Basic Mountaineering May’10

Course started with reaching Manali early in the morning on 30th April. I took a cup of tea at bus stand and came to know that Atal Bihari Vajeypayee Institute of Mountaineering & Allied Sports (ABVIMAS) is situated on left bank of river Beas in Aleo which is 2km from bus stand. I went by walk to the place.

Day was spent visiting Hadimba Devi Temple and roaming in the market. First day of the course went in selecting course senior and dividing students in ropes (groups). Instructors tried their best to make sure no two person of same state stay in same rope. Next seven days we woke up early to visit nearby sites with our rucksack on the back. We visited Vashisht, Suru Devi and Hadimba Devi temple. Every day we were going to field where we practiced rock climbing, jumaring, rappelling and river crossing. Post lunch time was utilized in learning some theory which include introduction to Himalaya, Hazards in mountains, Mountain illnesses and Mountain manners. In this time we also learned knots to be used in mountaineering. One day was given to us as free day when we can do shopping from Manali market.

There was artificial wall climbing on 9th May. Next day was a departure to Solang Nala where we reached in the afternoon with our rucksacks (full of equipments and personnel clothing) on our back. It was trek of 13km. We went for acclimatization walk in the evening and there was small lecture on flora and fauna. On 12th May we left for Patalsu peak with water bottle and refreshment. Next day we left for Bakar-thach, our training area. It was 11 km trek out of which first 7 km was by road while last 4km was little steep. There was raining on the way and we reached half wet. Tea was served in the kitchen at camp.

Camp site was surrounded by Hanuman Tibba, Seven sisters, Shitidhar, Friendship, Ladhakhi and Manali peaks. There was snow all around us. We played volleyball in the evening. We (rope 4) won our match against rope 3 by 15-5. Next day was acclimatization walk; we walked around the mountains surrounding our camp. We went to Beas glacier and Beas Kund . It was sum total of 16 km walk and we came back to camp at 2:30PM.

Next two days were training on snow and lectures in the evening. On 17th May it was raining and our instructors decided to wait for some time. Rain continued for whole day and we kept resting inside our tents. Next day it was still raining and our instructors decided to go in the field. Due to heavy rain today, day ended only in demonstrations. Next day weather was clear, first we practiced anchoring and belaying on snow then there was lecture on crampon and cramponing. We used crampons today and it was long day we came back 3:30PM. 20th may , Instructors decided to train for whole day to cover up days lost due to rain. We went to Beas glacier and practiced ice wall, tractioning, rappelling and jumaring on ice. We came back to base camp by 6:30Pm. Next day was height gain and we were given dry fruits, refreshments as next day lunch will not be there.

We woke up 4:30AM and started preparing for height gain. We left by 6:00AM. I started strong and reached Beas kund with first group. From here on I and Purvesh we both went together and reached 15,800 feet by 12:15.It was great joy to achieve it. We came back to camp by 6:00PM. Next day was test on rock climbing, knots, rappelling, snow craft and equipment knowledge. In the evening we came to know that there will be survival night today. We were asked to bring empty rucksack, water bottle, carry mate and were asked to come back in morning. Gurvinder(Rinku) found a good place  for the night and we came back to Bakar-Thach by 5 AM.

Next day it was raining when we left for Solang. I called up home after reaching Solang and we spent evening in tourist area. Next day was trek to Manali while 25th May was written test day. There was graduation ceremony on 26th May and majority of students left that day itself. I left Manali on 27th May and came back home same day.

Result was declared on 20th June and I got ‘A’ grade.

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