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In love with the mountains

| Updated on October 16, 2020 Published on October 15, 2020

A mountaineer compiles memories of his journey to Mount Kailash in the form of a book. Here are glimpses from the expedition

The trek to Kailash and Manasarovar was a divine intervention, a design by the great ecosystem called Nature. It was not just calling me — it seduced me, cast me under its spell and led me by an invisible hand. For 32 days, I was in a trance — traversing range after range, crossing high-altitude passes, jumping over brooks, feeling every living and inanimate being in conversation with me. The silence spoke. In that rarefied atmosphere, hunger, thirst and aches were inconsequential. What mattered were the mountains, their wonder, the awe and my insignificance. Kailash: Jewel of the Snows is an account of that interlude, which swings me time and again to the Himalayas.

Kailash: Jewel of the Snows; Rajinder Arora; Nirala Publications; non-fiction; ₹895

 

It is not about running away from cities, home or responsibilities; it is about craving and desire for that which makes me feel alive. Thousands of feet above on a mountain top, closer to the stars and, possibly, the heavens, the universe throbs inside me, it talks to me.

No sooner I am in the plains than I start planning the next trip. One thing that saddens me the most is leaving the mountains and heading down. It is like parting from the beloved. It is agonising; the longing is so strong that I feel like turning back midway to return to the snow-clad peaks, rocky cliffs, glacial streams and scent of the pine and deodar. The unending trails lead you to the top, the place where you are one not just with nature but with your inner self — where nothing but peace prevails. We are in love, mountains and I.

Rajinder Arora is a Delhi-based mountaineer and entrepreneur

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Published on October 15, 2020