Going for trekking in the mountains sounds peaceful and quiet, but doing it from McLeod Ganj to Triund on a long weekend wasn’t. We had traffic congestion up there! Too many people had the same idea as we had and many of them carried their music with them.

But we still managed to enjoy it.

The climb was tough with a backpack filled and laden with two tents, clothes for cold weather (which we used), clothes for wet weather (which we didn’t, luckily), a sleeping bag, a light for the tent, 7 passports (which we used), toiletries (which we didn’t!), etc… But tough is what I like.

So I can’t complain.

The company going up was my three children. My 14-year-old runner daughter happily carried a heavy bag on very little fuel. By 17-year-old was a bit sick as we started and became more so as we continued. But she kept on going, be it with an air of doom and gloom about her. My 7-year-old son high-fived people, kept up a running commentary at top-volume and generally had a ball as long as he could be the leader. When that did not happen, he became despondent, slumped, and plodded along. For him, it is all in the mind.

The clouds surging up the mountains was a spectacle to behold. The mountains were mostly hidden from view, but it was cool after the heat of the plains and we enjoyed it.

At the top, there were what seemed like hundreds of tents. Fellow-hikers competed for space to pitch their tents, competed for a cup of tea or a plate of boiled rice. We wondered if we could go up a bit more, but my sick daughter would not, could not.

We found the rest of our company or rather they found us. Five brave colleagues pitched their tents next to ours and we proceeded to fight for our rice or omelets. We saw trouble brewing as the occupants of one big tent right next to ours seemed to have an excess of booze and wanted to involve everyone else in their party. They were loud and their singing diminished in quality but increased in volume as the night progressed.

We pitched our tents on a slight slope. Between the noise and slipping slowly downhill in my sleeping bag throughout the night, it was a miracle that I got any sleep. Five of us were up at five and decided to go further up to the snow line cafe. This was the best part of the weekend for me. There were still some clouds, but it was open enough to see some awesome views. (Although there wasn’t any snow at the snow line) I will let the pictures speak for themselves.

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Coming down my son dictated the pace. At first, everyone had to wait for him since he believed that he was struggling. Then somehow he got it in his mind that he can go really fast and so he did. The rest of us had a hard time to keep up.

So let’s fast forward. We ate pizza, it rained finally, we found the car with a flat tire, changed it, waited for the one-way to turn our way, drove and drove and drove and reached Chandigarh ten minutes past midnight.

On our way down, Gagan started planning the next one. Maybe in October…

This concludes my go-slow what running is concerned. It is time to perk up again and start RUNNING.

Keep doing it

Stephan

 

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