26 Jun 2013

The Only Way is Up! A Trek to Triund

Wow, it's been ages since we posted, apologies! 

Here's a story from way back in early May...

We were happily living in Bhagsu or as Paddy likes to call it, happiness. 

This meant £6 a night hotel (thanks to our dear friends L & L and G!), room service, cable TV (no less than FIVE cricket channels!) and a view of the mountains amazing enough to make your head spin. To everyone else, it is a small village embedded deep in the Himalayas, and one day we decided to trek up to Triund, (9000+ft), to catch a better glimpse of the aforementioned mountains.

To be honest, it really wasn't on Maddy's radar, but Paddy and the group of friends we were with had decided this was a Good Idea and so Maddy was gently persuaded not to be a big girl's blouse and joined the group with a hop, skip and a jump. 

Plus they really were lovely company :)

Lovely friends
So there we were, getting up very early with Simon haggling for a taxi, whereupon he would end up in the boot, that would agree to take seven of us up the hill to the restaurant where we were to breakfast and begin. So bag of trail mix and a bottle of water in hand, off we ambled.

It was a beautiful day. The sun was shining, the birds were singing, the eagles were soaring, butterflies fluttering and ladybirds, well, ladybirding, (see previous post about Maddy's delight with nature here, Paddy's stoic bemusement was as ever legendary) and we were loving the walk. 


Big drop behind us...
In our experience, walking with a group can be a little stressful - everyone has their own pace and priorities - but it's clearly a sign of just how lovely everyone is that patience was in abundance whilst we stopped for regular cups of chai, photo opportunities, much needed breathers (it all gets a bit huffy puffy as you ascend), packs of donkeys laden with bizarre things such as portable toilet seats and gas stoves, to pass, goats to swerve, views to admire, other hikers who kindly shared tips about what to do once we got up there. Oddly we were overtaken by one or two people RUNNING their way to the top. Perplexing but hey, each to their own!

Our dear friend Tony enjoying the view

We breathed in the scent of the bright rhododendrons, we collected petals and scattered them to the wind off the edge of the path. We marvelled at the stunning views, and we had a fantastic time huffing and puffing our way slowly into the upper reaches of the Himalayas, stopping every now and then to take in the beauty of our surroundings. 

Looking pretty!
Once we reached Triund, the view was breathtakingly spectacular. 

If you ever feel the need to gain a sense of perspective in your life, Paddy suggests walking up a mountainside. 
Paddy (the king of understatement) was simply beyond words. There are precisely two times when Maddy has witnessed a speechless Paddy:

1. When Maddy walked down the aisle on our wedding day (phew)
2. This trek to Triund.

The view is of the Dhauladhar mountains. They are amazing. Period. Exclamation point! There are no other words for the view. We could see 5000m mountains disappearing into the clouds, and ate our daal (lentils) and rice surrounded by goats, sheep, dogs, and many many ladybirds on a mountain ridge that was vaguely like an Alpine meadow. It was also strewn with massive million year old boulders (we're talking the size of your house), that looked as if they had been tossed idly there, by some colossal mythical being that was the daddy of this range. Who knows? People lay around the mountain top, oddly green and flat (well, for a mountain top), and drank in the splendour of the Himalayas, yoga fans did yogic photo poses on the edge of thousand foot drops, we hugged a lot, and mountain dogs, sheep and goats wandered round, wondering what all the fuss was about.

Maddy really loved the sheep and goats - so cute!

Gaining a sense of perspective

Newborn lamb feeds for the first time!

Feeling the love!
We had decided to stay the night in Triund, so there were two sleeping options:

A) You could hire a tent and sleeping bags
B) You could take a gamble on the two roomed guesthouse(shed) not having a booking...

...so, like an Irishman at Cheltenham, we took the gamble.

The guesthouse(shed) - we all slept in the room on the left
Luckily the guesthouse(shed) had a room available for the princely sum of 250 rupees each (£3). We would all be sharing the one room, plus (stinky) blankets and (stale) sleeping bags for everyone. With no electricity or running water it was interesting!

Waking up the next day to walk down again was cold but the sight of the sun rising from behind the mountain range was spectacular. Yet again, Paddy was rendered speechless, as he stood there smoking a cigar he had saved from our wedding in August, merely pronouncing that, yes indeed, it was a fine fine day!

Early morning sunshine

Simon wearing all the clothes he owns, smoking that wedding cigar
It was decided that morning that some of the group wanted to head to the snow line, another 1.5 hours upwards. Paddy went, Maddy stayed near the hot tea and fire.

The snowline with Tibetan Buddhist flags waving in the wind
... and it was with much relief, and a hint of sadness, that we found our way back down the hill smoothly and quickly, beating the bad weather that descended on the mountain range by the skin of our teeth. Others we met going up on the trail were not so lucky, heading up into the mist as if entering the land that time forgot. 

We all set off at different times, as we all had different agendas for that day, so we set off just the two of us, and oh boy did we find the path less travelled. 

After some hours hobbling and sliding down the mountains on our bottoms we found a small stream in which to place our sore feet (grooves had been hollowed in the stone from the thousands of weary feet resting in that very spot over thousands of years, followed swiftly by finding a cafe serving that elixir of life, otherwise known as ice cold beer. This fact plus the fact that Maddy fell flat on her back after breaking a plastic chair in this place have no association. Honest, guv.

Ah soothing water...
We eventually stumbled home (the stumbling had nothing to do with the beer and everything to do with sore knees and feet) and climbed into a steaming hot showers, thanking each other profusely that we could order room service and watch terrible movies on our cable TV at our lovely little hotel, the Eco Nest. 


  1. i found your tweet about Triund Hill yesterday night(so just done the RT and Favorite)..and decided to read the blog today...no words can describe the beauty of Nature and Triund Hill..still enjoyed reading all and specially "If you ever feel the need to gain a sense of perspective in your life, Paddy suggests walking up a mountainside.

    Paddy (the king of understatement) was simply beyond words. There are precisely two times when Maddy has witnessed a speechless Paddy:

    1. When Maddy walked down the aisle on our wedding day (phew)
    2. This trek to Triund."


    we have dedicated a fb page facebook.com / Triund so can you share images there in or let us download n share like baby sheep n mother and some more or say all :D
    or mail us at triundhill@gmail.com

    Thank you will look forward for your reply.