As a middle school student, I learned that Mt. Victoria or Khaw-na-soum is the highest mountain in Chin State. But I had little interest of Chin State for a long time. It was not until I started traveling around SE Asian countries during my holiday, I realized that there are many places that I need to go see in my own country. My goal for 2015 was to go to Mt. Victoria and I finally made it on December 23, 2015.
The area is designated as Natma Taung National Park and it is closest to Kanpetlet (4,560 feet above sea level). We left from our hotel, Mountain Oasis, around 9 in the morning. The hotel had prepared lunch boxes for us.
On the way to the base camp, which is 10 miles up from the hotel, we enjoyed the breathtaking scene of forests and mountains. But we also witnessed the ugly truth of the future of Mt. Victoria. Road expansion were happening along the way and I couldn’t help but found myself with a heavy heart to see so much of deforestation.
From the base camp (8000 ft), my friends and I proceeded to the peak on foot. Many local tourists are going to the peak by motorbikes or cars, but what’s the point of reaching to the peak without embracing the nature and its beauty.
People from the hotel informed us that it would be nearly 4 miles (2,000 feet away) from the base camp to the peak and would take about 2 hours. I underestimated that 4 miles up to the peak. Pine trees are everywhere and the view was breathtaking that my friends and I wanted to stop and take pictures every 15 minutes.
When we realized that we were no where near the peak, my friend and I proceeded with a steady pace leaving two friends behind who were taking slower pace.
Supposedly 2 hours trek took a little bit over 3 hours because we couldn’t help ourselves but take pictures a long the way to the peak.
Taking pictures was great but taking mental snapshots are better. I can still vividly see the gorgeous blue sky and feel the crisp clean air of Mt. Victoria. Surrounded by God’s amazing creations and the company of my three amazing friends gave me a glimpse of heaven on earth moment.