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Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Kohoj

Kohoj was the first trek of the season. We were 7 of us and had booked a vehicle. A couple of them were first time trekkers.

When we set out in the morning, we realised that one of the first timers had dropped out. That made it quite a comfortable journey for us in the Tavera. We stopped by for tea and then set out again. The first trek of the season.

It was a period of recession and the monsoon was also playing truant. It normally rains quite heavily by that time of the year. But this year even the pre monsoon showers were not there.

We reached the base village Vaghote at around 830 and started trekking. I had just had dialysis the previous night and due to cramps I had not even slept well. It might have been due to the fact that I was so excited about the first trek of the season.

The villagers showed us the way to the lake. They told us that we had to go around the lake and then the ascent would start. We kept going around the lake. Suddenly there was a dead end. We shouted out to a cowherd in the distance who pointed us to the other side of the lake. We had taken the wrong side. As we were moving towards the lake, I saw a huge snake slither into its hole. It might have been scared by our presence. I must say the feeling was mutual.

It was quite hot. The cloud cover made it dark and there was no wind. This normally means imminent rainfall. It rained yes but not heavily. It just drizzled. Another proof that the monsoon was poor and had not picked up. I was sweating like a pig. (Never seen a pig sweating though)

The climb was not tough, but at a point in time, I started feeling giddy. My sugar levels had gone very low. I replenished it with some glucose powder that we were carrying. And resumed the trek. After a while I started feeling giddy again and blacked out. Luckily I didnt collapse. And now I got a bad bout of cramps in my stomach. It was a signal to me that my body was revolting. It needed to rest. My friends stopped for me. But I could not become a liability to the group. They had to reach the top irrespective of whether I could be there with them.

I offered to drop out. One of my friends offered to return with me. I vetoed the idea and told them to go ahead. I walked back. Suddenly under the leaves i first heard and then saw another snake slithering away. This time I was alone. And I was more scared than the first time. As I walked towards the lake I felt giddy again. I was not having the glucose with me. I stopped by the lake. Sat there for a while and then resumed my journey to the vehicle.

Once back, I requested the driver to take me to the nearest junction where restaurants were available and had a very early lunch. That was very refreshing. I was back to normal. Maybe I should have had a good breakfast and that would have done the trick.

Anyways, it was a long wait till everyone returned from the top. We stopped for a snack break for the rest of the gang and then came back to Mumbai.

The first trek of the season had ended. For me it had not. It had just started .................