Monday, 22 January 2018

A 1st time trekker's learning:

As a 1st time YHAI trekker, I went through a lot of suggestions and blogs but the best experience has been in real. I went to Sandakphu summer trek (read experience here) in 2016 and sharing some of my lessons besides the basic guidelines ~

1. Even if you think your bag is light, make it more lighter.
2. Don't take too big bags, they add weight on your shoulders.
3. Walk in your own pace. Befriend the guide at your end. They are great teachers.
4. Take hot water for drinking at higher base camps, they are safer.
5. Keep your feet clean. Take wet tissues and medicated powder.
6. If you're a bird watcher or look out for species, pause in your trek and then watch.
7. Build your stamina before trekking, it helps the most and increases your immunity.
8. Don't ignore your illness, talk to your guides, it might be high altitude sickness. In case you're a women in your periods share it with your guide or camp leaders or Doctors there if available. It's nothing to be ashamed off.
9. Take jackets with hood that are water resistant. Woolen sweaters add weight and when wet, don't dry. Add poncho raincoat to your list too if your regions have chances of rain/snow. Invest in quick dry and light clothing. When you need warmth, simply layer. Add thermals. No body cares what you are wearing there. 2-3 tees and pants max are sufficient. Trust me!
10. I took my DSLR and when the battery wasn't in use, I kept it in my inner jacket pocket. It went a long way.
11. Waterproof and high ankle shoes with good grip are good investment.
12. Have some lone time but also have chit-chat with your team mates, it reduces your walking stress.
13. You can keep a knee cap with you. When we came steep downhill, a lot of them got problem in their right knees, including mine. Thankfully I could borrow a knee cap from a team mate.
14. Keep your ID cards safe. They are to be stamped at every base camp.
15. Take an extra bag to keep your extra stuff like your travel wear at base camp, in case YHA bags are not provided like in Darjeeling.
16. Simply take a thin hand-towel and basic things like vaseline jelly (multi-purpose), sunscreen, little pack of facewash etc.
17. I found my fellow mates carrying novels and other fancy toiletry stuffs...Avoid-avoid-avoid.
18. Add goggles and sun caps to your lists besides woolen caps, gloves etc.
19. Do not forget toilet paper. Many places have shortage of water.
20. You can take a flat kinda plastic tiffin box, instead of plates. Take tumbler/ torch/ chappals/ pain balms and other basic things from the YHAI list.
21. Keep cash out in your pockets for need.
22. Take some chocolates and candies, You can add glucose to your water. Sip water at regular intervals.
23. Don't take long breaks in between trekking. Take little breaks and start walking. Do stretches.
24. Abide by the rules. When the guide says: No alcohol. It means NO.
25. When the guide says you are unwell and you need to go to low altitude for your safely reasons, listen to him.
26. The 1st trek challenges you mentally, be sound and be positive that you can do it. Enjoy the unexpected too! 
27. You might face loss of appetite around trek time, still eat. Drink all the liquids they give like tea and soups. It helps you to stay hydrated. Do not skip meals plus food at YHAI is superb as per me.
28. Carry a light weight slipper. I think it's a good idea to reach your base camp and give some air and relaxation to feet. 
29. Take your own things, depending every time to share things might trouble others.
30. Go open minded to make friends. Help others! The best part of YHAI treks!

Tanuja :)


  1. Nice blog ....Thanks for sharing this article with us. Book cab from our various options and let us make your holiday a moment to always remember.

  2. Very interesting documentation of your personal experience of your first trek, as per my experience every trek teaches us something. The best part is to be a student to learn more and more. Wish you good luck

  3. Wonderful article. Very useful and encouraging for first time trekkers. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Wonderful article. Very useful and encouraging for first time trekkers. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Marvelous work!. Blog is brilliantly written and provides all necessary information I really like this awesome post. Thanks for sharing this useful post.


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