Thursday 1 August 2019

Okhrey-Barsey Expedition by the Participants of DPS Megacity

The Award participants of DPS Megacity, Kolkata visited the Okhrey village in Sikkim for their Adventurous Journey section of the Award Programme. Mr. Atanu Chatterjee shares insights on the journey of the participants and narrates how it enlightened them.
The Award participants of DPS Megacity, Kolkata set off for Okhrey village in West Sikkim for a 5-day long expedition from 11th to 16th March 2019. Considered to be the base camp for one who is keen to visit the wonderful Barsey Rhododendron Sanctuary, Okhrey is situated at about 7200 feet and offers a great opportunity to witness the splendid diversity of nature.
We boarded the NJP Shatabdi Express from Howrah station and reached Siliguri on 11th March. After a night’s stay at Siliguri, we started for our destination and reached Okhrey via Jorethang by lunch time. After an hour's rest, we started the first day’s acclimatization trek to Okhrey Government School, and the trek became more strenuous with increasing altitude. The next morning saw the participants waking up at 6 a.m. for a warm up session and then being taken to Hiley - the entry point of Barsey Wildlife Sanctuary. The journey to Guras Kunj, which was 5 km away, started with a briefing session where the instructors explained the concept and importance of safety and helped the participants comprehend different equipment. The students saw different varieties of rhododendron and numerous chirping birds during the trek through the thick jungle trail and finally reached Guras Kunj. The temperature was around 2 degree Centigrade and everyone was enraptured by the breathtaking view of Kanchenjunga. Having had lunch in Guras Kunj, the participants headed towards Hiley, where they engaged in a session, learning about rope knots and camp craft in the evening. Next morning, after warm up and early breakfast, the participants began their third day’s trek to a very old monastery in Okhrey. They also visited the Okhrey Government School for a cultural exchange programme, where they put up some lovely performances. The participants also experienced a thoroughly challenging yet blissful session of rappelling and had a lot of fun during the campfire in the evening. Next day after breakfast, we began our retreat journey to Siliguri and boarded the Howrah Shatabdi Express.
This Adventurous Journey was a thrilling experience for the participants; one that helped them build their confidence by exposing them to a different environment altogether. It helped them mould themselves according to the needs of the environment and then push themselves to excel in that very environment. Through intense and mild activities, the participants tested themselves, building themselves into stronger and more self-assured individuals.

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