This is a multi part blog on our experience of ‘The Himalayas’, my first. This one covers the period prior to my actual travel, and provides a preamble to the journey. Readers are encouraged to read this post and each of my other posts on this topic which I will release hopefully early to sustain the interest of readers.
So I have this wish since my childhood to see the Himalayas. Somehow I believed Lord Shiva would physically be present there. Now I believe though that He is omni present. Not only did I want to see Himalayas, but also had this strong desire to settle there for my old age doing penance. I know this is a bit far fetched and perhaps childish, or lets say too ambitious. So the least I could do is a visit for now. At least for the first time. I do believe and strongly wish that this will not be my last or only visit to the Himalayas.
It all started after several broken attempts earlier, and finally when Varma mentioned he was going for a trek from Gangotri to the Gaumukh and potentially to Tapovan. That sounded very exciting to me. But my wife, Komala was willing to go to the Himalayas but not on this adventurous and non-religious trek. So I decided that for the same period we would do a Chardham yatra. It consists of visiting Yamunotri, Gangotri, Kedarnath and Badrinath and several other places on the way.
As Ravi suggested, I realized the first thing to do is block leave so the vacation is frozen whether it is for this place or something else. So the formalities of leave, Internet based long analysis, booking the flights and the tour package for these areas in a personal taxi with hotels pre arranged by them, is all done.
As it always happens with me, wanted to do the packing one week in advance, but executed only the night before the flight, thanks to my habit of prioritizing office work higher everyday. Needless to say some excess packing despite careful packing and missing out important items such as Hydration bag, binoculors, deciding in the last minute to drop the idea of carrying laptop and all & sundry happened.
And also buying an extra memory card for my camera in the airport! So we start off the epic journey at 5 am from my home leaving Hyderabad in its week long spell of heavy rains 🏠.