The Little Escapes

Although I deeply love oceans deserts, and other wild landscapes, it is only mountains that beckon me with that sort of painful magnetic pull to walk deeper and deeper into their beauty.

My love for the mountains is something very real and pure and so deep that I keep picturing them in my subconscious but i can’t express or experience the sensations I get when I am on a peak.

It all begun when I came to Delhi for my graduation which is more of दिल्ली to me. All the most scenic and picturesque mountains in the north are just one night away from Delhi.So my journey in the mountains started from there.From Uttarakhand to Himachal to Jammu & kashmir, I just kept walking trekking hiking running flying and never realised how deeply in love i was with the hills . Generally people ask me why do I do it . My usual answer is why not?

When first deciding to take the big leap to travel or pursue something different, the same types of questions and trepidation fill our minds. What if I fail? What if I get into an accident? What if I end up hating it? Let me tell you one thing. Fear of the unknown is normal. It is perfectly normal to be scared, excited, and nervous all at the same time. As soon as you take the first big step, that is when you will be reminded that adventure is out there. That there are a million and one new things to see and discover and you are just getting started.

First few trips I went with my friends to the mountains and those trips have bonded us for a lifetime. That’s what travelling together does to you and when you are alone in the hills you get to bond with yourself ,find new possibilities, seek new adventure and fall in love with yourself

Karnprayag (Uttarakhand)

Chhalaal Village( Himachal Pradesh)

Chopta (Uttarakhand )

Kheerganga (Himachal Pradesh)

Auli ( Uttarakhand )

In my initial days of travelling I liked the idea of wolfpack but somewhere along the J became solivagant.

The title of this blog is the little escapes because most of the time during my college days me and my crew went to hills as soon we got chance and that was our escape.

These little escapes turned me from a tourist to traveller.When you climb a peak in full fatigue and you get that mesmerising view where the cool breeze gets on your face aand leaves tears in your eyes that’s where you fal in love .That’s what true love means to me.

Travelling for me turned out to be a life changing passion. It turned me into a storyteller . Mountains made me face my worst fear and made me a stronger person.

You learn about your fears and how to tackle them .I believe that’s what life is all about.

Dabbing in Kheerganga (HP)

Riding in Uttarakhand

Keep Trekking

Bòn Voyage

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The Solo Sailor

To awaken quite alone in a strange town is one of the most pleasant sensations in the world. You are surrounded by adventure. Freya Stark

I haven’t been much of a guy who shares about his life but I had to get over it sometime so I started this blog.

This blog is about the trip that kind of changed me.My one month solo backpacking in southern parts of India.Before this trip I just went solo trips couple of times in the hills of north India but this was a big jump for me. A long solo trip was in my mind as I was travelling to delhi from my home and all of a sudden things picked up pace as I was staring out of the train at the starless sky which filled my heart with unknown melancholy and my spirit craved more adventure and just like that I booked my tickets to banglore for the next day and I did my research in the train and now comes the most challenging part that was preparing for 1 month trip in 10 hours.Thanks to my brother and my friends I anyhow managed all the essentials and everything was on motion.Just keep in mind that you don’t forget get all the essentials before you leave.

I was both excited and scared because I hadn’t pulled of something like this before but that feeling makes trips like these worth it.The fear of being alone on a totally new place because our country is so diverse that it becomes beautifully adventures for travellers like me.I arrived bengaluru on the birthday of my best to surprise him and that was part of my plan, and my welcome in bangluru was amazing.I partied there for four cotinuous days which made me love bengaluru.I explored bengaluru for a few days.I loved Nandi hills ,its a beautiful hillstation on the outskirts of bengaluru and the mouth watering south indian food in bengaluru. These both things were enough to love this beautiful city.

After I was done with parties and exploring bengaluru I decided to leave for my next destination that was Ooty and Coonoor in Tamilnadu. I got into the bus from anandrao circle in night ,plugged my headphones and as I woke up around seven in the morning I was alone in the hills of tamilnadu. Western ghats roads are damm beautiful my friends,only lush green valleys as far as you can see which will take your breath away .By eight in the morning I reached Ooty .

I decided to stay in a hostel and it was a way better experience than hotels. I left my backpack at the reception of The Zostel and started walking in Ooty and reached Ooty lake and that was a beautiful morning. I sat there for a while and had idli sambhar and then walked back to the hostel. The freedom of travelling alone is awesome, there is no room for compromises. You go wherever you like however you like, you don’t have to wait or think about others or anything. It’s just you and the nature. Travelling solo helps you get out of your comfort zone and explore new possibilities. You get to know new things about yourself, you get to meet the real you.I believe life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.I have come to accept that I can’t experience everything in this lifetime,but what I can,I will experience deeply.

(Ooty lake)

After few hours of walk I checked into my bunk bed which recalled my my memories of growing up in hostel of Varanasi.

I am a hills lover and I was on the hills so I climbed wherever I can to get the perfect view and when I came back in evening I saw every stranger in the hostel sitting around bonfire like a happy family sharing their pieces.There I realised that you never really travel alone ,the world is full of friends waiting to know you and that’s what exactly happened as i made few friends and explored Coonoor with them.The best part of Ooty was the toy train ride from Udagamandalam(Ooty) to Coonoor which takes you through forest and hills with breathtaking views.The train turning on the edges of the hills and going through tunnels was one of the best rides of ny life.

