Trekking across the Buran Pass, Himachal

She knew. I could tell she knew that I was in pain. I had been making sure that the violent negotiations between my calves and knees were kept to, well, myself. But she could see through it.

I was determined to take myself and the 20 kilo pack on my back, safely to wherever the trail ended. This was the last, and particularly gruelling, day of a 6-day-trek across the Buran Pass. And I was not going to let my knees or calves come in the way of my finishing the trek. I was not going let myself get distracted by a little bit of pain.

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Hiking in the Spiti valley

In June I traveled almost the entire length of the Spiti valley in the ‘European backpacker’ style. Using local buses (non-a/c with non-reclining seats), hitching rides, and hiking– from village to village and from monastery to monastery; eating in ‘dhabas’, staying in village homes, monasteries; making new friends (some of whom were perpetual travelers — they do not have a stable snail mail address)…

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Trek to Chandratal — the moon lake

Freezing temperatures, mutinous children and kindergarten values

Educational consultant Ajay Jaiman, 40, trekked to Chandratal over the Dussehra break last year with three other families—the Bhattacharyas, the Chopras and the Chakrabartis—ranging in age from 7 to 51. Despite a recent heart attack, which has postponed a high-altitude lake expedition this summer, he has not given up on physically demanding outdoor breaks

I like to be outdoors when on vacation. Therefore, most of our holidays tend to focus on the outdoors and are often activity-oriented. We have a core group of three families with children in the same age group who go trekking together. Chandratal had been on the cards for some time. As a group, we had seen pictures, talked about it, and my family had been in the vicinity during one of our driving holidays some years ago. The Dussehra break in schools is not long enough to plan a long trek, and Chandratal seemed doable. We knew that the passes may be a challenge and the altitude could require some acclimatization, but apart from that, we thought it would be good.

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Trekking to Beas Kund

Seven adults, five kids take a trek to Beas Kund, moving away from the trodden path and opting instead for a route that is spectacular, challenging, and at times, downright tricky. The oldest beyond 40; the youngest a little over 6. On our trekking holiday in Manali, we were joined by our friends, their friends, and two trekking titans. The result: a life-changing, mind-bending, muscle-opening experience that every one is just waiting to revisit.

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