Rinku (Rajender Sharma) and I have known each other since 2000 when we were both running a mountaineering course at WHMI, Manali. Both of us were (and are) passionate about climbing and mountains. Of course, we hit it off instantly and have worked loads of trips together. Rinku has climbed various peaks all over the Himachal and Uttarakhand – Bara Shigri, CB 13, CB 14, Menthosa, Joanli, Fray Peak, Hanuman Tibba, Deo Tibba to name a few. Rinku is also and very good skier and has represented Himachal in many National Ski Championships. Soft-spoken and quick to laugh, you will always find him humming an old Hindi tune while walking or cooking in camps.
Rinku’s wife Sushma is from Manali and a mountaineer herself. Arghan Kangri, Gangotri I, Nun, Menthosa, Deo Tibba and Hanuman Tibba are among her climbs. As part of Above 14000ft, she brings in a lot of local knowledge, especially for treks or climbs around Himachal. Together, Rinku and Sushma form an integral part of Above 14000ft.
Bhagwan Das comes from a village called Jhibi in the inner Siraj valley and guides mountaineering trips with us, he has been part of the team since 2005. Weather you are waiting out a storm at 7000m or hanging on an ice wall having Bhagwan around is always comforting. His easy manner and never give up attitude in the most stressful situations is very reassuring.
Devraj grew up in Khanag a village in the outer Siraj valley of Himachal Pradesh. He has been part of the team since 2006. He loves to guide treks and climbs. He is also a good cook and doubles up as a high altitude cook when ever needed above basecamp.
Tikam Dai comes from Nepal but has lived in Manali and climbed mountains for the last 40 years. Before he joined the gang he used to work with the Mountaineering Institute in Manali as a guide. He was also the resident rescue expert at the Institute and is legend of sorts in Manali having worked the rescue posts at Rohtang and Koksar for 15 years and saved thousands of lives.
Pritam joined the above1400ft team in 2008, he belongs to the Lahaul valley of Himachal Pradesh but grew up in Manali. He is a very multi faceted mountain guide with a ton of experience in Himachal and Ladakh. He is also a gizmo freak and is usually found meddling with his fancy cell phone.
Pratap’s been part of the team since 2007, He also belongs to the Lahaul valley but grew up in Manali. He has guided many treks and cycling trips with us. However his first love is the surf and loves to kayak big rapids. He manages all our rafting and kayaking operations.
Bharat was sure he wanted to work in the outdoors even when he was in school. He grew up in Shakrori a village close to Shimla in Himachal Pradesh. He has a Masters degree in Geography from the University of Chandigarh. He has worked with NOLS since 2011 as their Instructor in Training for their Gharwal mountaineering course and is hoping to get the NOLS scholarship for their Instructor Course in the US. He has climbed a few interesting 6000 – 6500m peaks and apart from his love for the outdoors and mountaineering he wants to dabble in making outdoor gear. He is going to help us develop an above1400ft gear line and maybe also guide a few treks in between when he needs a break from all the gear work.
Partha loves the outdoors and adventure, has a masters in tourism from the University of Bangalore and has more than 10 years of work experience. He is the newest member in the above14000ft family. He grew up in Calcutta but has lived all over the country and joins us as the sales and marketing manager.
Ram been part of the family since 2007. He belongs to Nepal but has lived and worked in Manali for the last 20 years. He currently works as our head cook managing all the other cooks on various trails over 3 states.
At above 14000ft the team will never be complete with out Maggie and Biki. They work as hard as we do to make your trip with us unforgettable.
I found Maggie lost and hungry, but very friendly, on a meadow near Hampta Pass in Aug 2006. Since then, she has stayed with me. She loves to snoop around camp or just loll around soaking in the sun. However the thing she enjoys best is find a pool of cold water for a dip.
Biki, Cookie and Scrawny’s mother adopted us. She gave birth to the threesome in our house, along with four of their siblings. The siblings found a new home but Biki, Cookie and Scrawny chose to stay with us. Cookie went on to the Big Kennel in the Sky in 2007 and Scrawny left us in 2009 both of you will always be missed. Biki continues to be part of all trips along with her de-genrate aunt Maggie.