Kedarkantha Trek Day 02

CONTINUED FROM  - Kedarkantha Trek Day 01

Day 02 - 28-Dec-2021

Route - Juda Ka Talab To Kedarkantha Base Camp

Distance - 4 KM (3h)

I wouldn’t say that I had the best sleep of my life, but it was not bad either. I woke up a few times in the middle of the night, but then, that is normal. In the morning, even though the water in my bottle was freezing, I had to brush my teeth and wash my face. We were served hot black tea at around 7:30 AM.

For those who have a doubt regarding toilets, a few tents, with pits dug inside it, act as toilets. Generally, you finish your business and use a shovel to fill it up with some mud. Therefore, they are generally very clean; but not here. There were too many people and the place wasn’t clean enough. But then, one of the things that a trek teaches you is to adapt to the situation. You can also choose to go into the woods. 

Breakfast was served on time. Poori-Bhaji was delicious. We began our trek at around 10AM. As we climbed higher, the trail got slippery and demanded us to be extra cautious. Abhishek had a terrible sprain from the previous day. He struggled to walk fast. Nitin stuck to his speed. The rest of us tried to match up to Chauhaun Ji’s haste. 

We reached Juda ka talab in half an hour. At this time of the year, the lake is frozen and thus is a point of attraction for visitors. There were several people walking or sliding on it. Looking at the crowd, I refrained from going any closer. This wasn’t anything new for me at least. I had been on Frozen lakes at Twin lakes, Colorado. But for many this was an interesting sight and a moment to capture some cool Instagram reels. 

The dhabas along the way seemed like a distraction to me. Generally when you trek, you do not expect any facility along the way. But due to this trek's popularity, the villagers have found a way to encash this opportunity. I remember Prakash's brother (who is also a guide and runs a trekking group) telling me that during this peak season, everyone wants to make as much money as they could. 

As we climbed higher, the views got better and better. We were surrounded by snow which seemed to enhance the tree colours. 

We reached our camp at around 1PM. Located at 11,250ft, Kedarkantha Base Camp stands at one of the most beautiful  places along the trek. From here, we could get an excellent view of the surrounding mountains. 

The camp had two levels. At the lower level, our tents were pitched. At the upper level, the kitchen and dinning area was set up. After lunch, we headed to our tents. This time, we had twin sharing tents. I shared my tent with Nitin. He told me that he had decided to give up in between, but then his friends motivated him and he kept going. Reaching the base camp itself was a great achievement for hi, he thought. He did not want to strain himself further to reach the peak. Abhishek, who was injured, also did not want to trek and worsen his sprain. So, it was 7 of us trekking to the peak next morning. 

We met a lot of people in the camp, who had come under prepared. There was a jovial lady from Gujarat, who joked that many had turned up here after watching Instagram reels, without realising how difficult it could be. Many in her group also chose not to continue to the summit.

Kedarkantha trek is promoted as an easy trek. The climb indeed is easy, but in summer. During winter, the cold makes it a moderate level trek. Also, we had to wake up at 3 AM and trek to the peak to watch the sunrise. That meant, it was going to be very cold. The peak was visible from the camp. It was one cold night away from us. 

Evening, the sky turned into a colour palette. As the earth was painted white with snow, the colours on the sky looked prominent. 

But, as the sun set, the temperature also began to drop. We were unable to stand outside for a long time due to the cold wind that blew past us. As soon as we poured boiling water into the bottle, it turned cold almost immediately. Within few minutes there were ice flakes forming inside. It was terribly cold. The temperature had dropped below -10 degree celsius. I seriously doubted if I could wake up at 3 AM and trek next morning. 

We assembled at the dinning room and began discussing our experiences. I told Piyush that this was going to be my first and last winter trek. He asked me to watch 14 peaks, a movie on Netflix, hoping that it could motivate me to keep going. I have lived in Colorado Springs, which often sees blizzards in the month of March or April. But the biggest difference between that experience and this is that over there you hardly step out. The house, car, office or shops all have heaters. The only time you are exposed to the cold is when you walking to or from your car. 

We were served hot soup and then dinner. As the food went in, we felt warmer. As we could not drink a lot of water in that cold weather, some liquid, in the form of black tea or soup was served regularly. 

With 5 layers of clothes, two pair of socks and a head cap, I still felt cold inside the sleeping bag. All of us brainstormed and figured out that there was something wrong with the tents. It wasn’t insulated properly. There were two perforated windows in the inside layer of the tent, that missed a cover. Air could enter through the gaps in first layer and make its way into the tent through these windows. But the staff did not seem to have the covers for them. We crawled into the sleeping bags and went to sleep.

At around midnight, I woke up and saw that Nitin was awake. When I enquired, he told me that he was feeling terribly cold and he could not fit into the sleeping bag. I woke up and noticed that he had barely entered the bag. I helped him into the sleeping bag and zipped it up, as far as possible. Luckily he had a blanket too. So, I covered him with the blanket and he felt much better. I strongly feel that the trekking groups should have a few over sized sleeping bags with them. This was a feedback, along with tent insulation, I shall provide to HT. 

When I wake up in the middle of the night, I feel that my moth goes dry. I need some water before going back to sleep. But, the water inside my bottle was completely frozen. I sipped a few drops from it and tried to go back to sleep. 

Continued Here - Kedarkantha Trek Day 03


  1. I applaud you for braving the weather. Many people think consumption of alcohol will make you feel warm. The opposite is true. Alcohol will reduce your body temperature. And, thanks for the wonderful photos.

    1. SG. I Concur. Many visitors had brought some alcohol with them. But, personally, I am against the consumption of alcohol while trekking, because it also makes you lethargic.

  2. Contact me for Kedarkantha Trek we are direct local organization from sankri 7534079784


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