Monday, April 27, 2015

Snow Trek - Siri Pai

In March 2009, a few friends from my MBA batch at LUMS, went on a winter (snow) trek to assail the peaks of Siri and Paye (9,500 feet above sea level). Located 8 kms from Shogran (atop mountains in Mansehra District, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa), slight detour from the Mansehra to Naran road (goes onto Gilgit and into Southern China. The trip was conducted through the services of Adventure Foundation Pakistan who arrange some spectacular trips to various places in Pakistan. This one, Winter Survival, was no exception. No one stays in these hills over the winter as there are only basic facilities possible and the snowfall is very heavy. We were to be the first one traversing these peaks that year. :)

From Lahore we went to Abbottabad, where we were given training on various aspects of the trek as well as provided with the necessary equipment and gear to manage the journey properly. They had trained instructors and nice facilities for our preparatory training there. From there we went via Balakot to Shogran to begin our trek.

Training time

okay, it was a bit boring
Charpai Restaurant at Kewai (image taken from the web)

The team!

Our attire was awesome

The excitement mixed with nervousness was very apparent

so was the humourous mood to hide the fear perhaps!

Team spirit was strong to start-off

We all had quite the load to carry

Night before the start
it was fun!

Had a heavy junk food meal @ the start

Pine Park Hotel and Lodge - Trek start point
Sleeping bag test

Training tips

Tent building practice

It wasnt that simple


Tent Nirvana


Amazing yaadein
Some monkey-ind around
Ready to rumble
After getting the required training (theoretical and practical) we were all set for the adventure

Here is a nice blog by someone else about Siri Paye

Snow Trek - Siri Pai (continued)

And so our 3 days of trekking up the mountain began....

The beginnings 
Initial bewilderment

Excitement at the start

Enjoying the views

Angular climb with lots to carry and soft snow, challenging much!

Took plenty of breaks

Discovered ourselves

Re-defined exhaustion

Enjoyed the beauty of it all
Loved the experience

Just like Sherpas

Regular breaks were needed

low on oxygen but high on spirit, we kept going

Rallying on!

It seemed we had been going on for days

posed for photos

Step by step, foot by foot we climbed

Through the pain, we carried on

Snow Trek - Siri Pai (continued part 3)

We had lots of trekking done and we learned some pretty nifty things

like a Snow cave

very satisfying

Like really big too

Snow sliding

which was lots of fun

and hilariously tragic (almost) - missed videotaping this, shucks

and more climbing

Making Igloos
Our own version of hide and seek

Had tea with  weetabix morning, noon and night
Learning different types of rope tricks

Found igloos too be uber cool

goofed off in the snow

played competitive and challenging games

Loved every bit of it

Got extremely exhausted

lifetime experiences

but we carried on trekking

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