Mt. Thelu Expedition

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            Hari Mohan Nagapalli a mountaineer friend who had earlier scaled upto the  Mt. Thelu Advance camp initiated the program nearly six months back and a team comprising of like minded people met first at his residence and subsequently other places and finally the list of 8 people was short listed and finalised to go on the trek cum expedition from 1st October to 15th October 2004 .

The team consisted of Hari , The expedition leader , Vijayant  & Indu Sanjeev alias Raid , Subrat , Jeetram, Pankaj Malhotra  from New Zealand and myself Parth Sharma as the liaison officer  was finalised and started preparation well in advance .    

1st October 2004 . ( Delhi - Rishikesh ) 

All the expedition members gathered at my place where the bus was called . The ration along with the rucksacks were loaded on the bus which was flagged off by my wife at 11.55 p.m. on the 1st October 2004 .

2nd October 2004 . ( Rishikesh -Uttarkashi )

Thanks to my friend Mr. Rajiv Bhartari who is the Conservator of Forest posted at Rishikesh , we took a break at the scenically located Forest Rest House and  had breakfast and freshened up .  We departed at 7.00 a.m. and reached Uttarkashi GMVN rest house at approx. 1.30 p.m. Our sincere thanks to the Honorable Minister of Tourism , Uttaranchal  Lt. Gen . T.P.S. Rawat  who had ensured and given directions for our bookings and any assistance required for the expedition .

We contacted Mount Support and  hired 1 main Guide ( Lakshman ) , 2 High Altitude Porters ( Girish and Harish ) , 1 Cook ( Manoj ) , and 12 Low altitude porters .  Bought some Vegetables and last minute groceries  and were ready for takeoff , just then it was informed that due to 2nd October Nehru Institute of Mountaineering will be closed , hence the next day we will get our Koflachs and Carmpons  for high altitude walking on snow .


3rd October 2004 .

After a good nights sleep and fully refreshed , we packed our stuff in the bus and departed for NIM ( Nehru Institute of Mountaineering ) in Uttarkashi . When we reached there we realized  that being a sunday , NIM was closed and hence our equipment would be available the next day . Thanks to Col. Abhay the chief of  NIM and our Indu Anand who cordinated with the Army officer and ensured that we got our stuff on sunday itself.

We left NIM at around 2.00 p.m. and reached Gangotri at around 6.00 p.m. and cheched into the GMVN rest house at 6.30 p.m. We had a brief meeting where our Expedition leader Hari explained to us some guidlines and ethics to follow during our trek to Mt. Thelu .

Me & Pankaj walked around after the meeting to acclimatize ourselves and visited a few places such as the main Gangotri Temple , the massive suryakund falls and the Pandu Gufa . 

4th October 2004 ( Gangotri - Bhojwasa 14 kms ) 

After breakfast of Paranthas and Dalia we got our packed lunches and proceeded for our first destination Bhojwasa a trek of 14kms from Gangotri . It was a fairly simple and straightforward trek with some good landscaping and wild life to be seen . One has to be very careful while crossing some areas where stones keep falling from the top of the hills due to moving herds of Ibex ( mountain goat) . The route to Gaumukh takes you through 2 major stops one at Chirbasa (8kms from Gangotri) and the second one at Bhojbasa (11kms from Gangotri). Great weather means some superb scenery and we just did not have that. We halted that night at Bhojbasa. How close we were to some of the most beautiful and some of the most talked about peaks in the Indian Himalayas became evident only the next morning. The view of Bhagirathi peaks (I, II & III), all towering over 6100mts, right in front of us, some 10kms away from where we stayed, held us spell bound. And this was just the beginning . We were lucky to get a tent accomodating all eight of us at the GMVN rest house .

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