We were up at first light and soon after 6am made our way along the now silent main street to Lukla airport to catch the first flight out to Kathmandu. Continue reading
With the trek successfully behind us, we had a free afternoon to do as we wished. Most of our group let their hair down in the Wave Bar, playing pool to music downloaded from their phones and rehearsing the trek rap song led by Hannah (Dahl Baht Power – 24 Hour). Continue reading
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I got up for an early morning walk and wash in the stream that ran down the hill above the village. I made my way up to a spot where I could bathe discretely, well below the intake point for the water pipes that feed water into the houses.
Our big descending traverse to Phakding thankfully coincided with a cool sunny day. The path began on a gentle gradient through tall pine and oak forests, high above the river just visible through the trees as a white ribbon snaking along the bottom of the valley. We made way for several unloaded yak trains making their way downhill to pick up supplies from towns lower down.
The gods intervened in our plans as it snowed through the night. We woke to a black and white landscape and low cloud, so no hope of climbing to Kala Patthar. While a little sad not to rise at 4am to see the dawn break over Pumori, Nuptse, Lhotse and Everest, the day was richly rewarding in its own way.
Today’s trekking was the core of our climate journey.
We left Lobuche around 8am and made our way gradually uphill along a broad path to Gorakshep, a settlement perched on a small knoll on the glacial moraine.
We left early, climbing back up the first part of yesterday’s ridge before veering left along the undulating valley floor carved out by the Khumbu Glacier, dotted with massive boulders dropped as it passed.
Several of us sat in to listen to the monks chanting morning prayers in the Gompa. The ridge above it is festooned with prayer flags and little stupas and clay ovens for burning the incense from the juniper bushes during festivals. There was a fantastic view back down the valley we’d climbed the day before and across to Khundre village on the far side.