Sunday, June 30, 2013

Mount Bhagirathi-II (6512M) Expedition


Pinch darkness all around, Severe coldness because of very low temperature and we were climbing final ridge of Mount Bhagirathi II at a height more than 6000 M. It was very difficult to breath, I was realizing my each and every breath and Happy about it. Yes, I am Alive...!! that one thought itself was enough for being Happy and keep Climbing.

In day-to-day life we get so much engrossed in so many things that we forget to even realize our breath. We forget that Yes, I am alive..!! Don't you think so??!!

Anyway...We Successfully completed Mount Bhagirathi II expedition on 6th June 2013 at 8 am under leadership of Rajiv Ravat and Dhanendar Negi.
Everyone is healthy and Alive. Thanks to all team members including support staff whose great work made this expedition a huge success.
Also thanks to all family and friends who were praying for our safe expedition.

[Expedition Team]


The Full Story:

On 25th May our team (Myself, Rajiv sir, Negi Sir, Prashant, Nischal, Peter, Narendar, Rajee, Shashi Madam, Udisha, Nishant) assembled at Uttarkashi. I had participated in this expedition on behalf of Aberrant Wanderers (Mumbai). Rajiv and Negi sir briefed us about expedition plan.

[Rough map of route with camp locations]

[Flag of ceremony at Neharu Institute of Mountaineering (NIM) with principal Ajay Kothiyal Sir and some veteran mountaineers]

After flag off ceremony and equipment collection we packed all loads and started for Gangotri.

Gangotri (3140 M):

We stayed one day in Gangotri where we repacked our loads, went to Pandav Gufa for acclimatization walk. Also visited Gangotri temple and took blessings of Ganga maiya for safe and successful expedition.

[Scenic picture captured on the way to Pandav Gufa.]

[Baba inside Pandav gufa.]

[Ganga aarati at Gangotri temple.]

Gangotri to Bhojbasa (3500 M):

Finally we started our trek to Bhojbasa with team of 12 climbers, 2 Sherpas, 2 cook and 13 porters on 27th May. It was 14 km trek. On the way to bhojbasa, we had lunch at Chhidwasa.

[This was the first Bharal sighted on the way to Bhojbasa.]

[Setting up camp at bhojbasa.]

[First glimpse of Mount Bhagirathi II from Bhojbasa camp.]

Bhojbasa to Nandanvan base camp (4350 M):

On 28th May we started from Bhojbasa and after exhaustive trek of 7 hours reached Nandanvan. This was one the most toughest day of expedition where we crossed difficult Gangotri glacier and moraine. During this trek we spent sometime at Gomukh (Origin of river Ganga). After reaching Nandanvan, we established base camp. But everyone was so tired that after dinner, we just got disappeared in sleeping bag.

We did load ferry on 29th and 30th May from Nandanvan to Upper Nandanvan [planned ABC(Advance Base Camp) at 4730 M] and shifted lot of extra load, technical gears. Finally on 31st May we moved from BC to ABC.

[Our base camp at Nadanvan.]

[Inside kitchen tent at base camp.]

[Team playing dumb sheraz, Some lighter moments at base camp.]

[Frozen streams around the camp because of sub minus temp at night.]

[Early morning photography was like treat, Golden Shivling.]

[Colors of nature, This was taken during sunset at base camp.]

Upper Nandanvan (ABC) to Camp1 (5340 M):

Now real exam was about to start. Entire remaining mountain was covered snow. We did load ferry from ABC to Camp1 and shifted technical gears other stuff to Camp1. Initially walking on snow was quite difficult but it became little easy as soon as we got used to it.

We went to Vasuki glacier on 2nd June for a walk. It was beautiful view to see Vasukital, entire route of Kalindi Pass, route to Satopanth. On the same evening our cook prepared special dish Mamo's for dinner. ah.....What a day it was..!!!

Finally on 4th June we shifted to Camp1.

[Establishing ABC.]


[Negi Sir and Shashi Madam in masti mood, some lighter moments at ABC.]

[Load ferry to camp1.]

Camp1 to Summit Camp (5800 M):

We established camp1 around 5pm on 4th June. Rajee, Shashi Madam and Peter prepared Hot soup and tea. Something hot was much required in such a cold condition and they appeared like God to me at that time.

We played a lot in snow and had full fledge photography session with Prashant's SLR camera. Slowly coldness increased and we  rushed into sleeping bag inside  tent. It was small tent but as we three (Myself, Prashant, Nishant) had squized in that tent, it created little warm conditions. We kept water bottle, inner of kofla shoes inside our sleeping bag and went to deep sleep.

We woke early on 5th June, packed everything and started moving towards summit camp with all the load. It was very strenuous climb where we struggled a lot while climbing with load. There was one point where I was about get fainted but thanks to Prashant who helped to recover with some quick food and water. We saw one well determined person approaching us slowly, he was Samarth. Samarth had started this expedition in alpine style on 1st June and met us directly in summit camp.

We reached summit camp around 4pm and quickly went to sleep as we had to move for summit attempt on same night.

[Camp1 established.]

[Tea, at camp1]

[Inside camp1 tent (L to R)-- Prashant, Myself, Nishant]

[In camp1, just before going into sleeping bag.]

[Summit camp]

Summit camp to top of Bhagirathi II:

We wake up at 10pm and started getting ready for summit attempt. Three layer of clothing, kofla's shoes, harness, jhumar, everyone got ready by wearing all the gears one by one. We started for summit attempt at 1am on 6th June. After lot of hard work we reached top of the mountain around 8 am. Peter sir flared of Indian flag and we were standing just few meters below him. Ecstasy of successful expedition was followed by agony of bad weather and we had to start descending down immediately because of complete whiteout. We reached summit camp around 12pm. Subsequently we descended to ABC on the same day and descended to Gangotri in next couple of days.

Everyone was very Happy because successful expedition, Our party had started from ABC and it continued all the way till Deharadun. As sir Edmund Hillary says, "It's not Mountain that we conquer but ourselves", we started journey to home with more confidence, new energy for Life. 

[Climbing in night for summit]

[First ray of sun at 4am]

[Ah....almost at top, very little is remaining.]

[Peter sir at summit]

[View from summit, Vasuki and satopanth behind it.]

[Whiteout after summit.]




  1. very good Sandeep, Congratulations !!!

  2. Kalakure machi. Fantastic dude. When I was reading I felt like I should come & join

  3. Hi Sandeep,

    We are planning for Bhagirathi 2 in nect May.

    Can you please give me your contact details.

    My email id is

    Thanks & Regards

  4. Your summit photo looks like a false summit.