On my way back from my exam, I had decided along with my friends to visit Parasher Lake.
After 3 hours, we had reached downhill, but we wanted to go a little further up the hill. But due to snowing, it was difficult for the car to move forward and it was already the evening time by then. Weighing the danger of traveling further ahead in the nighttime, we told the driver to stay there for the night and wait for us to get back here in the morning for the continuation of our journey ahead.
It was the very first and last time I and my friends had done trekking in the night time.We were at an unknown dark point, with absolutely nothing and nobody around us. We were walking with no set direction in mind. At a spot a few kilometers ahead, we saw a valley with the house lights blinking like stars.
We stood there under the moonlight for a while just absorbing and admiring the breathtaking view in front of us.
We again started to walk until we reached a point where the path was splitting into two; one path went in the left direction and the other went up the hill. My instincts told me take the path up the hill and so I did. But unfortunately, we lost our way because the path was leading nowhere. However, suddenly, we spotted an animal’s shining eyes in the distance and lit up our torches in its direction. It stared right back at us. It was only for the knife in my hand which had me lighting up the torch in its direction even though I was terrified to bits. However, in a few moments it ran away.
Next on our way, we spotted foot-marks and wrappers lying on a 5-6 feet wide pathway which was at least 8-9 feet below the ridge. So we decided to jump from there. But upon jumping, I got trapped into a tree-well. My body up to my chest and my hands which held the knife and my torch were stuck in the snow.
With constant wriggling and with the help of the thrust due to the bag on my back, I was able to come out of the snow along with my torch but my knife had gotten lost. When I was out and we finally checked our surrounding with the torch light, the area where we had jumped turned out to be a watershed. As dangerous and funny it was, we kept on moving forward with exhaustion and thirst being our travel companions. Our feet were freezing from the snow but our upper bodies were trapped in heat from the walking with sweat dripping down our heads. The time was around 10 pm in the night and as the temperature kept on dropping, the water which had melted in the morning from the sunlight started to freeze. It was getting harder for us to move forward due to the snow drenched surroundings. We had almost given up but a ray of hope shone upon us when we spotted a house light approximately 5 kilometers from where we were. So we started to move in that direction but the path only got harder as the snow had finally converted into ice. We started to slip and fall. So, we had to take help of the sticks and tiredly were walking our way towards the light. But because the snow had fallen quite recently in the area, we were deep into it up to our knees. Somehow I and my friend managed to reach that house and brought back a snow cutter with myself to make way for my friends.
When all of us reached the house, we decided to flash our torches in the direction of the house. A man was there who was drinking at the moment. We shouted for him to help us and give us shelter. He turned out to be the caretaker and the house was a Forest Guest House which was the only accommodation on that hill for the winter time. We had informed him of our coming beforehand but since it was so late in the night, he had assumed that we wouldn’t arrive now. He was the only person in the house. Before our arrival, he had informed us to bring with ourselves whatever food we wanted to have since the shops were only found in the down hill areas. So we handed over the food items to him and rested in front of the room heater. After a while, he arrived with food and somehow, also our happiness.
That was the end of my one and only night trek which had brought with itself a danger filled adventurous story; a story which none of us would ever forget.