September 15, 2015

The Spiti Story-5

Part 1, 2, 3 and 4 here.

There were bumpier roads. There were bikers. There were rugged riders riding them. There were a couple of sturdy cars with high horse power engines roaring on the path. More than anything else, it was Adrenaline getting sprinkled every where, for me. We were on the way to Chandratal.

I was quite excited by the idea of living in a camp, hiking to the lake and framing splendid beauty if I can. I wanted to let me eyes wide open and fill them with blues, grays and greens till they over flow.

When we spotted our tents, it brought excitement in some of us and some were nervous at the thought of spending the night inside those tiny fabric toy-looking rooms. We ate something, kept our luggage there and started for the most spectacular site in Spiti.

Chandratal is a 'moon' lake at the height of 4300 meters in Spiti. It is one of the two highest wetlands in India. Once the road ends, there is a hike of around 30 minutes to reach the lake. One should always acclimatize to the high lands before starting for this place. I can not explain the beauty of this place with words any more.

When we saw the lake from distance after taking the turn from the peak we were hiking on...

We were closer to the lake.. A small stream of water below the track,,,

When we reached the lake, Felt the lake. The Chandra Tal. I almost thought if this is Chandratal, how would be the mighty 'Maansarovar'!

The colour of the lake changed with the direction of sun rays. It was not a magic but still a magic.

We spent good amount of time in the super windy atmosphere. We saw some crazy pupils jumping in the water without clothes and having fun while I refused to remove my shoes too! We jumped, we sat peacefully ( Okay, not me!), we clicked, we admired nature. Almost a sense of Niravana, may be.

Coming back to the base was quick as almost every one was stunned by the beauty of the valley. We were not knowing the actual thrill was in braving cold that night! :D

The chilling wind was trying to penetrate in the multiple layers of sweaters - jackets we were wearing. Getting inside the tent could help a bit,but not much. Our driver T came to our rescue and offered us the local wine made out of 'Jawar' which they drink to save themselves from cold. We all enjoyed it to the core, yeah me and Mr.ISB - the almost teetotalers of the gang also took shots!

We were hungry and so in the dining tent, along with other 17 ( Ah,, random) foreigners (mostly from Israel) we had Rajma Chawal and Achar. The simple menu appealed to our stomach and not to our taste buds. After dining we all decided to occupy the tent shared by me and SIL to play games. While they could enjoy cards, I the-no-cards-gamer sealed my self in the sleeping bag. After struggling for a while in the chilling weather, every one decided to sleep as the next day our return journey was to kick off.

Next morning when I unsealed myself to switch off the Auto Alarm in the phone, we had to carry a search operation to find the mobile as multiple layers of clothes and sleeping bags had engulfed us completely.

A cup of Kawah and a bit courage we all started our return journey. A journey, I did not have a heart to make. I wanted to stay there forever.This never happened to me before!

Spiti, Stay Special! 

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