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Published: December 20th 2016
Our guide picked us up from bright and early to take the flight to Lukla. The airport was kind of a chaos but the guide handled everything. The flight was an hr or so late, but no one was bothered. When we were taken to the plane, it was a small, reminded me of one I took in Alaska. That was a harrowing VERY cold flight. I was a bit apprehensive now. It was like a 9 seater, I sat in and stuffed my bag under the seat. The steward gave us toffees and cotton to stuff in the ear for the noise. The flight was thankfully uneventful. I was sitting on the wrong side, so did not really see the mountains approaching, just the valley below. It was a scene which I thought would be similar to other mountains in US or Europe, but somehow it was very different.
We were soon at Lukla and ready to start the trek. We grabbed the bags, and started. We stopped at a tea house for tea before start, but since we had enough for breakfast, so no eating here. We will stay here on the way back. The
One of many on the way
way to Phakding was easy, mostly down, crossing lots of swinging bridges. We were there by 11:00am. It was too early to stop, so we just had lunch here. Another place where we will stop on the way back. Then carried on to Monjo reaching there by 3:00. On the way we crossed the first yak train which presented no difficulty. They just look very scary. Day 2:
On our first night into the Himalayas we stayed at small village of Monjo. Today was plan to head to Namche Bazaar. We started early in the morning at 7:45. It is a short day as we covered quite a bit yesterday. But then we were going to cross 3000m mark and some altitude sickness was to be expected. The trail climbed steeply, dropped down to the river level, and then some more steep climb to a bridge. After the bridge some more steep climbing and then a nice resting point. From this point we had the first glimpse the mighty Everest on a very clear blue sky. To be honest this was a little disappointing. It was looking like glimpse of a mountain overshadowed by its neighbour Lahotse.
Beyond the rest stop, some more steep climb, but soon we were at the check point right outside Namche. The day's trek was mostly done. So far so good. Our tea house was all the way to other end of Namche which required more uphill, but we had an awesome view from there. We will stay here 2 nights. Namche Bazaar is literally a Bazaar with shops selling all sorts of gear and services. Prices are of course much higher, but still not exorbitant. I bet some of the stuff was still cheaper than Swiss prices 😊.
Our lodge is called Himalyan Sherpa Lodge. It is very fancy with nicely polished new looking furniture. I was expecting much worse quality. This could easily compete with Swiss huttes. We ordered lunch here, a serving of daal bhaat (which come unlimited) and momos. I loved momos! After lunch it was off to a local museum that showed history and ways of Sherpa life. Day 3:
A rest day in Namche. We just had to go to a Everest View point hotel for a acclimatization hike. I was not really feeling any effect of altitude yet, just some slow down
Everest View Hotel
From left - right - Everest, Lahoste, Ama Dablam
in the pace. It turned out to be a really awesome clear day. We made it up to the view point in good time. Here was a view worth Himalayas. As not surprising Everest was half in clouds. But we had lot of time, so we just sat and waited for clouds to move. They did move here and there and we did see some good sights of Everest. Though Ama Dablam was looking much more interesting. It was hard to turn back, except when the clouds came and the view was hidden.
Back to the lodge we had time to wash and sit in sun. I met a porter here who was going to climb one of the peaks. We got to talking about state of porters and how it is so unfair and they get exploited. Well, nothing we did not know, but did made me wish I had hired direct porter instead of going through agency no matter how great they are. After dinner, early sleep for an early start tomorrow.
Tot: 3.711s; Tpl: 0.046s; cc: 18; qc: 38; dbt: 0.0343s; 3; m:saturn w:www (22.214.171.124); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.4mb