Trekking is my perfect idea of romancing with the mountains. The solitude, the serene valleys, gushing river streams, the gradual ascend, the depleting oxygen at every few steps…The whirlpool of these natural extravaganzas leaves my mind and soul with an everlasting and cascading effect.
A trek has the ability to alter your thought process. The hardships and the surprise elements that one encounters on the expeditions, makes one experience life up close, changing him or her as a person for the rest of their lives..THIS IS HOW….
1. OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE
During my trek to Roopkund, I started feeling whether the word ‘luxury’ really exists? The sleeping bag was comfortable but the entire night went by twisting and turning. This made the next day look even more monstrous. The ascend from 10,000ft to 12,000ft became even more demanding due to the extreme dizziness. At that height, forget a bucket of hot water, one is not even expected to take a bath for the entire duration of the trek (for obvious reasons)!!!
These sorts of experiences are common in high altitude treks. They do take a toll on you, both physically and mentally. But at the end of the day, it’s only you who comes out triumphant. The feeling of “If I can withstand this, I can withstand anything” would linger on with you for the rest of your life, giving you the required confidence to withstand the various uncertainties and challenges that life would throw at you.
2. PLAYGROUND TO STRETCH YOURSELF
Let me straight come to the point. Trekking is probably the best medium to test your endurance and resilience. It’s not as simple as having a stroll on a hill station’s Mall road. The gradual dip in the oxygen level is perhaps the primary reason for people to stay away from high altitude treks. And add to it, the long strenuous daily walks. This combination makes it seem to be an audacious attempt to many.
But here lies its true beauty. The sense of accomplishment one garners through reaching a summit is simply unmatched. That feeling when I finally came face to face with the Roopkund lake, at a height of close to 15,700ft, after a struggle of 5 days, will always keep boosting my morale in the times to come.
3. OPPORTUNITY TO INTROSPECT
Where is my life heading?
Am I going the right way?
Am I really happy with my current job?
Am I really content from within?
There are certain questions that keep on cropping up inside us in our daily lives. But we seem to be so tied up in our daily routine, that finding the answers seems improbable.
I strongly believe that a trek provides us with that required space to reboot our thought process in the midst of the resounding beauty of nature. It’s a physically demanding work for sure, but at the same time, it soothes you from inside and provides you with a sense of peace and tranquility. The heavenly surroundings that you encounter on a trek, provide you with an ample opportunity for ‘self realization’. You start finding answers to questions that were juggling up inside you and were holding you back.
Sometimes, nature, rather than humans, shows you the way forward…
4. NATURE AT ITS VERY BEST
The spell bounding hidden beauty of the Himalayas, that I have encountered on my various treks, has gradually made these mountains an indispensable part of my life. The mighty Ganga coming out of the Gaumukh glacier, the twin meadows (Ali and Bedni bugyal) on the Roopkund trek, the hidden and sleepy villages that could not be even spotted on state maps; the plethora of such benign sightings and the mesmerizing experiences have many a times left me speechless and awe struck.
One reaps fruits only through hardships. The saying is perfectly suited in the case of trekking. One definitely goes through various labors and toils, but the everlasting experiences that are awaiting on the other side, are surely worth it.
Go deeper in the mountains to witness them in their full glory….ASK ME!!!
5. BREAKS INNER SHACKLES
Trekking is a group activity. You meet and interact with ‘like minded people’ and start looking at life with an entirely different perspective. I have read about numerous people returning from a trek with a new business idea or with a burning desire to go all out to chase their passion, instead of getting tied up in that daily 9-5pm routine. You won’t believe how quickly strangers become your companions for the next few days. Everybody assists each other in seeing off the various hardships and in getting closer to the single aim, i.e. the trek summit.
I still remember a lady from some other group making me a bottle of ‘Electral powder’ , when I was in a state of acute weakness at a place called Bhagwabasa, at a height of close to 14,000ft.