Kedarkantha Trek

Posted by Astha Tarwani
February 8, 2017

NOTE: This post has been self-published by the author. Anyone can write on Youth Ki Awaaz.

Some trips take you to a serene place where everything is just perfectly set. One such experience involved a lot of pretty scenic mountains and a lot of snowfall. Earlier this year I witnessed a chance to go for Kedarkantha Trek which takes place in Uttrakhand. When I signed up for this, never did I think that it’s going to be easy. And what fun it is if you do something which you know is a piece of cake.

Vouching for risky and insane stuff when you’re young is the reason why you have bountiful of memories when you’re old. I crave for many such experiences and they turn out to be memorable stories to share.

As for this getaway, I prepared myself for nearly a week. I used to do everything which would make me go all fit and ready to jump in for this experience. Before the trek started, we were briefed about all the repercussions that one could face in an extreme weather and environment. The session involved with telling the symptoms of hypothermia and Acute Mountaineering Sickness (AMS). Symptoms usually involve headache, nausea, trouble in sleeping and also blackening of nails. The oxygen level had to be above 70 to make us keep on going. They also did let us know about whoever faces these symptoms would be made to descend from any point in time. In order to keep us going up, being hydrated had to have its share. It was also suggested not to wear thermals at the time of ascending because it can result into sweating. To be honest, being a beginner in trekking and listening to this session made me go a little scared on the inside on whether I would be able to do the trek or not.

With the same thought in mind, I started the trek the next morning and made sure I was keeping it light, both in baggage and the food sense. We trekked for almost six hours straight from 6400 feet to 9100 feet and then reached up mid evening. The view on the way made me go crazy. As we ascended,  the snow kept widening up on every side. We had started with brown patches of pathways and dirt but as the hours passed on, we had this beautiful view which is still very hard to forget. It was a complete patch of scenery right out of a picture which I witnessed live. As I reached up, a trail of black and white scenery made me go awestruck. Fresh white snow and trees combined made it look like a mini version of heaven.

As I was ascending, water and candies were necessary to make the energy level go up. Without that, one can feel completely drained out. We made our pitstop at Juda ka Talab where the tents were arranged beforehand by the agency I had went through.The lake was completely frozen and one would think tons of times to go even near that. Up there, 3-4 feet of snow was witnessed.

On the first night after reaching at such a height made me go gaga over the whole setting. The stars were brighter and the snow was whiter up there. The experience of sleeping in sleeping bags was amazing too. Being wrapped up in that setting is what one wants. The same night what hit us was the snowstorm which made us clean the tent from inside and outside in order to keep the tent intact and at its place.

At -11 degrees, the night was like sleeping in the ice box. It wasn’t getting any better and freezing minute by minute. But, as the morning commenced, the view was even prettier and brighter. The snowstorm had hit so hard that even one of the washroom tents had gone under the snow. It was submerged completely.

The way from Juda ka Talab to Kedarkantha base camp was from 9100 feet to nearly 11,250 feet, the one which involved windy air and making way in the snow. The snow kept getting more and more as we were going up. Falling in the snow and slipping at most of the steps had become a common thing. But that’s what gave me a bunch of memories.

This trek transpired me to go for more of such experiences which gives memories that are beyond words. Some things in life are only supposed to be felt and not read or listened to. Because only feeling them would make you realise how grand they are to be described in words.

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