Expedition Behavior

Helping a fellow student get through a rough day by carrying some of their weight, turning back due to bad weather, bringing your tent mate a hot drink, or keeping a smile on your face during five days of torrential rains are just a few examples of Expedition Behavior in action.

“Expedition Behavior” has evolved into a catchphrase—and an even shorter acronym, “EB”—that carries with it endless implications. In 1965 they were just two words Paul used to explain a suite of behavioral concepts, as simple as using the word “teamwork” on a football squad. Today, expedition behavior stands as an integral part of the NOLS curriculum, describing behaviors that help a group cooperate and attain goals.


Expedition Behavior

  • Serve the mission and goals of the group.
  • Be as concerned for others as you are for yourself.
  • Treat everyone with dignity and respect.
  • Support leadership and growth in everyone.
  • Respect the cultures you contact.
  • Be kind and open-hearted.
  • Do your share and stay organized.
  • Help others, but don’t routinely do their work.
  • Model integrity by being honest and accountable.
  • Admit and correct your mistakes.

A good expedition team is like a powerful, finely tuned marriage. Members cook meals together, face challenges together and finally go to bed together. A bad expedition, on the other hand, is an ugly, embarrassing thing characterized by bickering, filth, frustration and crispy macaroni.


Nearly all bad expeditions  have one thing in common: poor expedition behavior (EB). This is true even if team members follow the stated rules, such as No Standing on the Rope, No Kerosene in the Food, No Soap in the River, No Raccoons in the Tent, and Keep Your Goddam Ice Axe Out of My Eye.


Unfortunately, too many rules of expedition behavior remain unspoken. Some leaders seem to assume that their team members already have strong and generous characters like their own. But judging from a few of the campers we’ve encountered, more rules ought to be spelled out. Here are ten of them.



Get the hell out of bed.

 Suppose your tent mates get up early to fetch water and fire up the stove while you lie comatose in your sleeping bag. As they run an extensive equipment check, coil ropes and fix your breakfast, they hear you start to snore. Last night you were their buddy; now they’re listing things about you that make them want to spit. They will devise cruel punishments for you. You have earned them. Had you gotten out of bed, nobody would have had to suffer.


 Do not be cheerful before breakfast.

 Some people wake up perky and happy as fluffy bunny rabbits. They put stress on those who wake up mean as rabid wolverines. Exhortations such as “Rise and shine, sugar!” and “Greet the dawn, pumpkin!” have been known to provoke pungent expletives from wolverine types. These curses, in turn, may offend fluffy bunny types. Indeed, they are issued with the sincere intent to offend. Thus, the day begins with flying fur and hurt feelings. The best early-morning EB is simple: Be quiet.



 Do not complain. About anything. Ever.

It’s ten below zero, visibility is four inches and wind-driven hailstones are embedded in your face. Must you mention it? Do you think your friends haven’t noticed the weather? Make a suggestion. Tell a joke. Lead a prayer. Do not lodge a complaint. Yes, your pack weighs 87 pounds and your cheap backpack straps are actually cutting into your flesh. Were you promised a personal Sherpa? Did somebody cheat you out of a mule team? If you can’t carry your weight, get a motor home.



4 Learn to cook at least one thing right.

 One expedition trick is so old that it is no longer amusing: on the first cooking assignment, the clever cook prepares a dish that resembles, say, Burnt Sock en le Sauce Toxique. The cook hopes to be relieved permanently from cooking duties. This is the childish approach to a problem that’s been with us since people first started throwing lizards on the fire. Tricks are not a part of a team spirit. If you don’t like to cook, offer to wash dishes and prepare the one thing you do know how to cook. Even if it’s only tea. Remember that talented camp cooks sometimes get invited to join major expeditions in Nepal, all expenses paid.



 Either A) shampoo, or B) do not remove your hat for any reason.

After a week or so on the trail, without shampooing, hair forms angry clumps and wads. These leave the person beneath looking like an escapee from a mental ward. Such an appearance could shake a team’s confidence in your judgment. If you can’t shampoo, pull a wool hat down over your ears and leave it there, night and day, for the entire expedition.



Do not ask if anybody’s seen your stuff.

Experienced adventures have systems for organizing their gear. They rarely leave it strewn around camp or lying back on the trail. One of the most damning things you can do is ask your teammates if they’ve seen the tent poles you thought you packed 20 miles ago. Even in the unlikely event you get home alive, you will not be invited on the next trip. Should you ever leave the tent poles 20 miles away, do not ask if anybody’s seen them. Simply announce, with a good-natured chuckle, that you are about to set off in the dark on a 40-mile hike to retrieve them, and that you are sorry. It’s unprofessional to lose your spoon or your toothbrush. If something like that happens, don’t mention it to anyone.



