Hampta Pass Trek: Lush green valleys, a snow-covered pass and the bleak cold deserts of Lahaul

Every summer, I make it a point to plan a trek to the Himalayas. And it is not different this time. Looking forward to lots of adventure and loads of memories

Pictures by: Sreelakshmi Thirumoorthy, Trek Co-ordinator, Indiahikes

While in Kolkata it is not very hot but extremely humid and really uncomfortable, in Delhi where I will be reaching on Friday, temperatures will be in the mid 40s. The point of saying all this is that from Saturday I start my Hampta Pass trek and for the next few days will be treated to some of the most beautiful sights in the Himalayas, plus of course, much cooler temperatures.

I have planned the trek with Indiahikes, my second trek with them. The Hampta Pass trek is one that you cannot miss simply because it is a trek which is unique in many aspects. The trek starts from the lush green valley of Kullu and ends in the wind-swept cold deserts of Lahaul. The highest point one reaches is at 14,035 ft.

The starting point of a trek is Jobra, where one reaches after a drive from Manali through winding hilly roads and hairpin bends. I will not go into describing the route as I will in a better position to do so after I am back from the trek but will leave you with some pictures taken by Sreelakshmi, our trek- co-coordinator from her trek in August 2014. All of these pictures look like Windows wallpapers and every time I look at them, I cannot wait to be a part of these beautiful surroundings myself. A word of thanks to her as she has been guiding us constantly on mail, giving us useful advice, telling us the do’s and don’ts and most importantly, urging us to work on our fitness.

As of now, the last moment preparations for the trek are on. I ordered a 20,000 mAh powerbank so that I have enough juice in my phone to take pictures and selfies,: a headlamp because my previous one is not working and a few other knickknacks like a really cool steel mug lined with plastic for all the tea and the soup I will be having on the trek and an aluminium water bottle from Quecha. Packing is fun, pulling out the jackets and thermals from the wardrobe even as you are all hot and sweaty is kind of fun too.

Our coordinator also insisted on physical fitness before the trek, the magic figure of 5 kms in 40 minutes, which, though very difficult outdoors in the Kolkata weather, is doable on a treadmill. We have to take a screenshot and upload, which I think makes sense as all of us have taken this bit seriously. It always helps to be fit on a trek. The fitter you are the more you enjoy. It is that simple.

So I set off for my trek this Friday, catch a flight to Delhi in the morning and take an overnight bus to Manali from where we have a pick-up at 1 pm. I am so looking forward to this one!

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