Priyanka: But ! Are you sure?
Me: Yes, Please cancel my tomorrow’s trek
Priyanka: Are you sure?
Above conversation happened around 11 am. Something was seriously messed up in the Office Project and our team was busy sorting it out. Following which we decided to cancel this 3 months old trek plans. “The better we plan, the better is fails” echoed in my mind as I was trying to figure out the problem. Later in the afternoon, the issue was known and I dialed again to TTH.
Me: Hi! Priyanka
Priyanka: Hello Yogesh! I have cancelled your Trek, which included your Pickup, stay and …
Me: I want to come.. actually the issue …
Priyanka: Are you Serious !!! Cmon..
[after 10 seconds]
Priyanka: This time it is final right?… okay give me 30 minutes. ohfo..
Me: Yup… (Sheepish Grin)
Day 1: Reaching Sankri
So in this way, the plan was in order again. I started packing my backpack and was ready to catch Nanda Devi Express to Dehradun.
We Reached Doon at 6 am. At this time Doon was relatively cosier than Delhi. After some hot tea, we sat in the traveller which took us to Sankri Village. The road to Sankri is very well built alongside river Yamuna. However, the last one hour of the journey made our stomach upset. Covering Nowgaon, Portola, Mori and Natwar we finally reached Sankri.
Starting the trek
Himalayas at sankri
Sankri is a small village. It is the base for 3 Major treks in Uttarakhand, Kedarkantha, HarkiDun and Bali Pass. At Sankri we met other fellow trekkers from different parts of India. An Amazing Journey was about to start.
Trees After Fresh Snowfall
Day 2: Juda ka Talab
We started from Sankri at 8 am sharp. From another end of the village, we started ascending uphill. Today was an easy 5 km Climb till Juda ka Talab. Unlike other treks in which Snow was visible on the top, here it was the starting of the trail itself. The views were amazing, everything from trees, leaves, Trail was covered in 6-7 inches of snow. We reached Juda-Ka-Talab in the afternoon and this campsite was like a vanilla slice of heaven.
Snow Snow Snow
Bridge at the Trail
After a fresh snowfall
Juda Ka Talab
At Juda ka Talab
Frozen lake Surrounded by pine trees, our campsites on a sheet of snow alongside the clear twinkling stars. What more can one ask for on the first day of a Trek. After a few games of UNO, everyone went to sleep.
Camps in the night
At JUDA ka Talab
Day 3: Kedarkantha Base Campsite
Although I didn’t want to leave Juda-Ka-Talab, We started for the Base Campsite in the morning. Today was the easiest day. After 3 km of an Uphill climb, the Basecamp greeted us with a gorgeous snowfall. The snowfall was so captivating that I didn’t go to the campsite but sat outside a hut to absorb this experience.
Himalayas from Base Camp
Trekkers Reaching base Camp
Snowfall At base camp
Later we levelled the snow to make ground for our Campsite. The Base campsite is an open meadow with snow peaks all around and it looked like a maiden dressed in white. Finally, after an hour of struggle with the snow, we were able to pitch the tent. We kept hearing in between that tommorow would be a tough affair if the weather gods were not on our side.
The Kedarkantha peak is clearly visible from the KK Base. It looked down as if it was watching us.
At Base Camp
Day 4: The Summit Day
Weather Gods were indeed on our sides. We attached Gaiters and Crampons to shoes and started at 4 am for the summit climb. As the sun the came up the Mountains grew closer. Tough winds and subzero temperature made the last 1 km feel like an eternity. I was able to see the summit in front of me. After reaching I closed my eyes and took one long deep breath, and sat down to witness the most jaw-dropping views of the mighty Himalayas.
Tent at Base Camp
Starting the Climb
The flat hilltop presents a 360 degree views of the area. One can see the snow-capped chain of the Greater Himalayan ranges from here. The Gangotri and the Yamunotri ranges are clearly visible from the summit, as are the Chanshil Pass and Kinnaur Kailash ranges. On the left Rupin pass and Har ki dun Valley are clearly visible.
At KedarKantha Top
View from the top
360 pics From KedarKantha Top
After a 20 minute rendezvous on the peak, we stated to descend. In between the trail, we slid from the hill top. It was an amazing experience. We reached back to the base camp at around 2 pm.
Indian Flag on 26th
It was a tough affair in the night as the campsite had a heavy snowfall. Everyone had to tradeoff between making sure tent does not fall on us and sleeping.
Morning View From Tent
Day 5 : Reaching Sankri Back
I know that no one wanted to return back from the Camp (But we had to). We moved from the camp on our way back to Sankri. We continued through deep dark pine forest to reach Hargaon. Hargaon is a beautiful clearing which also offers amazing views.
Leaves After a fresh Snowfall
The royal Orchestra
Fog engulfed in the Forest
The View to die for
Crossing Hargaon the snow had started to melt. Snow and Dirt made the descend slipperily. After a couple of falls and trousers soaked in mud, we reached Sankri.We reached Sankri after 5 hours and the first thing everyone wanted to do was bathe in hot water. And Sadly, we didn’t had Hot water. So a few brave hearts including me took an icy cold shower. It was freaking awesome.
An Empty Broken Hut
Some last Moments With Mountains
Day 6: Back to Doon
Not willing to leave the perfect place to go back to a world full of stress and pollution, we pushed ourselves into the Traveller that took us back to Dehradun.