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Facing the Samsara: Indian Women Climbing High

Nutan Shinde profiles three women pushing boundaries in Indian climbing and competing on the world circuit. You might wonder where women feature in the Indian climbing community. In recent years, a major milestone in Indian climbing was passed as multiple women attained the significant grade of 8a. In 2018, Siddhi Manerikar was the first Indian woman to climb 8a with her ascent of Samsara in Badami. In January 2020, Prateeksha Arun also climbed the line, followed by Gowri Varanashi in December.

Trekking in India - a Beginner's Introduction

Which is the first country that first comes to mind when you mention the Himalayas? I bet it's Nepal, and perhaps more specifically Everest Base Camp. Nepal and perhaps Pakistan are considered the flag-bearers of Himalayan hikes due to their eight thousand metre peaks. But don't let the grandeur of altitude overshadow other Himalayan nations, most especially India. While the tallest has its appeal, there's real adventure to be found among the (slightly) lesser elevations. India is a stunningly diverse country to hike in.

Rock Climbing Festivals in Asia and Beyond

Climbing is a celebration. A celebration of freedom of movement, crafts and humanity where hoards of people come together with their exceptional skill set and cultural relevance making every climb a pious ritual. Climbing Festival is a way for climbers to spread that enthusiasm and expand the community. When tonnes of adventure seekers gather with only one intention of climbing it makes the stagnant rocks come to life. The barren grasslands or forests suddenly get a human touch. Remote lands then become accessible hence starts the process of plotting an undiscovered site on the world map. Climbing festivals give us a chance to be a tiny part of the mega exploration.

Pandemic Helps Ladakh’s Snow Leopards

In the last few years, Ladakh has been in the news for all the wrong reasons — increased plastic waste, pollution, water shortages and especially overcrowded tourist sites. The number of tourists, in particular, who come to view the elusive snow leopard has increased from a handful to thousands. The serene Leh is being loved to death. So while acknowledging the economic hurt that so many people have suffered, Covid-19 came as an environmental ray of hope. The snow leopards seem to be flourishing. Other resources are at least enjoying a respite.

Why Pangarchulla Peak trek is not suggested for Monsoon & Winters?

Pangarchulla Peak has become a dream summit for many of us. The extreme cold of winters and the added challenges of knee-deep snow is what we strive for. Pangarchulla is known for its notorious knife ridge which is difficult even in summers. One can only imagine how strainful it would be in the cold season. Owing to the curiosity of strength and thrill Pangarchulla is the most queried trek. Despite that, we don’t run a single batch to the stunning mountain. There is no big mystery behind it. So let’s find out why Pangarchulla is not good for winters.

The best climbing destinations in India

Do you remember watching Chris Sharma cruise through intricate lines in the sweltering weather, travelling in auto-rickshaws, meandering around the stone-carved temples? “Pilgrimage” movie in 2009 with Chris and his two friends, was a breakthrough for India as a climbing nation in Asia. The most populated nation suddenly became every climber’s dreamland. The natural outcome of megadiverse geography and having the biggest democracy is manifold rock climbing opportunities. East, west, north or south wherever you go, you will discover tonnes of crags for bouldering, sport routes, big-wall climbing, trad climbing and ice climbing.

Mocked because I travel without my husband

My Mom always told me, "Once you get married you can travel as much as you can. People won't judge after you have a husband." Being married for 2 years and travelling, I don't feel judged any less. I am a proud adventure traveller and writer working for Trek the Himalayas who pay me to trek and depict the mountains. With this dream job, I am in the Himalayas every 2 months. I know I am lucky. I wonder is my being fortunate making other people hate me? A working woman is common these days. But a Traveling Working woman is unheard of even in 2020. This is my story and every other girl's journey who doesn't fit in society's standards.

MOUNTAINEERING ARTICLES

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Opinion | Traffic jam on Everest is an NP problem

After the Everest disaster in 1996, the 2019 season of climbing Everest has received a lot of criticism. 1996 was the glimpse of the beginning of a commercial era and today is the comeuppance of it. The picture revealed by Nirmal Puja ( Nims Dai) also revealed the harsh reality of climbing Everest. It has led to a sudden wave of enlightenment amongst the entire world. So, is there is a solution to the traffic jam on Everest?

Sergi Mingote aims to complete 6 Eight-thousanders in a year

Sergi Mingote (48) is here with a mountaineering challenge to summit 6 of the 14 Eight-thousander in a year. The growth of technological aid in mountaineering has led to innovative records by aspirational mountaineers. Each year mountaineers come with a daring challenge that blows everybody's mind. This year along with some mind-blowing projects of Spring 2019, Sergi Mingote is self-motivated to reach the zenith of climbing.

TREK GUIDE/HOW-TO ARTICLES

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Can you choose between the two lake treks of the Kashmir Valley?

Not only do we trekkers but every traveller around the world agrees that Kashmir is the heaven on Earth. And who knows it might be prettier than Heaven! Green is the prime colour of happiness. Kashmir valley showcases the refreshing green everywhere. Peacefulness is amplified to its zenith by the glittering sunshine on the vibrant flowers rocking back and forth by the exhilarating cold breeze. One would wonder how all of this magically entwines with the blissful Himalayas. In short, Kashmir is...

The best climbing destinations in India

Do you remember watching Chris Sharma cruise through intricate lines in the sweltering weather, travelling in auto-rickshaws, meandering around the stone-carved temples? “Pilgrimage” movie in 2009 with Chris and his two friends, was a breakthrough for India as a climbing nation in Asia. The most populated nation suddenly became every climber’s dreamland. The natural outcome of megadiverse geography and having the biggest democracy is manifold rock climbing opportunities. East, west, north or south wherever you go, you will discover tonnes of crags for bouldering, sport routes, big-wall climbing, trad climbing and ice climbing.

