As I am back from successfully completion of YHAI Sar Pass trek 2010 SP2 batch. This is a long write-up of me which I am sharing with you about the routines and experience of mine while crossing Sar Pass. One thing before that I want to share with you that I had done this trek from YHAI second time. Earlier I had done the same trek via different route, when I was only 13 and now after 16 years of long period I ad done from different route. As per my memory this route is much tougher then previous one.
What a beautiful and awesome trek it was. We have a group of 57 when we start from Base camp, all of us we know that one trekker will be return back after Guna pani. So we will be 56 after that. Out of that 16 Ladies trekkers and rest Gents. We have age group of 14 to 73 so all age of trekkers we have in our group. Trekkers from all over the India. I met with one guy from Orissa who is traveling with me in the same bus from Delhi and get down at Bhunter. He knows me via Indiamike. Thanks to indiamike who gives me lot of friends. That guy was in SP3, I told him to shift his batch to SP2, and he did the same. Meet with other guys form Goa, Chennai, Gurgaon and all over India. All of them were looking part of my family because we have to spend some next days with each other. Morning time is for some exercise and after that our day begins with fixed and planned schedules.
First day you have to report base camp, some formalities registration and rest whole day is yours to explore the beauty of Kasol small village made for Israelies not for Indians, Manikaran and all near places.
Second day is acclimatization walk, in that you have to put your two blankets and filled water bottle in your rucksack and way towards to climb. At some height we choose our group leader, environment leader. Do some photo shoots here.
Third Day is for Repelling and Rock Climbing. Repelling is mandatory for everyone because you have to do it between Biskeri and Bhadakthatch. Rock Climbing is not mandatory for everyone.
Base Camp to Guna Pani
Fourth day, Actual trek starts from here. Guna Pani is on 8000 feet height, we start our journey form 6500 feet height. Before start we will get warm cheers form other groups. You have to wait for bus here which will take you some place where you have to trek for next seven days.
From here some local villagers sold stick in 10 bucks which will be your good companion in entire trek. We had start for Guna pani, up and downs cross Shila village take some rest, villagers sold buttermilk nice taste. Soon we will reach lunch point take our lunch; villagers sold omlette, maggi juices, tea there. Price list goes higher as we climb higher. I want to enjoy the beauty so I was the slowest one, anyhow all of we reach Gunapani near abt 1.30 or 2.00 noon. Weather was very good at that time so all of we was enjoying there. Suddenly climate change and rain starts, after that our tent was floating in water. All of our blankets get wet. We filled water in glasses and drained out from our tent. Our group leader tried to shift us to another place but somehow we manage and spent our night in that tent. YHAI volunteers make a good food for all of us in very well manner. Next morning weather was clear and we will get some good scenic view and a view of Hanuman Tibba from here. After our breakfast and packed lunch we are ready for to proceed for our next campsite Fualpani which is at 9500 feet height. Remember you will get last electricity point here in private canteen.
Guna Pani to Fual Pani
We had started our trek near abt 9.00 in morning. Journey between both of the destination is again steep. There was some scenic point also between them so all of we had done some photography there. There was a steep climb before lunch point and after also. But all of us made it and reach there near abt 1.30 to next camp. We met here the same camp leader who was with us in our acclimatization walk. This camp site is very bad as per location wise because there was no flat ground and all of the tents mounted on slopes and Zigzag way. But again heads off to YHAI to arrange camps n this type of condition. Here we make chain to circulate all our stuff like blankets, sleeping bags etc. for any of our activity like dinner, soup, tea we have to move either up or down so it creates lot of problem. We had not done campfire in open area so all of our tent members did it in tent only. We have not faced any weather problem here. We will sleep early to wake early in next morning to reach next camp site which is on 11000 feet height.
Fual Pani to Zirmi
Today is our third day for walk. Same routine again. Morning calls, bed tea, breakfast, Packed Lunch, fall in and proceed for next camp.
