Basic Mountain Skills Course

from 85,800.00

A great introduction for anybody looking to do harder treks and beginner mountaineering summits, this mountain skills course focuses on navigating through snow and ice fields safely and for building confidence and enabling you to tackle difficult terrain with competence.

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  • Vacation Style Holiday Type
      Camping, Trekking
    • Activity Level Challenging
    • Group Size Medium Group

    May 17, 2019 - May 25, 2019

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    Basic Mountain Skills Course.

    A great introduction for anybody looking to do harder treks and beginner mountaineering summits, this mountain skills course focuses on navigating through snow and ice fields safely and for building confidence and enabling you to tackle difficult terrain with competence.

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    1. Day 0 DELHI – MANALI (2050M)

      Arrive at ISBT Kashmiri Gate by 8pm to board the bus to Manali. The Volvo Semi –Sleeper bus takes 13 hours to reach our destination. Board waiting vehicles to drive to our lodge away from the bustle of the city at Haripur – 15km away.

    2. Day 1 MANALI

      Reach Manali by early morning and transfer to the hotel. Relax in the morning. Afternoon hike to Lamadugh to get acclimatized.

    3. Day 2 MANALI - BAKARTHACH (3200 M)

      Drive 1.5 hours to reach Dhundi. From Dhundi we take a steadily ascending trail to reach Bakarthach, our base for the next few days. We learn some basic navigation enroute. Learn how to choose a campsite and set it up.

    4. Day 3 TRAINING & PRACTICE

      Spend the day on the slopes near camp practicing ascending & descending using toe-kicking & edging techniques on snow. The instructors help participants get the body position & body balance right. By the end of the day, you should be able to navigate steep snow slopes confidently.

    5. Day 4 TRAINING & PRACTICE

      Another day on the snow slopes. Practice everything learnt yesterday. Learn arresting your falls and get introduced to basic rope work.

    6. Day 5 TRAINING & PRACTICE

      On the snow slope again, we practice yesterday’s class and learn how to move roped up in a group and how to navigate a glacial field. Also practice belaying and team arrest.

    7. Day 6 TRAINING & PRACTICE

      Move to the glacier for some ice climbing! We practice the same skills learnt on the snow fields but with much more commitment. Come back to camp for the evening

    8. Day 7 HEIGHT GAIN

      We go up to a high point and get to utilise some of the skills we’ve learnt in the past few days. Back to the base camp for the night

    9. Day 8 MANALI - DELHI (5050 M)

      We wrap up camp and move back down to Dhundi where our cars await us. Drive back to Manali and catch the evening Volvo bus back to Delhi.

    Responsible Travel

    We believe that along with the privilege of adventure in the Himalaya comes a serious responsibility, the responsibility to protect and contribute to its ecology, cultures and its tremendous beauty. The “Leave No Trace” philosophy is followed to the letter and we work to minimize the environmental impact of our trips. We are scrupulous in our camping, cooking and sanitation practices; we limit the number of trekkers we allow to join us on our trips and the number of trips we lead in a given area.
    In wilderness, commercial agreements between service provider and client require a depth of understanding that is more than what is routinely attached to similar agreements elsewhere. In the outdoors, we have to balance pursuit of stated objective and risk. We try to overcome risk and deliver the objective promised in the agreement between client and service provider. But that does not mean that we ignore risk altogether to chase an objective. We wish you to be informed on what makes a trip safe for you and everyone else.

    Please take a few minutes to read the following:

    The nature of wilderness
    By definition wilderness implies remoteness. It means that response to any accident or mishap takes time. Timely intervention is a life saver. Working back from this, it becomes imperative that any commercial adventure in wilderness be conservative in terms of the risk it courts. Yet adventure means there will be risk. The way out is to manage the risk involved in such a fashion that a safe experience is provided. There are a few things that the client can do.