Period Hygiene | Yes, we bleed and we trek!

In this age, all the women are becoming more aware. Not only that the men are also raising their hands to support women. How can we keep our ladies derived from the thrill of the Himalayas? With all the mood swings, stomach cramps, weakness, headache, and lots of blood, we always fear that these scary dates will ruin our excursion. Cheer up ladies; here are answers to all your questions about trekking in periods.

Insight into better eyesight while trekking (Lens or Specs or LASIK)

Gone are those days when Spectacles symbolized experience. Now, spectacles have become a style statement. But, when it comes to trekking, spectacles may not be that tempting. Blurring vision is the most common issue of the youth. Therefore, technology has come up with various solutions also. With many options available, it is confusing to choose one. To use Contact lenses, Spectacles or LASIK.

Do’s and Don’t’s for Winter treks

Winter in the Himalayas brings diamond ice covering on the beautiful mountains. Hiking on these mountains is living in the present while creating your footprints, that mark your presence in the gone moment. Though these footprints are mortal, the sensation of the snow on our feet remains forever with us. The breeze burns our nose, leaves our body to shivering, the trail shines hard on the eyes, yet all this is negligible in front of the overwhelming beauty of the winter world.

Getting fit in less than month for trek

Just like the mountains, our life is unpredictable too. Sometimes we plan and it never turns out well. Sometimes we don’t plan and it becomes the momentous times of life. We always suggest trekkers booking a trek at least 3-4 months prior to the trek date to avail cheap travel cost and to prepare for the trek. However hard we try, not always it is possible to register for a trek 3-6 months in advance. We have observed that most of the trekkers make random plans a month before, so how to prepare physically in less than a month?

HIKING/BACKPACKING ARTICLES

Opinion | The age of Roopkund trek is over. So what?

Everything on Earth has its own share of success and significance that never remains forever. Roopkund trek too had its own era of popularity. It was once every adventure seekers dream. A super-hit and blockbuster trek. It has now become like a forgotten film star. The memories of its splendidness, curiosity of the mystery lake have begun to fade. Trekkers have deviated to different treks and trekking agencies are focusing on marketing other treks. The age of Roopkund trek is over...

The reason why most people want to quit their jobs and travel to the mountains

Doesn’t it sound bizarre when you hear that your colleague quits a job just to roam in the mountains? It is crazy, how can one leave luxurious, quintessential city life to live an uncertain raw life in the mountains. According to the Ministry of Tourism, Adventure Tourism industry has grown tremendously in the last decade. Trekking is the most popular amongst adventure sports. Along with this, another important survey result is that the majority of the trekking community is formed by high...

Trekking with the mountain ladies: Bachendri Pal and Premlata Agarwal

While I was still thinking of a theme for Women’s Day article, I got a call from Rakesh (TTH Co-founder). Excitedly he said, “Nutan, we have good news. Bachendri Pal will be trekking with us and we want you to accompany our other female trek leaders. Tata Steel Adventure Foundation have organized Nag Tibba trek for their female staff on Women’s Day. Bachendri Pal and Premlata Agarwal will be leading this event for them…” While he was still talking, my mind just hung there. I was going to meet...

I am a Trekker and not a Tourist

Hello folks! My name is Nutan, I am a trekker and not a tourist. What a wonderful way to greet your own self, I just love it. No, I am not a Shah Rukh fan, I am just a proud trekker. Although being a minority amongst tons of travellers, we trekkers have managed to create our own mark. We want to see the world or to be precise we want to see every mountain in the world. We arrive at adventures in style, we walk in the mountains in swag, we are different. Here is how we are different from Tourists.

A stairway to inner peace: Kalavantini Durg trek

Eyes filled with fear, care, anger and tears were looking at me. “Listen to me, Dad is not happy, girls going out is not safe, don’t you read newspapers about all those incidents? Are there any girls with you?“. “Please Mom, I won’t stop this time now. I have been eagerly waiting for this day, I am going and that is final”, my words were determined. “Why do you have to go?”. I had no answer to this question. I preferred staying quiet. “Can’t you stay here and help me, spend time with family…?”...

Misconceptions of Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani

Visual memory is the long-lasting memory they say. These memories also have a great effect on our mind. That is why movies are the biggest source of entertainment and inspiration. Indian movies are going through a great deal of revolution with new concepts, true stories, etc. Yet is always influencing the audience in a somewhat bad manner. Hampta Pass trek is the best example where one can find both its good and bad effects. The good impact being Hampta Pass is one of the most popular treks. And...

HIKING WITH FAMILY GUIDES

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Six years old conquering Dayara Bugyal trek

“We as parents limit our kids by asking questions whether they can do it or not. In fact, we must put them in the situation and see how they react. Kids today are smart, resilient. They can adjust to anything,” says Subhadra Patil who recently completed Dayara Bugyal trek with her 6-year-old son Ayan. Being outdoor lovers Ayan’s parents always took out time for a trek or an outdoor trip. Ayan saw his parents going away for a trek when he was 4 years old. Just like any other kid, he did not like...

Here is how a 6-year-old trekked with us

Kids are a surprise package and with their every gesture they keep us stunned. We were also amazed by Shanaya Saxena, a 6-year-old, who completed Kareri Lake trek with us on 25th June. With only 6 years of life experience, she has given us important life lessons. She was accompanied by her father, Deepankar Saxena. “I love trekking. I have done a few Himalayan treks. Whenever I would show my trek pictures, Shanaya would always talk about coming along with me. I could see her desire. She was...

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