We began our day at the crack of dawn, after the preparation I was all set to begin my ride at 7.30 a.m in the morning. The track was from Manali to Marhi a journey of 42 kilometres. Being the first day of ascend, the journey was certainly challenging but the scenic view made my day. I cycled towards the Rohtang Pass. crossing Manali, Bahand and Kothi. I cycled my way till Gulaba, where we stopped for our first break of refreshments for the day. The beautiful skyline with a beautiful landscape which was enlightened by sharp sun rays piercing through the clouds made a perfect atmosphere to take a short nap. A rainbow accompanied for a while on the way too. Reaching Marhi (10300 feet altitude), needed a lot of efforts being the first day I had trouble breathing as the height increased gradually. After reaching the story of real struggle began.
On reaching Marhi we inquired with the police and Border Road organization on where to set up our tent they suggested that it’d be best to pitch tent in the open ground where we could spend a relaxed evening enjoying the splendid view it offered.
As they say, all that glitters isn’t gold. It was beautiful landcape and we were the only one in the big grass field. Our green tent made us feel like out of the world. Soon after setting up our tend we got on to cooking soup as our sumptuous meal for the day when a herd of cows surrounded the tent. Parth tried to shoo them away but to our surprise they turned violent and counter attacked. To add on our muddle a herd of horses joined them.
Within a jiffy, our tent was surrounded by more than 20 cows and 5 wild horses who were creating chaos around our tent. Parth tried creating noise utensils while I was busy saving our had cooled food. We understood we had established our tent in their habitat and it would be best to evacuate the place.
In exact 3 minutes Parth wrapped up the tents as I tried to divert the attention of this not so tame animals. Meanwhile we figured an alternate but a much safer spot to settle down and call it a day. While Parth Chaudhary was trying to take care of tend, Parth Brahmbhatt went to the car and managed to get it close to tend in extreme slope and off road. Within minutes tent was placed inside the car and all three of us jumped onto two seats with cycle hung behind the car.
We slept under the starry sky with fog clouds giving us company at a 10,300 feet altitude above sea level. It rained throughout the night, and my garmin showed 10degree centigrade temperature while were were off to sleep around 7.30 in the evening post our dinner. Dinner was simple that night, a coup of soup, few sweets that were given from home and dry snacks that we carried for our survival in salutations like this.
The nights showered heavy rains as we slept cozily in our sleeping bags in the tent. As both Parth say in unison ‘Kahan Pant house se Tent hous me aa gaye’. The morning awaited us with better encounters and tougher challenges.