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Old 25th August 2011, 17:54   #16
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Default Re: When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011

Great account with loads of info, deky. I am glad you were selected and able to make it this time from the Indian side.

Just curious about the 750 bucks charged by the Chinese - what are the facilities provided by them, if any? Is there any specific security/ escort or some otehr logistical support provided from their side for the duration of this trip?
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Old 25th August 2011, 18:49   #17
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Default Re: When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011

Fantastic start Deky. Very details and informative.

We are all eyes and ears here.
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Old 25th August 2011, 19:43   #18
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Default Re: When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011

Very nice and informative write up deky. It makes me want to do this trip once in my lifetime. Waiting for more. 2 months back, my aunt and cousins too went to Mansarovar, but I think they went through Nepal directly. It seems there was an emergency evacuation in their group too.
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Old 25th August 2011, 19:54   #19
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Default Luggaage

Thank you all for the comments and the appreciation. Now to answer some specific querries

Quote:
Originally Posted by simply_sunny001 View Post
Good stuff Dhiraj and congrats on completing the Yatra this time.

The whole process seems to be systematic from the organising point of view, though its a tad early to comment.

Please keep the updates coming.

looking forward

Thanks
Yes, KMVN &ITBP does a great job all along the Indian route. There is a batch leaving after every 6 days so there is a lot of work but slowly and steadily I think they have fine tuned themselves, and the best part is that they are always thinking as to how to make the yatra more comfortable

Quote:
Originally Posted by amitwlele View Post
@deky - First congrats on being selected for this exciting journey. This sure is one trip that requires elaborate planning. After reading through your initial posts i am scared and wondering if i would be able to undertake it anytime.

What kind of fitness regimen were you following before embarking on the journey?

Waiting for further updates.
Health is a very important factor that will determine the success of your trip. So being healthy and getting up to shape atleast a few months prior to the trip is very important.

My health regime this time was really messed up. I started swimming but could only do it for a week as I had to undergo a nose surgery, I tried giving up smoking but could not. Luckily enough I was able to finish the journey without any problem.

Kindly do not take me as an example and avoid being healthy, I will say I was just plain lucky!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by selfdrive View Post
Great account with loads of info, deky. I am glad you were selected and able to make it this time from the Indian side.

Just curious about the 750 bucks charged by the Chinese - what are the facilities provided by them, if any? Is there any specific security/ escort or some otehr logistical support provided from their side for the duration of this trip?
USD$750 is charged by the Chinese towards 12 day accommodation in Tibet, complete meal charges for 4 days at Taklkot, transportation charges for the entire duration, yak/horse/ pony charges for transpoertation of yatris and luggage at Lipulekh, entry tickets for Manasarovar and Kailash tourist zones, and entry tickets for Khorchak nath temple,

The rest is self paid by yatris.

Discussing Luggage

Luggage is very important factor that will determine how much time you will waste in opening, packing and again waterproofing it at each camps. Infact sometimes after a hard days walk, you are so tired that you dont even feel like opening your bag to take out anything. Also sometimes you will only be getting your bags at alternate camps so what you keep with you and what you send along in the common luggage is also important. Sometimes you only get your bag for 2 hours as the luggage contractor would want to send you bag ahead early so that it reaches the next camp before you do.

So what I mean is that you have to be very organized and precise in what you pack and how you pack.

Few points to remember about the luggage.

1. Apart from the common food items that go as common luggage on mules there are two type's of other luggage, one is yatri's big bag called the common yatri luggage and the other is the yatri's small bag/ rucksack known as the personnel luggage. The common food with the common luggage will be transported on mules from camp to camp. 25 kgs per yatri is part of the package and no extra payment is required for that.

The personal bag will be carried by yourself or by your porter if you have hired one so will be with you all the time.

2. Daily need items like medicines, rain coat, a change if required, some eatable, warm clothes (as required) a torch etc etc is to be carried in personal bag. The rest can go in your big bag with your common luggage.

3. The big bag that goes with the common luggage can not be a hard top one, it has to be a soft top so that it can be easily carried on mules.

4. Packing of the big bag is very important. Even important is waterproofing it. Do not keep any valuables or breakable items in this bag. Make sure to put each item in small polly bags and cover the bag with another plastic sheet and then put this in big jute bags provided by an NGO free of cost at Gujrati Samaj. Then tie this properly with nylon ropes that are also provided. This is important due to the way the bags are handled or rather manhandled

5. Write your name and bag number (if provided by the luggage committee) properly and in bold on the bag. It will be easier for the luggage committee to locate your bag at the time of distribution.

6. The luggage committee usually counts the total number of bags and hands it over to the luggage contractor so while receiving the same number is received. So please do not take your bag without informing the luggage committee.

7. At Dharchula the luggage restriction will come into place. Each yatri can only carry 25 kgs of luggage with them. This 25 kgs also include 5 kgs of common food stuff so effectively you can carry 20 kgs of personal belongings in the common luggage.

8. There are cloak room facilities available at Gujrati Samaj, Dharchula and at Gunji/Kalapani. While at Gujrati samaj its at payment the rest of the places its free so you can plan to leave stuff accordingly.

