To the mountain of the gods

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DREAM COME TRUE It's a difficult trek to the Adi Kailash but worth it
DREAM COME TRUE It's a difficult trek to the Adi Kailash but worth it

Adi Kailash is practically a replica of the Manasarovar

The Other Haven of Shiva
Hill after hill was climbed and now...
Behold, the last tremendous brow...
And the great rock that none has trod...
A step, and now is all and God... Sri AurobindoIt was a dream coming true when I accomplished an arduous journey to Adi Kailash despite chronic backache and dwindling stamina. I had crossed many valleys traversing 160 km to reach Adi Kailash, a replica of holy Kailash and Manasarovar Lake in China. The trail to Adi Kailash branches off at Gunji following the course of Kuti river along the Tibet border. Till Gunji river, the Kali forms a natural border with Nepal. Up till Budi en route to Malpa, I encountered huge waterfalls and wind swaying the tiny droplets to a melody. It was not possible to cross over without getting drenched. There was fear of losing grip on the boulders that had smoothened with erosion. Intermittently, signboards warned us to watch out for falling stones.At Malpa, heaps of boulders were reminiscent of the devastation in 1998, razing an entire village. A statue of Shiva, enshrined in the memory of those who lost their lives, boosts the rhythms of life and "Om Namah Shivaya" rents the air.The trek to Chhiyalekh Pass (3320m) is a steep one for next three km but promising with rhododendrons and wild roses. The terrace fields were blooming with red hue of a local pulse, keeping mind off the steep climb. As one reached atop the pass, the enchanting view of the Annapurna range in Nepal unfolded. The meadows skirting them were laden with multi-hued flowers.After ITBP verified our permits, a prerequisite for entering inner line border areas, we descended towards Garbyang. This sleepy village has been a mute spectator of nature's relentless pressure. Houses existing at three levels were leaning like Tower of Pisa, deserted for fear of imminent collapse. By evening we reached Gunji, situated at the confluence of the Kuti and the Kali merging from right side. The latter originates at the Kailash Mansarovar in China and Kuti at Adi Kailash.The mountains are devoid of vegetation and we struggled with the thin, high-altitude air. A pathway dotted with white and green painted bricks and signboard "Doorway to Adi Kailash" herald Kuti village, which is named after Kunti. The houses are made of huge stone blocks, each sporting colourful strips on dried deodar to ward off evil spirits.Chilly winds could not dampen our high spirits and we left early at 6 a.m. towards Jolingkong, (4572 m). The words of the ITBP personnel, "Mithi mithi chadai", proved true as the climb was killing. A message on a rock aptly announced: "Bas thoda aur". All our aches and pains vanished at the first glimpse of the Adi Kailash at Jolingkong.Its snow-clad peak was drenched in the crimson hue of early sun. Its image in calm waters of Parbati Sarovar was like a mirage that soon mingled with the ripples. It took an hour to do the three-km parikrama around the lake. River Kuti, whose course we had been following, takes it birth at Parbati Sarovar. At we drank in its indescribable beauty, these words echoed in my mind... "The mountain said to the man...
see my height!
The man said to the mountain...
see my determination and resolve...
and the mountain vanished."
Sonita kataria




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