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Summiters Blog (42)

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Hiking up the hills and Exploring the thick Rainforest is something a Favourite pastime of every Nature lover, Adventure seeker, Photographer or a Naturalist. It is true that the beautiful scenic beauty of Western Ghats , flora and fauna mesmerizes everyone. Ghats are home to innumerable species of pezzy leeches, mammals, creepy crawly insects, butterflies and reptiles – Vipers/Snakes . One should be aware or basic idea of recognizing these creatures while you encounter them by its Color, Shape and Size .Identifying them, without hurting them and in the mean while be safe.! Snakes including Vipers are deadliest of creatures found in Jungles. It is necessary for those who are passionate about Hiking to have first hand information in Identifying these creatures , Habitat , First Aid, Conservation, Bite and How to overcome it.

Power of Panja

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We had bypassed Harkidoon valley , Morinda Taal and were in the midst of Vast Borasu valley and heading towards Ratha - do campsite during our trek to Borasu pass 5320m in Govind national park in Gharwal region of Himalayas. A group of Villagers from Puoni and Osla villages including women folk armed with picks were busy in collecting some stuff in the bushes. The valley was lush green in riot of colours with flowers Geranium, Inulas, Impatiens, Bistorta and Erigerons in full bloom. Inquisitive to know I hiked up and found one of the folk stuffing a root of a colorful plant whitish in colour resembling ginger into his pocket.Upon inquiry he said it is called as Panja in local dialect and told that it is used in treating injuries.
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 Normally in things to carry items for a any trek or expedition will have a sunscreen. But not many know what is a sunscreen and how to use it. Mr. Vishwanath with his experience in high altitude discloses the necessity to carry it and using it. First of all. It is not a cream that can be applied easily anytime and start. No..! Yes.Sure that will protect you from the sun exposure...for a little while. But to properly and effectively wear sunscreen and get its maximum benefits, you should follow these sunscreen tips.    About Sunscreens and Altitude There is no better way to prevent sunburn at high altitude than to cover up exposed parts with clothing. There is no suggestion from clinical experience that malignant melanomas are seen commonly in high altitude climbers than in the general population. Obviously, the more benign skin cancers are seen in more commonly…
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Common man thinks that cold in winter is unbearable. Even a fierce winter is bearable if you are well prepared. Clothing is the winter camper’s most important gear consideration. Your comfort, enjoyment, and fundamental safety all depend on your clothing “system”. A multi-layer system that is flexible and used in combinations that allows you to adapt efficiently to many environmental situations. For a temperature that goes down to -10°C or lower, the suggestion is to be in 5 – 6 layers. As the mercury level rises subsequently one can remove outer layers. But never strip off to less than 4 layers. A six layer combination is normally suggested clothing for -15°C temperature. Winter is the coldest season of the year in Himalayan regions , between autumn and spring. Those who like to do a winter trek are normally worried about how to prepare for the extreme cold conditions and how…
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As I take a step, the next prayer follows. I am grabbing onto loose pebbles, trying to climb almost flat face on a mountain pass. There is not much distance left to the top. I am panting for breath and my heart is beating, and added to it the drop below is 2000 ft. Charang Ghati pass at 17,600 ft, the mountain pass in the Kinnaur Kailash range, is in Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh.  view from kalpa  It has been four days since we left Lambar, the last motorable road at 9850 ft. We have crossed the alpine meadows, walked down to the valleys, crossed several streams seen waterfalls and snow-clad mountains all just a few hundred feet away.It is monsoon and while everything around seems pretty, walking in the rain is not advisable. The bugyals (alpine meadows) are blanketed with wild flower creating a kaleidoscope of colours. Clouds…
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 The Chirping sound of the birds intensified as the darkness befell. Miles and miles of undulating forest covered with peaks, seemed guarding the hillock in the diminishing light. The feeble wind blowing tickled us and I soon felt chill into the bones. After a arduous day’s hike in the dense forest we were standing on a cliff adjoining the hillock of Vellarimala.    Vellarimala forms a part of a high hill range of what is otherwise known as Camel's Hump Mountains, a part of the Western Ghats. Most of the hill range falls in the Meppady Forest Range of South Wayanad Division with some parts falling Thamarassery Range of Kozhikode Division. Vellarimala peak is at an altitude of 2050 meters while the highest peak of this range would be Vavulmala standing tall at 2330 meters.      The forests here grow till great heights of 2000 meters and above deep…
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  We had just arrived at the eerie village of Bhyundar (2600 msl) after a weeklong trek in the picturesque flower valley and hemkund sahib in uttarakhand on a September evening. The hamlet was in news after the last year’s disaster which had caused much havoc in the region. I and a group of five intrepid trekkers were inquisitive & looking forward to an yet another adventurous trek to Kagbushandi taal. A less trodden trail in the region.      The central Himalayan belt is known for exotic high altitude lakes. Some less known are tucked away in remote corners thus making it necessary for one to traverse great distances just to get a glimpse.      We were cautioned by the locals about the difficult terrain and the impending danger to be overcome during the trail. We would have to ford the raging streams, broken glaciers, cross innumerable boulders…
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On A Divine Trail to Agasthya Mala Agasthya Mala Peak, also called the Agastyarkoodam is 1868 metres tall. Many rivers including Kararnana, Neyyar and Thamixabharani originate from the peak. Agasthya Mala Peak is also famous for its abundant medicinal plants. R Viswanath takes you to the peak for a trekking experience...AIthough the yatra season had begun and the train was packed to the core, I somehow managed to reach Thvandxum in the wee hours of that chilly morning. After munching a few appame for breakfast I headed straight away to a pLace caUcd Kottur and aftct a bumpy jeep ride reached a small sleepy hamlet of Kanni tribe settlement called Podium in the afternoon. It is cozily tucked away inside the Peppara wildlife sanctuary about 70 kn from the capital city. Rofreshing under a perennial waterfall nearby. I reclined over a rock overlooking the hill. The monolithic giant rock face…
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They say Himalayas are Heaven on Earth. To a reader that could merely be a statement. To a mountaineer, it is a moment that defines them: our trekking adventure at Roopkund will remain enshrined in our memories forever, the beauty of the Himalayas captured without a fleeting thought. Day - 0Having reached Lohajung after a long, grueling drive on a muddy road, the journey soothed only by view of beautiful pine trees that hugged the landscape, we were briefed about our trekking schedule and rules to be followed by our trekking organizers. They had promptly organized for both the accommodation and food on our arrival day. The rooms provided were really spacious and cozy. The food was delicious and it remained so throughout the trip. To ease our pain, the trekking organizers were gracious enough to arrange for a mule and trekking poles, both of which were had not explicitly…
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As I alight from the Air India flight in Bagdogra airport near Siliguri in Sikkim, I look up. What I see is not pleasing.There are thick grey clouds hovering in the sky. On this October day when I was hoping that there would be no precipitation in the air, I realize that Cyclone Phailin has changed the rules of the game. The fate of our trek rested in the lap of nature’s whims and fancies.The Goecha La trek is one of the most famous treks in the Indian Himalayas. The intimidating route starts from Yuksom in South Sikkim and goes up 48 kms north, along the valley of the Prek river, to the windy Goecha pass at an altitude of 16,200 feet. From here, one can almost touch Kanchenjunga, the third highest mountain in the world.Day 1 – Yuksom to Sachen Civilised us. I am the one wearing the navy…
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