My first trekking Experience - 24th Birthday on the hills of Chopta Tungnath - Part 1

in travel •  last year  (edited)

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Chopta - Tungnath is said to be one of the easier treks in India, well, maybe in summers but in January it was nowhere close to easy. For a first time trekker like me, it was a challenging one. Many have called me crazy to have taken a winter trek for the first time.

But I wasn't made for easy!!!!!

So today I thought I will share my crazy still amazing first time trekking experience and relive those moments along with it.
And then the preparations began with regular fitness routines, exercises, dos, and dont on what to pack and how to pack by reading about the experience of others.

I was excited more so as I was going to spend my birthday on the hills. Nervous and full of doubts about whether I will make it to the top, will I enjoy it away from all the comforts or will I bring down my team. What if something happens and I get lost!!! To be honest, I was afraid what if I wasn't strong enough coz sure enough I didn't want to be a burden on the team.
I guess these are common thoughts, and it's OK to feel like that.

One day before the trek, after packing and checking my trekking gears, I finally slept for about an hour or so waiting anxiously for the things that were to unfold. Shweta, my partner in all adventures, and I started from Jaipur to Delhi with no tickets, on my first local train experience and I couldn't have been more fussy. I am terrified of overcrowded places but somehow I survived because something amazing was waiting for me.


From Delhi to Haridwar was another 5 hours journey in the bus and we took our night halt at the Haridwar Jain temple. Next day we were to meet our trek leader in Rishikesh at 8 in the morning and so we left early. It was a small group of 5 people and we were happy thinking that now it would be easy to ask for breaks, decide what to cook or even where to put our tent for the night! Well, it was a hope that didn't last long and little did we know that its the mountains that make the plans and sometimes the trek leaders! Luckily we had amazing trek leaders Archit and Bianca, who not only guided us but kept us involved with many many stories.



After breakfast and exchanging our experiences, fears and what to expect we started our drive to Sari village on the Ukhimath Chopta road which is around 8 hours drive from Rishikesh. The road took us through some of the most beautiful scenic views of Uttarakhand. After dinner in Sari, we walked around the village, wondering why the name Sari. The best we came to was that a ghost in white sari must have been seen around walking this village and so the name. We dared not to ask the local villagers...what if it was true!!!


A woman at top of the tree for getting fodder

Later, we learned how to make out tents and use our sleeping bags, it was one hell of a task to use it for the first time especially for someone like me who sleeps like a starfish on comfy soft beds and suddenly it felt like a coffin box.

“And into the forest I go, To lose my mind and find my soul.”


Feeling strong and after a heavy breakfast the next day we began our climb at around 8 or 8.30 a.m. to Deorital lake. Legend has it that this lake is home to many gods. This wasn't my first experience with snow but camping in the snow was a different experience altogether. As soon as we reached Deorital, Archit asked us to make our tents, but we wanted to run wild, explore the place, dive into the lake. But like sincere students we did what was asked of us and was rewarded with a cup of tea. What more one can ask for, lakeside camp surrounded by snow peaked mountains, beautiful company, no office, no pollution, no crowd, amazingly cold weather and TEA. Oh, let me tell you I am a hardcore tea lover!!!


The lake is surrounded by snow, and mighty Chaukhamba peaks that reflect in the lake.


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Playing Ninja after a delicious lunch was so much fun and we were completely tired.



In the evening we collected woods and dry tree to build a campfire for the night. It was no easy task, but it kept us active and acclimatized us with the altitude while exploring the place. We also had our share of fun slipping down the slopes, throwing snowballs at each other and laughing our hearts out. For Shweta, it was her first time in snow so she was excited like a kid let loose in a toy store.

For me, I was happy and free!😍


“Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in an office or mowing the lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain.”--- Jack Kerouac

I would be posting soon for the next part of my journey....

Hope you liked it!

Love. Swati ❤️

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Those are some really great shots! I'm imagining it's quite a view up there?

It was.. just wait a day or so... I will post the rest with some amazing pictures...It was breathtaking!!

@ayushjalan P.S. just saw your 'about me' ..hehehehe.. professional sleeper...:D I wish i was getting paid for it.. Are you? I heard thr are few people who are getting paid for sleeping ...

It's a dream job of mine lol :P
And yeah, some people do actually get paid to sleep. Usually those who volunteer for sleep-study programmes. Sadly they don't organize these kinda programmes where I live otherwise I would be the first to show up hehe

Gosh this is beautiful. I've never been to India, but I always think I'd rather go to the natural environments than the big cities. We're got a trip planned in a year or two, so I'll keep this one in mind!! Adore your happy smiling face in the last photo! Just gorgeous.

@riverflows Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts :) I would love to recommend few places if you coming to this side of the world. Thr is so many hidden gems, but most travelers prefer the most popular ones... ..Thank you again for your beautiful comment. Mountains always makes me smile :) which part are you from?

