We recently interviewed Spriha Gupta, an adventure seeker from Bangalore. In a candid chat, she told us about her thrilling experience to Chadar trek that she recently completed in February. Read on!
Q: When did you start trekking?
A: I started trekking a couple of years ago but I only did a few short treks in South India, in and around Bangalore. Last year, I went for my first winter Himalayan trek with you guys, when I completed the Kedarkantha Trek. Hence, I was experienced and well-prepared for the Chadar trek.
Q: Why did you choose the Chadar trek?
A: There are two main reasons why I chose this trek. Firstly, I wanted to challenge myself and test my abilities. Secondly, I heard the route to this trek was going to shut down and another route was going to open. So I had to complete this trek this year and check it off my list.
Q: How was the Chadar trek?
A: For me, it wasn’t as difficult as I thought it would be. Maybe, because I was better prepared for it, in terms of clothing. My experience in Kedarkantha trek came in handy as I knew how cold it can actually get at an altitude as high as 12,000 ft. So I wore thermals, better and warmer jackets this time and in addition to this, I also carried heat pouches.
Q: Sounds like it was quite a task, So what inspired you to keep walking in below freezing temperature and an extreme weather?
A: My wish and will to complete the trek kept me determined throughout the trek but yes, the trek did challenge me on so many levels. The first day was definitely difficult because I was completely clueless about everything. As one reaches there, he/she is unaware of what lies in front of them and in case of this trek, what lies beneath them. Apart from this, I was adamant about the fact that I have to reach the waterfalls.
Q: How was your stay at the Dib cave?
A: It was an overnight camp but we didn’t really stay inside the cave as it is reserved for locals but our camp was right opposite to the cave and it was pretty amazing. Overnight camps are always beautiful.
Q: How did you feel when you reached Gyalpo waterfalls, your ‘destination’?
A: It was a feeling of accomplishment and relief that I had completed the trek after all the challenges that I faced. The biggest challenge was broken chadar. As I remember correctly, every other batch except ours returned because the chadar had cracked. Our batch faced the same issue, but later that day we saw a couple of girls coming down from another route. Excitedly, I asked them about the route and they told me that the alternate route was steep and rough. So when I asked my guide to give us another shot at this, he agreed and this is where Renok adventures really helped me out. Out of our batch of 9 people, 2 trekkers, my friend and I completed this trek against all odds. And all of this was definitely worth it because when I reached the waterfalls, the view was to die for!
Q: Was there any particular event from the trek which stood out for you?
A: My journey to the waterfalls was definitely the event that stood out for me. That day, I challenged my own self and I came out as a winner and that feeling of achievement was spectacular.
Q: Lastly, do you have any advice for first-time trekkers who aim to complete the Chadar trek?
A: Yes. Firstly, go for this trek in the second half of January because the chadar might start breaking in February and trekkers can lose out on experiencing the whole trek. Our batch faced the same challenge and many others didn’t get to see the waterfalls. Secondly, carry heat pouches because it can get really cold out there.
Spriha’s determination and willpower amazed us all. Her trek to the Chadar trek proves that you can go for this mesmerizing trek if you are as strong-willed as Spriha. She definitely had an amazing experience. Do you think Chadar trek could be your calling too?