The rain turned to sleet and then snow as they climbed higher. The trail was now ankle deep in fresh snow. As darkness fell, they reached the overhang, the only shelter from the snow and wind on this mountain.
After settling down in the cave, the two hurried off to collect firewood as it was getting darker. This was not easy since the wood was all wet, but they came back carrying a dry log on their shoulders. This should burn all night and keep them warm.
Night does not mean sleep for hunters. It is the time the nocturnal animals are out, and off the two went to stalk and find prey. They walked slowly not making a sound, but there no sign of any animals. Hungry and tired, they returned to the cave and started preparing dinner.
It took a long time for the fire to get going, but they managed it and melted some snow for water. Still the meal of rice and lentil took three hours because of the cold, and the altitude. The rice tasted a bit raw.
It was a bitterly cold night. Chandu and Makar snuggled for warmth under a single sleeping bag beside the fire. They took turns to add wood to keep the fire burning throughout the night. By morning, there was no firewood left, and this was just the first of four nights.
Chandu had given Makar strict instructions not to speak in the jungle unless absolutely necessary. They would whisper, or whistle instead and remain as quiet as possible. They saw some deer and impeyan pheasants, but they were too far to shoot accurately. The old muskets did not have the range.
Chandu crouched towards his prey, hiding behind the thick undergrowth, to get closer. But no luck. The animals would either take flight, or simply disappear. He went into the surrounding forest several times a day, even at night with a torchlight pointing up at the branches, but always came back empty-handed. Hunting is like that, it is a matter of skill, training, patience, and lots of luck.