Moment when I felt that I will die and will not able to talk to my family - A lifetime experience from Shrikhand Mahadev Trek in Himachal Pradesh

Recently I was attending a story-telling workshop and there was an exercise about telling a story from my life or something which will remain a memorable thing for me. I don't know why this experience came to mind and I thought of noting it down on my blog as well. I literally get goosebumps when I think about this experience and not sure if I will be able to express it in same way through this blog. Let me attempt and share through comments, if you could relate to it.

Recently I was attending a story-telling workshop and there was an exercise about telling a story from my life or something which will remain a memorable thing for me. I don't know why this experience came to mind and I thought of noting it down on my blog as well. I literally get goosebumps when I think about this experience and not sure if I will be able to express it in same way through this blog. Let me attempt and share through comments, if you could relate to it.


In 2008, I went on a trek with my friend Vikas, his brother and brother-in-law. This is one of the most difficult treks around Himalayan state of India - Shrikhand Mahadev. Before I move ahead, I want to share a very interesting fact that Travellingcamera's first blog is about this trek and that's how this blog started on 30th July 2008.

In 2008, I went on a trek with my friend Vikas, his brother and brother-in-law. This is one of the most difficult treks around Himalayan state of India - Shrikhand Mahadev. Before I move ahead, I want to share a very interesting fact that Travellingcamera's first blog is about this trek and that's how this blog started on 30th July 2008


Vikas initiated this idea of planning the trek to Shrikhand Mahadev and he has been following this place for few years. He made this group of 4 people and majorly planned for it. Other 3 folks were very serious planning for the trek in terms of what to carry in terms of gear, cloths, eatables etc. I was somehow overconfident that being a Pahadi, I have done lot walking, hiking so it should not be a big deal. And I can also stay hungry for longer period of time if needed. Anyways, summary is that I was going with these guys with 100% confidence on their planning. The only thing I had to do was to go with them and trek to the peak, which is at approximately 17000 feet height.     Related blogpost - Planning Shrikhand Manahdev Trek - India's one of the most difficult Pilgrimage Trek

Related Blogpost - How getting lost in Himalayas brought us closer


Vikas initiated this idea of planning the trek to Shrikhand Mahadev and he has been following this place for few years. He made this group of 4 people and majorly planned for it. Other 3 folks were very serious planning for the trek in terms of what to carry in terms of gear, cloths, eatables etc. I was somehow overconfident that being a Pahadi, I have done lot walking, hiking so it should not be a big deal. And I can also stay hungry for longer period of time if needed. Anyways, summary is that I was going with these guys with 100% confidence on their planning. The only thing I had to do was to go with them and trek to the peak, which is at approximately 17000 feet height.     Related blogpost - Planning Shrikhand Manahdev Trek - India's one of the most difficult Pilgrimage Trek

Vikas initiated this idea of planning the trek to Shrikhand Mahadev and he has been following this place for few years. He made this group of 4 people and majorly planned for it. Other 3 folks were very serious about planning for the trek in terms of what to carry in terms of gear, cloths, eatables etc. I was somehow overconfident that being a Pahadi, I have done lot of walking, hiking so it should not be a big deal. And I can also stay hungry for longer period of time, if needed. Anyways, summary is that I was going with these guys with 100% confidence on their planning. The only thing I had to do was to go with them and trek to the peak, which is at approximately 17000 feet height. 

Related blogpost - Planning Shrikhand Manahdev Trek - India's one of the most difficult Pilgrimage Trek

..

On second day of Shrikhand Mahadev trek, we were almost in middle of the whole stretch between base and the peak, which is approx 40 kilometres distance. We were taking small breaks every 45 mins. After one of the breaks in the evening, I couldn't stand up. My legs were shivering and my body was not moving. Suddenly I felt extremely weak, which had never happened in my life. With the help of my friend, I tried to stand up but couldn't take a step forward.    Related Blogpost - Shrikhand Mahadev Trek - One of the most difficult treks in Himalayan Ranges of India

On very first day of Shrikhand Mahadev trek, we were almost at 30% of the whole stretch between base and the peak, which is approx 40 kilometres distance. We were taking small breaks every 45 mins. After one of the breaks in the evening, I couldn't stand up. My legs were shivering and my body was not moving. Suddenly I felt extremely weak, which had never happened in my life. With the help of my friend, I tried to stand up but couldn't take a step forward.



All that was very scary and I continued to struggle. My body was unable to move. All scary thoughts started coming to my mind. We were sitting on a hill which had 70-75 degree slope and I couldn't see the bottom of it. Above photograph shows the view of the valley from the place we were sitting. I was imagining myself walking and suddenly my feet slips & I go down in the valley. Then I was wondering if I die on this trek, how will my body reach my home ( not sure why I felt it's important for my dead-body to reach home). The next immediate thought was how can I talk to my family. We were already in a zone without any connection. So that thought made me even more nervous that I will die without talking to my family. While all these thoughts were running in my mind, my friends gave me water to drink & stuff to eat, including glucose.


