Lessons from Himalayan Biking Expedition (Jalori Pass)


May 2014, I went for biking expedition towards Jalori Pass from Manali. Here are a few interesting learnings. We were a gang of 22 participants and had a great time together. I learned at least couple of lessons from each of them. Here, I will capture just a few of them.

Attitude defines altitude

β€œI am not sure how and in what shape I am going to make it, but I am definitely going to make it”. One of the participants told me on the very first day. This is what I call attitude.

Those who endure, conquer.

A small account on biking each day.

Day 1 was fine and smooth. Day 2 was a little tougher. Day 3 was toughest. Day 4 was when I realized, what the team of 22 accomplished.

The climb down the slippery gravel road and turns with unfathomable depth on one side was spellbinding. It helped me understand the endurance and grit the gang of 22 had. The feat that we accomplished was not a small deed.

Focus on strengths

One participant, who was always among the first to reach the camp each day was very terrified while biking down. This participant found it nerve wrecking This reinforced 2 aspects. Everyone is special and best in certain areas and has his/her own fears. What really matters is to bring out the best in everyone. Focus on your strengths. Weakness really does not matter as long as one can manage it.

Always expect surprises

That is what we experienced at top of Jalori Pass. Though the climb up after a walk of about 7KM (we did some extra walking) drained us of our energy, the sight of snow clad mountains were a treat to our eyes and soul. I could not stop running from one hill to the next. I am still surprised and do not realize where I got energy to run.

Never benchmark self with others, it may sometimes pull us down

It took me about 4.5 hours to cover the first 5 KM, and less than an hour to complete the last 2 KM. This was an interesting phenomenon and when I look back, I see the trick our mind plays. I trailed on last day, since I started late. The climb up was definitely tough because of the gravel road and vehicles crossing over. I had made up my mind to ride rather than push my bike, come whatever. (I managed to achieve this except, may be, for a distance of 200metres where I pushed). During the climb, whenever I saw someone taking rest, I felt that I had no energy in me and forced myself to stop. This continued till we took our lunch. After lunch, and taking enough rest (read as sleeping) I was the first to start among the lunch group. Since there were no one ahead of me, I kept on biking and when I thought I was tired, I decided I will do another 100metres. I pushed myself and completed the last stretch faster.

Looking back, the biking expedition has revitalized and brought in a new set of connects. We are on our next expedition plans. Wait for more πŸ™‚