I got up thanking god that i was not eaten up by the bear at night. Thanks to Ninoy and his hypothesis of the bear, we all were shit scared. So scared that we had to go in groups for our morning chores :) After i was done i heard some weird noises deep in the jungle. I was so scared that i literally came running to the camp. A little later we were served good poha which i thulped before starting off for ratnapani. As always the initial part was a steep descent. Like always i was doing the math and something startled me. We had to ascend 2000 ft that day and we already descended like some 400 ft in the first hour or so!! That meant for the rest of the day we had to do an additional 2400 ft. Compared to the 1400 ft we did in the first day this was very scary.

For the next hour we kept trekking up and down until we reached a waterfall. The next climb was terrific. It was a 70 degree climb and that was by far the steepest i have ever trekked.  It was getting scarily steep as we climbed up and up. After half an hour of climb we all sat down till everyone of us gathered. Polls made the mistake of not sitting with us and then decided to go down and give up on the trek. He had a fever last night and that had a toll on him. I kindly offered to carry his sandals and everyone took some bit of his luggage.

We started climbing again and the trek started to get very tiring. The scenes were awesome from those heights but none of us had the energy to admire them. The sandals on my back started to become deadly. Rena had tied them to a side and everytime i climbed a rock, they sway and tilt the rucksack position. I almost lost balance once and if i had not latched onto a branch i would have been down a few hundred feet. Not losing hope we kept going on and on. The climb got steeper and more dangerous after a while.

Every time I convinced myself that the peak i see was the end and mustered enough courage to get to the peak, only to realize there was another peak up ahead. This must have happened some 10 times in all, before i gave up hope that the lunch point was any near. Every 10 steps i took, i took a long pause breathing heavily and then carried on. These long pauses started to make the trekking a lot easier. We were now in excess of 10000 ft and the dip in oxygen levels started to show. After trekking for 3 hours at such steep gradients, we finally reached the lunch camp at 2PM.

We were all so hungry that we thulped chapati and aloo (something i started to like now!!). We even got omelet courtesy a small shop where they sold everything at twice MRP. Still they felt cheaper than what we pay for maggi and omelet!! We started our way again at around 3.30 after taking few snaps and a short nap. We then crossed a couple of very scenic waterfalls and reached a very large meadow which was supposed to be the Ratnapani camp. But then we realized that the camp had been moved to a different location and we were up for a climb that would totally give a different perspective to philosophy all together. :P

Every step we took potentially had a life risk element and for a few steps we know there would be only one way to hell if we slipped. To add to all this the rain god wanted to make the trek more interesting. There were lightening and thunder but luckily the rain held on. We kept climbing up and up before Rena/Polls started to freak out a lot. I was already so tensed, that they freaking out got me to panic. To avoid more tension i got ahead and without thinking about anything and giving up any hope i still had of living i started climbing till I got to the top. I was greeted by the camp leader i was still surprised i had done it. I started to yell at the top of my voice. I was so happy, and the awesome views that awaited us at the top had me forget all the problems i had. The snow filled mountains were only a climb away from where we stood. We had a clear view of the entire panorama stretching from the Grahan Camp till the padri camp and a view of the Nagaru camp too!

I was the first to reach the camp and got to see everyone’s reaction when they finally finished it! Everyone looked freaked out and relieved at the same time. Just as we got to the camp site, the rain started to pour in. We all thanked heavens for the timing or else it would have been GG! The temperatures dropped abruptly after the rain. We were all frozen and shivering in the tents as they served some hot soup and bournvita in our tents. The tent had a slope and it was enough for me to slip from one end to the other hitting jishnu in the process. I freaked out even more thinking bear had my leg!! Rofl!! :)

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