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Sunday, April 21, 2024

Meet Kashmir’s ‘Urban Nomad’ who holds record of exploring 200 alpine lakes in Himalayas


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Srinagar: His name is Khan, Tanveer Khan…. he holds a record of exploring 200 scenic alpine lakes in the Himalayan region.

Tanveer Khan, aka Tani Khan aka `Urban Nomad’ is possibly the first person from the northern Himalayas to hold the unique distinction.

A resident of Srinagar’s Batamaloo area, he is the President of Pathfinders, a trekking group. He has a resolute passion for discovering the unseen and unknown in Kashmir. This has taken him to mountains, meadows, peaks, pasturelands, ridges and rocks, wildlife bastions, pastoral cultures, tribes, and traditions, high-altitude glaciers, and glacial lakes.

“Ultimately, at the end of the day, everybody wants to be at peace. The definitive aim most people have is happiness. You may get happiness in different ways; every person may have various goals, but the final goal is harmony. I get my share of peace in the mountains, where you are in complete synchrony with nature,” Khan said.

Alpine lakes in the Himalayas are formed because of glaciers, some are formed due to volcanic activities, and some are formed due to tectonic plate movement.

Khan who is heading a marketing division of a pipe manufacturing company in India, has been deeply curious about mountains and what lies beyond the horizons of the pinnacle from his school days.

However, due to the long-standing conflict, he could not set foot in the mountains for years together.

In 2014, he joined the Jammu and Kashmir Mountaineering and Hiking Club (JKMHC) for Sunday treks to the mountains. For almost two years, he remained a beginner, though a highly dedicated member of the club, exploring many lakes together.

In 2017, Khan combined a group of like-minded people from different walks of life, under the new name “Pathfinders.” And they never stopped trekking since then.

Together, they began venturing into the unfamiliar peaks and unmapped alpine lakes of the Kashmir Himalayas, starting from Pir Panchaal to Chenab (Wadwan), Zanskar in Ladakh, and Gurez in the extreme north.

Trekking in snowy landscapes in harsh winters became their new amusement.

“His journey to complete 200 Alpine lakes is a testament to his unparalleled commitment and dedication to adventure. More than the numerical achievement, the journey to conquer the peace within has been a remarkable accomplishment,” said Khan’s co-trekker Jalal Baba.

His co-trekker, a noted endocrinologist, Shariq Masoodi said exploring 200 alpine lakes in Jammu and Kashmir was an incredible feat.

“It is an inspiration to us all to pursue our dreams and to never give up on our goals,” he said.

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