Sar Pass 2: First view of Snow

At Delhi Airport

A plan must be made like never before, meeting all expectations, but on the day it should go for a toss and the journey should take us in its own way. This is the essence of travel, as I see it. We spent days looking into map, checking bus schedules, observing the weather forecast and finally had decided to pay a visit to Aksharadham temple before boarding our bus to Manali. But all we did was to travel in metro, have stomach full of Biryani and sleep in a AC room. Well, that was Delhi for us. The temperature was so high and our bags were so heavy that as soon as Adi proposed the plan to go to his friend’s place, with no much confusion we accepted. The room and sleep was so cozy that I had to literally pull people out of bed to reach to our boarding point, Chanderlok building on time. God only knew where it was.

After bidding goodbye and wishing good luck to the to be IAS officers of this country, we got into Metro again to reach Rajiv Chowk. I wanted to walk in the streets of Delhi at least for a while to get hang of the place. So we walked, asking everyone the route to Chanderlok building :D. Rajiv Chowk looked more like commercial street of Delhi. More crowd, more pollution, more shopping options and more street vendors. As soon as we got down, an auto guy asked Rs.120 to take us to the building and warned us that we won’t make it in time if we walk. I was sure it was not more than 5 mins from where we stood (thanks to all map reading). This particular building was not listed on Google maps and the quest got interesting when each one showed us a different way.  We walked for some 30 mins and finally reached the damn building. By then, I had got a migraine attack, thanks to the HOT sun and I was craving for my evening coffee. Sana was not at all ready to get up from the place she had found to sit at our HPTDC office and few were engrossed in IPL. Finally me and Manoj decided to go in search of coffee. As we started many joined us.

brewing coffee

We stopped at the first shop where we found water. Delhi’s temperature makes it really difficult for a Bangalorean to survive. It was 44 degrees and we drank as much water and cool drinks as we can and took some for the people back at stop. Searching for a tea shop, we walked furthermore. The road was all dug up due to some metro work (Ya, even there 😛 ). We finally found a small shop and stopped over. The guy made coffee just like a professional. Heated milk with sugar, added a bit of Nescafe and frothed the milk before adding to the cup. He sprinkled a little chocolate  powder on top and to my surprise, that’s the BEST COFFEE that I have had in my life so far.  Strangely, that coffee made me start feeling good about the city.

The HPTDC bus was more comfortable than expected. Our journey into the pleasant cold Manali from burning Delhi started in the night. From my window seat, I sat looking at the sky which looks more beautiful from a moving bus. Thinking about the excitement of adventures that is ahead of me, I drifted off to sleep.

I woke up to a curvy and bumpy ride of the bus and warm pleasant morning sunlight. It was around 6 AM and the bus had stopped for coffee and mini breakfast. I checked with the driver and found out that Bhuntar is 2 hrs from there. Like always, the feeling that the journey is going to end started to disappoint me. I don’t get the connection, but I never like to get down a train/bus. I hate destinations. But as we reached Bhuntar, I got down with the group and boarded a local bus to Kasol. There we met another group of people with backpacks and that itself told us that they were coming to Sar Pass as well.  While I was making up a conversation in my mind to talk to them, Adi stepped ahead and started a small talk with them. Guess he had gained that pace and confidence with new people from his earlier Goa trek. We got to know that they are from Bangalore as well and listening to their conversation, I again drifted into my sleep.

The journey took us through some bumpy path, not letting me really sleep that well. Now and then I was opening my eyes to witness the calm nature around, where trees stood amidst rocky wall of the mountains, and River Parbati was flowing with a gush. The look of water itself was giving us an idea of how cold it would be. The bus was stopping every here and there either to board people or to deliver the post and newspaper bundle, almost at each village. I remembered my childhood days where we used to wait for the paper bundle from the first bus that used to come to my granny’s place. I wondered if our villages will ever change.

Suddenly I was woken up by, I guess Manoj’s voice, calling me. I opened my eyes and there it stood, the misty, serene brown massive rock covered with snow at the peak, like a cap. A moment of eternal silence and bliss filled me. The whole 4 month’s wait and excitement was paid off with the first glimpse of Himalayan Mountain.  I could not sleep then. With every turn I was waiting to see it again. I felt like I am travelling into it. The noise of river running next to the road provided a nice bgm all through.

Thus a joy full ride bought us to Kasol base camp in Kulu district and the bus just dropped us in front of the neatly spread campsite.

(To be continued…)


  • Shweta June 12, 2012 at 18:55

    Chanderlok building is just behind parliament.. Didn’t you find it thr?? 😛

    Truly Life’s in the journeys we make.. but many of life changing experiences can also happen in those stop-overs we take. Been a nice read and with this you’ve reclaimed the skill of fabulous narration. Some good elements of transition there.
    I lived thru your recount of the walk next to the gushing river with Himalayan range in sight. In fact, I’m still there.. get me to another good one !!! Next post pls..

    • Suhas June 13, 2012 at 14:50

      Thank you Shweta. I totally agree, was kind of lost grip in the first post, but this was satisfactory!! You please be there itself untill the next post, i will do my honest attempt to take you through Sarpass! 🙂


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