Never ask where you are.

 If you want to know where you are, look at the map. Try to figure it out yourself. If you’re still confused, feel free to discuss the identity of landmarks around you and how they correspond to the cartography. If you A) suspect that a mistake has been made; and B) have experience interpreting topographical maps, and C) are certain that your group leader is a novice or on drugs, speak up. Otherwise, follow the group like sheep.



 Always carry more than your fair share.

 When the trip is over, would you rather be remembered as a rock or a wuss? Keep in mind that a pound or two of extra weight in your pack won’t make your back hurt any more than it already does. In any given group of flatlanders, somebody is bound to bicker about weight. When an argument begins, take the extra weight yourself. Then shake your head and gaze with pity upon the slothful one. This is the mature response to childish behavior. On the trail that day, during a break, load the tenderfoot’s pack with 20 pounds of gravel.



Do not get sunburned.

Sunburn is not only painful and unattractive—it’s also and obvious sign of inexperience. Most greenhorns wait too long before applying sunscreen. Once you’ve burned on an expedition, you may not have a chance to get out of the sun. Then the burn gets burned, skin peels away, blisters sprout on the already swollen lips. You get the idea. Wear zinc oxide. You can see exactly where and how thickly it’s applied and it gives you just about 100% protection. It does get on your sunglasses, all over your clothes and in your mouth. But that’s OK. Unlike sunshine, zinc oxide is non-toxic.


RULE #10

 Do not get killed.

Suppose you make the summit , chain-smoking Gilanes and carrying the complete works of Hemingway in hardcover. Pretty macho, huh? Suppose now that you take a vertical detour down a crevasse and never make it back to camp. Would you still qualify as a hero? And would it matter? Nobody’s going to run any fingers through your new chest hair. The worst thing to have on your outdoor resume is a list of the possible locations of your body. Besides, your demise might distract your team members from enjoying what’s left of their vacations.


All expedition behavior really flows from this one principle: Think of your team, the beautiful machine, first. You are merely a cog in that machine. If you have something to prove, forget about joining an expedition. Your team will never have more than one member.

Mountain Stories Narrated to SMW

 ON Social Media Week  at Bangalore,  iquest adventures hosted a event on mountain stories by Renu Kotian & Sunand Sampath.

It went on like…

When the mountain calls, you have to respond. IQuest started ten years ago when Sunand Sampath followed his heart and swapped the life of an engineer for that of an adventurer. He decided to take up mountaineering professionally and eventually started offering services to people who wanted to answer the call of the wild too.
It all began with a small circle of networking with close friends and family, expanding by word of mouth until the time when a professional team was required to set up a page and help them navigate the flow of enquiries and engagement with enthusiasts from all over the world.

In this session at Social Media Week, Sunand shared how they have encouraged their to shed their fears and inhibitions and conquer mountains together. He has also been steadfast in promoting thinking green and not leaving a trail behind as he helped people plan their expeditions to the Himalayas, Mt. Everest base camps and Mt Kilimanjaro among other.

Photographer and Capoeira enthusiast Taushik Mandal also shared how social media got him in touch with the other side of Brazil and took him to Israel to interact with other Capoeira enthusiasts. He also presented snapshots from his exploratory trip to Spiti Valley and the trials and joys of being in the mountains.

Renu Kotain took us on a journey to the basecamp of Mt. Everest and back. With her effusive narrative and cheerful recounting of her adventures and misadventures, including her encounters with yaks on bridges and “Dal bhat – full power – No toilet – No shower” initiation, the audience was moved and felt like they had taken the trip with her to the snowcapped peaks of the majestic Himalayas.

Ramakhrishna regaled the gathering with stories from his travels to Mt. Kilimanjaro and how he social media connected him to Sunand and enabled him to realise his dream of conquering the peak.

The evening came to a close with much interaction between the presenters and audience while addressing concerns like training for the climb, saving funds, preparation, packing, equpments and planning successful climbs without disturbing the ecological balance of nature, accepting one’s limits and no spill attitude. Sunand urged the audience to go out there, make the climb and conquer life.

