Roopkund: A photo story of mountain moods

Arvind Kumar. N takes his photography as a hobby to new heights by conducting a basic photography workshop and sharing with us some astonishing photos he captured during his trek to Roopkund in May 2014.

Inspired by my brother and having started as a passionate hobby, I endeavour to become a Professional Photographer. According to me, no place is boring, if you have a good night’s sleep and a DSLR in hand. To me, travel and photography go hand in hand and hence, the former has also been an inspiration for the latter. I am not a gadget guy. I use a very basic entry level DSLR Canon 1100D and very basic lenses 18-55, 55-250 and a 50mm f/1.8. I believe that composition, exposure knowledge and having an eye for photography make your pictures unique and enjoyable. That’s why I repeatedly tell people that we can do wonders even with a point and shoot camera or a mobile phone camera. Here a glimpse of Roopkund through my lens:

  1. The Twilight Beauty:

After enjoying the white and brown snow theme, we were relished. When we reached the Ghairoli Patal base camp we witness a thick forest theme. This photograph shows the beauty of the sunset through the woods. Shooting during sunrise and sunset can result in astonishing pictures and that is why they are called ‘The Magical Hours’. 1. The twilight beauty1

  1. The Trekker:

This was shot when my co-trekker Chandra was crossing a rock in Ali Bugyal. This silhouette photograph portrays the enjoyment, pain and excitement which a trekker experiences during the trek. 2. The Trekker

  1. The Blush:

This was shot while I went for a walk around the most beautiful village I have ever seen – Didna Village. This picture reveals two vital elements:

  • ‘The blush’ – People living here are not exposed to the city life. When I asked her if I could take a picture of her, she approved with this million dollar blush.
  • ‘The simplicity’- Her clothes and shoes are simple. The life here is also simple and happier with more values to family and relationships. Their life is pristine sans gadgets.

3. The Blush

  1. The Reflection:

I saw a perfect symmetrical scene in Bedni Bugyal. The lake does a 10 hour job being a mirror to the mountains. The lake is filled with water from morning till the afternoon and dries out in the evening. 4. The Reflection

  1. The Happiness:

‘Make hay while the sun shines! A young and an old lady carrying hay for their cattle in happiness. They dont need much to make them smile. 5. The Happiness

  1. The Camp:

Thanks to Indiahikes for setting up the campsites at the most unforgettable places where you can’t take your eyes off the surrounding sceneries. 6. The Camp

  1. The Lonely trekker:

A lone trekker in a trail near Pathar Nachauni camp site. You will never feel lonely while walking alone because you are accompanied by jaw dropping mountains and heartwarming sceneries. 7. The Lonely Trekker

  1. The Joy:

My co-trekker Jayesh jumps in joy as we all summited the Roopkund Lake. The Feeling and the Joy when the trek leader congratulates you for summiting cannot be defined by words. You have to be present there to feel it. The efforts and dedication that we have put so far will be repaid 100 times more with immense joy and satisfaction. 8. The Joy

  1. The Will Power:

We spotted two trekkers climbing the Mt. Trishul. This photo was shot from Pathar Nachauni campsite. As they say, more often than not it’s mind over matter that’s going to take you higher. 9. The Will Power

  1. The Kids:

This moment was captured on the way to Wan village. Look at the kids..what excitement! 10. The Kids

  1. The Rest:

This photo was shot in Bedni Bugyal, after a long and tiring walk, a mule rests near the Indiahikes campsite at Bedni Bugyal. Again a symmetrically composed picture which is always a delight to watch. 11. The Rest

  1. The Vacation:

This abandoned house was shot on the way to Bhagwabwasa. Usually people living here have two houses. They vacate one and go to the other house downhill, when the weather conditions are bad. 12. The Vacation

  1. The Fire:

The campfire at Ghairoli Patal campsite. Being pitch dark, the campfire is the only source of light. A co-trekker holds his camera while the others share their trek experience. 13. The Fire

  1. The Feast:

The Mule is having a feast after the walks at the Ghairoli Patal campsite. I was lying on the ground to get this angle and to give the mule a dominant look. 14. The Feast

  1. The Sunset:

A very rare sight at Bagwa Bwasa, A clean yellowish sunset which is a delight to the eyes in snow. 15. The Sunset

Here’s a glimpse of the ‘Basic Photography Workshop’ I conducted

Day 1:

The workshop started in Didna village with many photography enthusiasts. Participants were provided with workshop materials/handouts for quick reference. On day one, the workshop was all about composition techniques. This workshop was for any camera user. Many participants came out with many doubts about composition and exposure. Day 1 (3)

Day 2:

The workshop continues in one of the most unforgettable locations, Bedni Bugyal where we came across the perfect symmetrical scene. The mountain’s mirror image is in the lake. It was raining that time when we started the session, but no one bothered about the rain and was keen to know things about photography. Day 2 session was filled up with Composition elements, focus techniques and tips and tricks.   Day 2 (2)

Day 3:

At the Ghairoli Patal Camp Site, we had our last session but very important session about Controlling the exposure and Getting out of Auto mode. This session was filled with lots of examples and practical sessions for better understanding of the exposure triangle. My main aim was to make everyone use the various exposure techniques in their cameras by selecting different modes and stop using the camera in the auto mode.   Workshop Day 3 The overall workshop experience was great and I felt satisfied sharing my photography knowledge with other enthusiasts. My heartfelt thanks go to IndiaHikes for giving me a life time trek experience and for giving me the opportunity to explore the beauty of India. I shall do more workshops if I am permitted during the forthcoming treks. KUDOS!!!

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