Category: Other

How to choose the right backpack

In a very recent journey I met a good friend who’s been travelling in various corner of the country since more than a year. She asked me about the gears she carried.

She had problems about the most important gear a traveler needs to have in a good healthy condition. A BACKPACK…!

Luckily we were in right place to figure out more options about those gears. We were in adventure “capital” of the country, Manali. 😀 There are too many dealers and sellers in that small region with national and international brands. I could show her the difference between various quality and apt cost for the quality some of them charged.

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A man from Bidar

It was one of our regular weekend camping road trip, towards the end of a long Indian summer. Four of us were heading back to home from an obscure village on an obscure road in the interiors of Maharashtra. Coming across a roadside Dhaba, where we had least expected it, we halted for some freshly cooked food. We had been having packed food brought from home since last couple of days. We stuffed ourselves full with spicy jhunka, solid jowar rotis (called bhakar) and varan bhaat topped with ample ghee, prepared by a middle aged man who looked starkly different from locals of the area. Intrigued as to why someone would open up a Dhaba at such an odd place we started chatting with this guy who not only owned the place but also played the role of chef, cleaner, waiter and maître d’hôtel. To us, it was clearly not a wise business decision. Continue reading

Puppy Love / પ્રેમ મુગ્ધ

January ના પહેલા અઠવાડિયામાં શિયાળો જ્યારે મુંબઈને બરોબર ભીંસમાં લઈને બેઠો હતો, ત્યારે વહેલી સવારે ઉઠીને સ્કૂલે જવું એ એક શિક્ષા સમાન હતું. મમ્મીની લાખ બુમો છતાં હજી પાંચ મિનીટ સુવાની લાલચ લગભગ રોજ મોડું કરાવી દેતી. સાડા સાતના પહેલા period માટે અંતે માંડમાંડ સાડા છએ ઉઠીને અડધું પડધુ નાહીને હું દોડતો. નીચે મમ્મી scooter શરુ કરીને ઉભી હોય. કાંદીવલીથી મલાડ સુધીની 15-20 મિનીટની સફરમાં હજી એક નાનકડું ઝોકું ખાઈ લેવાનો અવકાશ રહે. પણ હાઇવે પરની ઠંડી હવા શરીર સોંસરવી નીકળી જતી હોય ત્યાં ઊંઘ કેમ કરતા આવે?

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Tips to prepare for a hike..

I got a crazy idea on sleepless night, of traversing the most glamorous highway in the world; Manail-Leh highway. Of course by avoiding walking on the highway all the time and exploring wilderness around, throughout whole geographical region.

Before implementing the idea, I started preparing and gathering as much information as I could to train myself for fairly “easy” but romantic and adventurous journey.

So here it is… Practicing following points will help you improvise in your performance. Continue reading

9 lessons from a Himalayan Snow Trek

1. Human body can survive harsh weather if the mind is ready to!

There’s a reason why this is the first point I want to talk about. I took this trek (YHAI Dalhousie December snow trek) with my sister and her husband Hardik to introduce them to the beautiful aspects of Himalayas, that lay beyond the beaten tracks literally. But they quit midway!

There were about 50 people in the group and everyone faced the same weather yet some decided to quit the trek on the second day after the first day of intense cold and difficult walk (the trek in the mountains had not begin yet – this was Banikhet to Dalhousie). While those who stayed were equally skeptical of how the days ahead were going to be. Continue reading

ત્રીજો માર્ગ

સામાન્ય રીતે આપણા જેવા સામાન્ય સંસારિક જીવો માટે ઈશ્વરપ્રાપ્તિના બે માર્ગ દર્શાવવામાં આવ્યા છે – ભક્તિ માર્ગ અને જ્ઞાન માર્ગ. અલબત્ત, મારું દ્રઢપણે એમ માનવું છે કે આ ઉપરાંત એક ત્રીજો અને એટલો જ અકસીર માર્ગ ઉપલબ્ધ છે જે મોટા ભાગના ધુરંધરો આપણને કેહતા નથી. તે છે પ્રવાસ માર્ગ.

ભક્તિ માર્ગ (path of unconditional devotion to God) કહે છે કે પરમકૃપાળુ પરમાત્માની ઈચ્છા વગર એક પાંદડું પણ હલતું નથી. માટે જ તમારા બધા દુઃખ, ચિંતા, સમસ્યાઓ ભૂલી જાઓ અને ઈશ્વરને જીવન સમર્પિત કરી દો. Continue reading

How to pack your backpacks efficiently

Backpack weight is very important. The pack weight should be 1/4 of your body weight or less. Too much weight, just like blisters, can spoil a trip. Shoulders, hips, knees, ankles and feet are the stress points. Downhill hiking is much harder on joints. Uphill hiking stresses quadriceps and lungs.

Considering various experiments and experiences in Indian wilderness I have learnt how to pack rucksack properly. Still experimenting and still learning to improvise day by day. Thought will jot down a few pointers of best practices to pack your backpack for a hike. Continue reading

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