Life in Sub Zero – How Spiti Sustains Sustainably
“When you feel the reality is more beautiful than the dream itself, when you find your mind is louder
than the peace outside, when you find your toes frozen and your nose red, you know you are above
10,000 feet and are in below -10 degrees” – Yangchen Lamo
Winters is Spiti is certainly not meant for the faint hearted! But certainly for those who are willing to
challenge their physical limits at the cost of exploring and experience a complete out of the world
experience in a land that is out of the world.
There is only one route that is open during this time which is the Rampur- ReconkPeo route and one has
to take this route alone to get to Spiti. This could close down occasionally due to snowfall, however, is
restored as soon as possible as all the supplies in the valley go through this route.
Spiti in summer and Spiti in winters is completely different. It gets cold, colder than one can imagine. Water pipelines do not function during this time, water supply is shut and water for everything – right from drinking, cooking, cleaning and washing needs to be stored, and it needs to be stored in warm areas of the house so that the water doesn’t freeze.
The reason why houses are made here of mud and not concrete is because mud helps keep the house warm, and since Spiti gets bright sunshine, during the day hours the heat of the sun warms up the mud houses, the mud retains the heat from the sun and that helps in keeping the house warm post sunset.
Ofcourse, supplemented heating is necessary, hence local tandoors are placed inside the houses that burns on cow dung and wood, usually placed in the kitchen.
In the winters the Kitchen is where the home is, we eat there, we sit there, we chill there and we sleep there. The colder it gets outside, the warmer it gets inside, this is the time when Spitians are completely free and chilling, although not completely as life in winters requires a lot of preparation and everyday survival work, mornings are still early, everything still is happening, and it is important not to be lazy but active to be able to survive the winters in Spiti. But after all work is done, you have all the time to yourself, to do pursue all those hobbies you had to leave behind in high school because you had to
When you plan your travel in winter to Spiti, do ensure you are carrying sufficient and very warm clothing, socks, caps, mufflers. Coming well prepared is necessary to have a pleasant experience.
Keep yourself hydrated at all times and consume warm foods like dry fruits for example and you are all set!
Join us for our winter experiences