All that was very scary and I continued to struggle. My body was unable to move. All scary thoughts started coming to my mind. We were sitting on a hill which had 70-75 degree slope and I couldn't see the bottom of it. Above photograph shows the view of the valley from the place we were sitting. I was imagining myself walking and suddenly my feet slips & I go down in the valley. Then I was wondering if I die on this trek, how will my body reach my home ( not sure why I felt it's important for my dead-body to reach home). The next immediate thought was how can I talk to my family. We were already in a zone without any connection. So that thought made me even more nervous that I will die without talking to my family. While all these thoughts were running in my mind, my friends gave me water to drink & stuff to eat, including glucose. 


By this time, my friends were worried about me and they even suggested that let's go back. Let's go to the nearest camping site, take rest for a day and then head back. That thought by friends made me feel extremely bad that how can I spoil this 1 week long plan for my friends. Although I had no energy to think about resuming the trek.    Related Blogpost - Old photographs of Shrikhand Mahadev Trek in new look || Black & White photographs of Shrikhand Mahadev Trek in Himachal Pradesh, INDIA

By this time, my friends were worried about me and they even suggested that let's go back. Let's go to the nearest camping site, take rest for a day and then head back. That thought by friends made me feel extremely bad that how can I spoil this 1 week long plan for my friends. Although I had no energy to think about resuming the trek.


I slept on the grass for an hour or so. My friends sat around me and kept a watch about how I was feeling. When I felt a little better, we walked to the nearest camping site and spent the night there. Plan was to return back in the morning, but only if I feel better. Another thought was running in my mind that I will probably stay for 2 more days at same place and let my friends go to the peak and come back. That way, they will be able to complete the trek and we can go back together.     Related Blogpost - Trek to Shrikhand Mahadev in Himalayan State of India - A Lifetime Experience

I slept on the grass for an hour or so. My friends sat around me and kept a watch about how I was feeling. When I felt a little better, we walked to the nearest camping site and spent the night there. Plan was to return back in the morning, but only if I feel better. Another thought was running in my mind that I will probably stay for 2 more days at same place and let my friends go to the peak and come back. That way, they will be able to complete the trek and we can go back together. 


Luckily, morning was much better and I was feeling much better physically & mentally. We went ahead & reached up there on the top. That was a strange experience at the top of the Shrikhand Mahadev rock. I tried like a baby and it was happening automatically. It was hard for me to stop and by the time I stopped crying, I had pain in the throat. Many say that such reactions can also be due to low oxygen on the top.     Related Blogpost - Scaling the heights of Shrikhand Mahadev - one of the most challenging treks in India

Luckily, morning was much better and I was feeling much better physically & mentally. We went ahead & reached up there on the top. That was a strange experience at the top of the Shrikhand Mahadev rock. I tried like a baby and it was happening automatically. It was hard for me to stop and by the time I stopped crying, I had pain in the throat. Many say that such reactions can also be due to low oxygen on the top. 


Anyways, that's a quick incident from Shrikhand Mahadev trek. There were lot of other experiences but this is the first thing comes to my head when I think about Shrikhand Mahadev trek. When I was done with this trek, I had to take another week off to recover from it. One of the major lesson I learned was that it's extremely important to plan well for such hikes and don't be overconfident. Mountains teach you a lot !

Anyways, that's a quick incident from Shrikhand Mahadev trek. There were lot of other experiences but this is the first thing comes to my head when I think about Shrikhand Mahadev trek. When I was done with this trek, I had to take another week off to recover from it. One of the major lesson I learned was that it's extremely important to plan well for such hikes and don't be overconfident. Mountains teach you a lot !

Comments

Vikas Sharma said…
Very well articulated VJ. And what a lifetim experience that was. Remember the energy level we had from Delhi, uptill Nirmand, where we parked the car. After that, we started to trek from there itself, and by the time we reached our first halt - the Jaon village (at end of day 1), we all were like "how much is done?", and another pilgrim answered, you guys are yet to start. LOL. The beautic scenery we saw after that, is jaw breaking and cannot be expressed. The photograhs can never match those mesmerizing feelings (with all due respect to your photographs & skills).
Lastly do you remember the last stretches to the peak, when we ran out of water - what saved us? The glacier snow.

Trending Post Today !

Travel & Music || Enchanting Himachal and its Charming Songs

A failed attempt to reach Spiti Valley on new KTM Bike - Opportunity to make random plans to explore even more special places in Shimla region of Himachal Pradesh

Road Trip from Delhi to Kashmir Valley through stunning & lush green Old Mughal Road - Srinagar, Sinthan Pass, Kishtwar, Daksum, Anantnag, Buffliaz, Behramgalla, Chandimarh, Poshana, Chattapani, Peer Ki Gali, Aliabad, Zaznar, Dubjan, Heerpora and Shopian

Humayun's Tomb - Taj Mahal of Delhi in shining Red stone and a popular UNESCO World Heritage site in Indian capital