A gushing huge river Zanskar, flowing down the mountains of the rugged terrains of ladakh. Its turns solid and freezes in the heavy chill of winter. Making for the best trek you might ever embark upon , why does it call us in our dreams!!
A dialouge between me and one of the people who will be joinning me this season in 2016 for chadar trek in ladakh.
Me: So you are 60, sir , I hope you understand the intensity of this trek, the challenges involved??
Sir : Ofcourse , Deep, don't worry!! I know it will be the harsh cold winds of subzero temperature beating my body , some challenges with breathing in such light oxygen zone , but , this is it , Deep , this is THE CHADAR TREK , !! People from round the world crave to do it and some still are unable to make it realize. When I'm finally getting the chance , I just can't let it go. Its like , chadar trek has been comming over my dreams and calling me , uptill I response and agree to take the challenge , it would not listen. Its not in my power anymore to avoid. Have to do it!!
It is so true , that a world famous trek haunts you , if you are a crazy trek freak like me , which you probably are, if you are reading this , you would probably agree!! The Chadar justifies this below reason , why we should be taking on this adventure immediately in 2016 and make it no more later!!
Go to any trek in this world , but none can replicate or even reflect a part of chadar or its feature. Why??? Because the conditions are impossible to be formed anywhere else. Blue crystalline ice formed in between rugged ridges and gorges of ladakh , walking over it and experiencing things beyond capacity to express in words. Nopes , not happening anywhere else in this world!! But due to global warming ,the formation of ice is getting lesser and like the year 2015 sometimes chadar does not even form, which makes this chadar trek must do in 2016 , for who knows , the trek might not exist anymore a further year down the line.!!!!
The formation of chadar takes temperature to go subzero until minus 20 to minus 30. Yes that does make a hard solid chadar or chunk of ice to walk upon. But with more carbon in our atmosphere , such cold is not generated anymore , or there is no surety , hence , it is advisable to do it as earliest as possible. You don't want to regret missing out on such thing in life do you ???
The pure bliss feeling of walking and skating on the thin ice can be only found on regions of Artic or Antertic , which are beyond our reach. Hence , chadar provides the perfect substitution to enjoy such experience and glow with joy!!! Walking on a glass of ice like the polar ice caps , does not it lure you ??? It surely convinced me !!!
At night , the temperature on the trek might drop to minus 35 degrees!!!! yes you heard it right!! It makes thing difficult and hard no doubt , but then again its once in a lifetime experience!! Think about the bragging rights you get when you finally accomplish such thing!! Among friends , family and colleagues .... when people will be shivering in your city with just 4 to 5 degrees in winter , you are like " Been to chadar , have survived minus 30 , so baby , been there done that !! " You know how it feels to be an eskimo , or a villager from the wilds of siberia or our brave men who tread up the Siachen glacier facing such sub zero temperature!!
Did I tell you , the most elusive of all cats , the ghost of the Himalayas is sighted the most in winter over this trek??? How many do you know who have seen a snow leopard in their original regions!??! The ghosts roam around this trek always , and pug marks are sure to be sighted. Just imagine the time we are walking early in the morning and over a distance you see something moving , next you realize , that is nothing but the ghost cat , for which half of the world photographers have died for!!! Experience worth trying??
Ladakh it self seems , cut from the rest of the world , with its landscapes which seems ethereal and unimaginable!!! The mac-ken's gold kind of rocks and stones makes it seems somewhere men have never been!! Its dream to see such wilderness in the months of winter when the rest of the world can't even imagine to be at such a place. Chadar is where the time stops , eternity waits and ages take to move on. Can't wait to be there.
Its sad that such a trek is facing s threat for the global warming. It might cease to exist couple of years from now on. I hope I and you will be able to see this before that happens. The gushing zanskar does not freeze like it did earlier , but yet we enjoy whatever we make out of it and find. If you really don't want to miss out on such a magic , its better do it immediately. All other things can wait surely!!
Everybody gives their heart to such a trek as chadar. And imagine enjoying the final success party on the valentines day?? Sounds crazy ?? Well that is exactly what I'm going to do in the february of 2016!! And I am searching out for crazy mountain lovers like me to join on this expedition.
I will be with the love of my life on this valentines day of feb 14 ,2016 ... the Mountains , in the dreamways of chadar. Do you??
Join me if you have the guts!!
All pictures are taken by my trekkers , strictly copyrighted material. Don't copy make your own memory by joinning up with me!!
Note from the Author,
" Travel made me rich and free. Magic and miracles are true , once you wander on the roads to places different and divine. I have collected so many thoughts and stories while being a Tour & Trek guide for last seven years. Sharing with you all, those memories and stories , and wishing you all , that someday you guys travel far and wide too. I am not a great writer , so ignore my grammar and spellings, read it with feelings, and you might just be affected with the wanderlust to hit the road"