It was again steep climb. Till 11.00 pm it was ok but after that condition become very worse. We faced the bad weather problem. Rain starts near ant 11.15pm, but all of us maintained our slowly pace and reached Lunch point neat about 12 noon. We waited there at least for some hours to settle down the rain but condition become worst and worst, so finally all of us form our group of 56 decided to do step forward and climb up. It was the day which I don’t want to remember in my whole life, I think all of us don’t want to remember this. What a panic trek it was. The climb was steep and it’s muddy too. Our shoes were not gripping properly and we slipped fell down. Believe me all of us was crawling with our hands and knee taking support of bushes and roots of trees. All of our clothes wet but we have only one aim to reach Zirmi, we fell down making chains everything what we have to do we did and finally reach Zirmi camp. All of us was shivering, our clothes was totally wet. Our hands was totally cold with water, infect there was no sensation in our hands like if we put our palm on the bunch of thorns to grip there was no sensation for any harm. Unbelievable or no words to express my feelings those 45minutes to 1 hrs trek.
Zirmi campsite is scenic one. All of we get a good view of nature from here.
The worst part of this campsite is that the distance between Zirmi campsite and welcome board of Zirmi is very much. As all of the trekkers became tired and after the welcome board they was in impression that campsite is near but it became panic to walk near ant 750 meter to 1 km. to reach campsite.
After completion of that worst part I think that I got a new birth today. I thank to my God for no causalities and pray for good weather.
From here half of our group decides to get down directly to Kasol. Most of them have no spare clothes and some mental block was also there.
Zirmi to TilaLotni
From here now we are total 29 trekkers to go forward for next camp. Half of our group members decided not to move forward. There were many reasons behind it. They will directly get down to Kasol from here. There was only one girl out of sixteen who decided to step forward with us. She is really brave one. Now from this camp site all of we decided to leave early for next camp because climate become changes form every 12.00 noon. Here we do some prayer and proceed for next camp with new courage and adventure. From here Rain God bless us and we will not find any bad weather for entire trek. They had already examine our patience and our courage,
Now most of us from 29 trekkers are from same speed. I am the slowest one but not too much. One important thing is that Camp leader of Zirmi was also accompanying us till Tila Lotni.. All of us made our steady pace. It was again steep climb. We reach tea point do same rest there and again proceed. We reached lunch point. Here we felt some cold so all of us wear our woolens. Here I take Maggi from private canteen, after some time we start for next camp. From here we will frequently get snow patches. They were melting so it creates a lot of problem for us to walk on that. Till 1.00 pm all of us we will reach to Tila Lotni campsite. It was a beautiful camp site with snow covered mountains. Soon snow fall starts and we rush to our belonging tents. Here we met with another girl of SP1 who will join us for next three days. So now two girls with 28 boys. After some time weather was clear and all of us will roam here and there to take snaps. From here we will get a perfect view of Sar pass which we have to cross today’s night. We collect all our sleeping bags and other stuff. Here we will meet with two Sherpas belongs from Darjeeling, they are like snow leopards. They are act as our guide to cross the Sar Pass. One of them reached the height of 26500feet. So they are very experienced and cooperative. Nice to meet with both of them clicked some snap with them. As usual same routine, here YHAI provide Gulabjamun pleasant surprise for us to get such dish at that height.
The camp leader explains us that we have to wake up 3.00 in morning so we sleep early that night in freezing cold. They will provide breakfast and tea with packed lunch which is Chkki biscuit and juice this time. We all fall in on time. Here we will get another news that 3 of our members not to travel ahead because one of them faces some problem in his knees. All of them are very fit guys from Gujrat but because of some problem they had not crossed the sar pass. It’s very sad for all of them that they was at Tila lotni and not crossed the Sar pass.
