For the month of October CBMG team memebers Ian Hatchett and Mary Mahoney took advanatge of the quiet off-season in Crested Butte, to leave and explore the trekking (hiking) possibilities of the Himalaya of Northern India.
Our first trek was in the mountains north of Dharamsala, in the Northwest of India next to Kashmir. Before our trek, Mary had attended a lecture series by the Dalai Lama, and somehow managed to get him to personally bless a set of Red Lady prayer flags destined for the summit of Crested Butte’s local iconic mountain, Mount Emmons.
We set forth through lush temperate forests to high alpine meadows…surrounded by rugged 14,000 – 16,000′ peaks, with lots of good camping to be found along the way.
After this warm up 4-day trek, we set off for the Garwhal Himal to the East, by a series of tough mountain bus rides.
The Garwhal is the section of the Himalayas west of Nepal, betwen India and Tibet, and home to the world’s 20th highest peak, and a popular mountaineering destination, Nanda Devi 25,500′ (7, 820 m).
We trekked several valleys to the East of Nanda Devi, and found beautiful and tranquil mountain trails, and very few people. Mary said, “It’s like trekking in Nepal 30 years ago.”…but she was only 2 then, so who knows?
October was perfect trekking weather, mostly dry and cool (some snow at night). We camped in some spots, and also stayed in simple government rest houses, where we could supplement our food with rice and dahl cooked by the caretaker.
We gathered lots of information, scored some great treks, lived through some epic bus rides, and returned to Crested Butte with future plans…and information and Indian contacts to share with all our CBMG guests.
—Ian Hatchett (CBMG Guide)