Going where no one, with brains, had ever gone before
Note: This post may make you feel that I take too many risks in life. If that is so, then you are right to an extent. I can be said to be like that. But eventually, I have realised a lot, because of this trekking expedition, which I undertook with a friend(colleague) of mine.
So, let me tell you at the onset, that one of the dreams or wishes of my life has been to climb a mountain. I have always wanted to climb a peak. And by peak, what I mean, is summit. It may have been a summit of a hill also. But that is not important. I just wished to go and climb up a peak and look down upon the world [devilish wish] ;-) Whatever.
So, after pondering over it for a while, I finally decided to make it happen. And I was able to convince one of my colleagues to do the same. So, we finally shortlisted a peak in the Aravallis range. Aravallis, because they are the nearest to our place of existence.
So on a cool Sunday morning, before the sun could wake up, we woke up and drove to the road, nearest to the peak. Since vehicles could not go to the bottom of the hill, we had to make it on foot.
The picture above shows me going towards the bottom of the peak. I am not sure about the height of the peak, but the main reason of shortlisting the above peak was that, just a few days back, when I was trying to make up my mind for the same, I saw a shepherd at a height of around 30% of the entire height. And you know what, he, from that height, looked just like a speck of color to me. That was it. I had to climb. And this had to be the peak.
By the way, I would like to mention here that I have no formal training in trekking our rock climbing at all.
As mentioned, I am not sure about the height of the peak, but I reckon it to be around 150 mts. Doesn’t seem much? Even I thought so. Till I realized otherwise, during my accent to the top.
So we began climbing, first few meters were quite easy and it seemed that we shall be able to make it no time. But just by looking up, it was visible that the hard part was about to begin. Reason being that, rocks above were much smaller and looser. So putting our foot in the right place would require a real honest effort.
The picture below shows, what I saw at about half way mark. And I swear, it was phenomenal. It seemed that very soon, I would realize my dream of looking down upon the world.
But it seemed that powers above had the idea of my evil thoughts.
A confession here first; Around the time, when the last one third of the height was left, it seemed to us that we had made a huge mistake. We had grossly underestimated the height and the effort required to reach to the top. The problem was that the soil and rocks up there were much smaller and looser than those below. Making it extremely difficult to plant our feet in the rocks. Whenever I tried to push myself upwards, a part of soil below my feet would slip down; making me hanging for my life with my hands. It was tough. Really tough. It was at this time that my friend and I started thinking about our future and life(!) Though both of us knew that we had actually made a mistake, we did not want to show our fears and kept prompting each other to go on.
Also, it was now very sure that we could not, I repeat, could not go back from the side of the mountain, from which we were going up in the first place. It was way too slippery to climb down. We would definitely have slipped.
We had to decide. And we decided that we had to go to the top. It was the only way to save ourselves. Then maybe we could climb down from the other side of the mountain. Now it seems very stupid, but the reality was that all I wanted from God, at that time, was to leave me with a broken hand or foot. That was the least I could have bargained for.
But the point is that you are reading this post. Which means that it must have been posted by someone who did not die. So I am here and alive. This story must have a happy ending therefore.
So, without any options in our hand, we started towards the peak. And this time around, we had to hold cactuses (!) Yes. Cactuses. And that too, many times. We had no other option. We used our handkerchiefs to cover our hand and then held the stem of cactus and pulled ourselves up. The Aravallis have a lot of cactus here. And I never knew, that cactus could be so useful and help me rise. Difficulties make you put in efforts to raise higher.
This is how my target seemed from just below the peak. And this is what was motivating me. I really could not have given up after coming so near to my goal. I couldn’t.
And we continued. But both of us had just one thing in our mind. We would never take such risks ever again. Never.
And just to show the level to which we both had climbed, without any trekking equipment or formal training, just have a look at the picture below –
The picture above, made me realise 3 very important things –
First – I had been really stupid, to have tried something as risky as this.
Second – Never underestimate nature and overestimate yourself. You can be killed. Really.
Third – Trekking is not a time pass sports. And it should never to be done alone. And never without proper equipments and training.
But in life things usually take their own course. And I feel that it has been rightfully said, that if you want something really badly, then the entire universe conspires to help you get it. There could have been so many things that could have gone wrong. But universe had other ideas. It made me achieve, what I wanted to. I was where I always wanted to be.
I had made it to the top. I was alive. I was kicking & I was bruised
But I had achieved what I wanted.
Note: I eventually made it back with my friend. I bruised myself a bit .At last count, there had been a total of 17 cactus’s love marks in both my palms. But that was a bargain to what could have actually happened.
Caution: Never do this, no matter how exciting it may seem at first.