Sour Tal trek

sayshh

Member
27-05-2017: Summit - Sour Tal (3700 m)

If you have read the posts till now, you will know that I used to have sound sleep in the night - while others complained of fitful sleep. In Laanga Thach, a little while after dozing off to sleep I felt suffocated and woke up. Unsurprisingly, the other two tentmates - Sudhakar and Jai were already awake. They were also feeling the same way. The tent was flapping as it was windy outside. It was very cold in spite of having a fleece liner inside the sleeping bag. We took the hard decision of opening the vent window flaps even though it would make it even colder inside. After a while I fell asleep blissfully. Luckily it was just ventilation, not altitude or anxiousness.
:razz:


As already briefed on the previous day, we had to start much earlier than usual. The plan was to reach the summit and descend to Camp 4 (Mahili Thach) by (late) lunch time. Morning tea and breakfast were clubbed, which means we had to eat breakfast at 5:30 AM! Just imagine the campsite staff who prepared it so early in the morning.
=D>
We collected energy packs and started walking - slower members of the group were given a headstart.

Steep climb towards the ridge

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Right from the campsite the ascent was steep. After that we walked past some ravines and cliffs. Sun was shining brightly, but the wind chill negated the heat. Mid-way break arrived in an hour and half. By now we had reached the ridge of the mountain range and the landscape was a mix of grassy, snowy ridges and gentle slopes.

Climbing against the backdrop of mighty Mt. Indrasan and Mt. Deo Tibba towering in the Pir Panjal range

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Walking over gentle undulations for an hour brought us to… wait for it!
\\:D/


Yours truly at the summit
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Initial impressions were somewhat underwhelming. The small glacial lake formed in the depression was mostly frozen. Whereas spectacular scenery surrounded us from all sides here. Or rather we were a tiny element of nature. Most of the folks went down to the lake, some of us decided to stay back.

Beautiful scenery all around
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The icy breeze and pleasant warmth of the sunshine. The calmness and serenity. Breathing the pure but slightly oxygen deficient air, the spellbinding scenery all around. The time we spent at this place till others returned was one of the most blissful and peaceful times. We (Jai and I) clicked some photographs, got a feel of snow (for the first time), and just sat admiring the picturesque landscape. Our accomplishment was sinking in slowly. Once everyone was back, we had another round of celebratory photographs with the summit banner.

Hide and seek with clouds
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Instead of walking on grassy meadows, Ganga Ram coaxed everyone to glissade on snow. Those who were reluctant, including me got a “gentle” push. :D The fastest way to lose 100 metres of altitude! Some repeated the activity just for the fun of it. Our descent to Mahili Thach started from here. As legendary mountaineer Ed Viesturs used to say “Getting to the top is optional. Getting down is mandatory.
 

adsatinder

Plz Help Himabuj (Amit Tyagi) in Corona Fighting
We (Jai and I) clicked some photographs, got a feel of snow (for the first time), and just sat admiring the picturesque landscape. Our accomplishment was sinking in slowly. Once everyone was back, we had another round of celebratory photographs with the summit banner.
Where are photographs of Summit ?
Show us 360° View !
We want more !
 

sayshh

Member
Great Views !
Great Summit !
Great Memories !
Great Photographs !
Where are photographs of Summit ?
Thanks! Where I am sitting, and the next photo are the summit. :D By the way, the summit was not like a peak, more of a flat area higher than the nearby mountains. The lake was little below the summit. I am posting some more pictures (with due credit) to give better idea.

Towards the extreme left is Sour Tal a little below the summit "area", where I was sitting :razz:
SourTal406.jpg

[Picture credit: Sudhakar]

This is the direction from which we climbed - Mt. Indrasan and Mt. Deo Tibba in the backdrop
SourTal409.jpg

[Picture credit: Sudhakar]

Another angle of view, snow capped peaks all around
SourTal417.jpg

[Picture credit: Sudhakar]


Amazing write up man!!
Awesome photos.
Thank you Gaurav Dutt, much appreciated!
 

sayshh

Member
27-05-2017: Mahili Thach (3200 m)

Continued from the summit day and descending to Mahili Thach...

Having attained the pinnacle and the purpose of the expedition, everyone was in a cheerful mood. Ganga Ram also appeared more laid-back than usual. :-D We started traversing the ridge, crossing many snowfields. Patches of snow were slippery and required a fair amount of care to cross. The clouds were playing hide-and-seek with the Sun. It was a very pleasant walk. We marched forward in a jolly mood, cracking jokes and having fun.

Returning towards camp from summit
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High altitude cows grazing on grassy slope :p

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A little ahead, out of nowhere among the grassy slopes, there was a long patch of boulders. Some gaps were deep and wide enough for a person to fall through if they slipped. :shock: Though for a change, it was fun leaping and hopping over the boulders. There were a few thrilling moments while crossing deep crevasses. After the boulder stretch we stopped for a mid-way break.

Boulders among green carpet of greenery
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[Picture credit: Sudhakar]

Campsite visible below, steep descent
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[Picture credit: Jai]

From here the trail went visibly steeply downhill, we followed the trail and some time later we could see our campsite below. Another section of steep descent brought us to the level terrain where Camp 4 was located. Like Camp 3 (Laanga Thach), this camp was also on the edge of the treeline. We reached the campsite close to 2 PM and got the much deserved welcome drink.

Today we hiked for close to 8 hours, as against the usual 4 hours on other days. Soon after getting our tents allotted, we had lunch. Most of the people opted to rest and skipped the ziplining adventure activity after tea. I cheered the participants as usual and relaxed. After the activity, soup and dinner followed. Sudhakar was feeling somewhat uneasy, having had some sleepless night(s) before. Jai wanted to accompany him in his tent, so I volunteered to stay the night alone (another first) in a tent. It was quite dark by now, after shuffling our things around we settled into our respective tents. My initial apprehensions of sleeping alone were unfounded as I fell asleep immediately. :razz:
 

adsatinder

Plz Help Himabuj (Amit Tyagi) in Corona Fighting
27-05-2017: Mahili Thach (3200 m)

I volunteered to stay the night alone (another first) in a tent. It was quite dark by now, after shuffling our things around we settled into our respective tents. My initial apprehensions of sleeping alone were unfounded as I fell asleep immediately. :razz:
Ghosts came later for party !
You lost the opportunity !
 

adsatinder

Plz Help Himabuj (Amit Tyagi) in Corona Fighting
Thanks! Where I am sitting, and the next photo are the summit. :D By the way, the summit was not like a peak, more of a flat area higher than the nearby mountains. The lake was little below the summit. I am posting some more pictures (with due credit) to give better idea.

Towards the extreme left is Sour Tal a little below the summit "area", where I was sitting :razz:
View attachment 788211
[Picture credit: Sudhakar]

This is the direction from which we climbed - Mt. Indrasan and Mt. Deo Tibba in the backdrop
View attachment 788212
[Picture credit: Sudhakar]

Another angle of view, snow capped peaks all around
View attachment 788213
[Picture credit: Sudhakar]




Thank you Gaurav Dutt, much appreciated!
We want such images.
You are trying to hide all the views !
Show us videos if possible.
Post on youtube and post the url of the video here.
 
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