Mt Elbrus Russia .. Climbing Expedition

mt Elbrus

Mt.Elbrus, The roof of Europe , one of the Seven summit series , a two-peaked ice giant, crowns the panorama of Central Caucasus. Its two peaks have two volcano craters, which make the Eastern peak a little lower than the other (5642 and 5621m).The Eastern peak still has an enormous crater 250m in diameter. The massif is covered by a gigantic ice-cap. Therefore from Persian language the name of the mountain is translated as “Snow Mountain”. Cabardin and Balkarian people, local folks of these lands, call it “Mountain of Happiness”
Normally the ascent is started from the Baksan Valley and is led on a south slope of mountain Elbrus.
The trip is not technically difficult but requires crampons and ice axe. Systematic programmer of acclimatization is essential prior to making the ascent.
The climb itself may take between 7-10 hours; the descent another 4-6 hours. The main obstacles are high altitude, fog, wind and cold.
Guiding this climb are experienced top Russian mountaineers, and a highly experienced Trip Leader . This no technical climb is a test of stamina, and with proper acclimatization and good weather, you can reach the summit.
17 Aug to 25 Aug 2014.

Day 1  :- Arrive to Mineralnye Vody airport. Our English-speaking guide will meet you at the airport. 4-hour private bus transfer to Terskol village in the Baksan valley (about 2,000 m). Accommodation at a hotel for two nights.
Day 2 : Acclimatization hike of the Cheghet massif up to 3000 m. Duration – about 5 hours. Excursion to the local bazaar. Night at the hotel.
Day 3 :- Checking out of the hotel. 15 min (4-km) transfer to “Azau” (2,250m) – the lower station of the Elbrus cable-way. Cable-way up to the highest point – “Gara-Bashi” station (3,700 m), which includes 2 lower cabin spans, and the upper part – chair-lift. The latter one sometimes does not operate due to poor weather conditions. Accommodation at the “Bochki” (“Barrels”) high mountain hotel. 1.5-hour acclimatization trekking up to “Priut odinnadtsati” (“Shelter of the 11th”, 4,050 m), return down to “Barrels”.
Day 4 : Acclimatization hike up to Pastukhov’s Rocks (4,700-4,800 m). Return down to “Barrels” (3-4 hours up and 1-1.5 hour down).

Day 5 : Rest day. Training on the glacier.
Day 6 : Summit day. Ascent of Elbrus west summit (5,642 m). Leaving for the ascent at 2-3 A.M., 10-12 hours trip in total. Night at “Barrels”.
Day 7 : Descend into the Baksan valley. Overnight at the hotel. Reserve day in case of bad weather.
Day 8:- Reserve day in case of bad weather.
Day 9 : Transfer to the airport, flight home.
End of expedition Package
Cost of the expedition
USD 1850 /-

More options
Extend stay in Moscow or a visit to St.petersburg or a trans Siberian Rail journey. ( at additional cost )

• Transfers (a group’s bus M.Vody-Terskol-M.Vody, HTL-Azau-HTL) , an English-speaking attendant on TRFs
• lift to Elbrus(one day ticket)
• Double/ twin accommodation at a hotel (4 nights)
• accommodation at the mountain Hut (4-5 nights)
• full board
• An English-speaking mountain guide
• Mountain guides for summit attempt (1 guide : 3-4 clients, one attempt is paid)
• a cook at the hut
• visa support, registration, certification of an ascent of Elbrus.
• National Park permit for climb Mt.Elbrus
-single supplement at the hotel 80 EURO p/person per 4 nights
(that should be ordered in advance. That is to be paid extra in case if there are vacant rooms at the hotel)
-snow cat (In 2013 the price is 400 EURO per one drive per the group 1-8 pax from a mountain hut to the Pastukhov Rocks. In 2014 it’s subject to change.)
-an individual mountain guide on the summit day 330 EURO p/one guide,
-extra lift and transfers
-rent of individual equipment.. we can help procure the equipment .

Last Date for registration May 5th 2014

Cancellation Charges:
10% of the Total Charges on Cancellation Before May 15th 2014.
25% of the total charges on cancellation between 16th May and 5th June 2014

50% of the total charges or the Local cancellation expenses which ever is higher On cancellation between 6th June and 15th June 2014.
100 % charges if cancelled after 15th June or if the participant has to leave at anypoint of theProgramme due to any reason
No refunds will be made if the programme gets cancelled due to Unavoidable circumstances out of the control of the organizers like Natural calamities, bundhs, strikes , etc.

NOTE: Incase of circumstance out of control like natural calamities, local law and order situation,etc.,which may result in change in iternary,additional booking of accomdation,transport,logistic etc causing an increase in expenses. The additional cost thus incurred shall be borne by the participant.

