The work pressure at office couldn’t stop the adrenaline flow gushing inside. The only thing I waited that evening was 9:15 PM, when we would board the bus for the upcoming trek. To every excitement, there is a spoiler. Of course, the greatest spoiler of all times is the Bangalore Traffic, while we waited eagerly for the call from GBL team. I and my friend scanned almost everyone at the Madivala bus stop. With the overload trekking bags, shorts and headphones, it was obvious that half of the crowd was travelling away from the hustle bustle of the city. With the speed of a snail, we hit the highway by around 11:30 PM or maybe later. The sleepy eyes were awakened by the shout out of the Trek leaders. To keep the night alive, we were lured into the introduction tradition of GBL team where half asleep we heard each one talk. Well aware of the fact that no one would be remembering any names or place where we belonged, still we kept chirping. A small halt to straighten our back at the tea stall and then we headed to our destination. Half of the bus decided to doze off and rest of them were now a part of the big game “Mafia”.
Early morning I opened my eyes to the most scenic place on this earth. Travelling through the hair pin loop drive, it was the Western Ghats that we had hit. Hopping off to the drop point where we wait for the jeeps to arrive disappointed us, all you could see was a mountain range covered in fog and pitter-patter raindrops. After long wait of 2 hours, the jeeps arrived and we headed for the roller coaster ride of our lives. On one side we could see the mountain range surrounding us, and on the other side the muddy pathway towards the homestay. By this time, we had lost the network of our phones and only thing you could hear was water streams flowing. Descending from the jeeps, the view left us awestruck. With the ticking clock, we had to get ready ASAP and start the journey. All set for the trek, super excited we began, our journey towards Bavikonda. Some of us were first time trekkers and others had been through few of them. For it was my first trek, I had confidence in myself until the time I slipped. Thankfully, I wasn’t hurt but I freaked out. The ups and downs during the journey kept me nervous and cautious all the time. I am glad that the leaders never left me alone and kept guiding me throughout. Every time we stopped to catch our breath and look around, the view was mesmerizing. A weather where it was sunny for a while and it rained the next instance. Reaching the top is an achievement, where you could admire the beauty of nature. A place which would remind you of the song by Coldplay “Call it magic”, it was a place which changed every second. A cloud kissing the mountain peak, far away a waterfall flowing through the mountain range, step farming, spine chilling wind and the sun playing hide & seek, an experience worth giving a shot. The next challenge was yet to come, descending down the mountain. I was the last one, slower than a tortoise, every step being guided by the last outdoor leader. I would have lost the battle if he would have not encouraged me on each step and guided me throughout. We completed our trek successfully in about 6 hours. While at the homestay, where everyone was busy cleaning up… I was busy cursing myself to be the stupid trekker, who fell many times and was the last one. Never did I know about the encouragement, I would be getting from the Outdoor leader that I never gave up. We slept off when after the camp fire, dance and song session to head for the waterfall in the morning.
0500 Hours, chilling cold, rain and a waterfall waiting… With great difficulty, each one of us managed to walk down to the waterfall. The magnificent waterfall flowing through the rocky hills was a view worth the sleep sacrifice. Most of the guys jumped and crossed the waterfall trekking ahead to explore the jungle. Frankly speaking, I couldn’t restore the courage to do that as I was in pain deep inside. After about an hour or so, we headed back and started preparing to leave. A two day holiday came to an end with a dance session, crazy stunts by the leaders. We started our journey back to Bangalore where again half of the bus dozed off, handful of them enjoyed solitude amidst the drive through the Ghats and the “Mafia” lot never got tired. We walked back with memories, experience and good friends.
Venky - A crazy leader, who knows the art of making people smile even in difficult times
Sheryas - A source of encouragement at every step
Navdeep - High on the motto “Keep calm and walk ahead”
Thank you GBL, it was a lifetime experience with you.
Thank you GBL, it was a lifetime experience with you.
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