I'm from Australia, so south of Melbourne. Absolutely would love recommendations! Stay in touch and I'll ask again when we decide to leave! Mountains are great, we generally stay near the coast as we surf, but not when we travel.

Oooh, I loved this! Great story, great photos! Surely I'll wait for your next journey. Cheers! :D

@gibic Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts :)
I checked your page and you have some amazing work I am already a fan of your videos and posts.. will be following.. Cheers and Much love <3


I just watched your documentary on @derangedvisions' blog ... you did an incredible job. It was very professional.

You've got one more Follower.

BTW, Wes is a great guy. You're lucky to have him as a mentor.

Welcome to Steemit.


I am so glad you liked it.. It was a documentary made for a project and my first time making videos.
thank you for your appreciation and following. :) It made my day!
Wes is definitely great, and he is helping me out in all possible ways, I am indeed very lucky to have him as my mentor. .much love <3

Wow. The photos from your trekking experience are absolutely gorgeous! Looks like all the hard work would be worth it for those views, and that fresh air. Congratulations on completing your first trek. I'm in pretty good shape, but I find trekking mountains to always be some of the hardest work I can put myself through, so good for you girl!

Also, I love this quote:

“And into the forest I go, To lose my mind and find my soul.”

It is so true. We must often lose ourselves, in order to truly find and begin to know ourselves. Glad you had a nice experience. Thanks for sharing.

@rainbowrachel you are an amazing person, I checked your page, and what a beautiful home you have, so much vibrancy, positivity, I could already feel it here and the same energy coming from you..
I really love how you express.. Thank you for all your appreciation. Much love and power <3

Ohh one more thing, the photos and landscapes are awesome, specially mighty Chaukhamba peak. I like the way you write, It felt like that I am not reading travelouge instead of that It felt like experience and feelings. Thanks for posting. People should know the beauty of Indian Himalayas over here.

Great post Swati!
You have made a very impressive enter into the steemit world :)
You can edit your tags and replace one with the #travelfeed (I recommend it). It is a pity for such a wonderful post not to be noticed. Looking forward for the second part!
A, and welcome :)

thank you so much @fotostef I appreciate with all my heart for your feedback and kind words. please keep encouraging and guiding. :) and I have replaced my tag. Thank you again .
Much love and power

Congratulations! Your high quality travel content caught our attention and earned you a reward, in form of an upvote and resteem. Your work really stands out. Your article now has a chance to get curated and featured under the appropriate daily topic of our Travelfeed blog. Thank you for using #travelfeed

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Such beautiful photos! Thank you for sharing the sights, I especially love the third picture!

@amymya Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts.. i love that picture, beautiful rice paddies, it always bring smile on my face :) .Much love and power my friend

Great report Swati, the landscape looks amazing. Make sure to use the tag "travelfeed" next time you post an awesome travel post like this, I am sure the curators will love it and reward it accordingly ;)

thank you @phortun .. this is what I love about this community, thr are feedbacks and so much positivity.. I would surely use the tag you suggested next time. please keep reading , i will be posting about my remaining journey in a day or so.

@itravelarts first treking is always challenging one.. but hats off to you for making it possible.

Thank you :) It has been some years that i started trekking. But my first experience was the most memorable, so thought of sharing that first!!

What an amazing place !!!
I should try something this unique to celebrate my next birthday !!! :-)

I love the idea of being with nature on my special day.. :) i would wait for your story @lastravage and you know what Indian Himalayan region is one place you wouldn't regret .. <3 Much love

I love nature, too !!! Thank you for inspiring me !!!

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Congratulations for completing your first trek. I have been visited Tungnath in winters and like it was unforgettable moment. I remember about my first trek which was up to Kedarnath temple, that time I took 14 hours to cover 14 kms, but that was fun. Waiting for next part.

thank you @himalayanwomb .. this was my first trek some 7 years back, since then I have been trekking, its an addiction. I wanted to write about it before any other blog on travel since it was the most amazing and memorable trek for me..Tungnath in winter is just gorgeous and wish to go to Kedarnath temple some day. Thank you for your kind words (below) also resteeming! :)
Much Love and power

And you come up with best destination and experience for first time. Looks like someone having fun getting addicted with mountains. I hope this hangover never leave you.

I hope never!! :)

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thank you @arcange

What a lovely blog about your first trekking experience! And the photo's are really nice. I love your writing style. You let me feel as if I actually joined in ... Awesome job! Going to follow you. And very curious for your next travels!

Hi @hetty-rowan Thank you so much for reading my blog and for your appreciation. This was my most memorable trek, and the place was really beautiful! I have posted my second part of this trek, you can check it out

Much love and a big hug <3

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