As part of the preparation (about which I have already written here) there were other aspects too which had to be taken care of before we actually head out to the mountains. After some basic research, tips from other people who have been active trekkers and the guys at my trekking agency, I was able to compile a list of all the things which we were supposed to carry on the trek. Let me share the same list here albeit, in a much more structured way (I bet you would not like it if I share it the way I used it).
Let’s talk food!
No you don’t have to carry all your food items (as that is your trek agency’s job) but as you will have to walk for long hours during the day time, you will need a constant supply of energy. The best things to carry for such situations are, dry-fruits and chocolates. We carried the following:
- Kishmish (raisins)
- Mixed dry-fruits
- Snickers Nutri bars
- Small Five star chocobars
- Cadbury toffees
Glucon D(forgot to take it)
It might sound a bit more to some but believe me, you will thank yourself every-time you put that sweet toffee in your dry mouth while you are on the move or may be, taking a quick break on the side of a big mountain overlooking the fast-flowing river below.
What do we wear?
One good thing about packing for the mountains is that, you don’t have to carry a lot of clothes (you will hardly change or take a shower in the cold weather of mountains anyway 😉 ). The thing that worked brilliantly for us is, getting couple of quick-dry track-pants and multiple layers of fleece jackets topped with a light but good rain-protection. You never know when it is going to rain in the mountains. No matter in which trek, you will start feeling hot (maybe even sweating) once you start walking but as soon as you stop, the mountains will make you feel themselves. Having multiple layers makes it easier to take them off & on.
We carried the stuff listed below:
- Rain Coat (you can also take poncho if you prefer)
- Backpacks (we had a 40L & a 60L) with rain covers
- Trekking Shoes (Forclaz 500 for both of us)
- 2 pair of Quick Dry Tees
- 2 pair of Trek Pants
- 6 pair of Socks (1 pair woolen)
- Fleece Jacket ( 2 each)
Thermal jackets & pants(forgot to put them in the bag 🙁 )
- Heavy Jacket (for both of us)
- Sun Cap (very helpful)
- One Scarf
- Light towels (2 pieces)
- Fleece gloves (1 pair)
- Woolen gloves (1 pair)
Some random but useful stuff
One of the best things about being in the Himalayas is the fresh air you breathe in, the virgin beauty you see whichever way you turn and, the sweetest water you get to drink, straight from the mountain steams. All you need to do is fill it in a bottle and have a sip or even better, drink directly from the stream 🙂 . Also, you need to make sure you don’t step on one of the cold streams and wet your socks when you get out in the dark, flowing beside your camp. To be on the safer side, we carried the following things:
- 1 Water Bottle (Quechua)
- 1 Torch light with enough batteries
- 2 pair of slippers
- Extra poly-bags (for carrying wet clothes)
- Walking pole
- 10400 mAh Power bank
- Three mobile phones
- Safety pins
- Hand sanitizer
- Toilet paper (1 roll)
- Tissue Paper (1 big packet)
- Paper soap (1 packet)
- Wet tissue (1 packet)
Every single time I have been to the mountains, the simple cold & cough or similar nuisances have vanished on their own in the pureness of the Himalayas. However, in the past, even though I have been in the mountains, I have always been in and around civilization and hence had never bothered to take any medicines along. Of-course apart from Diamox which I religiously start taking whenever in the higher Himalayas. I took it during my ladakh trip and we took it this time.
- ORS (small packets)
- Dimaox 250 (1 strip)
- Vicks Vaporub
- Crepe bandage
- Band-aid strips (10 strips)
Apart from the fact that I just love being in the Himalayas anyway, photographing in and around the Himalayas is also something I really enjoy. Going on a trek in the Himalayas gives you a much better opportunity to shoot and capture the pristine beauty of the majestic mountains than you would get during any other form of travel. To make the most out of it, I carried the following photography gear:
- Nikon D3100
- Nikon 18-55 VR
- Nikkor 50mm 1.8 G
- Polaroid XS 100
- Lowepro AW 100 (with rain cover)
- HOYA ND8 filter
- SLIK Tripod
- Extra battery for DSLR
- Nikon intervalometer
Of all the things we took, I would not say there was any extra thing which I should not have carried. In fact, I missed my thermal inner-wear on the third day of the trek.
Note: The advice applies only for multi-day treks where your sleeping-bags, tents and fooding is taken care of by a trek agency (or someone else) .
Do you think I have missed something which should have been there in one of the lists above?
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You can also download the above listicles as pdf from here.