    Prepare in advance
    Commercial expeditions entail strain even if others are carrying your load and doing the team’s work. Prior physical conditioning – particularly of the cardiovascular sort contributing to improved endurance – helps. Please invest time and effort for that before embarking on the trip. It will help you in the field.

    Be honest, speak up
    We encourage clients to be honest about how they are feeling on expedition days; voice any personal difficulties they may be experiencing. This helps the team make relevant decisions for clients’ well being, something crucial when venturing into altitude. Not all of us are meant for altitude. If your physiology rebels, there is nothing to be ashamed of it. Speak up. Make sure that your disclosures about self are not biased by an objective you are feverishly trying to achieve like getting to the summit of a peak or crossing a high pass at any cost. Don’t let summit fever and similar instances of extreme personal ambition, consume you. It puts you and your support team at risk. Stay with the team’s assessment of risk. Go with the resultant decisions. If you think you have a point to make by all means do so. We will hear you out. But risk assessment and decisions, will be by the team leaders as the onus of a safe expedition primarily rests with them.

    Let the leaders work
    You may be familiar with rivers, mountains and altitude. We don’t wish to question that. But there are reasons why many of us choose to go as clients. One of them is that our primary vocation is something else, while those working in the mountains as guides have chosen to make that their primary vocation or at the very least, dedicate time to it. More than us, they are in the mountains. They are alive to it. That’s why we entrust our passage to them. So, please let them work free of interference. Please don’t influence their judgement. Your expedition needs their best work and best judgement. In any expedition, leadership style will vary with the risk being tackled in a given situation. There will be times when we can travel easy in a very consultative fashion. There will be times when that is not advisable and a more directive style may be adopted by your guides. Please comply.

    Be open to alternatives
    We can set up the best safety systems possible, checking and double checking to make sure that nothing is left to chance. But we don’t control or totally overcome variables like weather and terrain / river conditions. They impact expedition’s progress. If team leaders review / alter plan citing concerns on any front, we request that it be respected and not viewed as money’s worth denied even if it dims prospects for achieving an expedition’s original goal. Such challenges are frequent in the outdoors. Seasoned trekkers and climbers, when they realize that a particular objective does not seem achievable on a given trip, learn to be happy with other pursuits to compensate – like staying camped and enjoying the mountain environment or attempting more doable hikes from wherever they are. We request you to stay aware of these possibilities. Be open to them. Decades ago when exploration and first ascents were happening in the Himalaya, the explorers / mountaineers / hikers devoted months to their work. Committed outdoorsmen still do. They wait out unfavourable circumstances by having a lot of time and patience. Time is what the modern world does not have even as the mountains remain the same, posing the same challenges; the same risk, the same unpredictable circumstances. An exceptionally lucky circumstance may deliver success. But luck isn’t commonplace. We should be mentally prepared for the above mentioned alternatives.

    Be safe
    If you don’t achieve your objective it isn’t the end of the world. Be patient, another chance will emerge. There is a simple reminder, climbers often tell their colleagues leaving for a summit: “ the mountain will always be there; make sure you are there.’’
    In other words – be safe.

    Activity Level
    Our expedition trips are designed for energetic and flexible people who have the spirit of adventure and a positive attitude. Previous experience in the outdoors and camping helps, though is not a must. These trips are participatory in nature, and everyone is expected to pitch in, set up and break down their own tent, clean their own dishes. Look up our trip grading before you sign up.

    Grading of Trips
    We have graded our trips in four different categories and you should choose one that suits you the most. Grading of each trip has been done keeping in mind a lot of factors like the trip duration, the altitude, the terrain, the no. of hours of activity everyday, temperatures and conditions encountered, and the level of fitness needed. Any kind of exercise which gets you fitter before this trip is advisable, as it will enable you to enjoy the region more.

