Himalayan Autumn Colours
I have been focussing on black and white photography these days because of this project. My last travel persuaded me to move back to coloured photos.
Between 8 and 14 November 2015, I trekked¹ to Sandakphu and Phalut – west of Darjeeling, next to India-Nepal border². The claim to fame of these two places is they are respectively, the highest and the second highest mountains, in West Bengal and one can spot four of the world’s five highest peaks from Sandakphu and Phalut: Everest (highest), Kanchenjunga (third), Lhotse (fourth) and Makalu (fifth)³. These two places offer views of mountains from Annapurna ranges in Nepal to Kula Kangri, the highest peak of Bhutan and other Bhutanese ranges.
Our trek began at India-Nepal border, led us across the border to Nepal, mostly kept us there, brought us back to West Bengal and ended at West Bengal’s border with Sikkim. In this part of the country you are never too far from a border – whether international or inter-state.
Some instagrams on the trek are here:
I discovered this is a beautiful time to visit this part of the Himalayas. Autumn colours were all around us. Diwali fell on one of our trekking days and there were more colours than usual on display in the places we visited. For me, splashes of colours in children and grown-ups in brightly coloured clothes against cold drab weather, different shades of green of different forms of vegetation, often clear blue sky with sometimes grey clouds, occasional frost, colourful houses and other structures, and sunrises made the journey truly enchanting.
Throughout the trek, I shot in raw in black and white with two DSLRs and in colour with a point and shoot. An advantage of shooting in raw is photos preserve data on colors even when they are shot in monochrome. When I downloaded the Sandakphu and Phalut photos and saw them in Lightroom – I was even more in awe of the colours. These are a few such photos. There are other photos, whose look is better enhanced in black and white. Perhaps that’s a topic for another post.
The photos are not in a particular order.
Versions of the article also posted at https://www.gohimalayan.com/blogs/post/himalayan-autumn-colours/
¹ The trek was organised by India Hilkes. See more at http://indiahikes.in/sandakphu/
² see this map: http://www.darjeeling-tourism.com/darj_0000ad.htm
³ these peaks are ‘members’ of the ‘eight thousander club’: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eight-thousander
Photos and Text: © Sanchita Chatterjee 2015
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