The Himalayan Wanderer from Jammu

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The Himalayan Wanderer

Research Scholar Parul Jasrotia is a rarity, a 32 year old married woman who has reached the most obscure belts of Himalayas

Hoisting the Indian Flag at the Naerak Fall of the daunting Chadar trek in -25’C, after having spent freezing nights in tents inside cold sleeping bags, completing a course of 41 Km trek in a single day, is Parul Jasrotia.

Parul, 32, is pursuing a Doctorate in Tourism. She is a travel enthusiast who often motivates and organises people to embark upon adventure trips. She herself, has skillfully explored the most obscure regions at an age when most people are looking forward to settle in their couch and spend their life watching TV.

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A daring child in early life, Parul was good in her academics, but even more interested in outdoor activities.

She started her career in Travel industry in 2007 with her first journey to Tamil Nadu and Kerala. She later toured to Goa, Kerala and Rajasthan. A rather fancy tour amidst leisure and luxury left a dissatisfying void in her heart. She felt something missing; a hunch that embarked a new pursuit and ultimately took her to the beautiful yet formidable Himalayas.

Her trip to Rishikesh in 2009, although her 4th visit to the enchanted place, was an extraordinary life experience than a usual visit. She spent hours sitting quietly on ghats contemplating on the questions that have troubled the human mind for ages. An abstract feeling that can’t be contained in words but that comes from experience, a sortof a rendezvous with oneself. Since then Rishikesh made to her list of frequently visited places.

Soon, she had started exploring Himalayas. It’s true, the mountains aren’t quiet, they are meditating. Parul went to Amarnath, Badrinath, Kedarnath, Hemkund Sahib, voyages of the spiritual ilk, and her long time dream came true when she reached The Valley of Flowers located in West Himalayas, Uttrakhand.

Parul is a nature savouring explorer. Her each arduous journey is equally rewarded with bliss bestowed onto her by the Mother nature. She has ridden motorbikes, mountain bikes and hiked to beautiful lakes and hills. She has even done Bungee jumping, rafting, paragliding , parasailing and rappelling. She believes that everyone of us has something special that we need to realise and the universe will itself conspire to guide you to your destination.

Her most recent trek was the formidable Chadar trek. With walls that are near vertical cliffs up to 600 m high and the Zanskar River only 5 metres in places, the overall distance of the trek is approximately 105 km where an average trekker walks 16 kilometres per day. After a number of flight cancellations, unfavourable weather and unexpected hurdles, Parul was able to make it to the last point. In an incredible feat, she covered the last 41 Kms in a single day! Her mentor gifted her the Indian flag which boosted her spirit in a time when she felt dejected. Deriving the strength from the mighty mountains and timeless rivers, Parul completed the trek and hoisted the Indian flag at the Naerak Fall.

She believes that the Nature posts challenges and as well as the way out of it. It is upto us to have faith or quit – “Where there is a will, there is a way.”