Trekker’s Nightmare in Nepal: Leeches

What do you expect to take away from trekking! Well, I’m not asking for a reply here because it doesn’t concern me. But, whatever it is, I guess it’s something that’s needed and I hope that it gets fulfilled. Opposite to which, there are certain things that you might encounter. Things that are not needed but you get them. It doesn’t depend on you, no, it depends on them!

I’m talking about Leeches!

Anyways, getting back to what I was saying, the girl gave me an impression of a runner running for gold in the Olympics! Hope she doesn’t give Kenyans a very hard time! Now, I’m almost certain that you must have had an experience encountering leeches. But you didn’t react this bizarre, right?

I, personally, have always had a thing for leeches. I don’t know if it’s the way they move or if it’s how they cling on to moving objects (that’s us), if it’s the way they always manage to play hide and seek or their weird appearance, their cold, gooey bodies. Whatever the reason is, I fancy them. Wherever I find them, I tend to play along. I tend to give them a false hope that they would be sucking my blood.

My experience suggests that the best time to hit them is when they are most vulnerable- when their two ends are together and the body is arching up. Hit them as hard as you can, they deserve it and maybe they are used to it as well.

Let me tell you what leeches like. They like to come out of, I don’t know where, but when it rains. And they like to chill in cool and wet places- preferably on something green. They also like to saunter inside our shoes or boots and get into a cozy warm bar between your toes to have a drink. I think they are the coolest of all blood sucking parasites.



Now, if I were a leech, I would, totally, be organizing international competition or something like Guinness World Records. The records could be set under following categories: amount of blood sucked in one shot, number of successful attacks, longest free- fall from an attack, combo attacks, duration of attack- escape and so on.

If you are planning your trek in Nepal in monsoon season, be AWARE! They attack from the ground, bushes, water- sources and even from the trees. Although, using your fingers to remove them is an option, I recommend other alternatives- sprinkling salt, alcohol, vinegar and lemon juice. Please don’t use insect repellents because it will kill these poor cuties. Sprinkle a pinch of salt and watch these SUCKERS drop and get high or something.

Finally, let me talk about how to avoid leeches and I think you were here for the same purpose.

  1. Get a pair of leech socks and even pantyhose
  2. Use raw tobacco soaked water on your shoes, socks, pants and clothes
  3. Apply salt rather than pulling leeches for less bleeding
  4. Tuck your shirt into your pants to keep them from getting under your clothes
  5. Keep walking and rest only in sunny and dry places.

Even after all this, if you get bit, don’t worry! It’s just going to itch for a few days and a scar would develop. You can, then, go with the Joker dialogue: “You wanna know how I got these scars?”