Its not prudent anyways to carry much luggage, you wont be requiring most of the stuff. MEA website has a comprehensive list of what to carry and how much to carry.

PIC A sample of how to pack your bag, notice the individual poly bags and then then everything in a bigger plastic sheet
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc00468.jpg

Sample about how to pack your bag in jute bags for waterproofing and how to tie it properly and label it
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06960.jpg

Luggage committee weighing the luggage at Dharchula and handing over to the Luggage contractor.
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06962.jpg
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Old 25th August 2011, 20:06   #20
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Default Re: When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011

Oh boy! oh boy! After Deky's last spellbinding Kailash/Mansarovar journey here we go with another one. Fabulous! I am glued to this thread. Thanks so much for sharing Deky!

Cheers!
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Old 26th August 2011, 09:37   #21
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Default Re: Luggaage

Quote:
Originally Posted by deky View Post
Sample about how to pack your bag in jute bags for waterproofing and how to tie it properly and label it
Attachment 599557
An excellent and very informative thread! A small correction, if I may! Those are HDPE bags, not jute bags. The latter are not water-proof.
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Old 26th August 2011, 10:18   #22
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Default Re: When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011

Glad to see you back with the account of the Kailash Yatra. Totally hooked and will be keeping a regular watch.
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Old 26th August 2011, 11:17   #23
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Default Re: When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011

Amazing start deky. I finished reading your earlier log about 2 hours back and now I'm glued to this. I plan to take my mother too before the age gets better of her. So 2 questions:

1. What is the total cost for such a trip?
2. Do they let diabetic people with medication come along?

(Don't bother answering to question 2. They don't take diabetic people. :( )

Last edited by creative420 : 26th August 2011 at 11:19. Reason: Edit
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Old 26th August 2011, 11:31   #24
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Default Re: When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011

Congrats Dhiraj for completing this yatra and thanks for sharing the story and info.

Looking forward.
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Old 26th August 2011, 11:45   #25
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Default Re: When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011

Well done, Deky
I can actually identify the roads from my last year's trek to Panchachuli..
Thanks for the detailed information. Glued to the thread.
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Old 26th August 2011, 13:00   #26
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Default Day6 : Dharchula to Sirkha- 57 kms

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gansan View Post
An excellent and very informative thread! A small correction, if I may! Those are HDPE bags, not jute bags. The latter are not water-proof.
Hi,
Thanks, I was looking for the right word for these bags, so glad you helped me out. Also these HPDE bags were not totally waterproof but obviously would have been better than jute bags.

I had two layers of HDPE bags over my duffle bag but the duffle bag still managed to get wet during heavy rain. Luckily every thing was in 2 layers of plastic inside hence not much of damage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by creative420 View Post
Amazing start deky. I finished reading your earlier log about 2 hours back and now I'm glued to this. I plan to take my mother too before the age gets better of her. So 2 questions:

1. What is the total cost for such a trip?
2. Do they let diabetic people with medication come along?

(Don't bother answering to question 2. They don't take diabetic people. :( )
1. May I answer you on the cost aspect in a separate post later?

2. Yes infact they do. If you condition is stable after medication, then the doctors will give you the leverage. They also allow High BP patients on medication on this trip, which I think is more dangerous than diabetes (?). So do not loose hope. Just make sure you disclose the ailment to the doctor and not hide it.

Before we continue, here is a map scanned from KMVN brochure depicting the Kumaon region. The area covering our journey is marked with a red line. This is to give you an idea of the route we took.

(click on the picture for a bigger map)
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-final.jpg

DAY6: DHARCHULA TO SIRKHA

Dharchula: 1015 mtrs
Sirkha : 2200 mtrs
Dharchula to Narayan Ashram (44 kms): By Jeeps
Narayan Ashram to Sirkha (13 kms): Trek
Total time taken : 8 hours

It was again an early morning start from Dharchula. It had been raining the whole of previous night but luckily iy had stopped now but the skies were still grey. River Kali was flowing along the KMVN guest house in full force. It was greenery all around and with the rain it looked all so fresh and clean.

I had no time to enjoy the scenery but had to get to work immediately. I being part of the luggage committee had to count the bags, weigh the bag, label the bags properly and hand them over to the luggage contractor. So my day along with the other members of the committee started 1 hr earlier than the rest of the group.

By 0600 hrs the rest of the group was ready after breakfast. Those yatris who had not made up their mind for a pony or a porter during the journey could still do so and order for them with the LO.

Today we would be travveling approximately 44 kms by jeeps and then approximately 13 kms by foot to reach Sirkha. With the bags loaded in a truck and yatris in jeeps we were ready to leave

Route from Dharchula to Narayan Ashram on google map
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-1dharchula-nsa.jpg

The route all along the River Kali was very scenic. There were plenty of water crossing en route which were flowing at their full strength due to the continuous rain fall thru out the night. Rain fall also meant landslides and we were kept waiting at a few places for them to be cleared all along the route.