    • Easy : Most of our camp based trips, with easy activities, that are optional and involve fairly easy travel. Trips may include short hikes of two to three hours or optional walks at low elevations. Includes less demanding whitewater trips with easy support and myriad options.
    • Moderate : Active trips involving hiking over reasonable terrain, within vehicular access, upto elevations less than 4000 meters, or trips with long walking days, multiple rafting days, wilderness camping. Includes more demanding whitewater trips with Class III rapids.
    • Demanding : Hiking and trekking to elevations exceeding 4000-5000 meters, away from vehicular access, over multiple days. Encompasses demanding whitewater with Class IV rapids.
    • Challenging : Our most demanding trips include climbing at high elevations in excess of 5000 meters, in remote and extreme conditions with no access to roads; trips to remote, extreme wilderness; mountaineering trips, and demanding whitewater trips with Class IV-V rapids.

    The Next Step
    Ready to go? Email us at info@aquaterra.in to book your place and we will guide you through the booking process. Please sign and scan/email us your booking form and inform us about the status of your payments at the time of confirming the trip (Booking form and Payment details below).

    Why travel with Aquaterra Adventures?
    We are a pioneer in active adventure travel, and run the most number of rivers in India, having opened them up over the past several years. We set the standard and have a strong reputation for excellence. We have a lot to live up to and we ensure we provide the safest, quality trips for our guests.

    References
    Should you wish to contact any of our past guests for a trip reference, write to us.

    Services provided
    In remote regions, we often use local suppliers who provide services that may include vehicles for transportation, equipment, logistical support, hotels, guest houses etc. We do not own or operate these independent services or suppliers. We work with them as they share our commitment to service and quality.

    The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance.
    Inclusions
    • All transfers in a non-ac vehicle as per the itinerary
    • All arrangements for staying and camping while on trip
    • Accommodation on twin sharing basis in tents/ hotel
    • All meals as detailed in itinerary
    • Individual climbing equipment
    • All trekking arrangements with India’s most experienced guiding team, camp staff and cooks
    • Porterage upto 15kg/person
    • All common camping and trekking equipment
    • Peak fee/sanctuary fee/royalty/permits where applicable
    • Safe drinking water
    Exclusions & Cancellations

    What’s not:

    • Sleeping bag
    • Any transfers outside of itinerary
    • Bottled water
    • Items of personal clothing
    • Expenses of personal nature (laundry/phone calls/alcohol/cigarettes/insurance/camera fee/etc.)
    • Any expense incurred due to force majeure such as landslide, bad weather or reasons beyond our control

    Please note

    • Flights not included in the above-mentioned cost
    • Single supplement – Rs.13500/- + 5% tax,
    • Forced single supplement in case there is no one to share your tent with – Rs 6,500 + 5% tax

    Booking conditions: All bookings are subject to availability of space at Camp. We book space on a 100% advance. All payments by wire transfer, cash or cheque/draft in favor of “Aquaterra Adventures (I) Pvt. Ltd.”

    Tips & Gratuities: Our recommendation is a minimum 5-10% of your trip cost for tips to be distributed amongst the team that makes your adventure safe and successful. This includes drivers, guides, cook, kitchen team, porters and horsemen. Of course, this remains a personal choice.

    Cancellations
    If it becomes necessary to cancel your tour, you must notify Aquaterra Adventures India Pvt. Ltd. immediately in writing. Once we receive your notice, cancellation will take effect. Please note that the following charges will apply on cancellation:

    • if cancellation takes place more than 45 days prior to departure, your full deposit
    • will be returned except a processing charge of Rs. 5000 or US$ 77 ; (60 days for Brahmaputra trip)
    • if cancellation takes place between 45 and 30 days prior to departure, 50% of the
    • tour price will be forfeited (between 60 and 30 days for Brahmaputra trip); and
    • if cancellation takes place less than 30 days prior to departure, 100% of the tour price will be forfeited.

    Some trips attract a minimum processing charge – please check.
    The tour price is quoted as a package. No partial refunds or credit will be given for services not used. We recommend that you obtain travel insurance upon booking.