08 March, 2021

The Upper Reaches

Hooked by rarefied thrill, affluent youth buy into adventure sports

Anil Dayal
The Upper Reaches

To reach Giri Camp near Solan, Himachal Pradesh, from where the paved road ends, you drive down 10 km of dirt track, cross the Giri Ganga river, and walk a kilometre along its bank to reach the campsite. Hardly extreme adventure, you would say. Yes, it’s quite common, and that’s the point—sites like Giri Camp are now dime a dozen. Owner Anurag Sharma is amazed by the clients he’s getting from places not known to have a history of adventure sports—Kaithal in Haryana, for instance. Sharma, who quit a media job in Delhi to start Giri Camp, says, “With due respect to these cities, I never thought I’d get people from Kaithal or Kapurthala!” Adventure sport is no longer the preserve of the metros; through the media and the internet, it has filtered down to small towns and the young there are flocking to places off the radar with a new relish.

Adventure tourism, though still a small part of the tourism industry, is rapidly gaining in numbers through new converts, mostly young professionals. Sharma...

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