Guest blogger Lee here!
I have just got back from an amazing six days with tango five trekking in Kerala. This blog is an update for you all.
We all got up bright and early and after eating some bread wrapped in omelette for breakfast and left field base on our four hour journey into Kerala. After a quick stop at one of the coffee shops along the way we arrived at our destination around 11:00 ready to begin trekking. We had a brief introduction from the Muddy Boots guys and then embarked on our first day of trekking.
The trek was 6km through a tea plantation where we got to see some amazing views and eat our lunch undercover in a locals’ shed. We arrived at camp shortly after lunch and put up our tents, made our group shelter and then prepared dinner; tuna, pasta with sweet corn. Due to the rain and not being used to trekking we hit the sack quite early.
Today was our first proper morning of trek. We woke up early and set off on a 7km trek through some more tea plantations and arrived at our camp just in time for lunch. Our camp for the night was a watch tower used by the forestry agency, it had all the mod cons; western toilet, western shower... that was about it. After lunch we walked a further 2.2km to a heart shaped lake. After the walking was leech care time. I managed to pull 13 of them out of one sock! We stayed in a watch tower for the night and crammed 8 people into one room whilst the PM’s and Dan slept in tents up on the roof.
A double rainbow!
We got a bit of a lie in this morning as there were only two tents to pack away; 6:30. After a good night’s sleep at the watch tower we set off on an 11.8km trek. The trek wasn’t too hard and we were rewarded with a chai stop at the end of the day. We had our first really good campsite as well, we got to set up our group shelter properly, wash in the river and pitch out tents with a bit of space! The weather turned in the evening and a couple of people were woken up by the thunder.
Early start this morning! We had a 14km trek to get through! It was really good seeing the team pull together to help each other out on our first long day of trekking. Again, we were treated to some amazing views and waved on by a number of locals as we walked through their villages. Our campsite was in a coffee plantation where we pitched our tents on concrete rather than grass. There was an elephant nearby and a chance for chai.
We had a massive lie in this morning and were joined by Hannah for rafting. The group had to build their own rafts and then float down the river with the guides steering them. All in all a relaxing day! The weather held up so we all got to work on our tans. Probably the best thing about the day was lunch. It was from a restaurant! Everyone agreed it was much better than rice bags. The afternoon was pretty chilled and consisted of chai and sorting out the next five days food.
My last day with tango 5! Today was the groups first cycling day – they had 40km to cover during the day over mixed terrain. Everyone was kitted out with a good bike and helmet and we were followed by a tuk tuk and a jeep which held our water. The cycling was really good and it was another day where the group really mucked in to help each other out on the challenging bits. Unfortunately I had to leave at midday to be back at field base before dark but when I got back I heard that they had all completed the cycling!!
That’s it from me. Keep checking the blog for updates for the other groups.