Register now :


Sunand sampath : +91 9448476683 Email : contact@iquestindia.com

Feb 13, 2014 - Uncategorized    No Comments

A new thought on conservation of mountains

“Nature is not a place to visit. It is home.”
― Gary Snyder.

“I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery—air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, “This is what it is to be happy.”
— Sylvia Plath

What is Mountain??

A area that has been raised by erosion (being worn down) or Plates sliding. Mountains are formed when the land is being pushed up by strong forces in the Earth, such as plate tectonics. Some mountains are formed by areas being thrust up over other areas; some mountains are volcanoes that have died out, or become extinct.

A mountain  must be an equilibrium between uplift and erosion (glacial or fluvial) in order  to maintain the mountain, otherwise it would be eroded back to base level.

What is conservation??

the action of conserving, preserving , protecting , or restoration of the natural environment and of wildlife, repair of archaeological, historical, and cultural sites and are facts.


Why  the Mountain has to be conserved?

We are living on the planet as if we have another one to go to. It is not reasonable that art should win the place of honor over our great and powerful mother Nature. We have so overloaded the beauty and richness of her works by our inventions that we have quite smothered her.

Mountains have always presented the human race with a great challenge – they have had to be climbed, cultivated and tamed. They have also been the subject of numerous books about heroic deeds, wars, adventures, real and imagined, and of mystical and romantic poetry, as well as favorite places for prayer and adoration.

From the scientific viewpoint, mountains are large, interesting laboratories of knowledge where species and communities, which have adapted in various ways to their environment.

Mountain environments are essential to the survival of the global ecosystem. But mountains are also very fragile and are, now more than ever, experiencing environmental degradation from soil erosion, landslides, loss of habitats and species, and genetic diversity. In addition, they are particularly vulnerable to pressing changes such as global warming. Regional cooperation in mountainous areas has proved to be the right approach to protect mountains as storehouses of biological diversity and endangered species.

Organization involved in the process:-

There are “n” number of organization who had involved in the common object to conserve mountains internationally  like:

  • earth System Governance Project (ESGP)
  • Global Environment Facility (GEF)
  • Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)
  • United Nations Environment Program (UNEP)
  • World Nature Organization (WNO)
  • World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)

Not only these organization which has to come forward to protect our mountains, but even we as  a individual must also join hands to protect each and every gift of our mother land.


Feb 12, 2014 - Sunand Sampath, Travel    No Comments

Some interesting place of Sikkim..

Welcome!!! to the Himalayan land called “Indrakil” or “Garden of Lord Indra”.
(Sikkim), where you will find a unique landscape, fast flowing rivers and lakes, nurtured varieties of flora and fauna and different animal species. Sikkim is such a unique place where you will find every reason for an adventurous trip and can make your imagination come true. If you are an enthusiastic and daring traveler, Sikkim adventure holidays is the great opportunity to explore yourself.

Iquest Outdoor Leadership and Adventure Consultants specialized in designing and organizing tailor made packages to Sikkim.

We undertake packages for groups of various types, whether you are a honeymooner, seeking a truly exotic experience  or a corporate team looking for a stimulating engaging and refreshing experience for your team. You might be looking out for a family outing or group of friends , we will design an experience for you………
Just contact us NOW..

Sikkim – Perfect for Adventure Travel:-

Sikkim is one of the best spots for adventure travel in India. The most famous attraction points include Mt. Kanchenjunga, Mighty Kanchenjunga glacier and Great Valleys. Darjeeling in northeastern part of India has many of the perfect ambiances of the hill resorts with its mild climate. Trekking is the best tour that can make you explore the beauty of Sikkim in the most memorable way.

Adventure Sports at Sikkim – Most Demanded by Travelers:-
Trekking in Sikkim:-

Trekking is the most amazing possibility of getting a closer look to lofty peaks, dense forests, winding rivers, spring and to know the village or mountain life. You can experience the thrill and excitement related to trekking and can have wonderful moments. Some of the wonderful treks can make your trekking experience more excited, and they are: Dzongri – Goecha la Trek, Kanchenjunga Base Camp Trek, Singalila Ridge trek, Green Lake treks etc.

Sikkim is embraced with the gigantic peaks of Himalayas including Mt. Kanchenjunga which is 8586 m high. Sikkim trekking tour will give you the towering moments and inner strength to feel the natural wonders of the world. Trekking in Sikkim is exciting both in spring and during autumn. You can get clear view of mountains with variety of blossoming flowers. On the other hand, in autumn you will find dry and clear mountain views.

