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THINGS NOT TO DO ON A HIMALAYAN HIGH ALTITUDE TREK


By: Jolly November 12, 2017
Climbing a mountain peak or exploring the majestic Himalayas is the dream everyone nurtures deep inside their heart. Trekking through the Himalayas, if taken in the right spirit, can be extremely rewarding. On the other hand, wrong attitude and wrong preparation can lead to a disastrous experience. And nobody wants to do that after the long flight to India or even from India and all the efforts made to reach Himalayas. So here is a list of things to make your Himalayan trekking experience the best.

1) Don’t Cover Your Ears While Wandering Around

Ears are considered to be a good indicator of atmospheric condition to the brain. Your inner ears trap air and when you are at a high altitude or below sea level, the actual pressure and air pressure trapped in inner ears differ. This cause imbalance and to restore balance, you need to pop that trapped air out.

2) Cover Your Head

Covering your head is very important as it gives protection in every weather conditions like it will keep our head little warmer than body in winter, it will keep the sun off your face and on a rainy day it keeps the rain off your eyes.

3) Don't Carry Ego, Alcohol & Smoke

Ego is never good on mountains. Each one of us share responsibility to make it a successful event. At the same time consuming alcohol causes dehydration which isn’t good for trekkers at high altitude. It can head to AMS (Acute Mountaineering Sickness) also. Smoking directly affects your lungs and your reduced capacity in thin air deteriorates even further. Be calm and strong like a mountain to make the Himalayan trek experience happen successfully.

4) No Sleeping In Day Time

‘Climb high and sleep low’

Walk little higher for little distance, explore the place after reaching the camp not just to enjoy the nature but also get acclimatized with high altitude. Before retiring to your tents, you should hike up any mountain, gain some altitude let’s say around 500 feet, spend some time there and return to your camp before sunset. This hike is nothing but an acclimatisation walk. Any acclimatisation walk helps our body to acclimatise better to the camp altitude as the body was actually trying to acclimatise to the higher altitude.
So, don’t reach your camp and directly crash in the tent to take a nap. Wander around, explore the surroundings and let your acclimatisation begin.

5) Consumption Of Diamox Without Doctor’s Consultation

To avoid altitude sickness, many start taking Diamox. This medicine helps in acclimatising to the higher altitude. However, it doesn’t guarantee that you wouldn’t develop altitude sickness symptoms. Additionally, if you are not on a Diamox course and suffer from altitude sickness, you shouldn’t take Diamox to cure AMS. It doesn’t work like that. Diamox is more of a preventive measure than a cure for altitude sickness.

A Diamox course should start at least 2 days before the trek starts and continue till you are back at the altitude when you started the course. Discontinuing the course during the trek can trigger altitude sickness symptoms rapidly. Diamox has some side effects like strong sensation in the mouth and on the tongue, day mouth and increased urine amount which dehydrates your body quicker than normal. So, if you are on a course of Diamox, it is recommended to consume 6-7 litres of water every day instead of 4-5.

An alternative for Diamox is Cocoa Leaves, Beet Juice, Ginger which is an Ayurveda medicine to fight altitude sickness.

You must always consult your doctor before taking any form of medicine for high altitude.

6) Don’t Take Unnecessary Breaks

Aim to finish the day walking the same speed at which you started. Think about rhythm and flow. Tortoise rather than hare. Don’t stop anywhere on your own, Take break on proposed stops.

7) Don’t Be Either Too Fast Or Too Slow


Moving too fast will make one tired easily and if too slow, you might be left behind. Try to walk at steady pace so that you reach campsite before the time.

8) Avoid Jerky Movements

Making jerky movements like jumping can be risky and is also not good for joints as you will have to trek more on further days. And you understand that coming back is mandatory on mountains.

9) Protect Body From Getting Overheated



After 20-30 minutes of starting the trek, remove excessive clothing if you are sweating a lot. Maintain body temperature when resting by putting on a windproof jacket.

10) Walk, Don’t Run


Trekking is not a race; it’s a fun activity which if done at steady pace is more enjoyable. Do not try to compete with fellow trekkers while trekking. You are not in a race, so enjoy the trek, nature and your company.

11) Don’t Take Photos Without Permission
 
Ask anyone before taking a photo, as many people prefer not to be photographed for personal, cultural or superstitious reasons.

12) Don’t Use Earphones 

Rather than listening to the noise of life along the trail some people prefer to plug into a Music Players. Doing so puts you at greater risk from animals and rock fall. There are good chances that you can miss on an important sign from your fellow trekkers or Outdoor Leaders.

13) No Fire

As it may cause the forest fire sometime and It’s not allowed in many areas in Himalayas.

14) Don’t Pollute Water And The Mountain


Plan to leave with the rest of the trek crew to ensure that your campsite is cleaned up and garbage carried out (it's eco-conscious, and also avoids the possibility of any of your belongings being accidentally discarded).

15) Avoid Creating Unnecessary Noise

Creating noise or Shouting may trigger Avalanches in avalanche prone areas. Don’t disturb the local wildlife, it’s their home and you are visiting. So, make sure you leave nothing behind but your footsteps and leave with nothing more than a few good memories.

16) No Cotton clothes on High Altitude

Cotton  is not efficient at keeping human body warm at such a cold temperature and it takes ages to dry. Ditch all the cotton clothing out of your pack and replace with items made of pure merino wool (or a merino/synthetic mix). These fabrics absorb sweat away, keep you warm, dry quickly, and are breathable. 
Trekking in Himalayas will be fun if done in certain manner and these small things are followed and you will come to know how enriching experience it was after the trek no matter how hard it was during the trek. 

We hope all these tips would help you on your treks. 
Keep trekking and live healthy! 

Feel free to call or email us if you want to know more about Himalayan Trekking.

Himalaya ka tempo high hai and so shall be yours.

Tags: trekking in himalaya , trekking essentials , indian himalaya , winter treks , what to wear on treks , diamox , head cap

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