How My Wife And I Did 9 High Altitude Treks With Our Baby

M y wife, Srimati, and I had done five treks in the Himalayas until October 2010. The birth of our daughter, Tista, put a brake on this for a while.

We enjoyed watching Tista grow but yearned to return to the Himalayas. But as months passed, it was becoming almost impossible to stay away from the mountains.

Finally, in March 2011, fifteen months since our last visit to the Himalayas, we headed to Kaluk, a small car trip. This was to be the beginning of Tista’s Himalayan adventures.

She was just 5 months old.

Tista’s first trek

After returning from the Kaluk trip with Tista, we started thinking seriously about getting back to trekking.

Our last trek in 2009 had been an unsuccessful one from Baralacha La to Chandratal.

I was still very hesitant. In addition to the challenges of trekking in high altitude, Srimati would also have to tend to Tista. I did not want trekking to end up being a pain for her. But Srimati was very confident.

Srimati’s excitement eventually got the better of my worries. Memories of her courage and strength on treks also came to mind.

When I was affected by AMS symptoms at Samiti Lake on the Goechala trek in 2007, it was Srimati who led me to the pass and helped me descend along with Krishna, our guide on that trek.

So, we planned a trek to Chintaphu in Nepal in October 2011. At approximately 12,000 ft, Chintaphu was a 12 km walk from a village called Maimajua in Nepal’s Illam district.

Trek with tista
1st Birthday celebration of Tista under Torkey Jhora – Chintaphu Trek, Nepal

Not only did Srimati complete the trek comfortably, she even brought Tista out in her arms at 5.00 am to watch the sunrise!

Women indeed have some magical superpower, much beyond the cognizance of men.

Chintaphu Trek Oct 11
Srimati carries 1-year-old Tista on the trails of Chintaphu Trek as I follow behind.

We felt truly blessed as we took in crystal clear views of Mt Kanchenjunga, Mt Pandim, Mt Makalu, Mt Lhotse, Mt Everest and other mighty peaks in a row. Tista was one year old.

Getting familair with the mountains

After Chintaphu, we went to the Himalayas each year in 2012 and 2013.

First, to Chansal Pass and next, to Sach Pass. However, these were not really treks. We made a few day hikes to Nagasti-ITBP camp from Chitkul and Khanjar village from Udaipur-Lahaul-Himachal.

Srimati and Tista at Chansal Pass Oct 12
Srimati and Tista – the mother-daughter duo at Chansal Pass. Tista was around 2 years old.

This driving around and fitting in short hikes did not quench our thirst for the Himalayas.

We started planning ‘proper’ treks.

In April 2014, we trekked with Tista to Phoktey Dara in West Sikkim.

Tista was now 3.5 years old.

After this trek, there has been no looking back.

Full-fledged trekking with Tista

The trek to Phoktey Dara was followed by Bagini Glacier in Oct 2014.

Then came Panchachuli Base Camp in May 2015, Madh Maheshwar in Oct 2015, Kunt Khal in June 2016, Har Ki Dun in Oct 2016, Kedartal in May 2017 and Hampta Pass in Oct 2017.

Tista at lower Bagini camp site - Oct 14
Tista at lower Bagini camp site on the way to Bagini glacier trek, Uttarakhand.
Srimati with Tista near Panchachulli BC - May 15
Srimati with Tista near Panchachulli Base Camp, Uttarakhand.
trek with tista
Srimati arranging the Kandi for Tista near Kunt Khal top, Valley of Flowers Trek, Uttarakhand.

How we manage our daughter while trekking

Srimati has her ways to ensure that Tista is always engaged at campsites. She packs her drawing books, colour pencils, an extra set of clothes and most importantly, her favourite doll!

Srimati is also careful not make trekking a very strenuous activity for Tista. She doesn’t want her to lose interest in trekking because of the terrain.

For this, we always arrange for an extra porter to carry her either on Kandi or Baby Carrier. At Hampta Pass, it was Tista’s horse, Badal, who carried her across and she managed quite well on the horse.

Tista on her Horse friend Badal near Hampta Pass top - Oct 17
Tista on her horse, Badal near Hampta Pass, Himachal Pradesh. She was 7-years-old when she did this trek.

Inculcating green practices in our daughter

My wife is very much concerned about nature and ensures not to leave any sort of garbage behind us in the mountains.

She has been constantly raising this awareness in Tista as well.

Tista has, in turn, imbibed this love for nature and at seven years, deeply respects mountains.

I highly appreciate the courage, enthusiasm, love and respect for the Mountains that Srimati possesses. This is something that is helping us constantly to return to the Himalayas time and again.

Srimati at Kedartal - May 17
A defiant Srimati poses at Kedartal.

Here’s a full record of the treks we have done with our daughter ever since her birth

1. Kaluk in Sikkim at age of 5 months
2. Chintaphu in Nepal at age of 366 days
3. Chansal Pass – Oct 2012 and Sach Pass – Oct 2013 (Car tour)
4. Phoktey Dara – April 2014
5. Bagini Glacier – Oct 2014
6. Panchachulli BC – May 2015
7. Buda Madh Maheshwar – Oct 2015
8. Kunth Khal – June 2016
9. Har ki Dun – Oct 2016
10. Kedartal – May 2017
11. Hampta Pass – Oct 2017

A note by the Editor

It is heartening to see women like Srimati who make the seemingly impossible, possible. We salute her ‘never say never’ attitude. A big shout out to Anirban who endlessly supports his family on this noble feat.

