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4 months of workout, 4 months of abstinence, 4 friends – and the mountains beckoned!
This is their journey from New Delhi to Roopkund and back, covered in 7 days!
Day 1 – Reached Kathgodam by train from Delhi and drove up to Loharjung (7600ft), which is a 10-hour drive through the foothills of the Himalayas – past gushing streams, through valley clouds and on curvy roads.
Day 2 – Walking past icy-cold streams and coming face to face with high-flying birds, the group trekked its way up to Didna (8800ft). Villagers’ huts and blankets came in handy for camping.
Day 3 – The day began at 8, and through muck, rock, oak forests and meadows, they reached Ali Bugyal – the next campsite.
Day 4 – It was a day spent witnessing lush-green meadows and climbing some small hills while constantly moving towards Pathor Nachoni – the next stop at 13,000ft. It was always foggy here, and the valley clouds obstructed the view of snow-capped peaks.
Day 5 – The climb to Bagua Basu was next, through a zigzag trail (which makes one gain altitude very rapidly). This was one stretch that the group found particularly hard on account of the body trying to adjust to the altitude and the lack of oxygen. Still, 25 minutes away from the campsite, there was Kalu Vinayak (which probably gets its name from the black Ganesh idol enclosed in the stone shrine). Finally made it to Bagua Basa (14,700ft)!
Day 6 – The day began with an easy stretch, marked by some frozen streams. Then it got tougher and more exhausting as the air grew thinner, and Roopkund, which was right over there, seemed elusive. Breaks every 10 minutes, and after every 100 steps, and the group made it to the Roopkund Lake!
Day 7 – Crossing Bedni Bugyal, Neel Ganga and Amaranth farms, the group reached Wan, to be picked up for their long journey back to Loharjung.
Landslides from earlier that day did not make things any easier but memories of the trip overshadowed everything else.
A beautiful journey comes to an end!