I and few amazing people from different parts of the world decided to explore Coonoor on foot and so we did , we walked all of Coonoor and that was hell of an experience. Coonoor is a less commercialised and quiet hillstation just below Ooty.Travelling solo took away my irrational fears because as you move out of your comfort zone ,what once was unknown and frightening becomes your new normal.I realised people everywhere in the world are same,some good and some bad just divided by boundaries and language and culture.I realised this while walking with these beautiful ladies.Jackie and daniel if you guys are reading this come back soon .

(Coonoor park)

The next day was the one of the best days of my life.I woke up and took toy train to a purely untouched Ketti valley.I was all alone on that station with my backpack ,so what I did was started walking on the railway tracks and went into huge alpine forest and i just kept on walking till I reached very isolated Ketti village.One benefit of travelling alone is that your travelling style ultimately improves. Your perception will become heightened,making you far more aware of surroundings and experiences . Having the time to take in all our surroundings will make for a far richer travel experience and maybe you discover a hidden passion while you are away. Getting used to your own company will alter your perceptive on what’s important and give clarity to your decisions.I had a proper tamil lunch at a small dhaba and took a bus back to Ooty. As it was my last day in Tamilnadu I decided to explore the local market of the town which serves delicious homemade chocolates. That was all from Tamilnadu for this time, I took a bus back to bengaluru for refueling and from there to my last destination.

(Credits #stationmaster)

(Ooty local market)

My next destination was Gokarn (Karnataka).I have been a hills lover all my life ,I had been to Goa couple of times but the crowd and commercialization never lets me open up to full potential and then I arrived in Gokarn and the arabian sea just had me from first sight. No commercialization no crowd, quite and isolated beaches ,where only thing you could hear was waves roaring.I was afraid of sea because I am not a legit swimmer but all that came in my mind was this quote from the movie Into The Wild.

I don’t know much about the sea, but I do know that that’s the way it is here. And I also know how important it is in life not necessarily to be strong but to feel strong. To measure yourself at least once.

-Alexander Supertramp

And I was in the sea playing with the waves and every time the waves pushed me to the shore I was loving it. After being in sea for hours I realised that I was capable of pushing myself to new limit

(Arabian sea)

I was not so fond of the beaches but one evening walk on the Om beach of Gokarn changed my perception about beaches.Its so quite and the sunset on around the endless sea was that kept me sitting on the sand for hours . I didn’t want to wake up till its dark.It turned out to be best sunset of my life.I was wishing that I had more time to stay there. When I was travelling to Gokarn I had kind of goa in my imagination but it turned out to be not something I imagined but something I needed.

I explored whole Gokarn with my best friend who lives in karnatka itself.We went to Mirjan fort 30 kms out of Gokarn on scooty and what a ride it was.Only lush green valleys below the blue sky on the way and while coming back we went to Kudle beach ,another beautiful beach to enjoy awesome kingfish dishesh.Seafood is so tasty on Kudle beach ,a must try thing and you are gonna love it.

We went on a boat ride in the sea to see Paradise beach and the beauty of that beach is you can only go there by boat and you have to carry your camp and food because there is nothing, You have to camp and cook into the wilderness. There is a 30 minutes trek on a hill from paradise beach where you get the best view of Gokarn . I live for places which give this kind of freedom.You are all on your own and when you are on your own ,responsible for yourself ,its inevitable that you will learn great things about yourself .

(Mirjan Fort)

(Kudle beach)

(Boat ride to Paradise beach)
Despite the wild, unforeseen, unforgettable adventures a month of being nomadic has placed on my lap, I have merely continued to drift along in the bigger picture, not tipping any closer on the happiness scale. Truth be told, I’ve come closer to knowing that I never will, for it’s a mere illusion, much like the higher powers we try to believe in, because life feels more meaningful with something to aspire towards.

So this was one month of being a wanderer and I would just like to say that the perfect time to travel is never, start today.

Peace out

(Countryboyonroad)

The Birth

“Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that’s okay. The journey changes you; it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you. Hopefully, you leave something good behind.” – Anthony Bourdain

Travelling for me begun at an early age.When I was in boarding school, they organised educational trips every year and I literally wept to my parents for not coming home and going on the trip instead. I was a kid and I used to be so excited just to see new places .I wish I had the pictures of that time but I only have memories in different pieces. And as I grew up the idea of travelling grew up inside me and then there was no stopping me.

People often ask me that why I travel solo most of the time and I am not able to express my joy in conversations but I think I can write my stories so here I am starting my blog .

I like sitting on the hills/beaches alone where only thing you can hear is wind roaring and the endless ocean staring at you. There is no honking no crowd, there is only me and my thoughts.That feeling I can’t express. Its just there in that moment.

“If you’re in twenties , physically fit, hungry to learn and be better, I urge you to travel – as far and as widely as possible. Sleep on floors if you have to. Find out how other people live and eat and cook. Learn from them – wherever you go.”

I believe the core of mans spirit comes from new experiences and I am going to hold this thought for my lifetime.

So this was the birth story of a wanderer and as it is a birth story so it gotta be short and sweet. I’ll be back with my adventure stories .Till then

Safe travel

All love.