Mountain Biking in Sikkim:

Visiting Sikkim is incomplete without having fun of mountain biking. Most of the adventure lovers must take the opportunity to experience the thrilling and excitement while biking. It is the best way to know this place while riding. Since many of the routes of Sikkim are suitable for mountain biking, you can easily explore many of the mountains of Sikkim. The starting point for mountain biking in Sikkim is Gangtok

Mountaineering: Sikkim Himalayas is the best place for mountaineering in the world. In the southern part of Himalayas there is a wide range of peaks like Kanchenjunga, pandim, Narsing, Kabru, Talung with its sheer beauty.

River Rafting: River Rafting is the adventure sport most enjoyed in Sikkim. Teesta & Rangit River are

the ideal rivers for safe River Rafting. The river is covered by the thick forest from both the sides.

Yak Safari: Yaks are bovine mammals that makes the adventure sports travel  more interesting and unforgettable. You can have a unique kind of experience while yak safari. You are supposed to have a ride on yak and cover the different trekking points and Rivers.
Hang Gliding: Hang Gliding is the kind of aero sports that makes you to fly over the sky like birds. At some parts of Sikkim, Hang Gliding adventure is available. And so on………

Pack your bag for a great exploring trip where you will get your interest of activities at a single destination.

Enjoy the full fledged activities provided in Sikkim adventure holidays and become a daring traveler to explore the unidentified regions in the world and unfold its beauty.


Feb 11, 2014 - Uncategorized    No Comments

Few glimpses of the iquest programe with Seva in Action’s special childrens

For some children wheelchair is not a boundary, this young one attempting the slack line at the camp. !The amount of energy and will power he has is tremendous. And moving… ask for a moment of thought









Look at that smile , own creation , need to wait to see what arrives out of that pattern . ?..


And the colors , just play with imagination , everybody loves to c4eat their own pattern



Through the process



Tie and dye , whites getting set to get colored


Riot of colors


Climbers Dictionary

  “Here are few  abbreviations associated with rock climbing.

This might be helpful answer  for some questions of rock

climbers or help you feel more familiar with the scenario.”



