Published 16 Mar 2020 Author Amrita Das

Climbing the mountains are addictive. Every year, I relentlessly go back, see, explore more and become a little bit more alive.

And yet, it is different each time.

Even though the Valley of Flowers and the Hemkund Sahib trek isn't a tough one, in comparison with the more strenuous ones along the Himalayas; this one was a particular challenge—a first trek with strangers, a first trek with an adventure group and a realisation of a dream. 

As the days progressed, I realised how each day a new motivation introduced itself in my life and helped me overcome these challenges.

The group I trekked with was diverse, young IT professionals with a sense of humour to middle aged, spirited couple to sensible woman adventurer. These people were contributors to my every day happiness.

GIO Adventures’ polite, organised and very experienced trek leaders are a world apart. While I know it is difficult to plan these ‘group treks’ with a bunch of seasoned trekkers, from different parts of the country, I was in awe of the smooth delegation and execution of tasks by each of the team members. Sure, encouragement and patience are an important aspects of every guide, but so is tact and honesty. Yashpal and Govind are well balanced ends of this spectrum.

The luxury tents in Ghangaria and the comfortable rooms in Auli were other features which enabled the journey to become even more memorable. And GIO’s other pamper techniques include delicious, hot food (packed food during each hike), the clean and warm blankets (really, where are those from?), hot water every morning in Ghangaria and delectable dessert after every meal. I don’t remember the last trek I did with all these luxuries.

How was the trek? My narrative in the links below are descriptive of my experience. The highlight of my trek continues to be the people I climbed with, from the strangers to the guides and their stories. 

After all, ‘life is about the people you meet and the things you create with them.’

Valley of Flowers and Hemkund Sahib: A Trek with Strangers
Valley of Flowers and Hemkund Trek: Things to Know Before You Go
People of the Garhwal Mountains, Uttarakhand

Facebook album: Valley of Flowers and Hemkund Trek

Author: Amrita Das

Amrita is a freelance travel writer and full-time travel blogger at Travelling Ides of March . She quit her corporate job to become a traveller. She has been contributing to some of the top publications including National Geographic Traveller India, The Hindu and Fah Thai (in-flight magazine of Bangkok Airways). She propagates female solo travel and shares her experiences from off-beat, culture and adventure travel through her writing.

Recognition & Association

Recognised by Ministry of Tourism, Government of India as an Approved Adventure Tour Operator