The next two days were dedicated for acclimatization walk and rock climbing. YHAI is a very well organised group. Everything was systematic and well planned. I really appreciate the efforts put in by all of them and have very few complaints against them. They offered healthy and nutritious food on all days; gave us good blankets and sleeping bags and made sure we did not face much hassle during the trek.
We had to wake up at and get ready by to go to the nearby ground where we were made to exercise for a while. After exercising we had breakfast at the camp. Then we cleaned the tents and got ready for the acclimatization walk to a nearby hill. We cheered for the previous batch leaving for higher camps. After lunch, they conducted an orientation to brief us about the trek schedule and things to carry for the trek. By evening I was feeling sick because of some stomach and gastric issues. I took a tablet and forced myself to sleep after campfire. Luckily I was fine by next day morning.
On the third day, after the morning exercises and breakfast, we headed for rock climbing and rappelling. I could rappel easily but did not attempt rock climbing since it looked tricky. Instead Naina, Vaidehi and I just relaxed beside the Parvati river flowing nearby while the others from our batch continued with rock climbing. It was wonderful to lie on the grass beside the river and listen to the water flowing. We ended up taking a short nap there.
After lunch we were given our rucksacks. We were supposed to finish packing our stuff by evening and deposit the extra luggage in the locker room at the base camp. The three of us sat together to pack and carry as little luggage as possible for the trek. But it wasn't as easy as we had expected it to be, even with prior planning. Being first time trekkers, many of our estimations had gone terribly wrong. We had brought many unnecessary things and had also purchased large packs of some necessary stuff instead of buying small ones. We were forced to make some difficult decisions while choosing.
Somehow we finished packing with the help of some experienced trekkers who guided us through the process. Manu, Madan and Chukki (Sachin) were already on the line to deposit their luggage by the time we weighed our rucksacks and went to deposit ours. They did not seem to have faced the dilemma we girls faced. Finally, all of us were geared up to leave for higher camps the next day.
Trek to Grahan (Height-7700 ft)
This was THE day we actually started our trek. We had breakfast in the morning and packed lunch to have on the way. We were all set to go by 8 o clock. The other batches cheered for us as we walked in a single line. The girls were in the front followed by the boys. That was how we were supposed to move everyday .But we always got mixed up on the way as each of us had different walking speeds. We three girls ended up walking with our friends at the end of the line most of the times. I did not face any hitches until the lunch point as we were given 3 breaks by the guide until then. Every lunch point had some local people selling maggi, omelettes and chai. Most of the days, we ended up having maggi as we preferred eating something hot. YHAI food was good only when hot.
From the lunch point we had no guide and had to move on our own (YHAI arrow marks were there everywhere and it was pretty easy to find the way).By then the weather had turned cloudy and it looked like it was going to rain. Everybody decided to hurry with the lunch and move soon to avoid getting caught in the rain. So we put on our rain ponchos and walked.