The Allure Of The Himalayas

For me, the Himalayas are a testament to natures magnificence and a symbol of human ambition
Magnificent blossoms rhododendrons against the Himalayas. Credit Shutterstock
Magnificent blossoms rhododendrons against the Himalayas. Credit Shutterstock

As I write this month&rsquos column, I&rsquom seated at a table from where I have a unique view of the vast Pokhara Valley. Beyond lies what truly holds my attention&mdashthe majestic Dhaulagiri range of the Himalayas. Views of the mountains are few and far between at this time of year. Dense monsoon clouds hang low in the skies, arriving unpredictably and quickly wiping away visibility. And yet, many like me have travelled from far at considerable expense and effort, willing to wait for days together to catch even just one glimpse of the mighty mountains. 

This is not my first jaunt to this region, but this trip is different. I&rsquom not here to &ldquoachieve&rdquo anything but rather for a change of scene (and scenery). My previous travels to the Himalayas in India, Nepal, and beyond focused on motorcycling expeditions. Trying to ride down (up) challenging routes, scale new heights, and achieve other such milestones. But, this time, I&rsquove had a chance to simply admire the Himalayas instead of being preoccupied with the excitement of adventure. 

For me, the Himalayas are a testament to nature&rsquos magnificence and a symbol of human ambition. They instill a sense of meditative calmness that I have never otherwise experienced and leave me in awe, no matter how many times I&rsquove seen them. They serve as a humbling reminder that we are each nothing more than a speck in this universe. Standing before a mountain that is incomprehensibly larger than you can have that effect. Come to think of it, it&rsquos probably that very feeling that has inspired some of the most outrageous human adventures in the Himalayas. 

The fact that these mountains have such a dominating presence naturally induces a need to showcase human capability. It&rsquos a slippery slope that can easily become an obsession because it takes a deep-rooted passion for achieving anything in such an inherently dangerous playground. The key, of course, is always to remember that nature is the ultimate decider. Irrespective of how many times one may have &ldquoconquered&rdquo any of these mountains&mdasha pass traversed or a peak scaled&mdashwhen you witness nature&rsquos fury, you quickly realise that human ability offers very little to counter. I know this from personal experience. All that you can honestly hope for is a safe passage. 

Sitting where I am today, I realise these magnificent mountains truly besot me. What draws me back to them, time and again, is not the thrill of pushing the boundaries of my capability but rather a deep sense of respect I feel when I stand before them. These mountains offer inspiration for the adventurer and admirer alike, which is the true allure of the Himalayas.

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