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Old 25th April 2016, 21:21   #31
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Default Re: Nandikund Trek: Quest through the Garhwal Himalayas

Nandikund to Manpai Bugyal

54. The next day we decided to press on and by seven thirty in the morning, Umeid and me were on the way while the rest of the team would follow. We made good progress and the first target was to ascent Ghia Vinayak Pass. The pass was marked by the egress from the cavity that Nandikund lay in and we moved in that direction .The route was extremely brutal and treacherous and involved walking or rather I would say hopping over huge boulders and to do this without a guide is definitely not even to be thought of , it is so easy to get lost out here and wander off into the various trails that lead into the surrounding mountains and there is no coming back from them .We would have covered a distance of 2.5 km uphill till we reached elevation 4712 mts which was at the pass and from here one could see the entire Himalayan Range including Nanda Devi , Nanda Ghunti , trishul and other glittering peaks

55. We waited for the rest of the team and then after offering prayers we descended the pass and I looked back once towards the lake which was not visible anymore and with a sense of sadness turned my back towards it and moved ahead as I pass through the region of the high mountains towards the forest that awaited us.

56. The descent from Ghia Vinayak was also treacherous and totally boulder ridden as I picked my way slowly and we reach Vaitrani covering a distance of around 2.0 km which marked the base of the descent. Elevation recorded was 4335 mts. From here the walking was faster as we were crossing rolling hills, the elevation dropped sharply and soon we reached Barma and then Kiel which was 2.0 km ahead. Elevation recorded was 3713 mts. The effects of the 2013 disaster were visible here too as there were huge cracks and fissures that had opened up where earlier there was nothing.

57. The next way point was Achrikona , which had a small shrine dedicated to the forest goddess , this shrine lay on the mountain slope near to the summit at an elevation of 3900 mts and was around 2.5 km ahead of Kiel . We rested for a while and it was early evening but decided to press on and reach Manpai Bugyal where we would stop for the day. This lay on the other side of the mountain, a series of meadows and at an elevation of 3670 mts and around three kms ahead.

58. Soon after around an hour and half we reached Manpai Bugyal and found a good camping site next to flowing water and made camp for the night. The mood in the camp was very jubilant as it marked the near completion of a successful trek. I was grateful to nature and circumstances that had allowed me to see places and vistas that I a year ago had not even heard about but now had seen and lived through them.

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Old 27th April 2016, 20:06   #32
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Default Re: Nandikund Trek: Quest through the Garhwal Himalayas

Manpai Bugyal to BansiNarayan .

59. From Manpai bugyal one needs to proceed downhill to the base of the valley ,cross the river and then climb up again to cross the mountain range up ahead as one moves to Bansinarayan .So we started the trek towards Ghad bhitri which was the first way point at the foot of the mountain near to the river , as we descended we reached the tree line and then we moved further downwards reaching the river and crossing the same on a log bridge built every season , and then the uphill climb began again . The next way point was Khandwari ghad which was round three kms uphill and soon we were above the tree line once again .

60. Thereafter we took some rest and then proceeded towards Bansinarayan , which involved descending again and coming back into the tree line . This was bear country and I was moving as fast as possible, the last thing I wanted was to come face to face with the Himalayan Black Bear; after around three kms we reached Bansi Narayan temple and our camp site for the day at an elevation of 3546 mts. From here one can proceed towards Urugham village or can take the alternate route to Dumak village and further ahead to Rudranath ji .

61. The villagers of Dumak and further ahead are actively engaged in collecting various medicinal herbs that are sold to the pharmaceutical companies that manufacture medicines and is one of the main source of livelihood out here. The afternoon it started snowing again and the winter call of nature was everywhere. Winter was coming and it was coming fast , I was glad that I had made out just in time for getting caught in the region from where I had just come was really a daunting thought .

62. From Bansinarayan temple one can see the entire great Himalayan Range including Nanda Devi, Nanda Ghunti , Dronagiri , Trisul and various other peaks that I am not aware of they are lined up one after the other and it is a sight to see .
63. The entire evening I spent clicking them as I got a break in the weather and as night approached it started to snow once again, hence after an early dinner I hit the sleeping bag.

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Old 27th April 2016, 20:33   #33
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Thumbs up Re: Nandikund Trek: Quest through the Garhwal Himalayas

These are great pictures Sumit, coupled with lovely narration! I can only envy you and miss the mountains while I bake in the heat of North India The landscape shots are simply out of this world. Surreal is how I'd describe them!

Once again - great travelogue !

Cheers!


