Trekking guide to Himalayas

Essentials List

Essentials List

1.Small rucksack / knapsack
2. Sleeping bag
3. Lockable duffel bag
4. Karrimat / Therm-a-Rest
5. Tent
6. Personal toiletries
7. Water bottle (at least 2 litres)
8. First-aid kit
9. Camera with spare batteries and film
10. Headlamp/torch with spare cells
11. Maps
12. Diary/pen/reading material
13. Sewing kit
14. Swiss Army knife
15. Whistle
16. Sunscreen – with high SPF (at least 30, to better protect you from harmful UV rays)
17. Lip salve/ChapStick
18. Sunglasses with retainers/spare prescription glasses
19. Lighter
20. Emergency rations/goodies
21. Parachute cord
22. Ski-stick/ice-axe
23. Rope (for high-altitude treks)
24. Plastic bags and Ziplocs for packing gear

How to Pitch a Tent

How to Pitch a Tent

There are a few things that are to be kept in mind while pitching a tent.

Plane surface: Make sure that you find plane surface on which you can pitch your tent. Uneven surfaces can cause trouble in sleeping at night. There is nothing much you can do about the discomfort after sunset.

Pitch the tent on a gradient: It make sense pitch the tent on a totally flat surface however when you are in the mountains all the water flows top down and has a tendency to accumulate  on flat surface ,so make sure that you pitch the  tent on a slight gradient so that the water does not accumulate.

U shape: Water that is coming your way from the slope above will hit your tent, to avoid that from happening you will have to dig a U shaped circumference around your tent, so that the water gets channelized and passes around your tent. When you reach the campsite look out for such dugouts and avoid digging a new channel as it destroys the natural beauty of the place.

 

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Wildlife

Wildlife

The mountains are full of wildlife ,however there is a very slim chance that you will come across any wild animal if you are on a track that is frequented by shepherds or trekkers. Wild animals avoid such corridors as they are more afraid of us then we are of them. If you have any leftover food and you are in bear territory ,it would make sense to keep the food items at least 100 meters away from where you are camping because bears have a very good sense of smell. If you come across a wild animal such as a bear  or a leopard make sure you make some sound because it is more susceptible to attack if you catch it off guard.

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Landslides and Rock fall

Landslides and Rock fall

Landslides and Rockfall are a very common phenomenon in the mountains. You can avoid such incidents by staying alert. If you are walking through a  region that has a lot of loose rocks and scree and the mountain face has a steep gradient with loose rocks then you should and cross the section as fast as you can and cross one person at a time.

 

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River Crossing

River crossing

You will come across a lot of river crossings in the Himalayas. The best way to cross a river or a stream is to cross it as early as possible in the day because as the day passes by the sunlight increases and so does the meltwater from the snow above. Also you want to cross the stream before it starts going up because as the stream goes up it will start becoming narrower and the force of the water will also increase. It make sense to cross it  from a place where the stream is shallow and branched. If the stream is deep ,roping up is a good idea.

Organic Waste Disposal

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Organic Waste Disposal

Organic waste disposal: To dispose of organic waste you should dig at least a 10 inch deep hole. You can put your organic stuff into that hole and make sure you cover it with rocks and soil so that any wild animal is not able to access your organic waste.

Inorganic waste disposal: Inorganic waste has to be carried in a separate pouch throughout the trek. Even if you reach a mountain town you should not dispose your inorganic waste there because there are no provisions for waste disposal in hilly regions and it will find its way to a open air waste dump. It would be sensible to carry it till Chandigarh and then dispose it off in a dustbin.

Sanitation

Sanitation

lot of people carry wet wipes. Most of the wet wipes must have harmful chemicals in them which make the wipe non biodegradable and it becomes an environmental hazard. So before buying a wet wipe make sure it is biodegradable.

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