The amount of work we put into making each event successful is equal to what we put to be a responsible organization towards our Mother Nature. Treks and trails have begun with an initiative known as the Green Treks and Trails which is a mission to engage in conserving and safeguarding the Ecosystem of the Sahyadris. This movement is also known as Healing Sahyadris.
Since plastic is the foremost cause of waste in the mountains and forests, we aim at curbing down the use of plastic among our organization and on the treks and also collecting trash along the trails and bringing it back to the city where it can undergo proper management. This action was essential because as these trails are getting popular day by day with major publicity over social media, more and more people want to go to the exact same places and replicate the pictures which they had seen.
The excessive use of mineral water bottles, instant food packets, foam cutlery, beer bottles and polythene bags have harmful effects on the environment. This has led to accumulation of trash on these trails which deplete the soil quality, deteriorate the surroundings of the fortifications, broken glass bottles which hurt the villagers and domestic animals and also poses a threat to the flora and fauna of that region. Over the top these village waste management don’t have many options at their disposal. They burn the waste which pollutes the air and gives rise to global warming. The waste is also buried in the soil, plastic takes decades to degrade and it hampers the condition of the soil. Soil is the foundation of our food chain and if it is not healthy then the product won’t be fit to consume. Also during monsoon the garbage flows through the streams and ends up polluting the drinking water.
Green treks and trails aims to reduce the burden on the waste disposal systems in the local villages of Maharashtra and make Sahyadris clean and green. On every event we take along biodegradable bags, if you don’t have these bags you can also carry your own jute sacks to collect waste along the trek. We also give our participants biodegradable gloves which they can wear before starting the collection so as to prevent any infection and injuries. We don’t allow the participants to gather waste which are at extreme edges for their own safety.
The process of collection is as follows:
We ascend the fort or the trail. The trek leaders carry collecting sacks/bags with them.
The participants are given utmost time to enjoy, devour the beauty and take pictures.
While descending down we accumulate the litter lying on the trail in these bags.
These bags filled with trash are dropped at the nearest city (usually Mumbai and Pune) recycler/collector so it can undergo further management.
With sincere efforts we have embarked on this journey to heal our beloved Sahyadris. Let us join hands and make them greener and cleaner. One can carry their own cutlery and use reusable metal water bottles to reduce the waste. People can even buy cooking stoves instead of using and burning wood for cooking purposes while camping. Even the minimal waste wrappers of chips or chocolates can be carried back with you to the city rather than dumping it in the village.
You can always join us on treks and participate in this initiative. If you are doing something personally we would also like to feature you on our instagram page which will motivate the trekking community. Use the hashtags #healinghsahyadri and/or #greentreksandtrails to get your work featured.