Mannu Singh Rawat was born and brought up in Mana village, this is the last village after Badrinath, just 3 km from Badrinath. Mana village is the base camp for treks to Satopanth Tal and Swargarohini.
Mannu got into this profession after he got a taste of the mountains when he went with an expedition team as a porter. He says, he liked it a lot and hence took it up as his profession. Mannu has grown in this field grounds up, from a porter he now runs a successful business called “M Hill Adventures” and is well known amongst the people in the trekking industry.
Mannu says he loves the mountains and gets despondent when he doesn’t get to climb them. He says he has sacrificed his youth for the love of the mountains and continues to love it.
Mannu says -
“The mountains are peaceful, and the treks are supposed to be done in the same manner, peacefully. The animals in the mountains and jungles should not be disturbed in any way.”
He says, “In the Gomukh Tapovan trek, the blue sheep (bharals) come close to us humans to eat salt, they are not afraid of us, because we have given love to them. Trekkers should also respect this and should not trouble the animals in any way, so the trust between man and animal is preserved.”
While talking about the difficulties on the mountains, he says -
“Experience teaches us a lot. People from all over the world come to these mountains and every person is different, but we are all humans and we all feel the same cold and pain. As this is our profession we ignore this and serve our customers, as this also instills confidence in them about their own abilities.”
Mannu has also been part of the Mt Kamet Expedition, where he helped the team reach upto base camp 2, he says the Mt Kamet Expedition can be done from two sides and the side towards his village, Mana is the tougher side.
When in school, Mannu loved to play volleyball and cricket. He says - “ We had a club called neelkanth club and I used to keep the wickets and also was the opening batsmen.”
Mannu’s wish in life is to discover a new and tough trek route, he says he has started the exploration for this. He wants to call the trek, “M Hill Adventure Trek”, so that his grand kids will remain with his story of exploration and it will kindle the same spark in them to explore and travel the Himalayas.