Tila Lotni to Biskeri Thatch via Sar Pass
Anyways now we 27 will start our trek near about 4.30 or 5.00 in morning. It was a steep climb very tough anyhow we will be on top of 13800 feet height at 6.00 in morning. I was in seventh cloud, what a scene it was, unbelievable, fantastic awesome, great, pleasant, scenic. I was at the place which I had crossed 16 years back. I thank my god here to give me such power to reach there. I was the second last one to reach there. My entire group was ahead of me but I enjoyed it very much. I wore my sun glasses to protect my eyes from snow blindness. Now I increased my pace and soon catch my group members. Meanwhile I have clicked some beautiful photographs of Snow Mountains and scenery. Frankly speaking I have no words to express my feelings here. Now from here that Sherpas told me to walk forward so I was at number three in entire row. Now we have to walk and walk in snow. Some times my feet get 3 to 4 feet inside the snow. It was a vast layer of snow. Everywhere you will get snow and snow. Really feeling good to walk on such snow ground. We have done entire video shoot of this trek. After some time we reached lunch point. Take some rest there and take tea also. Again we are ready to walk again with fresh legs, now from here we have to get down and up some time. At last again a steep climb was there in snow which we have to climb. No body sees here and there everyone follows the foot marks of followers and put there steps very tightly, it was very steep climb. All of we reached at top and now after some steps sidings are there wow great hurrayyyy. Sldes – Sherpas told us that we have almost crossed the Sar pass now we have to slide from here to some meters of 600 to 750 meters in few seconds. WE have to sit there bend our back and straight our legs. With in few second we will be slide and get down meters. Here we do photography and enjoy in snow. All of mine clothes get wet with snow but feel very good. There was again one slide which will get down us very near to grass land. On that grass land our lunch point was tented. All of us we cross the Sar pass near about 9.30 am. Good time faced no climate problem. At lunch point we passed 2 to 2.30 hrs. drew our wet clothes, take magi juices and do time pass take sun bath also. From now I felt very happy because I achieved my goal. Thanks to that Sherpas who help us very much to cross this.
We start from there to Biskeri Thatch near about 12.00 noon. Now we have to get down and down. After a long walk we will reach Biskeri Thatch. Campsite was mounted on large grass field surrounded with Christmas trees. Here we found that one of our group members infected with snow blindness. Luckily we have four doctors in our group so they examined him and give some medicines.
Biskeri to Bhandak Thatch
As everyone of our group crossed the Sar pass so most of them wants to skip the Bhandak thatch and directly report to base camp. So till morning 18 from 27 plans to get down directly and 9 of us move for Bhandak thatch. What our plan was that we will reach there near about 12 noon take rest there and leave for base camp same day near about 1.30 pm because the journey between Bhandak Thatch and Varshani is only 2 or 2.30 hrs. So we started early from Biskeri to Bhandak. All of us were in good pace and enjoying the beauty. We took small rests also between our walk. Before lunch point we do rapeling also, enjoyed it. At lunch point we take a rest of 30 minutes. As we start earlier so reach lunch point early so no local villagers was there to operate there canteen. Here we tried some palm, chikki, etc. again we start our trek with fresh legs. Now we were getting grass fields, shepherds. After a flat track our guide tolds us to climb for 20 minutes walk, it was a good climb and as usual I was the last one to climb up. After the climb it was a large grass field with totally snow covered mountains, palm trees like a movie scene. Awesome perfect location to shoot romantic song. On that flat land our tents was mounted. Suddenly all of the guys decided to stay here only and not to get down for base camp. This was the best camp site form YHAI for the Sar Pass trek. The guys who skipped this camp site were really unlucky for that but anyways we sizzling 9 was the lucky one. Here first time in entire trek only we 4 guys share the single tent. Dinner was amazing. This was the best location for photo shoot also. This was the last night which I have to spent in tent for this trek.
Bhandak Thatch to Base Camp
Morning wake up and our breakfast is ready again one surprise Noodles in breakfast. After do all formalities we start for our last trek to Varshani village. With some hours of walk we heard noises of dumpers, buses so think that we are back in crowd again but it’s a part of our life so after steady walk we reached a village. There we do some photo shoot with villagers. Construction of Dam was going on from Patel Engineering and hydro electric project was also going on. Now we are surrounding with trucks and dumpers. We reach varshani bus stand at near about 11.00 am. Bus will be at 12.00 pm so all of decided to hire private vehicle for base camp but they will charge very heavily. We started walk again and reach a point from where we saw that bus was coming from other side they told us that they will be back with in some time, we waited for this bus there only. When bus comes we climbed up in the bus for our last journey for base camp. We ate some banana at Manikaran and get down base camp at 1.30pm. Here all we 9 did photo shoot in front of YHAI Banner. We get down collect our bags rearrange all our stuff. Believe me I looked the mirror after 6 days. All of we collected our certificates returned rucksack to them.
I have to leave for Delhi so I rushed for Bhunter very first. Shacked hand with everyone and flew for Bhunter to catch bus for Delhi.
The 9 who completes the entire trek was me (Sankalp), Yatin, Saumendra, Varun, Ashok Puri (Mogembo), Shobhit, Himanshu, Savitri and Abha (SP1)
All of us enjoyed the entire trek very much.
Sincere Thanks to YHAI to arrange such trek in very beautiful and much planned manner.