This isn't a trek. You better stop this

I have been on treks; with friends, friends of friends, with a bunch of strangers; only to find out that most of us and the community is fighting a deception which grows slowly unnoticed.
Now, before jumping to conclusions, Read further.
Last week, when my friends planned to go on a trek to Tada (a small range in the Eastern Ghats, suitable for one day treks) I was elated and very much excited to have an adventurous experience. But it didn’t last long.  The plan failed to meet the basic requirements of a trek, not just failed by a mark, but in epic variations.
Here is why the plan failed massively;
In spite of my constant texts and calling up my friends, we started at 8 am while most people sported a jean for the trek, with the blazing sun above their heads. Our first stop was a tea shop where most of them had a smoke and bought cigarettes to survive the trek (Seriously, I opposed this idea totally but they didn’t give a shit about that)  thereby leading to the next pit stop; a liquor store, to buy some stocks to refuel some people on the group.  Then it was time for the much-needed breakfast. After devouring all the entities in a nearby hotel, we reached the base of the range around 12 pm, which the group considered as early and I have lost my enthusiasm by then and it was it was just seconds from totally dying  out.
But we were in front of  the invisible gates of wild, my energy was still burning in my mind only to be shooed off. We slowly made our way to the first pool, which was so damn easily accessible, had a refreshing bath without a lot of swimming but with an exhaustive amount of flashing cameras.
A clogged stream at Tada

A clogged stream at Tada
Now comes the most annoying part.
Some started to venture out further as we have not yet started to trek but a majority of people found some nice shady place to sit down, not because of the exhaustion (as if they are tired) but to start boozing, doing all the nasty stuff that shouldn’t be done on a trek and once the supplies are deplete, it’s time to return back home. And who says I don’t trek? will be their story next day across various social media platforms.
To some people in India, a trek is a place to booze, litter and to make noise which they strongly call it as “having fun.” Unfortunately, this is what many think about and do, when they get their asses in the wild under the pretext of trekking.
And this isn’t a trek!
In fact, when I first told my parents about my eagerness to take part in a trek, they tried to call it off under these claims though I made them understood but still it is a huge hindrance for many willing souls who are waiting for these shackles to be removed.
Ah !! Women! I don’t even want to talk about their problems.Many equally willing and spirited women suffer a lot due to many reasons including the one aforesaid and there are many others as like say,
  • Safety; due to the ill practices carried out in the name of trek, women and their parents are not willing or shocked to take part in a trek, I should say.
  • Society; people accept men to go anywhere they wish but due to our social safety, women themselves and society are worried on going to many places; a definite no, to a trek with a bunch of strangers.
This wouldn’t change unless our parents, friends and others are educated that those who go on a trek (especially in India) do not go there for drinking, littering or to do any such obscene stuff. Because they are deceiving the society and make a false impression on those who trek in a true sense.
Being said that, many fresh souls who want to be a part of the outdoor fraternity are 2009110250150402_107016gconfused about a trek. 
I have seen many of my friends and colleagues when called for a trek, simply opt out of it for a movie or a beer and that’s ABSURD.
Okay see it this way,
You go on a journey in the wild where you will be experiencing a whole new emotion which you have longed your entire life. Yes, THAT MAY SOUND EXAGGERATED but you will be tested, trained, ruined, tear down, fall apart not by others but by yourself; only to find out the true nature of your being.
If you understand this quote the you know what is  Trekking and you don’t have to read more ELSE RE-READ THE ENTIRE THING THRICE!
In life, you are only happy when you cross boundaries, destroy your limits and keep pushing them always. Once you stop doing that, you are dead.
It is true that everyone is concerned about nature, but very few act about it. When I come from a trek, people ask me the about the experience and express their interest in joining me next time. Unfortunately that next time never arrives.
Words won’t suffice if I tried to explain Trekking and it will be boring but this is what you can experience from a trek;
You will be Tested
Once you go out in the wild, you will be tested for all qualities, be it your self behavior or with your companions. Your abilities and responsibilities will be compelled to break. You will feel like a mere matter who has met his maker.
You will be Transformed
Many have been beautifully transformed in a trek. Your facilities won’t matter there. Your richness is incomparable. Your dedication and humility will be enriched.
You will be Devastated
The energies in yourself will be unleashed until it has been devastated, only to be one with your body and soul, to be happy and to exist along nature.
You will be Grateful
You will be having the richest experience you ever had till now. You would have heard the term “nature at its best”, for you, it will be always the best. NO CONDITIONS APPLY
The best thing about a trek or being out in the wild or to volunteer for such stuffs are that you could carry the glee wherever you go and that’s awesome.
You will be Amazed
Yes, at the intensity, at its calmness, at its condition, at its serenity above all, at its entirety.
You will be Thoughtful
On seeing NATURES true form  and with what we have done here in our localities, will make you think, will urge you to act, will make you join with nature to realize your own intensity.
You will Want More!
I have to tell you nothing more, you will be wanting for more on what you have felt.
A trek is something else, where we should be enthralled by nature and to protect it from ourselves and definitely not a place to dump our unwanted belongings, where one could see broken bottles, enormous quantity of garbage and plastic.
A trek is not about walking long distances in the wild, enjoying beautiful views on peaks and valleys, dipping ourselves in many clear and fresh water pools. It is something exquisite.
This is not about having fun in the wild without our daily pressures and commitments but it is much more than our life itself. This is not about going with a group of strangers or venturing out alone, it is the strength and determination that we have in ourselves.
It is not like you are following someone in the wild, it is you following the footsteps of nature.

I’m a proud member of the Chennai Trekking Club, a hardcore trekking fraternity which mainly operates in South India. You can check out CTC’s activities here

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Image Courtesy: CTC

Rajkumar Mahendran
See Everything, Be Nothing

0 thoughts on “This isn't a trek. You better stop this”

  1. Well Said … Very Well. I love your spirit & positive energy. Our own friends has different meaning for entertainment, I've been trying trying to change my friends, not yet successful.

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