed through a school football field where a few of us managed to make a few assists to the kids and score a goal whereas others failed miserably. The trail had to be along the Nyund stream and we were supposed to drink water from it, but there was no sign of water till the first 11 km of the 12 km trail. All our water resources got exhausted and there was no sign of the river, just the sounds of water gushing through the rocky terrain and a few pipelines that had a few leaks. Many of the members of the team were feeling half dead due to thirst and a few brave ones had to go down the bushes and across thorns on the ridge to fill the bottles from the pipeline leaks.
As we moved forward, the sounds of water increased and so did our motivation. We reached the riverside after 11 km of hardships and everyone drank water from the river as if they had humps to store water in it. The camp site was not far from that last stop and the team was set to reach the site and crash in their camps.
We finally reached the camps and everyone selected their tents and tent mates and got ready to do what everyone does on hills, eat maggi with soup. The bonfire was set and we put our mats next to the bonfire. BUT BUT BUT, we were at the mountains, and it can rain anytime and so it did. Sadly, each one of us had to depart to the tents with empty stomachs as it had started to rain. A few decided to stay out with their raincoats on and dance their heart out to the sound of clouds roaring and lighting effects by our lovely nature whereas others decided to stay inside the tents and solve rubik's cube. The organising team was generous enough to provide dinner in the tents itself even in the thunderstorm. A few hours later, the rain stopped, and the sky became clear, but unfortunately late enough for the trekkers to gaze the clear sky.
The next morning, while some decided to conquer Kareri Lake on another 24 km two way day hike, while the others decided to stay back and enjoy the scenic beauty. The group left again for the hike (No idea what happened with the people who stayed back as I went to the lake :P) and reach the place which was on the bucket list of many of us. The trail this time was along the stream and there was no shortage of water. Also, we were spared from the heavy loads of our backpacks so it was a less tiring, but to our surprise there were large boulders which had to be crossed along the entire trail. They took a lot of strength and time to cross which made it more difficult for us to reach the lake before the deadline given to us by the instructors as they didn't want us to be caught in another storm. Another group was divided where one group decided to stay back at Riyoti (5 km from the lake) and have a good time their (No idea what happened there either :P). The group that left for the lake had a challenging task of covering 5 km of ascending terrain full of boulders in an hour. The fight between will power and strength cropped up again and again but they motivated each other and reached the top.
The lake was on the other side of the ridge and the stream had to be crossed one last time to reach there where I decided to wait for others while 2 of my friends went to see it. When others came and we started to take our last few steps towards the lake, one of my friend came rushing to me and asked me to hurry up and see it before it hides itself beneath the clouds. I reached the top, there was a small shop there and a temple and nothing else could be seen except clouds. It was a bit disappointing after taking that long a trek and not seeing anything.
All of us have seen stage shows where the curtains are drawn and are pulled only when the participants behind it are in position?
Clouds were the curtain and the lake was the participant. The clouds cleared like the curtain gets pulled only to showcase the awesomeness behind it. The lake made the long hike worth and grouted a new zeal of exploring similar high altitude wonders in all of us. We managed to take a few photographs and make a short video (attached) in the given time before we had to depart to our camps. That day we had lunch sitting on rocks in the middle of the streams, drank water just by dipping our heads inside and fulfilled one of the bucket list wishes.
That night, there was a small flood after everyone was asleep but it was enough to make the organising team stay awake the whole night and catch the stuff that started to flow away with water. The next morning the team departed with a lot of memories.
There are times where "It's not the mountains you conquer, but yourself".
THE MOUNTAINS ARE CALLING AND YOU MUST GO!!!!
#KareriCalling #TripotoWanderer #Wanderlust #BucketListDestination