Prepare Yourself
The trek preparation will depend upon the duration and the season of the trek, the rigours involved and the region. Below is the list for a typical, medium to high altitude trek in the Himachal, Garhwal and Kumaon region (The list will be very different for Ladakh trek). But it is recommended that the items should be used and comfortable.

Check list for items for the trek-

  • Back pack (60 ltr -70ltr) with comfortable shoulder straps
  • Back pack cover to save the backpack from getting drenched in rain/snow (Optional). Even a large polythene sheet can serve the purpose
  • 2-3 large polythene sheets to line the Back pack from inside, so that your clothes and other items don’t get wet, in case your back pack gets wet.
  • Waterproof Trekking shoes -Preferably high ankle with good grips (recommended Quechua/woodland). The shoes should be worn before the trek for atleast a week to adjust in your feet, else may give problem on the trek
  • 2 synthetic, light weight track pants (stretch jeans can also suffice)
  • 2-3 full sleeve T-shirts
  • 1 Woolen sweater preferably used
  • 1 Wind proof jacket
  • 1 Heavy jacket.
  • 1 Thermal Inner
  • 2 pairs high ankle cotton shocks and 2 pairs woolen socks.
  • 2 pair water proof hand gloves.
  • Sun protection cream.
  • Woolen cap/ Balaclava.
  • Sun Cap.
  • Sun glasses Dark with side cover, it should be u/v protected. Plastic lens glasses are preferred over glass lenses.
  • Light weight LED Torch with extra batteries.
  • 1 light weight Water bottle- one liter
  • Lip Balm/ cold cream.
  • Toilet kit/ toilet Paper / wipes/ Sanitary napkins (for ladies if need be)
  • Quick dry Towel- It should be light / thin.
  • Personal Medical Kit. Though the team leader/guide carries essential first aid kit and common medicines, but any specific medicine advised by the doctor may be carried by the trekker.
  • Fevi Quick adhesive tube, small one
  • Camera and Binoculars (Optional)
  • Safety pins and a travel sewing kit
  • Camp slippers, very light weight
  • Diary and pen, for taking notes

Planning and Preparation :

1. Physical Fitness:
If you are planning to walk or trek in Himalayas it demands a certain degree of physical fitness in which muscles are conditioned to take the rigors of ascent and descent in long marches. A trek is enjoyed more if you are not particularly tired on reaching the camp after a day's trek. Even if you are only moderately conditioned at the outset, it will not take more than 2 to 3 days to become almost fully conditioned. After a week you will either be perfectly tuned up.

2. Mental Conditioning:
Mental preparation is more complex than physical conditioning. This activity teaches us to extend our limit in terms of patience, tolerance and perseverance. One needs to adjust his mental attitude, at least temporarily, to the ways and responses of the people and sights encountered wherever you happen to travel. Reading about Indian Himalayas, or about Indian culture will not acquaint you with the reality surrounding you. India is a country of diverse culture and can only be experienced. Most Europeans who have never visited India before have wrong ideas and notions about the country. Experience the nature and the world around you to get the real feel of the trek.

3. Preparation for the Trek:
There are various factors to consider, both mental and physical, in preparation for the trip. Most of the treks can be done by people of the age group of 10 – 70 years. It all depends upon your physical fitness and confidence. Here are a few tips to prepare oneself for the trek-
  • About 15 days prior to the trek, have long walks, mainly in parks or in grounds. Use your trekking shoes for alteast a week.
  • Consult your doctor and discuss the trek to prepare yourself in terms of any medical assistance.
  • Read blogs and other trekking related stuff on the net/ literature. Acquaint yourself with the weather conditions, road maps, trekking route, people and the culture of the people on the villages etc.
  • Avoid/ reduce drinking and smoking
  • Do yoga and pranayam to increase your lung capacity

4. Nutrition:
Good food is essential part of the trekking and here good food does not refer to costly delicacies but wholesome and nutritious diet. Choice of food is limited once you leave the town and head for wilderness. However freshly cooked food has no substitute as tinned food losses its taste after some time. Ready to eat packets are not available in most of the villages. Roadside dhaba or small hotels in town and villages offer simple but wholesome meal. Rice chapatti pulses and seasonal vegetables are the best choice. Trekkers can carry dry fruits chocolates sweets, biscuits, butter; cheese noodles etc. from the town market for instant energy.