(PS :What photography gear, if you don't mind me asking?)
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Old 27th April 2016, 22:08   #34
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Default Re: Nandikund Trek: Quest through the Garhwal Himalayas

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ironhide View Post
These are great pictures Sumit, coupled with lovely narration! I can only envy you and miss the mountains while I bake in the heat of North India The landscape shots are simply out of this world. Surreal is how I'd describe them!

Once again - great travelogue !

Cheers!


(PS :What photography gear, if you don't mind me asking?)
hiii

thx for the warm words , i would be covering abt the gear at the end of the TL , should not be long now

regards
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Old 29th April 2016, 08:01   #35
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Default Re: Nandikund Trek: Quest through the Garhwal Himalayas

BansiNarayan to Urugam to Joshimath

64. Today the was last day of the trek, as we would descend and reach Urugam Village from where we would take a local transport to Joshimath. I woke up by 530 am and witnessed a splendid sunrise and spent the next hour clicking pics, the first rays of the oncoming sun directly falls into the inner sanctum of Bansinarayan temple and is a wondrous sight to see.

65. By eight we were on the move and the descent is quite rapid and brutal as the mountain soil is soft and the decent steep hence it takes a toll on the knees. By eleven we were at Urugam village, from where Umeid and myself went to visit Kalpeswar Ji which is one of the five Paanch Kedars and around 3 kms walking distance.

66. By late afternoon after a sumptuous lunch we booked a jeep which deposited us in Joshimath by evening. Dinner was done in a small dhaba where I had eaten on my previous visit hence we went to the same place. The team was quite relaxed and they went for shopping with the hard earned money of the trek. I wandered on the streets of Joshimath suddenly surrounded by crowds of people and vehicular taxis and the pending messages and notifications on the mobile, something was definitely amiss. The mountains were calling me back .

67. The quest was finally over and I had done my first major and serious trek of my life and that too I had chosen one of the more challenging ones, but then as said by my head porter, it had nothing to do with me .. I was called by the Himalaya and because the call had come ... I was able to do it ... it was as simple as that. I for one believe what he said and I wait for my next call to once again go back into the land where Gods chose to stay.

68. Few lines came to me as I sat in the evening looking at the sun going down and the lights in the valley lighting up it said, The mountain does not care whether we are here or not, it does not compete with us and is not burdened with hopes and dreams. Everything it means to us is what we bring to it ... it is only what the mountain reveals to us that has any lasting value.



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The Team standing proud
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Old 30th April 2016, 07:02   #36
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Default Re: Nandikund Trek: Quest through the Garhwal Himalayas

Conclusion

Hope the readers were able to relate to this quest and could form a picture of what I was trying to convey, I sincerely will try to document further treks that as and when I undertake. Please find attached the day schedule and as many have asked the gear used , a brief summary of the same is also written down .

DAY 1 : Raasi to Nanu: 11 kms /08 hrs

DAY II : Nanu to Budhamadhmaheswar:8 km /07 hrs

DAY III : Budhamadhmaheswar to Dholakhetrapal : 07 km/05 hr

DAY IV: Dholakhetrapal to Launtri Khark : 05 km/06 hrs

DAY V : Launtri khark to Sujal Sarovaar and back : 12 km /8 hrs

DAY VI : Launtri khark to Pandavsera : 08 km/7 hrs

DAY VII : Pandavsra to Nandikund : 06 km/05 hrs

DAY VIII : Nandikund to Manpai Bugyal : 10 km /06 hrs

DAY IX : Manpai bugyal to Bansinarayan : 08 km /06 hrs

DAY X : Bansinarayan to Urugam : 11 km / 05 hrs


Gear Used.

Jacket Middle Layer from RAB

Base Layer ( two piece ) from RAB

Gloves ( woolen ) from Decathalon

Socks trekking from Decathalon

Shoes Forclaz 500

Walking Stick

UV Snow Glasses from Decathalon

Backpack Symbium series from Decathalon 70 litre

Monkey Cap

Sleeping Bag from RAB

Raincoat

Additionally, carried

Jacket upper layer from RAB

Thermal inner

Gloves outer from RAB

Snow trousers outer

T20 CS torch from Sunwayman

Photographic Gear

Twin camera carrier system from Cotton Carrier

S&F series harness from Lowepro

S&F series belt from Lowepro

Additonal pouches on the belt from Lowepro

Camera bag S& F series from Lowepro

Camera 5D MK III & 70D

Lenses 100-400 with 1.4 Extender , 11-24 MM , 24-70 MM, 100 MM

Filters , batteries , cleaning gear, timer

Tripod from Manfrotto heavy duty & Joby tripod

Go pro series 4 silver with accessories

Battery bank
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Old 30th April 2016, 09:21   #37
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this is simply surreal and stunning!
thanks for sharing!
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