This trip came out of nowhere- really. And boy did that feel good!
In February 2014, I had resigned from my job in Delhi NCR and accepted a position in Hyderabad. I was going to move in May. In between the two jobs, I wanted to go somewhere a little less visited and tried to make a plan to visit either Cambodia or Iran. I spent well over a month researching both options, speaking with people who had been to these countries. I even created a profile on couch surfing and found hosts in remote parts of Iran such as Rasht, near the Caspian Sea.
All this effort came to naught when towards the last week of March; Iran changed its visa policy towards Indian nationals. Thus, on Friday 25th of April, my last working day, I had nowhere to go but back to my apartment in Delhi. In fact, I was so dejected by the turn of events that I even contemplated joining my next job early! Clearly, I was in a disturbed frame of mind.
On Saturday morning, with still no plan at all, I figured that a short escape to Shimla wouldn’t hurt. Despite living in Delhi area for six years, I had never been to Shimla. At such a short notice, the narrow gauge train was out of the question and it would have to be a bus. I booked an HRTC Volvo leaving on Sunday night (27th) from ISBT and spent the remaining weekend packing, cleaning the apartment and emptying out the refrigerator.
I then called my parents that I’ve booked a ticket to Shimla and I should be back in couple days tops.
Instead, twelve days later, I found myself in Pin Valley, amongst the first tourists of the season, chasing a couple of ibexes through waist deep snow.
This report is a recollection of what happened in-between. A view over spiti river is below –