This blog series is dedicated to Hampta pass trek – a crossover trek from Kullu to Lahaul and Spiti valley at an elevation of 14,380 ft which is the best monsoon Himalayan trek. This blog post is the experience at the third campsite – Balu ka Gera Hampta pass trek.
Hampta pass blog series pitstops
- How I prepared for Hampta pass trek
- Jobra – the dream campsite of Hampta pass trek
- Jwara – a wildflower meadow/ Jwara Hampta pass trek
- Balu Ka Gera – Paradise overlooking Mountains – Hampta pass trek (you’re here)
and more to write.
Still struggling with sleeping bags! Our trek lead’s wake up call at 6 am and I had to wake up! It was drizzling in the morning already! A beautiful day showered me with the raindrops as soon as I came out of the tent. Remember the wildflowers of Jwara, waking up to it made my day! Soon started with daily chores, and just imagine brushing teeth with raincoats on! 😀 Munched on breakfast, it was already late! It was 8:05 am, I was still lacing up my shoes and obviously got scoldings from the trek lead for not being on time 😐 With all these we started trekking to the magic of monsoon.
Jwara to Balu ka Gera trek starts
It was monsoon! It felt to me that – this must be the best monsoon day of my life! Yes, because it rained all throughout the trek. I started the trek with raincoats on, ears and head covered with a baraclava, sprinting with the splashing raindrops sinking into my cheeks! The initial stretch was trekking via bushy trails along the river. The atmosphere had fogged up making it more dramatic. To add the colours to the trail, there were these beautiful pink flowers called Bistoria Affinis bloomed to the fullest! Mungaru male rain tunes humming in mind syncing with the raindrops, and the petrichor scent which I can still remember, cannot ask more treat for this wanderlust soul!
A pitstop in the mountains on the way to Balu ka Gera
At 11 am, we crossed by a small pitstop where we all had delicious omelette and chai! We spent almost an hour time chit-chatting here, waiting for the order and having the food. We could notice suddenly that we all started feeling cold! That’s because the body is at rest and not moving, so body produced less warmth compared to when trekking. The trek leads soon gave a call to resume the trek and we felt better!
An adventure of snow walk – Balu ka Gera
After trekking for 2 hours, there was a drastic change in the views. The valleys became narrower and we trekked between huge mountains on either side. Soon the roar of the water disappeared and the silence of snow dominated the surroundings. The rock-solid white glacier patches became our way! They were not that white as I had imagined, they had brown mud deposits, making it look not so pretty 😀 (don’t call me racist :P). The surface was spiky, because of which most of us kept falling! Well, it requires some time and observation to master walking on the snow patch, which we mastered to some extent.
Another thing to be careful is that we can’t predict the snow thickness! It can be possible that you step on the thin ones means the patch mostly on the edge or attached to rock! That’s quite dangerous because its the chilling river which is beneath this snow patch! So be careful to watch out and follow the path which the trek lead takes than creating your own! The temperature drops were expected and the atmosphere fogged up in no time. The group looked like white walkers walking on the ice! 😀
Balu ka Gera Hampta pass
It was 1:15 pm, we spotted the yellow tents! Hurray, we were at Balu ka Gera at an elevation of 12,411 ft! Balu ka Gera literally means the mound of sand in Hindi. This campsite is believed to be formed by the dust and sand brought by the river. When we neared the tents, we found that the tents were on a slant surface and the campsite was a slush of mud. The washrooms may be at 12,460ft :P, which was again an effort to trek! The views were out of this world! The giant mountains surrounded us, A view of Mount Indrasan to the left and Hanuman Tibba to the right! The snow-capped mountains were a treat to watch! A lake kind of patch adding to the reflection of the mountains and the yellow flowers bloomed all over the campsite! One word – Paradise!
It was lunchtime and as already stated, the impressive plate of food from IndiaHikes delighted us! Our trek lead always said Ghachke Khao – meaning to eat as more as you can and we followed only this order of his sincerely 😛 The health records were at the edge of the eligible readings. It is 12,411 ft come on! It is 4 times more than the elevation of Bengaluru! I could feel the difference of inhaling capacity slightly when I sip the tea! Watch out for this experience and let me know 😀 The prominent thing was the amazing group of trekkers we were! It has been 3 days, we all got to know each other and a crazy group of friends already. Spent the night in the dining hall conversing stories, playing UNO 😀 It was tough to get highly demanded UNO cards! Sagar did his bit and was successful in getting us the cards 😀 It was total fun and it’s all so memorable! We dozed off to sleep happily 🙂
- Follow the already existing snow trail than creating own.
- Wear dry fit trek wear during the trek and keep raincoats handy.
- Change to dry clothes immediately once you reach camp if you are drenched. Otherwise, layer up for the night.
- Drink water as and when you stop during the trek. It’s necessary to stay hydrated.
- Cover your head and extremities to avoid heat loss from the body if the temperature drops.
- Consider sharing food in the same tiffin box, because washing the boxes in cold water is a tough task.
- Consider taking Diamox as per the trek lead’s say! Also once started, continue it strictly. It increases the body’s capacity to take in more oxygen. It increases urination rate and tingling sensation, which is normal. So no need to worry!
- Carry dry fruits which can boost up energy when tired.
- Please do not litter any waste in the mountains. Take them with you and dispose off once you reach back. Please save it for future generations.
This was the third campsite Balu ka Gera Hampta pass trek experience. If you have any queries, please email me or add comments here.
Also, Sagar has compiled a great playlist of the Hampta pass trek experience. Subscribe to SakreCubes channel.
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