People take their resolutions on the new year's eve but my resolution came after my very first himalayan trek in January 2015. It was the long weekend of Republic day and I was really very excited for this trek to Nag Tibba in the garhwal hiamalayas, invited a few friends, formed a closed group, organised the trek, packed our stuff (with the very limited knowledge about what to pack for a trek especially when it was a winter trek) and left our homes to catch the overnight bus to Dehradun. By the time we came down from the mountains we were all so tired but there was a new zeal in everyone and that ignited the fire in me to continue doing more himalayan treks and I started waiting for my next long weekend or any opportunity to leave for the next trek.
Going back in time, my love for trekking started with what is considered as one of the most difficult trek in the western ghats known as Kumaraparvat. It was a long 21 kms trek and we were a group of 9 friends, inexperienced and unprepared, walking into the unknown land which is supposedly famous for king cobras as well. We went, we walked, we ran, we crawled and somehow finished those really tough 21 kms of our lives in just 1 day (which should ideally be done in 2 days but because of our inexperience and somewhat foolish decisions we just went for it with less food and very less water to drink). The breezing wind on top of the mountain never left my soul since then and the sense of achievement after conquering Kumaraparvat was so immense that it made me jump into any opportunity to trek. I was already fond of trekking as an adventure sport and was becoming a regular trekker on the western ghats when I started working in Hyderabad, where I met a group of trekking enthusiasts through our office chat portal and that's how trekking happened to me. Then I got a new job, returned to my home in Delhi and got really busy with the corporate life and had not been to mountains for almost a year.
So my second innings started with Nag Tibba which embarked the love for himalayas in me. That was the time when I decided to go on a mission, a mission to explore the beauty of the newest mountain ranges of the world, which luckily happens to be in India, and try to spread this beauty amongst others through my camera lens and also by taking the interested lot along with me in pursuit of mountain-ness. The mission was then aimed towards doing 15 treks in 2015 and that was my so called new year resolution.
I had then started planning treks almost every month, invited people to join in for every plan that I made and jumped into any opportunity to take leaves or any long weekends to visit the himalayas. The huge support from my team and managers back in office had always been the backbone of this initiative. I was then trekking with groups, solo, organized a lot of treks and self funded all of them to take this mission to its summit. Have met a lot of wonderful people throughout the journey, the businesses that are involved in adventure travel industry, spoken to a lot of guides on the field, the locals of various places, each and every person had added some values into me and somewhat made me a person with broader perspective on life.
The mission of completing 15 treks was finally accomplished on 28th December when I had my last packed lunch of 2015 on the summit of Darwa Peak, 4115 meters above sea level, after making way through the knee deep snow cover and finally finding a place to sit with panoramic views of the garhwal himalayas, facing the cold winter breeze head on but the clear sky and sun kept us warm even at such a high altitude. The whole journey was long, tiring, challenging and full of learnings.
But the whole mission is still not accomplished since the motive behind the journey was to inspire people to see the true beauty of the vast landscapes of himalayas, to inspire them to trek and climb and take this adventure sport to newer heights, and I hope to achieve that by sharing my story.
May the mountain forces be with you!