Adventure Sports : Mountaineering


The Himalayas, a dream for any mountaineer and the most cherished mountain system in the world that also is the home to the highest peak on the planet runs from the extreme north of the country and extends all the way up to the eastern most state, Arunachal Pradesh. The biggest adventure playground in the world -the Himalaya provides ample opportunities for the adventure enthusiast from all over the world to try their luck and immortalise their names by climbing some of the toughest and highest peaks. With more than 100 peaks above 6000 mtrs (some of them yet unclimbed) the Himalaya promises every climber their share of adventure, which lures them to the mountains.

Mountaineering is a serious activity undertaken with the primary goal of reaching a mountain's summit. Unlike trekking or hiking it requires a high degree of fitness and experience especially above the permanent snowline (i.e. above 5200 m). Even more than other adventure sporting enthusiasts, mountaineers recognise that they run a high level of risk of personal injury.

The Himalayan mountain range is home to some of the highest mountains of the world and many serious climbers seek to conquer peaks each year.

Starting from Delhi, Lucknow, Calcutta or Bombay, the mountain road heads in Garhwal and Kumaon can be usually reached within two to five days. In view of the height and distance of the Kumaon and Garhwal Himalayas, many available peaks can be attempted within a period of four to five weeks from Delhi.

Seasons : The mountaineering season tends to be concentrated during April-November. A number of climbs are also being attempted in winter.

Grade : Mountaineering routes are graded according to the degree of difficulty and accessibility. Prior medical examination is essential. The permanent snow line generally being in the region of 5,250 m, the degree of difficulty of mountaineering routes can broadly be defined as :

Moderate : Requiring knowledge of basic mountaineering techniques.

Advanced : For this category of peaks it is necessary to be in high-grade physical condition and to possess advanced mountaineering skills. Within this category further demarcation is possible till the highest degrees of difficulty. The difference between the various grades of difficulty is thus based essentially on the required techniques concerning rock, snow, ice and rescue.

Equipments : Can be hired from clubs or purchased from one of the agencies selling it. Places where equipment is available for hiring: Muni-ki-Reti, UttarKashi, Joshimath Gangotri, Purola, Chopta, Ukhimath Ghuttu.

Peak booking fees, Inner Line restrictions, import of equipment, camera permits, insurance, medical attention and evacuation procedure have been laid down in detail by the Indian Mountaineering Foundation based in Delhi. This is the national apex coordinating body for the sport in India.