And combining the two, Gautam was part of a team that comprised more than 30 people, including Ravi Shastri and some prominent CEOs, to a Leh-Ladakh Expedition 2012 on some high-end cars.
The team covered around 2000 kms of tough terrain including mountains and tarred to rough roads. They even crossed the Khardungla pass, considered to be one of the highest motorable roads in the world. Gautam spoke to CS about the beautiful and adventurous journey:
Kicking it off!
Leh-Ladakh is a beautiful part of the country and I have been wanting to go for an expedition there. I did my homework, spoke to Omar (Abdullah) and he said it can be done. Putting together the team was fun. We wanted people who have a passion for adventure and sports. I must say that the CEOs gelled very well with each other.
Preparing for the journey
There’s a medication that one needs to take two days before leaving and we took care of that. There are a number of dos and don’ts that most people do not follow. One must acclimatise oneself slowly to the climate. We also had a full-time doctor with us at all times. Safety has to be a priority at all times. If you follow the rules, you can do anything.
The road ahead
The entire journey went off so seamlessly, and that for me, was the highlight of the expedition. There were sheer drops on each side of the roads and we had to be extremely careful driving the cars. We clicked thousands of pictures of the mountains. It’s such a beautiful place! Once we stopped at a place that’s at a height of 13,000 ft and had our lunch there. When you work for eight to ten months to put something together and it goes off so well, that’s something to be happy about.
All the 35-40 CEOS had a great time. There were lots of interesting conversations. We visited the Drass Memorial and paid our respects to the jawans who laid down their lives during the Kargil war. It was a touching moment for us. We interacted with the local people and the army camps. It was a good break for us as we were out of office for a week, but a great learning experience as well.
Promotional feature/Editor: Janhavi Samant