Trekking-wise, 2016 has been a different kind of year! Till October I was busy with various family trips and could not plan or do any Long Treks. Even the Gokyo Lake trek I was planning (my 3rd attempt) for mid-Sept, suddenly fizzled out due to a family situation.
But when Manz (Manjunath of Bangalore, with whom I had done Kanchenjunga North & South Base Camps trek in Nepal in Oct-2015) said he is planning to do "Adi-Kailash & Om-Parvat Trek (AKOP)" starting mid-Oct, I saw hope ... and said I may join him, at the last minute, if my family situation clears up. And so it did ...
Thus, I found myself meeting Manz & his friend Prem at the Old Delhi Railway Station (DLI) on the afternoon of 16th October 2016, to catch the Uttarakhand Sampark Kranti Express to Kathgodam.
Multiple share-jeep rides from Kathgodam found us reaching Dharchula around 10:30 AM on 18th Oct. A quick tea and then a visit to SDM Dharchula Office revealed that they had stopped issuing Permits for AKOP Trek since last 5-6 days, due to bad weather and snowfall possibilities in the upper reaches of this route!
No amount of talk with lower officers could solve the problem, as only SDM can make an exception and issue permit. The SDM was on tour ... and so without a face-to-face interaction with him the task of explaining that we are experienced trekkers etc. became difficult.
So we were left with only two other trek possibilities:
1) The "Panchachuli BC Trek, via Darma Valley" starting from Dharchula
2) Go to Munsiary and get Permit for "Milam Glacier & ND-BC Trek" there.
We went back to our room in KMVN Dharchula (located in a serene Kali riverside near Nepal Crossover Bridge) and discussed the two options left with us. We dropped Panchchuli-BC idea as now-a-days the road goes all the way to Nagling, thus reducing this trek to just 2-3 days.
Instead we decided to go to Munsiary. A mobile call to Pandey-ji of Pandey Lodge in Munsiary confirmed that permits for Milam are being issued and he can help us get that if we arrive at his GH next morning.
Day-wise story in sub-pages below:
Manz, Me and Prem ... at Milam Glacier on 23-Oct-2016