Greetings everyone! Today I want to talk about an adventure I recently went on to the worlds highest point and back, how it took me 9 years to prepare for this and how I raised 50 lakh rupees to fulfill this 9 year long dream. But I am not just going to talk about my experience on the mountain. I am going to talk about how to break the barriers of your own mind, overcome all the excuses and how to climb the bigger Everest within you and once you overcome the mountain within, you can do whatever you want.
Everyone asks me how did this dream of climbing Everest even come to me? From sea level to the top of the world? Why do I want to do it?
The dream of climbing Everest started 9 years ago. As a kid, I was never athletic or into any kind of sports whatsoever. In fact, I used to hate sports. In my school PT period, I used to avoid playing anything. I wasn’t good at academics either. I had no focus or clarity in my life. I was a lost child. The world around me had convinced me that good marks and excellence in academics was the only way I could succeed and survive and because I wasn’t good in my academics, my confident level went down as I started growing up, making me an introvert.
In 2010, after my board exams during the summer vacations, I was just wasting my time at home, doing nothing productive. One evening in May, my dad was seeing random news and he suddenly called me in. He told me to see the news coverage of a 16 year old boy from Noida who climbed Everest. I sat and saw the coverage and the way he was explaining his experiences, something happened to me. It caught my imagination and I thought to myself that this is another world altogether and even I want to experience this. I asked my dad, how do I experience this? He was like you can never climb Everest. It takes years of preparation and its too risky. But you should definitely do a trek in the Sahyadris someday. I told him I want to do it now.
So we signed up for a trek to Mount Kalsubai, which is the highest peak in Maharashtra. It was summer time so it was a night trek. We reached the top in the morning and I saw the most amazing sunrise from there and as a 16 year old I thought, if the sunrise from here is so beautiful, how beautiful would it be from the top of the world? This was a turning point in my life. This where I told myself, that one day I would want to climb Everest. That’s where this dream of climbing Everest was sown into my head.
I knew nothing about what was actually required to climb Everest. I started doing treks every weekend in the Sahyadri’s and that’s when I started meeting people in the outdoor industry who knew a little bit more about mountaineering than me. That’s where I got to know that there are a few mountaineering courses in India which one can do where they teach ABCD of mountaineering. I enrolled myself for the Basic Mountaineering Course in NIM and that’s when a whole new world opened up for me. In the 28 days of training, day and night revolves around mountaineering. Lectures are held on mountaineering, in the evenings they show mountaineering films, all everyone talks about is mountaineering and mountaineers, there are pictures of mountaineering expeditions across the hostel and campus. This is where we learn a few basic snow, ice and rock skills. Few of our instructors had climbed Everest. I used to speak with them everyday about Everest and that is when I got to know specifically what is needed to climb Everest; experience wise and fitness wise.
In the coming few years, I climbed over a dozen peaks rising over the altitude of 6000 meters. The first peak I ever climbed was Stok Kangri peak in Ladakh which stands tall at 20,080 feet. Since then I climbed many mountains in Ladakh, Himachal, Uttarakhand, Sikkim, gaining very valuable mountaineering experience.
In 2017 I completed my Advance Mountaineering Course in HMI in Darjeeling and this is when I decided I thought that I have been dreaming of climbing Everest since so long. Now it is time for me to realistically think about it, set a target and work towards it with full focus. I set my eyes on Everest for 2019. It was game time now. No looking back now! Game time now!
I was confident that mountaineering experience wise I have good enough background. I needed to work on Everest specific physical fitness now and more importantly the massive funds required for it.
In the next blog I will take you guys through the rigorous fitness routine I went through to prepare my mind and body for the ultimate challenge a human can achieve