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An Unconventional Traveler

I am a trip leader by profession and founder of one of the fastest growing travel company in India i.e. DarkGreen Adventures (DGA). My specialities include backpacking and trekking. I am fortunate to have completed basic and advance courses in mountaineering and planning to do few more interesting courses.

Apart from that I practice Yoga at home and a certified Yoga Teacher.

Chitkul, Himachal Pradesh (Feb 2018)

Kudremukh, Karnataka (Nov 2018)

The untold story of DGA

In school, I was never into sports and could barely run more than 100 meters. My family comes from the villages in Thar Desert of India (Rajasthan) and never been into mountaineering. At the age of 25 (better late than never), I got the passion of trekking. It taught me many things, which my formal education could never teach. I lost my job in August 2014 and it was one of the best thing that happened in my life. I was ousted from the rat race. In next few months, some series of events in my personal life prompted me to start leading trekking groups and stop searching for job. I got help from unexpected sources and people who came as angels in my life. Therefore, I could start this company with zero investment.

Buddha Dordenma, Bhutan (June 2019)

Fast forward into present date and DGA has about 40k followers on Facebook and I am happily earning my livelihood by taking people to awesome locations. We are on a mission to change the way India travels by promoting backpack travel itineraries.

Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh (March 2019)

Trek Leader with an Engineering Degree?

People often ask me why and when I left my job and took traveling and trekking as a profession. Another obvious question would be why I did Post Graduation in Engineering if I had a passion of trekking. Even I feel that I should have started trekking much earlier in my life. These questions often makes me speechless so I thought to answer them systematically.

Gandikota, Andhra Pradesh (Oct 2019)

Why Engineering?

I was always fond of Physics and mathematics so Mechanical Engineering was an recognizable choice. I came from a business-oriented family with no interests in sports and fitness. My family, friends made me believe that a graduation degree followed by a job in MNC is the ultimate goal of happy life.

My Engineering Batchmates (2008)

Why Post Graduation?

Lack of job and my dad’s wish led me to pursue further studies and complete PG. Lack of proper finance made my life miserable. Even though I enjoyed engineering subjects, I could not really focus on studies.

A nervous seminar during Post Graduation (2010)

Why Job?

Simple answer - to repay education loans and to take more loans for a home. However, what happened later was perhaps the best turning point of my life.

My Colleagues cum Friends (2012)

Why I left job?

I never enjoyed working 9 to 5 or rather 9 to 7 and completing milestones, which helped my company to take more money from clients. I don’t want to write exact details but many times I felt that I should inform the clients that the project should be scrapped. Obviously, we cannot do that and had to continue the project until it died naturally. I made reports, which looked good only for presentation. That was not the proper use of my talent. The life in corporate world appeared artificial. However, I never left my job. I was fired and it turned out to be beneficial for me, as I could have never taken this decision on my own.

Gorakhgad, Maharashtra (June 2012)

Rapelling down the cliff of Kokankada (Dec 2013)

Why trekking?

I started trekking regularly almost at the same time when I started working and both were pretty late in life. I enjoyed trekking as much as I hated my job. Those were the days when we did not have gears like sleeping bag, high ankle shoes, tents etc. We simply carried a bedsheet and slept in temples or plateau during our short night halt. Still I felt like a champ every time I reached a peak and saw the view of valley. Later, I did not mind working for free as a trek volunteer during weekends.

Nalichi Vaat trail to Harishchandragad (Aug 2012)

Advance Base Camp during mountaineering course at HMI (April 2017)

Why trekking as a profession?

Leaving corporate world and starting trekking as a profession were not a simultaneous event. There was a brief period of 4 months when I was looking for a job and led few treks to kill boredom. These four months made me realize - “I can do trekking to earn money. I won’t leave trekking even if it doesn’t give me money”. I cannot apply the same logic to corporate job. I won’t work for a minute if I don’t get salary. I took a decision to give myself a chance to do what I like. With dependent parents, active home loan and zero investment this was the toughest and best decision of my life and I am still trying to prove it.

Dzukou Valley Trail, Nagaland (Feb 2019)

Do I repent?

Not at all. I still love engineering and might continue some research after retirement. I just didn’t enjoy working in corporate world. I am planning to do few more adventure courses and learn photography to make myself a versatile trip leader. Trekking and traveling has taught me much more than my formal eduation.

Paro, Bhutan (April 2016)

Hemkund Lake, Uttarakhand (Aug 2017)

Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Couchsurfing and LinkedIn (Krishna Kuya)

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