From pursuing BMC twice, once in 2009 and again in 2013, an AMC, climbing Mt Lapoche, Deo Tibba, Nanda Ghunti and also witnessing the deadliest avalanche on Everest in 2014, Bhargab has seen it all.
Bhargab Borah’s journey in the mountains started with a trek at a very young age. His love for mountains only grew after that. Read on to get a glimpse of his journey so far:
How did you get into mountaineering?
”I had extensive trekking experiences since my childhood. My first serious trek started with Sandakphu when I was still in school. I went there when I was in seventh standard and was stunned to see massive peaks right in front of my eyes. I later on went for a BMC (Basic Mountaineering Course) in 2009 and that’s how my mountaineering journey formally began.”
How was your time at BMC?
”I enrolled for BMC at NIM, Uttarkashi in 2009. The learning was great, but unfortunately I secured a B grade in the course.”
In order to be eligible for an Advanced course, one has to secure an A grade in the BMC. If someone gets any grade lower than A, then it means the aspiring mountaineer is required to do the BMC again and secure an A grade.
So what did you do after BMC?
”I continued to trek and enrolled for BMC again, after four years, this time from JIM&WS, Pahalgam. After that in 2014, I climbed Stok kangri , which was my first exposure to a 6,000 m peak. Then I climbed Hanuman tibba , Friendship peak and Bhanoti within a period of one Month.”
Bhargab attempted Everest with a group in 2014, where Anshu Jamsenpa was also present. Anshu Jamsenpa holds the world record for fastest double ascents of Everest by a woman (a record made by her in 2017). ”I went to Mt Everest with Anshu jamsenpa, but again unfortunately the entire climb from Nepal side had been suspended due to the tragic incident (of the deadliest avalanche which claimed 16 Sherpa lives). But before departure to India I climbed Mt Pokhalde, Mt Mera and Mt Laboche East in Nepal.”
How different was AMC from BMC?
”After coming back to India, I applied for AMC in HMI. I was lucky that I got vacancy for the next course within 2 months of applying. Just before the course I went for Kedartal trek. The mountaineering courses are really tough but for a determined mind it goes smoothly. I was mentally prepared for the hardships of the course so all the pains during the course went easily for me.”
”AMC and BMC are not that different, in essence, AMC is mostly repetition of BMC with higher stress on technical teachings of mountaineering and field learning. You can learn about expedition planning, route fixing/opening, leadership and also you get practical expeditions. I was always confused about the technical things of mountaineering. I had mostly problems in learning the knots.”
Bhargab hasn’t stopped after his AMC, he later went on to attempt several climbing expeditions. Here is a list of his expeditions:
Mt Deo Tibba twice, 6001 m (2015 and 2016)
Mt. Nanda Ghunti (6,309 m) in 2016.
Mt. Satopanth (7,075 m) in 2016 – Unsuccessful
Mt. Manirang (6,593 m) in 2017
Mt. Papsura (6,451 m) in 2018 – Unsuccessful, just below 200 m
Mt. Shivling (6,543 m) in 2018 – Unsuccessful
What are you doing currently?
“After AMC you are officially eligible to do expeditions above 6000+ m peaks and also it opens doors for further course like MOI and search and rescue. I climbed several peaks right after my AMC. I will be going for MOI and rescue courses next year. I also plan to conquer Mt Shivling in the Gangotri region in 2019. If everything works out we can also attempt Mt. Amadablam in Nepal and Mt. Blanc in Europe.”
Click here to read the interview with Kanchenjunga climber Monti Rajkhowa!!
Keep an eye out for our ‘Xpedition Series’ every Wednesday, where we are on a mission to curate tales of mountaineers, to share stories of explorations and their will to RISE above the limitations.