At a place called Tawaghat we left River Kali and started going along Dhauli Ganga. Initially the route was along Kali till Mangti (refer the above map) but this route has been changed now due to lots of landslides here.

The new route is now from Tawaghat to Sobla and then to Narayan Ashram. There were quite a few hydel power stations on this route and the biggest one was on the river Dhauli Ganga.

After about 3 hours of traveling by jeeps we finally stopped 1 km before Narayn Ashram. Though the motorable road is till the Ashram but due to landslide we had to cover the rest on foot. Nobody did mind that as the rest of the journey hence forth would be on foot/pony only.

Narayan Ashram is known for its picturesque, scenic and mesmerizing beauty. It was built by Shri Narayan Swami Jee in the year 1936 and it took 10 years to complete the Ashram. In earlier days this Ashram was one of the key rest points for the Yatris travelling to Kailash on this route.

After some Bhajans at the Ashram Temple, some snacks and mind blowing Suji Ka Halwa it was time to continue towards Sirkha.

As mentioned earlier there would be no motor able roads hence forth and everything would have to be done on foot or by Pony.

The route from Narayan Ashram to Sirkha.
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-2nsa-sirkha.jpg

Approximate elevation of the route travelled
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-2ansa-sirkhaaltitude.jpg

Those who had elected for a pony or/and a porter were allotted here. I had opted for neither a pony or a porter so I took my bag pack and my walking stick and started towards Sirkha.

Also its necessary to mention here, that the Uttrakhand Police deputes two men to walk with the group. Both the men have a 2-way radio and one stays right in the front (head) and one stays right at the back of the group (tail) There is also a doctor from the govt. who stays with the tail. This is to make sure that no one gets lost during the trek.

The trek was as beautifull as it could be, nature was at its best and the cloudy weather made it ideal for walking. Initially the trek was a gradual ascent but after some time it got steep. We had to cross a small hill and on the other side was Sirkha village.

Walking after a long long time it was rather difficult crossing the small hill also. We huffed and puffed and somehow managed to come across the other side of the hill. On the other side we could see the village of Sirkha at a distance. Slowly and steadily we reached Sirkha KMVN by 1400 hrs.

Lunch was served here and everyone decided to have a nap. We would not be getting our luggage today so the evening was spent with Bhajans. We got electricity for 2 hours during the evening so everyone had 2 hours to charge their cameras etc etc

Dinner was served and it was time to sleep

Pics from Day 6

Early morning view from our hotel balcony in Dharchula
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06958.jpg

On our way to Narayan Swami Ashram in Jeeps
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06964.jpg

Streams at their best
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06967.jpg

Landslides en-route
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06972.jpg

A dam on Dhauli ganga River
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06974.jpg

No more motorable road due to a landslide. Its on foot from here on
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06984.jpg

Picturesque Narayan Swami Ashram
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06989.jpg

The temple
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06993.jpg

Porters and ponies were allocated here
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06994.jpg

The journey on mountain tracks begin
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06996.jpg

Every point is a photo opportunity
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06997.jpg

Initially the whole group used to be together
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc06999.jpg

But slowly it stretched out
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc07000.jpg

Live landslide happening on the other hill
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc07002.jpg

Sirkha Village at a distance
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc07003.jpg

Village kids greeting us (please carry lots of sweets to distribute)
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc07004.jpg

Our KMVN guest house in sight
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc07005.jpg

A day scene at Sirkha
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc07007.jpg

Biggest chameleon i have ever seen
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc07013.jpg

Finally reached Camp Sirkha
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc07014.jpg

View of the mountains from Sirkha
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc07015.jpg

The clouds just cleared for a moment in the evening and we could see this beautifull sight
When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011-dsc07017.jpg
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Old 26th August 2011, 13:55   #27
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Default Re: When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011

Please keep posting and complete the whole log today. I am glued to it.
And wonderful pictures. Nice camera kit.
Live landslide pic was awesome.
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Old 26th August 2011, 14:42   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deky View Post

1. May I answer you on the cost aspect in a separate post later?

2. Yes infact they do. If you condition is stable after medication, then the doctors will give you the leverage. They also allow High BP patients on medication on this trip, which I think is more dangerous than diabetes (?). So do not loose hope. Just make sure you disclose the ailment to the doctor and not hide it.
Thanks Deky. My mother can only control her diabetes via insulin shots now. And it is in a controlled state for the last 6 months or so. Time to start saving up, both money and leaves. Glued to your thread. Bring on more boy!
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Old 26th August 2011, 18:20   #29
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Default Re: When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011

Wow Dhiraj!! People think about doing this once and you went ahead and did this twice. I am sure your travel spirit might lead you to a third one also. Like before, very informative and detailed report.

Keep Traveling & Writing.
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Old 26th August 2011, 18:25   #30
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Default Re: When I Went Walking To Tibet - Kailash Mansarovar Yatra-2011

Wow Deky, the detailed TL of yours is a gem of a travelouge. Wish I could also do it and I really want to do it, especially after seeing the pics and reading the intial posts.
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