Having explored Himachal for past 3 years and having trekked in different regions & seasons, I decided to introduce my elder sister into the trekking world with Parashar Lake as 1) it was easy to reach and 2) the trek was of easy/moderate difficulty level. Me and my sister were upbeat about the trek, bought all the essential things from Decathlon and left in an overnight Volvo from Delhi to be able to start trekking the next morning. As per the plan we reached Mandi at 10:00, freshened ourselves up at Rajmahal Palace andhit the base camp at Baggiat 12:00. Since the approximate duration for completion of this trek was 3hrs, we were pretty well in time.
The trek starts alongside Beas and post completion of 300mts, the actual trail begins. By the time we reached first grassland and observed the sky clearly, we could see that the sky had been stabbed in its back and that the sky has bled black. We could see a thick dark cloud approaching us in desperationaccompanied with monolithic sounds of thunder. Trying to ignore its aftermath, we kept on moving and by the time we reached the third grassland, we were contacted by those ravaging clouds. We barely walked for 50mts under the drizzle and in no time the baritone of that thunderoussky became spine chilling. Gigantic pellets of water bounced on our heads and since it was grassland, we were totally exposed. We covered ourselves with whatever we could and kept on walking to find a tree shade somewhere. We finally found a shade, waited there for 15mins just to realize that there was no point of waitingsince the rains seemed unrelenting.
Apart from bearing the wrath of nature, I was overly guilty of the fact it was my sister’s first trek. Keeping “It’s not always necessary to be strong, but to feel strong” quote in our mind, we continued our ascension towards the last stretch. Finally the rain gods pacified and both of us took a huge sigh. We were shocked and glad at the same time for what we had just witnessed. Slowly and steadily through the puddles, we made our way to the summit.Moving ahead we found a decayed cow skull which meant that there were wild boars around too. All these ominous signs were not helping our cause at all. Again we ignored it and forged ahead as we could now see the guesthouses in near distance.
We finally reached the first guesthouse but that was not the end to our plight. The home stay was locked. I knocked the door, called up Ram Singh(no. written on the door) but all in vain. We looked further and could see some hutches on the left and a forest range guest house on the right. I could see some smoke coming out from Forest Range and so we decided to go there. We walked towards the guest house and all hell broke loose again. We were reunited by the rain gods, this time on an open road with no tree shade around and backbreaking winds. Our hands were frozen(temperature dropped to 0C), lips turned blue, clothes and bag drenched in rain and again survival looked grim. We hollered outside the forest range guest house for 10mins but no one came out so we decided to go to the other side instead (only option left). All we could do was to walk till our last breath, find a shelter somewhere and ask someone to burn woods.
We finally managed to reach the other side and luckily found one operational shack which was serving tea, food etc. and survival looked likely. I asked the cook to burn some woods if possible. Though he denied burning of woods but he still managed to give us a hot water jar looking at our miserable condition. We dipped our hands in it to find a moment of solace but we were shivering and the jar didn't help us much. With shuddering hands, we had tea & maggi and felt slightly better. We then went to the temple(ashram), took a room, changed our clothes(most of them were wet) with whatever we could. I wore 3 t-shirts and covered myself with a blanket. Luckily we had one more jacket which my sister could use. Finally after we placated ourselves, we then went outside and took a view of the lake and thanked the lake for such a wonderful memory in the abode of Parashar Rishi Maharaj. Now that we look at it and talk about it, I treasure the kind of adventure that we went through. I have also realized that however prepared you might be but you can’t challenge what is written in your destiny. I take utmost pride in surrendering myself to the mystic law of nature and appreciate the unpredictability this life has in store for us. This trek will always remain as one of the most adventurous and exciting expedition of my life.