Trek to Gomukh Glacier

Amogh Rohmetra
It was April 28, 2012, the day our school Mayo College, Ajmer was closed for holidays. Most of my school- mates left for their homes with their parents while some were waiting. But at Prithviraj house we, the trekkers were thinking when to leave for the trek to Gomukh Glacier.
Some experienced trekkers who were with us were narrating their experiences about their last trek. After lunch we departed from the school to the railway station where we boarded the Shatabadi train. The moment train started towards its destination, we, the impatient lot started playing in the train. Lost in fun and frolic, we did not know when we arrived in Delhi. As we were tired, we directly went to our hotel Vitz where we divided into groups for night sleep.The following day we had a hurried breakfast and left for Rishikesh with lots and lots of excitement. In evening, we were served snacks, tea and pakoras in hotel Natraj, Rishikesh. Thereafter, we were allotted rooms according to our groups again. After this we went to a bank near river Ganga and prayed to goddess Ganga.
After spending some time there, we got some juice and chips in the bus. After checking in a hotel we had our tasty dinner and went off to a sound sleep. The next day afternoon we went to Uttarkashi. On the way, we even visited a temple and a natural hot spring. After covering this tiresome journey we ultimately reached Gangotri (3,042m) from where our trek had to start. We rested for a whole day there. The next day, we went to see the main temple of Gangotri where our teacher told us that the glacier had receded 18 kms due to Global Warming. The following day, we did lots of shopping and did packing for the trek. We took lot of rest and woke up in the morning. We had Dalia and bread butter and afterwards started our trek. But before that we were given a chocolate and a pack of chips. It was a 18 kms trek. We were three staff members and 35 students.
First day, we climbed 8 kms to reach our camping site. In starting everyone was excited. We enjoyed our way as there was fresh air and the water of river Ganga. While trekking, we felt hot even when the temperature was very low, forcing us take off our caps, mufflers and gloves. After two kms some boys were left behind as they got tired. After a bit of rest, we continued our trek on a narrow path. Some children who wanted to be ahead of others were advised by our teachers not to do this. They said “it’s is not a race, not a rally, but enjoy the beauty of valley”. Being mountainous terrain, some areas were prone to landslides, some were very narrow and some were full of loose stones. During the journey we saw more than hundred of mountain goats that delighted us. After a long trek, we finally reached to the end of the tree line, a place named Chirbasa (3,350m) place having prime forests. As we were tired we had hot some water with salt followed by lunch and then went to our tents to take rest. The river Ganga was flowing near by and we played for sometime by its bank. Then again we went in our tents and came back with our torches as it was night. After having Maggie noodles we had to take pain killers as everyone was having a headache due to air pressure. The next day we woke up early and went up through a steep area . It was risky, as we walked through a land slide prone area. As we had to go through a very dangerous area our sir divided us in groups of 10-10 with one teacher. First, one group would cross then another group. After a long time, passing through a very risky area, some small land slides appeared, while crossing this track we chanted “Go Mayo” and “Ganga Mata Ki -jai” to overcome fear factor . We kept walking and reached Bhojwasa (3,792m) at a distance of 5 kms and went 1km further to the camp site. Bhojwasa is named after Bhoj trees which are in abundance here.
The camp at Bhojwara looks up to the Gurmukh glacier at a distance and has magnificient views of Bhagirathi series of peaks. There we saw Tibetan mynas, which had migrated from Tibet. We played a bit with the sponge ball and went to see the weather conditions. After some rest, we visited Lal Baba temple. We also sang many of our assembly songs. After that a person also came who sang a song for us and then one of my friends who is a good singer also sang. As it was very cold outside due to snowfall we were given soup to savour. At night, we went outside to have our dinner quickly. In morning we got up and we Mayoites were ready to reach our destination. Everyone was fresh. we got one perk chocolate each. After putting some cream on our face we set for the destination. With lots of excitement, we had to climb 5 kms in cold area. While going up we saw a shivling shaped mountain and then we saw Gomukh (3,989m), which made us excited. After some time, we finally reached our destination. I was the 8th boy to reach the destination. Later on the three teachers reached there with all 35 students. We climbed 18kms. We spent our time there. Everyone filled his bottle which we had got with us for Gangajal. We had our group photo with our Pachranga (mayo flag) near Ganga. Everyone was smiling with pride. After the photo-session, we descended back to Bhojwasa. We again went to temple there where we met a foreign group of trekkers.
They sang the songs which they could and we sang the ones we could. We had our all the meals outside the tent because the weather was good .The next day after the last sleep of the trek we walked down 13 kms. When we reached Gangotri, we first went to the temple and thanked God for the safe trek. Then we went to do shopping .After some shopping we straight away boarded our bus and soon reached Uttarkashi hotel where we first changed our clothes and took proper bath. The next day after noon we went to Rishikesh where we did rafting. In rafting, we faced three rapids. We even dived into the river several times. We did our last shopping here. The next day we rested whole time in Haridwar. After that we went to Delhi. From Delhi I flew with my mother to Jammu. It was a fabulous and an unforgettable experience.