A lesson in eco-friendly trekking that no classroom course can teach you

Looking at the state of the mountains, cities and the world, we often tend to lose hope and wonder how our capacity to destroy nature is so high. But every now and then we see something that restores our faith in humanity. For me, it was the sight of 30 enthusiastic trekkers doing their best to save the Hampta pass trail!

Hampta Pass trek-Green trails-Indiahikes
Each trekker dedicated in keeping the trail clean

In less than an hour after the trek started, a few people came to me asking why the eco-bag is so small and complaining that their bags are already full. The same day I saw one of them borrowing and filling up at least 3-4 eco bags. When he couldn’t find any more empty eco-bags, he started filling a plastic bag!

Hampta Pass trek-Picking litter from rocky crevasses -Indiahikes
Picking litter from rocky crevasses

It’s hard enough to collect 2 sacks throughout the trek and these guys did that in just one day! After a special Green Trails briefing, everyone took keen interest in finding out more about toilet systems and the waste management that we practice. Everyday, they would ask me where it is okay to brush their teeth such that it doesn’t harm the water or the soil.

Hampta Pass trek-Filled up eco bags-Indiahikes
Filled up eco bags

At the end of the trek at Chatru, people are usually so tired that they just sit or sleep on the rocks till the cars are ready to leave. This time I saw them desperately cleaning Chatru, trying to fit as much as possible in their eco-bags. Looking at them Shyam bhaiyya and Dinesh Bhaiyya helped in cleaning up! In the debriefing, the trekkers themselves promised to keep an extra bag every time they visit the mountains. I was almost in tears looking at their dedication. Special thanks to Jit’s leading which made the Green Trails work so smooth!

Hampta Pass trek-The Hampta Pass team with the sacks of garbage they collected-Indiahikes
The Hampta Pass team with the sacks of garbage they collected

Of course Sunil bhaiyya and Harka bhaiyya helped everyday by advising the local staff not to wash in the streams and not to litter. They themselves collected 1.5 sacks of waste!
Definitely one of the best experiences I’ve had in the mountains! Something I couldn’t have gotten by attending the process dynamics or biochemical engineering classes back in college.

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Nikshep Trinetra

Nikshep Trinetra

Nikshep Trinetra is a Chemical engineering student at NITK Suratkal. A climbing and trekking enthusiast, he is a Green Trails crusader with Indiahikes.

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