At least a month before the Char Dham Yatra, it is advisable to start preparatory exercises: Even a brisk walk of about 4 to 5 km per day would be beneficial. Breathing exercises like Pranayama would help combat the lack of sufficient oxygen at high altitudes.
Avoid drinking water at all cost unless it is bottled water or from some clean natural source.
Food-wise anything that is boiled, cooked or fried is a safer bet than anything cold or raw. So avoid cold salads, raw vegetables, drinks with ice etc.
Carry a mosquito/insect repellent wherever you go to avoid diseases like malaria or simply even the itchy discomfort.
Always carry a kit of the basic emergency medicines you might need for diarrhoea, fever etc. Also, keep on your personal band-aids and an antiseptic ointment.
Use sunscreen all the time to prevent sunburn. Try and wear a hat if you’re going to be in the sun.
Ensure you are physically and mentally fit to perform the journey as the Yatra involves trekking at an altitude of 1,4000ft. Get yourself medically examined and certified fit for the journey.
Do carry heavy woollens, including thermal body warmers, wind cheaters, raincoats, sleeping bags, blankets, water-proof shoes with sufficient grips, small water proof tents, torch with sufficient batteries and walking sticks.
Keep a slip with your Name, Address and the name of accompanying yatri in your pocket.
Women are advised to avoid sarees and opt for salwar kameez or trousers.
Carry water and dry eatables. Ration and firewood quota is available en route and can be purchased.
All medical facilities during Yatra are free. It is advisable to carry your own personal medical kit and First aid box.
Hire only a registered ponywalla or porter. Don’t walk far away from ponies carrying luggage.
Move slowly and steadily, as this is an arduous pilgrimage and maintain discipline.
Don’t relax at places where warning signs are fixed. Don’t attempt short cuts on the route.