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History of hiking books at Woodstock
Guide to the Garhwal Himalaya

In July 1968, the Woodstock Natural History Society brought out a hiking guide called Ophrysia. It was edited by Titus Presler, Stephen Van Rooy, Joy Jantzen, John Whitcomb and Robert Waltner. The notebook, as it was called, had descriptions of hikes to Nali, Serona and Sulphur springs, Cobra temple, Top Tibba, PepperPot, Benog Tibba, Jumna River, Aglar, Deolsari, Lurntsu, Nag Tibba and Bhagdar. There was an article about the Paharis, and notes on animals, birds, butterflies, beetles, ferns as well as common trees, vines and shrubs of Mussoorie.

Ophrysia was followed by a Hiking Handbook, published on Diwali day in 1979. Jon Martin wrote the introduction. It has descriptions of trail routes for hikes to Flag Hill, Bear Hill, Witch's Hill, Pepper Pot cave and Suakholi, Magura, Tatura, Deosari, Nag Tibba, Nali and Dhinaulti, Dodital and Jumnotri. The book is dedicated - To Gordo, Shari and Liana. Our love for these hills brought us together and made us more than just friends.


Woodstock Publications class is working hard to meet the deadlines for The Hiking Guide to the Garhwal Himalaya in mid-October. (The official name of the cook has not been decided yet.) Divided into two sections, "Hikes around Mussoorie and "Hikes in other parts of the Garhwal," the guide will include detailed descriptions of over thirty hikes. The book will contain treks of various levels of difficulty from the nearby Bear Hill tour for beginners, to the difficult Lamkhaga Pass for experts in hiking. The guide is a collection of hikes from various sources, featuring legendary Woodstock hikers like Rolf Kleiner and Tom Kidder and a special geological section by Oxford Don, Paul Taylor. Apart from a variety of trips, the book will include basic guidelines for inexperienced hikers, a first aid section and a brief overview of the flora and fauna of the hills. In addition, the guide will contain up to sixteen pages of colour plates of the Indian Himalaya and artwork by student artists.

"Through this book we hope to get more people to go on hikes and experience the Himalaya," says the student editor of the publication Neha Mangalwadi. The hiking guide is expected to be published by the end of the fall semester, 1998.

Anna Sytina, Grade 11

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