Dear SB Subba ji,
I have been trekking for over last 20 years and already have covered a few high altitudes memorable trek. But this one was different altogether for some of the reasons. In our team, I was the only male member and the rest three were female of age 14 years, 36 years and 62 years. None of them had any experience of tent and sleeping bag before and a temperature of – 10 degree Celsius too heavy for them. As you know I have contacted you in the month of august first & thereafter several conversations with you went on to pinpoint every detail.
It was my friend Mr. Biplab Baidya(Everest climber, 25.5.2014 through north kol) who kept on informing me all technical details like the nature of terrain, temperature, wind speed especially at Kalizar and the required cloth lining depending on temperature and weather which could be as low as -10 degree Celsius.
Finally, it was the heartfelt all-out support from you, your team and the whole family which made our trek ‘Singalila pass’ from Uttarey to Gorkhey a grand success. I still remember the night at Uttarpani where Monima was not feeling well I thought that the trek was to be snapped but then the whole family came to our support and how you all delivered that night and next morning is a long story that made us to move ahead without a second thought. The entire trek was full of adventure from all possible ways. Lowest temperature was -13 degree Celsius. Most adventurous was that we three lost path deep into the forest on the way from Uttarpani to thulodhap. I made my wife and daughter to sit in a convenient visible place and asked watching me and while I went on searching the correct path. After 45 minutes, I found it and by the time our guide and team member also reached there. Both my wife and daughter were had enough strength to sit alone inside the jungle while I was much away deep into forest searching for route. We all three enjoyed this very much.
Then there was the wind of Kalizar (Biplab warned me earlier) at the evening, at a temperature of – 8 degree C to my experience it was not less than 80 kmph. The entire tent was shaking like hell. Inside the tent, we felt that we will be back at Uttarey by this blow along with the tent. Then our guide Mr. Dorjee fixed heavy additional stones around our tent to ensure that it remains there which relieved my daughter and wife inside the tent.
In this trek, we have met some sensible energetic team as well as some teams who need to think it serious. We have seen teams reaching Phalut/other places even at the evening between 7:30 pm to 8:30 pm when the temperature is -7 degree C. This may lead to casualty anytime.
Following are my suggestions regarding trek in this region in general for all trekkers:
- Plan a trek well before and keep preparing both physically and mentally. Please be informed that it is your decision to carry your bodyweight and the sack under difficult conditions in the trekking.
- Choose your tour operator sensibly. If you wish to trek in Sikkim region Mr. S.B. Subba is one point solution with all trekking gears and teams, or you can contact me (Mob: +91-9831154997) or meet me at Kolkatta, I shall be happy to share my experience. Though I know some of the operators which are very unreliable and have several complaints against them I wish not to mention their name. It is the responsibility of the trekker to find correct operator.
- Behave sensibly, listen to your guide and should not enforce your idea as he is most knowledgeable person there.
- Always trek as a team and your guide/ other team members must be within visible range.
- Try to keep water bottle and dry fruits with you while trekking.
- There are several high attitude syndromes, one of them is emotional/psychological disorder. Please try to keep your mood always calm & up & keep the whole team unite.
- Must maintain your mandatory personal medicines and additional medicines for trek.
- Rise early everyday, before sunrise is the best.
PLEASE BE INFORMED THAT TREKKING IS NOT ABOUT “HOW FAST YOU CAN REACH YOUR DESTINATION BUT HOW WELL YOU CAN PREPARE YOURSELF EVERY MORNING FOR THE TREK BOTH MENTALLY & PHYSICALLY”.
As a matter of memorable gesture, I have attached the map prepared by you with heights and distance which I requested the day before actual trek started.