Published: May 25th 2012April 25th 2012
I didn’t sleep very well last night as the hotel owners rather twitchy dog sat directly outside the wafer thin walls of my room and spent most of the night barking at nothing at all. I did consider shutting the dog up at one point by killing it, but decided that this may cause some ill feeling between the hotel owner and myself, something I was keen to avoid as he was a very nice chap. Talking of nice chaps, so far all the hotel owners and people we have met along the trail have been exceedingly pleasant, friendly, and very hospitable. Once again, another thing which makes this trek a pleasure.
The views from the Danakyu that morning were superb. Yesterdays rain had cleared the haze in the air and in the early morning light the clarity of the dramatic snow white peak of Annapurna II and the crisp blue sky which silhouetted it was incredible. As each day passes the scenery seems to keep getting better and I find myself continuously dumbfounded by the views.
I had the choice today of two routes today, one an easy slow climb following a gentle trail by the river and
one involving several sections of steep ascent and descent but with much finer views. Figuring I was here to enjoy the magnificent beauty of the Annapurna’s and to a lesser extent to give myself a physical challenge, I decided on the harder route. The trek began with a steep climb on a stone stair case, after around an hour we reached the village of Timang. I had been highly impressed with the views from Danakyu earlier in the morning, however these were somewhat ugly in comparison to the glorious views that awaited me in Timang. The village of Timang stands high on a hill about 3-400m above Danakyu, it’s vantage point gives a jaw droppingly beautiful 360 degree view which take in the Annapurna range, the mighty Manasulu range and also several lesser but still stunning ranges. The view of the Manasulu range from Timang is particularly impressive, indeed I would even go as far to say that the views were so beautiful they were almost obscene, so good it was almost offensive. If anyone reading this decides to do the trail then I would highly recommend staying in Timang, waking up to those mountain views must be a truly
The scenery today continued to become more alpine in nature, we passed through many pine forests and past several rhododendron’s in full bloom. From Timang we continued down a deep and steep valley, over a bridge before climbing up the side of another valley and up a particularly offensively steep slope. After much sweating we arrived at the picturesque village of Koto, the last before our final destination. Arriving into Koto I was hit with another knock out view, this time of Annapurna III towering above the tiny village’s traditional stone houses. Whilst the walk today was not long (just over 4 hours in total), the relentless ascents and descent made it fairly tough and I found myself flagging on the stretch before Koto. However the view of Annapurna III filled my body with a revitalising shot of adrenalin and reminded me why I was here doing the trek and just how lucky I was to be in such an incredible place.
From Koto it was a pleasant 20 min walk to Chame our final destination for the day. Chame is district headquarters and is a relatively large (but still pretty) village in comparison to others
in the region. KC my guide recommended that I stop sleeping in the afternoon from this point forward as too much sleep at altitude can apparently be bad for altitude sickness. Now I would have to find something other than sleeping to fill my afternoons! In the afternoon KC took me to some hot springs (actually a singular hot spring) which are found on the edge of the Marshyangdi River which runs directly through Chame. Here I was to take a bath, local style. The hot spring was pretty pathetic, it took a while to actually locate the tiny dribble of water it distributed and the water it did spout out was only slightly warmer than tepid. However, it was located on the edge of a beautiful fast flowing river and performing my cleaning rituals with an avid audience of local villagers in a very public spot was a new and interesting experience!
I know every day I talk about great views but today was the real trump card, I’ve never experienced such visual beauty in one day, incredible.
There are more photos below