Path of the Gurkha

THE PATH OF THE GURKHA


As the monsoon brings a sudden morning downpour, the sound of the men’s marching synchronises with the falling water that their feet splash in the street. They are drenched; their soaked T-shirts are pressed against the strong physiques that these young men have rigorously built. By 6am, despite the shower, a group of 60 Nepalese have already run five kilometres and had a push-up session on the bank of Fewa Lake, nestled in between the hills near Pokhara, Nepal. This is, however, just the beginning of a demanding routine that they follow six days a week, all for the hope and chance of following in the great Nepalese tradition of becoming a Gurkha with the British army.

FIND OUT
ABOUT THE SELECTION
PROCESS OF BECOMING
A GURKHA.


For the Nepali people becoming a Gurkha holds high honour to their family and for a long time until recently was the best way of providing support to their families financially. The journey to become a Gurkha is one of hardship; they choose to train for a year, often without any financial reward, just to prepare for the trials alone. This can create a great level of pressure on each individual and considering the applicant age ranges from 17-21 is testament to the dedication and resolve of them as young adults.


GRUELLING
CHALLENGES DURING
THE SELECTION PROCESS
OF THE GURKHAS



The selection process to become a serving member for the Brigade of Gurkhas takes place in Pokhara in the Himalayas and is full of punishing trials. This process sees recruits undergo various mental and physical tests – including the infamous five-kilometre Doko race. A five kilometre race may not sound too daunting at first, but with the added pressure of carrying 25kg bags of sand in a wicker basket on your back whilst running up a rocky, dusty mountain in under 48 minutes it really defines what makes the Gurkhas so tough. From the last 7,865 Nepalese applicants only 500 made it through to the final two weeks of testing, where 230 were successful and inducted into the British Army.

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