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Mountains and their Measurements

During the first week of June 2022 I set aside some time to complete a long standing desire to reach Tulian Lake located close to Pahalgam in Kashmir. Taking into account the massive tourism book taking place in Kashmir and the difficulty in getting hotel space the thought was to do this short trip without an hotel nights.

Tulian Lake 3700m adjacent to Pahalgam in Kashmir

The other objective of the trip was to test out my new purchase, the Suunto 9 Peak Titanium watch. Since I head to the mountains quite frequently specially into remote areas its imperative to have information on the altitude gain and the distance and time of travel. For several years I have used a handheld Garmin GPS devise to get this information. In recent years the GPS has slipped into a watch and my endeavour this time around was to test out the Suunto 9 Peak Titanium watch.

My earlier handheld GPS which locks into 5 satellites and new Suunto 9 Peak Titanium which also contains a GPS.

We flew into Srinagar and immediately started the drive to Pahalgam. By 4.30 pm we were ready to start our trek. A short trek took us to Baisaran Meadow where we camped. Its a sprawling meadow and we camped on its periphery. At the end of each day the data from the watch would sink into the app on the phone which would generate a map and a snapshot of the day.

On day two of the trek we would do a steady climb through a forested section and finally cross a pass and enter into the Tulian Valley. We then moved along a ridge which lead us to a most beautiful campsite set along a steam right on the valley floor.

Day 3 was a bit of a tester. The final approach to Tulian Lake was through a Boulder Field and this kept the group literally on the edge. After about 2 hours of climbing we finally reached the emerald green Tulian Lake 3700m.

Like on a summit day today was a roller coaster ride. After climbing 450m to Tulian Lake we would descend 800m to a most level meadow called Kanamarg 2900m.

On the descent we got a bit of a bonus in gaining a lovely view of the highest peak in Kashmir, Mt. Kolahoi 5425m which is visible in the background.

On Day 4 the data was split in two parts as there was a break due to a medical situation. We descended down to Pahalgam by 10.30 am and started the drive on to Srinagar airport and by 7pm we were at home completing yet another most enjoyable outing in Kashmir.

The Suunto 9 Titanium Peak Review and Summary :

  1. The watch at 52 grams felt light on the wrist.

  2. Earlier generation of adventure watches tended to be bulky and unattractive, this watch designed and manufactured in Finland looked attractive.

  3. The battery life in the mountain is most critical, this watch on GPS mode went through the 4 days without a recharge.

  4. The data was cross checked and was accurate as compared to handheld GPS devises.

  5. The watch appeared rugged and water proof which too is a benefit in mountain landscape.

  6. All team members liked the feature of receiving an image of the day with the critical data.

  7. On getting to a wifi zone it was also great to observe the route map in 3D showing us move in real time.

  8. The watch also dishes out data on personal health like heat beat and the oxidation level but my assessment is that this data is not accurate and I did not use this data.

Overall I feel for the serious outdoor enthusiast the Suunto 9 Peak Titanium packs a lot of punch and I would strongly recommend the product.

Maninder Kohli

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