TIBET: Trip to Namtso Lake


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Asia » China » Tibet
May 1st 2006
Published: May 2nd 2006
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Tibetan Buddhists believe the wind takes the prayers to heaven.
I posted a sign and got 3 people to share a 4WD with me for 900yuan. Michael from Germany, Hubert from Austria, and Marleen from Holland. It took us 4 hours to get to the lake which is still frozen. This is the second-largest saltwater lake in China.
On the way, we could see pilgrims prostating their way to Lhasa, yak and sheep herds on the hills with with snow on the peaks, nomad tents, sections of the infamous new railroad and a "parade of exactly 91 Chinese army trucks"!

The landscape is harsh: brown rocky soil, snow, icy lake. The wind is brutally cold, particularly for a tropical Brazilian. It's ~minus 5-10 centigrade, and the 4718 meters above sea level makes it hard to breath.

My advice: do NOT do what I did. Follow the recommendations to stay in Lhasa for 5-7days before going to such a high place. Do NOT go to Nam-tso, like I did, after less than 2 days in Lhasa. The headache was unberable and I had to really work at walking the kora, stopping to rest very often.

About photos: my new digital camera didn't work well there, which was very frustrating.
Cooooold windCooooold windCooooold wind

The wind takes the prayers to heaven and almost took me too!
Keep your batteries and camera warm.

It's possible to go to namtso and return the same day as we did. Sleeping on a tent without heater, with temperature -15C, at almost 5000m wasn't for me.

I highly recommend the trip, particularly if you stop to appreciate the nomadic lives along the way (next blog entry)


Additional photos below
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The presence of the strong Buddhist faith is felt all around the Sacret lake
Freezing in Nam-tsoFreezing in Nam-tso
Freezing in Nam-tso

Lake still frozen and my lims too!! One more rest, as I really suffered with the high altitude sickness


2nd May 2006

I am so impressed with how much you are seeing and doing. You are making us want to travel again and be more adventurous. The weather is starting to warm up in Tokyo so I would not recommend coming back here in the near future.
2nd May 2006

What an inspiration!
I look forward to each and every entry. Thank you.
3rd May 2006

Hey Mark
Yes, I feel like I've done a lot and I wish I had time to do more. It's been incredible!!!!! It's always nice to hear from you. Beijos
3rd May 2006

Hey friend.
Grete. Nice to know that you've been "travelling with me". It's wonderful to feel connected and to share all the incredible experiences. Tibet is simple, colorful, inspiring. It feels right to be here. Keep in touch.

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