Thursday, May 26, 2022 07:00 [IST]
Last Update: Thursday, May 26, 2022 01:27 [IST]
Gangtok to Gurudongmar run completed in 5 days, feat submitted to India Book of Records
GANGTOK,: Nine amateur but accomplished runners on Tuesday completed a record-making high altitude run from Gangtok to Gurudongmar Lake (17,800 ft) in North Sikkim. They covered 186 km in 5 days (May 20 to 24) to achieve the JBG Endura 101 Gangtok to Gurudongmar (G2G) challenge.
Bhupendra Hang Subba, Basant Pradhan, Nreependra Hang Subba, Sudarsan Tamang, Allen Targain, Anup Jyoti Baniya and Phurba Tamang, from Gangtok and other parts of Sikkim, are in the group. The other runners are Luv Burman from Kolkata and Wangden Chewang from Darjeeling.
All through the course of the challenge, the team of nine runners overcame intense rains, howling wind and the gruelling altitude as they climbed higher where oxygen levels drop down. They had a proper support of medical, physio, photography team, food, hydration and vehicle for luggage, support crew and other essentials.
The run covered a distance of 186 km (according to GPS data) with an altitude gain of 3504 m and it is the first occasion that anyone has run from Gangtok to Gurudongmar Lake, officially.
The team has submitted the details of endeavour for India Book of records and is under review.
“Lack of vegetation and oxygen made the run challenging. Thankfully no medical emergencies or issue happened to the runner although a support staff (photographer) filming the team had to be given oxygen twice due to high altitude sickness. The portable oxygen cans were sponsored by Sikkim based start-up O2 Himalaya,” said the group.
All the nine members are accomplished long distance runners having taken part in prestigious half and full marathons across the country, including some of the most challenging trails. Our passion is to look for challenges which have never been attempted, they said regarding the Gurudongmar run.
The G2G challenge was supported by JBG Endura 101 as an effort worthy of India Book of Records.
After completing the mentally and physically draining run, Bhupendra Hang Subba said: “The safe return of the team and the supporting staff without any physical or medical issues for me was the hallmark of the event.”
It was a sweet suffering, added Nreependra Subba.
Phurba Tamang, the only female member of the team, added: “I hated every minute of this high altitude run but kept saying to myself not to quit.” She hails from Yangang, South Sikkim.
Sudarsan Tamang shared that he took 2.29 lakh steps to cover the 186 km run, as per his GPS.
“Well, nature has its way to show us who is the real boss. My reverence to holy Gurudongmar Lake for its sheer intimidating height and mesmerising beauty. Blessed to reach the lake all the way from Gangtok on my two feet,” said Sudarsan. He is an assistant professor in Sikkim University and also a popular musician.
“We didn't conquer the mountain, the holy lake allowed us to reach here without any adversity,” said Luv Barman.
Basant Pradhan added that the G2G run is a glimpse of what it means to live life beyond ordinary while Anup Baniya mentioned that he is feeling blessed having completed the Gangtok to Gurudongmar mission.
It was all due to self-belief and a good team work, said Wangden Chewang.
The support crew of six members included manager Nishant Maheswari (JBG Endura 101 representative), physiotherapist Anil Subba, photographer/videographer Sarad Sharma, Ujwal Gurung and Joseph Rai, and coordinator Suman Lama.
THE GREAT RUN
Day 1 - Gangtok to Mangan (65 km)
Day 2 - Mangan to Chungthang (29 km)
Day 3 - Chungthang to Lachen (33 km)
Day 4 - Lachen to Thangu Valley (38 km)
Day 5 - Thangu Valley to Gurudongmar (21 km)