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Why the underrated Winter Snow Camp needs mention
Arjun Majumdar writes: The winter snow trek and skiing camp in Manali is the most underrated program in our calendar. I can see why.
People are generally confused about what they are going to be doing at the camp. Even the name “camp” makes people feel that it is for children. Far from being for children, the winter camp is perhaps one of the best holidays you’ll do in your life.
Here are a few reasons why:
1. First, the location. The camp is conducted at Kothi, 13 kms off Manali on the way to the Rothang Pass. Set in the midst of thick pine forest, with snow all around, staying at the camp is reason enough to do the program. Here is a picture of the Indiahikes base camp.
2. The camp is divided into two activities: treks and ski training – and that’s why it is called a camp – because it involves training. I am always amazed at the amount of skiing skills people pick at a short time. Here is a video of people skiing by the time the camp is over – it is bit of a fun video with people falling all over – but you’ll get an idea.
3. The treks near Kothi and then to Gulaba and Patalsu are vintage snow treks. The forests are thick and the snow virgin. The snow at places is waist high – and they have never been set foot on before. Making the first footsteps on fresh snow is a feeling that even poets find hard to describe.
4. The Patalsu peak trek is something that I won’t forget easily. Climbing to 12,500 feet to the Patalsu summit and watching the entire Kullu Manali valley covered in white is has left me wondering if there can be better sights to see in our Himalayas.
5. I hate to say this but the cost is an attraction too. The winter camp costs Rs 8950 per person. In winter just staying in Manali for 7 days would cost more than this. The Rs 8950 of the winter camp includes training fee, ski equipment (incidentally, each ski set with boots costs Rs 40,000), stay, all meals and local transport. Add to this the presence of Arti Gupta and her team as your trainers – frankly, it is madness not to do this camp.
The camp is not difficult but it does require a fit body. So prepare your body a bit before venturing for the camp.
The winter camp starts January 22, just when the snow is right and sufficient. We don’t do this camp every season. So take the opportunity and spend some grand moments in snow land -- especially if you are new to the world of trekking and camping. I would also strongly recommend this for husbands who want to introduce their wives to a new world of the outdoors.
To see all details of the Winter Camp visit the Winter Camp website www.wintercamp.indiahikes.in
To register for the Winter Camp click: Winter Camp Registration
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