  • Aid Climbing – The use of anything other than the natural features to ascend up the rock.
  • Anchor – The point where the rope is fixed into the rock.
  • Barn Door – An off balance move that causes a climber to pivot on two points of contact. The result looks like you are opening the barn door.
  • Belay – To keep the climber safe by controlling the rope.
  • Belayer – The person keeping the climber safe by controlling the rope.
  • Belay Device – Usually a metal device which the belayer uses to control the rope. There ae several types of devices, all creating friction against the rope, allowing the belayer to catch a falling climber.
  • Belay Betty or Belay Bob – The significant other of an addictive rock climber.
  • Big wall – A long route that takes many pitches or rope lengths to ascend.
  • Biner – Short for  “carabiner”, a short loop of metal with a gate that can attach things together.
  • Boulder – A rock short enough to climb relatively safely without a rope.
  • Bouldering – Climbing low to the ground and without a rope.
  • Brake Hand – The hand that holds the rope securely.
  • Camming Device – A removable, portable protection that helps stop a climber if they fall.
  • Carabiner – A removable, portable protection that helps stop a climber if they fall.
  • Crack climbing – Climbing continuous cracks in rocks, requiring specific techniques and protection methods.
  • Crimp – Gripping so that the fingertips contact the hold with slightly raised knuckles.
  • Crimping on the Way Radical Tiny Gnarlies – climbing a route with really small holds.
  • Cross through – Reaching with a hand or foot that crosses the other appendage.
  • Crux – The most crucial., difficult part of the climb.
  • Descender – The device used for rappelling.
  • Dirt Me – Climbing speak for “Let me down”, after finishing or giving up on a top rope climb.
  • Don’t Slap Rude if You’re Shaky at the Crux – duh… Don’t slap rude if you’re shaky at the crux… Dude!
  • Downclimb – Climbing downward rather than upward.
  • Dyno – Climbing move in which the climber jumps from one hold to another.
  • 8-Ring – A common rappel / belay device shaped like the number “8”.
  • Elvis leg – A leg shaking uncontrollably during a climb, usually due to nerves or over contraction of the muscles. Sometimes called sewing machine leg.
  • Enscarfment – A food break at the edge of a cliff.
  • Epic – The story of an ordinary, well planned, climb that suddenly turns into an adventure thriller!  With an eventual happy ending.  As the drama unfolds around the campfires at night or to a wide-eyed audience in the local tavern, it becomes increasingly difficult to sift the fact from the fiction.
  • Figure 8 knot – The most common knot used to attach the climber’s harness to the rope.
  • Flag – Dangling a leg to improve balance.
  • 4th Classing – see Free Solo
  • Free Climb – To climb upward using only the natural rock features, and only using man made gear for protection.
  • Free Solo – To free climb without the use of any manmade protection.
  • Going To Church – Climbing on Sunday.
  • Gravical – The adrenaline high a climber may experiences upon a lot of air between climber and the ground level.  ( i.e., “This is gravical, dude!”)
  • Gumbie – An inexperienced or new rock climber.
  • Hang Dog – To rest on the rope while climbing.
  • Lead – Starting with the rope on the ground, climbing by clipping into protection points on the way up.
  • Poser – Someone trying to make you believe that they climb much better than they actually do.
  • Rack – The climbing gear carried during an ascent.
  • Rappel – Descending down the length of a rope.
  • Rarppele – One who enjoys sliding down ropes instead of climbing up rocks.
  • “Rock!” – A warning yelled to anyone below when a piece of rock is falling on a climb.
  • Scrambling – Easy climbing, usually unroped.
  • Slab – A climb that is less than vertical.
  • Summit – The top of a mountain or rock.
  • Sling n : A sewn, typically shoulder-length nylon runner used to clip in long to protection, build anchors, carry gear, etc.
  • Sloper n : A downsloping handhold that relies on skin friction and an open-hand grip.
  • Smear n, v : To apply your entire forefoot (and not just toe) to the rock, often while slab climbing, stemming, or on large, sloping features.
  • Sport climbing n : Gymnastic face and overhang free climbing, with the climbs typically having fixed protection like bolts (usually equipped top down with a power drill). Another key feature is the acceptance of hang dogging.
  • Squeeze chimney n : Bigger than an off-width but smaller than a chimney, a squeeze chimney (12 to 18 inches or so) is a crack up which you must wriggle; these are infamous for provoking claustrophobia. A wise climber will ensure that his torso squeezes through unimpaired, even on a full in-breath.
  • Stem n, v : To splay and oppose your legs, {sansV}-like, across a dihedral or to otherwise enter a splits position.
  • Traditional climbing n : Before sport climbing, all climbing was traditional climbing, in which you started on the ground, placing pro as you went. Today’s slightly modified meaning seems to encompass all gear-protected (natural) leads.
  • Under cling n, v : Any hold used by turning your palm upside-down, as if receiving alms, and walking the feet up.



Annapurna circuit trek …. !!!!

This trek takes you through distinct regional scenery of rivers, flora, fauna and above all – mountains.    There are four regions that are passed through on the trek; Lamjung, Manang, Mustang and Myagdi.

Lamjung and Myagdi of the lower elevations are both predominantly Hindu and with lush green subtropical valleys with villages and terraced farming. Manang and Mustang are of the higher elevations and are predominantly Tibetan Buddhist.

The trek goes counter-clockwise reaches its summit in Thorung La (pass) at the height of 5416m, or 17,769 feet.  The route goes past the  mountains,      passing through the world’s deepest gorge in between those two 8,000-plus meter peaks. Poon Hill, at the end of the trek, affords views of those two mountains, as well as South Annapurna and Macchupucchre, the “Fishtail Mountain.”

The trek also goes through Buddhist villages and Hindu holy sites, most notably the village of Muktinath, a holy site for both Buddhists and Hindus, and Braga, one of the oldest monasteries in the region. From Dharapani to
Kagbeni you will be walking the Annapurna section of The Great Himalaya Trail, a long distance trekking route that connects Nepal from East to West.
To Be led by a Highly experienced Mountaineering Leader and supported by well experienced Guides and Friendly Staff…!

Dates : 5th April to 20th April 2014 ,KTM to KTM.
Type of Trek : Tea House.
Highest point:  17873 ft/5416 mts.
Focus : Villages, monasteries, wildlife, high passes, and dramatic landscape.
Grade : Physical Challenge, Hard trek overall, so physical fitness is recommended.

Day to Day Itinerary:-

Day 01: 5th April 2014: Arrival in Kathmandu
Upon arriving in Kathmandu (Tribhuvan International Airport), a representative will meet you and help you transfer to your hotel by private bus. Enjoy a free evening to explore Kathmandu and recover from your jet-lag. Meet the our trip leader during a short pre-tour briefing before dinner.

