Karma Police | ARTICLE

Will and his friends ventured off to India with high hopes of mountaineering but heavy snow ruined their chances of that happening. Athletes know that not all trips go as planned but that doesn’t mean they still can’t be good. We just have to make do with what we have. Read Will’s account of his trip below.

I’ve never been good at card games; the mix of sitting still, concentration and patience required to be a sharp tactical card player has always left me feeling bored, frustrated and intellectually inadequate. But it looked like I was about to win again. What was the catch? Luck is a confusing concept….

 In September UIsdean Hawthorn, Tom Livingston and myself headed to the Zanskar region of Jammu and Kashmir in search of a very attractive looking unclimbed face (and probably mountain?!) The trip kind of turned in to a card playing and yak herding holiday, we got better at both things, but we didn’t do any climbing.

A perfectly packed Donkey

 A metre or more of snow in the first week at base camp saw us scratching our heads, wondering what to do? To keep trying? To cut our losses and go surfing? We decided to keep trying, and we did kind of try, despite trouble with the Kashmiri police who tried to force us to leave and soul-destroying wading through deep dignity-crushing snow.

 This may sound like a disastrous fail to some, but I’ve realised in the last few days that when people ask me “Hey, how was India?” I keep replying “Great!”.

Walking through wild and barely touched mountains while experiencing alien cultures that boggle your mind in questions and thoughts is something I’m starting to value equal to those mind and body bending climbs.

We did try to climb this mountain

1 in 3 is a good odd for climbing in the big mountains, and we were all due our turn to hand over the chips, take our losses and go home empty handed.

Yaks grazing close to our base camp at 4300m. Note the beautiful snow free meadows

 Keep an eye out for more of Will’s upcoming journeys.