Story for all those women, who don't trek due to lack of company

The year was 2015, a big turning point in my life, the year I qualified as a CA. I was looking forward to a new beginning and soon took up a job as an auditor. This is when things unexpectedly changed. I didn't enjoy my work and to add to my frustration it was hectic. Though I was clear about becoming a CA, I lacked clarity as to what to do after that. It was monsoon, my friend insisted on going for a trek on one of the weekends with MT (MT wasn't officially formed back then) and I agreed to it. It was a much needed break- lush green landscape, gurgling streams and beautiful lakes. It was refreshing and I knew I was missing something huge. That was the only trek I could do in 2015.

I soon quit my job in search of a profile that had better work life balance so I could reconnect with nature often and that could also give me sufficient time to gain clarity over my career. In 2016, I decided to do as many treks as possible and I did about 7 treks that year in the Sahyadris. I didn't have a friend to tag along in most of these treks. Once I assessed that I was comfortable trekking with a bunch of strangers, it gave me the confidence to go ahead and plan my first Himalayan trek with Indiahikes the same year. Being alone in a group in Sahyadris is a different story as you just need to board a local train and reach the pickup point. Going on a Himalayan trek by yourself for the first time was a lot more thrilling and adventurous. That feeling of being alone in a land full of strangers was exciting and scary at the same time.

Five years and 47 treks down the line I am content with the decisions I made. From being super tired on my first trek to trekking comfortably, it was a wonderful journey. Never have I been so close to nature before.

As women we tend to hold back fearing safety concerns and that is totally okay but wherever safety can be taken care of, don't miss that chance to experience something new by yourself, especially if you are waiting for a friend to accompany you with your plans.

Written by : Pradnya Pujari

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