All posts filed under: Adventure Activities

backcountry snowboarding india

Where To Backcountry Snowboard In The Himalayas

Before anything, let me be clear… I am not a snowboard or a ski expert. I haven’t cleared any professional certifications, and neither have I been practising the sport since years. I am, in fact, so new to snowboarding that anyone would only call me a beginner. But mastering a sport is one thing, and knowing where to best do it, is the other — and speaking of backcountry snowboarding in the Himalayas, the Pir Panjal range near Sethan is perhaps one of the best options. I first visited Sethan, during the winter of 2017 where I met a group of North Americans who just wouldn’t stop bragging about the nearby ski-slopes. It was their third consecutive winter there. During the entire week I stayed in Sethan, and between all those chilling winter nights conversations, I found them constantly boasting about how exciting the slopes in Pir Panjal can be. “The thrill in snowboarding in the wilderness of the Himalayas is unparalleled, and this place is just so perfect,” one would repeat every two hours. …

My First Bungy Jumping Experience: A Few Seconds Of Insane Courage

I don’t think I can do this. What if I collapsed amidst air — a nervous breakdown, a heart attack, or something worse. My mind was constantly pleading me to reconsider. Fear had almost overpowered me. All excitement had momentarily turned into an undeniable panic. Things became even uglier when someone else jumped before me and screamed their guts out. I was going to be next! I remember my instructor constantly asking me to stop shaking my legs as he performed the safety checks and tied a harness above my ankles. His motivation counselling felt of no use either. “just don’t look down. Look up. Look up,” he repeated at least half a dozen times. “And how are you supposed to look up while you’re falling upside down,” I asked myself. But that was all I had. It felt like the best advice and sounded like an assurance. JUST DON’T LOOK DOWN! And then the moment came. With both legs bound together, I started walking like a helpless penguin. As I stood on the edge the instructor asked if everything …

My First REAL Motorbiking Experience

As I grabbed myself in the tiny corners of my flat in New Delhi, and started typing a set of careful words — an effort to pen down the itinerary we followed during our motorbiking expedition in Jammu — I realised what I’d left behind. There are some experiences that leave an imprint in our life, depart us with many uncountable memories, and this one week ride I ended up being a part of, with 60+ riders from across India, was definitely one among them. It is kind of comforting yet troubling at same time thinking about how until yesterday we were riding as a one big family while sharing our little lives together every minute. And today, almost everyone departed on their own, with some, a pair of wet-eyes and some, a heavy heart — very much like this pictures, with one frame saying two different stories altogether. I always thought that riders are hard-hearted, their instinct and mind work slightly differently than us — the-non-riders-bunch. I thought they are so particular about things and mean-spirited towards the entire business …

Looking For An Offbeat Motorbiking Trail In Himalayas? Try Jammu To Killar

During the past few months, and particularly after writing a few blogposts about my motorbiking trip in Spiti Valley last year, if there was one question I was repeatedly being questioned, it was “how commercialized Spiti Valley is.” And innocently, I always only answered, “not at all”. I mean if you compare the Buddha Circuit in Spiti Valley, that, in reality, takes you to some of the most untapped and isolated corners of Indian Himalayas, with the much commercialized and beaten Leh-Laddakh, what else would you anyway say. Though in reality, Spiti Valley is still pretty untapped, and there are times when you are driving there for hours without spotting any trace of life — the fact is, with soaring popularity, Spiti Valley is getting crowded everyday. But not so in parts I ended up exploring with Jammu & Kashmir Tourism, recently. During my recent motorbiking tour with J&K tourism, with 60 plus riders from across the country, we explored places like no other. Our route-map took us to exactly what the expedition title promised, “exploration of …

My First Snowboarding Experience

Confidently balancing on my board, gliding down the slope with all the grace of a gazelle, I slid for a few metres before finally landing on my chest. The last night’s fresh snow absorbed the hit every time I crashed, as I tried polishing my left and right turns on a snowboard! A few weeks ago the lovely folks at NorthlandAdventures, in Manali, invited me to try a few days of skiing or snowboarding with them, at their ski hotel, Sethan Heights, in the town of Sethan, in Himachal Pradesh. As they mentioned it, my (first) reaction was ‘oh, bum … I can’t ski!’. Then I realised, this would mean learning something new, and I spat a Big Yes! For the next few weeks, crashing, getting uncontrolled, and other hazards made me wince every time I thought about my decision. But To hell with it… I’d already said yes, and there was no chance I was going to say No later! Located at 2770 metres above sea level, more than 700 metres higher than Manali, the village of Sethan, in Himachal …

My First Scuba Diving Experience

Life Underwater – a serene, slow-motion world, almost tranquil and unreal. The sun started dissolving slowly, as I deflated my buoyancy control jacket. The blue, hazy sea in front of me, slowly darkened. I remember the first time I started sinking I was half scared. The idea of leaving the world I knew better and entering into something far mysterious and eerie was undoubtedly scary. And the fact that every cry, every yell, will only going to be left unheard there, was moreover alarmingly daunting. For the first 5 minutes, I did not take my eyes off my instructor and the other two fellow divers. They seemed like my only hope. But as I slowly sank down, listening to a louder ‘pop’ in my left ear, I began to take shape and coming into focus. Nearly 12 metres down in the depths of the Arabian Sea, the life I saw, existing and moving was totally magical. And I remember I stopped breathing. It was not through fear anymore but from sheer awe and wonder. The …