Day 02: 6th April: Sightseeing of Kathmandu Valley and preparation for the trip. Travel to Pokhara proceed to syangje and stay.

Day 03: 7th April: Trek from Syange to Dharapani [1,960m/6,430ft]: 7-8 hrs. A leisurely trekking pace takes us into the Manang district with its fields of barley, rice, potato and pine forests. We pass the village of Kodo and will overnight in Dharapani.

Day 04: 8th April: Trek from Dharapani to Chame [2,710m/8,891ft]: 5-6 hrs. On the way to Chame we climb a few steep, forested ridges and are treated by some of the most sensational mountain views: Lamjung Himal, Annapurna II, and Annapurna IV (7,525m/24,688ft). At our destination a few small hot springs bring relief to our taxed muscles.

Day 05: 9th April: Trek from Chame to Pisang [3,300m/10824ft]: 5-6 hrs.
Today we trek higher along a steep and narrow, densely forest path that leads to a rock face that soars 1500m/4,920 ft above the river. We reach at Pisang finally.

Day 06: 10th April: Trek from Upper Pisang to Manang [3,500m/11,482ft]: 6-7 hrs. Out of the two routes to choose, we select the upper one (through Upper Pisang and Geru) where the sceneries are unmatched. Majestic peaks tower all around us are Annapurna, Pisang peak, and several others. As we trek higher the landscape and vegetation change with the colder and dryer environment. It’s not all hard work though, since we will visit the Barge monastery (largest in the district of Manang).

Day 07: 11th April: Trek from Manang: Acclimatization Day
To allow our body chemistry to change, adapt to the lower levels of oxygen at altitude, this will be an acclimatization day. We will take a few short walks to higher ground. Great destinations are the Bhojo Gompa, Gangapurna Lake, the Himalayan Rescue Association and even the small old, monastery village of Vraga. This day is important since the next two are challenging with a rapid gain in altitude.

Day 8: 12th April: Trek from Manag to Yak Kharka ,3,110m/13,484ft]: 3-4 hrs.  We climb out of the Marshyangdi Valley toward Jarsang Khola and Ghunsa. We pass a few pastures, a patch of juniper trees, and the flat mud roofs. After crossing a small river, we pass an ancient old Mani wall (religious carvings on stone slabs) before entering the small village of Yak Kharka.

Day 9: 13th April: Trek from Yak Kharka to Thorong Phedi [4,600m/15,092ft]: 3-4 hrs.  Thorong Pedi is close to the foot of the pass, Thorong La. This ‘trekker/climber’ village caters to the needs of these adventures souls. Some people hike higher to make the “pass-day” easier and risk contracting Altitude Sickness. We stop here to avoid this and potentially get a better night’s sleep.

Day 10: 14th April: Trek from Thorong Phedi to Muktinath [3,800/12,467ft]: 7-8 hrs. Thorong La (5,416 m/17,769 ft), an unforgettable experience, is clearly the climax of our Annapurna Circuit trek. It is in our grasp today. Yes, we will be huffing and puffing, and at the same time exulting in the experience; our own human performance and the unimaginable majesty of this place that few Westerners see. We reach Muktinath with the setting sun. Muktinath hosts a Vishnu temple and a Buddhist Monastery and is often referred to as an example of the religions harmony in Nepal.

Day 11: 15th April: Trek from Muktinath to Tatopani [1,200m/3937ft]: 6-8 hrs. Today, we drive along a plateau above the Kali Gandaki – world`s deepest gorge. We will be using the local private jeep of bus to Ghasa and then change another vehicle to Tatopani. The road is gravel and unfortunately rough and dusty. At Tatopani another treat awaits us, and everyone is anxious to relax their weary muscles in one of the hot spring pools.

Day 12: 16th April: Trek from Tatopani to Ghorepani [2,850m/9,350ft].: 7-8 hrs. The trek to Ghorepani takes us past the Pun Magar villages of Ghara and Sikha and their terraced farmlands, through Phalate and Chitre, and through beautiful rhododendron, birch, and magnolia stands. The surrounding peaks look wonderful, almost ominous, as they tower above.

Day 13: 17th April: Trek from Ghorepani to Poon Hill to Nayapul and then drive to Pokhara. And stay
An early ascent of Poon Hill (3,210m. /10,531ft) takes us to the top to witness a spectacular moment in time: sunrise over the whole Annapurna and Dhaulagiri massifs. We then return back to our lodge for the breakfast. And then, we trek downhill to Nayapul via Ulleri and Birethanti. We drive to Pokhara from Nayapul, which take approx. an hour and half.