Little Tista is lucky to have such parents. We wish them very best in their future endeavours.

As a follow-up, if you’re looking to trek with your children, we highly recommend that you read this article, which tells you of a few good treks that you can take children on. 


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Anirban Banerjee

Anirban Banerjee

Anirban stays in Kolkata. With a management background, he works in the Media industry. Apart from his obsession for the Himalayas, he loves gardening and fishkeeping. His trekking love started back in 2006. Ever since, he has completed 14 Himalayan treks with his wife Srimati, including 9 treks with their daughter Tista.

53 thoughts on “How My Wife And I Did 9 High Altitude Treks With Our Baby

  1. Hi Anirban da & Srimati.
    Glad to read and know you. It is a terrific work dada. My deep respect for your endeavour and passion. What a run you made with a family, as I also trek with kids and wife and do some trekking every year, I understand the courage and passion in you and Srimati & Tista.
    With love.
    Keep trekking.

    1. Hi Dipankar,
      Thanks for the appreciation and kudos to you also for trekking with your family. Keep on walking.
      Anirban & Srimati

    2. Dear dada,you had done the Chintaphu from Nepal side. I am trying to do so in this year during Durga puja. Can you please help me regarding this with your valuable guidance.

      1. I salute to both of you particularly for the true education imposed by you both for your lovely kid. You are the ideal parents and every one should follow this for their next generation.

  2. I salute both of your determination, focus and dedication. It’s really nearly impossible to the average Indians which you made it happen. Have a strong desire to join you people one day : -)

  3. I always wait for u r new achiements. God bless u all in your upcoming treks. Love to my little princess Teesta and salute to Srimati. What for Anirban! …keep walking -\…

  4. Hi… I read your story. It is inspiring. I am also a Himalayan lover & trekker. I was made some moderate trek like, Kedar Taal, Tungnath-Chandrashila, Kedarnath, Deoria Taal, Mainam peak etc. My last trek was Yamunotry with my wife & she was quite good with energy. Now I got baby boy and eagerly awaiting for some next trek. My question is what safety step would be take for my kid for his first trek ?

    1. Altitude, the Month for Trek and duration of trek are very important factors which should be chosen judiciously, apart from these night stay whether at Tent or Hut is equally important. We carry Bottled water for Tista, also please carry few of his favorite toys to keep him engaged

      1. one more vital point … group is perhaps one of the most important factor, we were fortunate on this point to go out with a very accommodating and adjusting group every time…

  5. Wavh..!!!. It is an inspirational story. I love to do Himalaya treks, i will be waiting for the chance and time. Hats of to u couple and baby. Keep moving. Good luck.

  6. Hi anirban,

    Did you do the treks wi H your child on your own or through a company? I have a 4 year old and a 10 year old. I see that for India hikes the kid has to be over 10 yrs old.

  7. very inspiring story and so in time. My husband and I were contemplating about re starting our treks which had come to a halt because of our little princess. Your story is definitely going to add fuel to the fire. Thanks. Is there a way we can connect over email or chat? I have few queries

    -Chaityparna

    1. @MEENAN…..think I am not the best judge to suggest on this….but yes this much I can say little ones face lesser problem at Altitudes…I have experienced my little daughter running with her friend just after reaching Kedartal campsite when most of us adults were panting in the thin air….. you will have to be careful about cold, chilled Air and scorching heat, drinking water, medicines, etc for the baby…..all I can say is if you love Mountains and is simply crazy to visit there…just pack up and move…Mother Nature will take care of you all…

    1. Just one question to you both. How did you manage to convince the family about taking a months old baby on the trek? Please answer this. Badly need to learn this art!

      1. ha ha ha …. its a really good question…yes there were several protests at the beginning from the family end…both us were not offended with the series of questions we had to face but answered each and every diligently to satisfy the concerns raised… may be our confidence and the team comprising of our friends that were on the trek helped to convince the family members to allow us for all these adventures…

      1. How did you manage to carry baby weight her food .. in pics I didn’t see any baby carrier what’s your suggestions .. because carry 2 yrs baby in hand it’s really difficult.
        Please guide

        1. Tista’s first and second Trek was on our lap which was painful, so from 3rd onward we started arranging Kandi (Pitthu) for her, but till 6 years she was comfortable in it, but presently she avoid Kandi

  8. Can we take our 9 month old daughter to kedarnath in the month of October’19? Please reply as I really want to know the feasibility as few people are advising against it.

    1. It isn’t advisable Jayanti. It’s going to be very cold and it is high altitude. We wouldn’t recommend taking such a young infant there.

  9. when your daughter was small, you went on treks with Indiahikes or on your own or some other group. Generally indiahikes don’t allow children below 8 years on most treks.

  10. An amazing story!
    We will be trekking the Pin Bhaba Pass Trek in less than a month with my 13 and 11 years old children and hope to enjoy as much as every excursion we do in the spanish phrenees or the alps

    Best regards
    Anna from Barcelona, Spain

    1. Thanks a ton Anna, though we have not done this Trek but Bhaba Pass trek is awesome, u will be astonished by the changing landscapes in this trail, best of luck

  11. This is the best article to make me feel OK. Me and my husband did 3 treks including Nepal and India. Currently I am pregnant and afraid that I might never get to trek again. But this article has given me courage and inspiration.
    Thanks a lot. Love and respect for this family.

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