Day 14: 18th April Buffer Day 1
Day 15 : 19th April Buffer Day 2
Day 16 : 20th April: Final Departure from Kathmandu


  • Cost :40000/- INR
  • Last Date for Registration : 15th March 2014                                                 [Registration through an advance payment of 50% of the total charges , Balance to be paid before 15th March 2014]
  • Age Group: 15 and above
  • Minimum number of participants : 5 nos.
  • Contact for registration:-
  • Sunand Sampath ( Expedition Coordinator )
  • Email contact@iquestindia.com phone +91 80 40930357 ( 15:00 to 19:00 hrs on week days )
  • Mobil: 9448476683

Cost Includes:-

  • Highly experienced Leaders, High Altitude Guides.
  • Hotels when in city, during the trek in tents on sharing basis.
  • Food :3 Veg meals a day while trekking.
  • Certificates and expedition t-shirts.
  • Flight to and fro Pokhara
  • 3 night accommodation in Kathmandu in non star hotel.
  • 2 Night Accommodation in Pokhara non star (without meals)

Cost Excludes:-

  • All the personal expenses like drinks, tips etc.
  • Cost of any form of insurance, rescue, evacuation, hospitalization, etc.
  • Travel fare up to KTM and Back (iQuest can assist in getting reservations for travel).
  • Any Insurance. Any item apart from that indicated in the itinerary.
  • Sightseeing and other charges in Kathmandu.
  • Meals in Kathmandu and in Pokhara
  • Any Temple entry fee

Cancellation Charges:-

  • 25% of the total charges of the actual cost incurred , whichever is higher if cancelled before 15th March 2014.
  • 50% of the total charges If cancelled between 16th March and 25th March 2014.
  • 75% of the total charges if cancelled between 26th March and 31st March 2014.
  • 100% charges if cancelled on or after 1st April 2014 , No refunds will be made if the participant has to return back at any point of the programme or does not attend the programme due to any reason what-so-ever .


In case of circumstance out of our control like, natural calamities, local law and order situation,etc.,which may result in change in itinerary, additional booking of accommdation,transport,logistic etc., causing an increase in expenses, and also in case of any fuel price hike .The additional cost thus incurred shall be borne by the participant.

Jan 27, 2014 - Uncategorized    No Comments

Karnataka. The adventurer’s abode

This article was published in the karnataka tourism magazine..


 Karnataka, with its   geografical diversity  is often called  the heaven for adventure lovers.

The region is blessed with vast evergreen forests of  the western ghats, beautiful rock formation, mighty rivers, welcoming hills, never ending streams, add to it cool temperate climate, and you have an ideal adventure hotspot.

People from around the world visit karnataka for  various adventure activities like rock climbing, trekking, hiking, cave exploration etc., as this is the only region in this part of the country that offers challenges of various grades. It does not matter if one as a beginner or an ace, the terrain satisfies all needs.

For rock climbing enthusiasts, the craggy rock formation at ramnagar popularly called the mecca for  rock climbers has some of the most beautiful multi-grade pitch climbing routes as well as bolted routes, offering challenges to get your adrenalin pumping. Ramngar situated amidst serene natural habitat also offers one a  beautiful green-walk, the monoliths of savanadurga beckons you with enough challenges, while the surrounding  greenery invites you to soak in and enjoy it.

The innumerable trekking trails  of karnataka  have mesmerized many  the dense forest of bandipur , the enchanting  terrain of chikmagalur, the breathtaking trails of yana,the hills and the waterfalls. To tip it all, the weather conditions are just perfect for one to set forth and conquer.

Cross-country bicycle and mobike expenditions have gradually attained popularly with good roads and serene settings.  The various routes through cities, towns, village, and the countryside, all make the experience more memorable.

Karnataka is a hotspot in the field of adventure tourism not only for the above reasons, but also for the fact that any tourist visiting Karnataka can tailor-make his itinerary with a desirable mix of adventure, along with visit to places of historic and culture interest, or with visit to spiritual or wildlife destinations.



Sunand Sampath

Hampi Photography trip

A visit to Hampi

Is a sojourn into the past

And the best way to

experience this

World Heritage Site

Which now lies in ruins,

Is to take a leisurely walk.

And go on an enchanting journey

Of excitement and discovery.



to the team that returned from the Hampi Photography trip ,. Divya, Sindhu, Hinglaz, Saransh, Saket, Ami, Taushik and myself ( Sunand) went through some really memorable moments during the trip , Lot of sharing , Learnings teachings  and  Progress.