From Num to the East Pass’ Belvedere

From 7 to 26 May 2014

DSCF1634

 Click photos to enlarge them

GPS points in Annex and via GPS/Tableurs – Spreadsheets

Objectives :

After the forced stop to Kongma in April, 2013, because of the late snowfalls having blocked the

access to Shipton La, I organize a new trip towards Makalu, 5th summit of the world throning in 8434m.

The objective is to by-pass it until « East Pass » at 6150m, full stop of the project, to have it just 2300m up, in front of me.

Beside the meetings with our friends of Khandbari, Seduwa and Chyaksa danda, it is a ballad in 17 days with a total difference of altitude of 5400m, on a round trip distance of 130km.

 

Summary and Introduction:

Valleys and crests leading to the monsters of Makalu’s high mountains do not deny their reputation: the sky will be hardly blocked, up to the Base camp of Makalu (MBC). The rain will sometimes be present at the end of morning. Going up, the weather clears up to give way to a perfectly crystal clear sky during my four days and three nights of isolation after MBC. This respite will plunge me in a fabulous universe, which will mark my dreams as much as my shins: the trip is dangerous on a big part of the route, without path in the masses of fallen granit rocks of sometimes several hundred kilos in unstable equilibrium.

I won’t go to East Pass, ultimate purpose of this trek because enormous and inescapable glacier preceding it, with no visible track. The risks are too big. I shall contemplate it of my improvised belvedere at 5850m, big consolation prize …

With three foreign walkers met in three weeks, we can say that this trek is confidential. This Sherpa’s region would be worth nevertheless being better known, so warm than it is not need to know how to speak their language to exchange and spend long and unforgettable evenings by sharing Rocksi without moderation (Arack in Sherpa: alcohol of millet distilled once) and Sucuti (dried meat of yak recooked in the wood fire) and the unchangeable dalbath.

It is precious to discover their culture mixed with cheerfulness, innocence and frankness…hoping that it remains for a long time hung on on the sublime hillsides of their sacred mountains.

Preparation :

The route and the stays are positioned with the help of Google Earth ( GE ) and points entered in the Garmin GPS.

5 Days of autonomy are planned (2.6kg of food + tent).

The total taken weight is 18kg, including the water, the gasoline and the camera bag. Backpack: Gregory Wander 70; tent: Vaudé Power Lizard SUL 2 places; stove: MSR XGK EX with 400ml (100ml will be enough) of gasoline bought in a petrol station in Kathmandu; mattress: Thermarest Néoair XLIT

Sleeping bags: Valandré Bloody mary

I am accompanied with my friends of Friends of Nature to Tashigaon then alone up to the East Pass’ Belvedere.

Situation and route:

DSCF1373 situation


DSCF1373 trajet

Access :

Turkish Airlines, “best European company”, will not contradict its recent reputation. For 584€, it is the most direct access  to KTM. The ticket KTM Tumlingtar was bought by internet, it is a considerable novelty. From Tumlingtar to Num, jeeps leave when they are full (14 passengers): 150Rs to Khandbari (a small hour) then 600Rs to Num (4-5 hours)

A road is under construction to continue, as it is said to Tashigaon (not too fast!)

 

Budget :

Flights international: 584€, national KTM Tumlingtar: 184€, visa, entrance fee in the park, the accommodations and the meal in KTM and during trek: 420€, that is all in all less than 1188€

 

Agenda :

agenda

Height at Night :

Altitude à l'étape

altitude distance

 

 

Difference altitude / day :

dénivelé jour

The trek from day to day

Wednesday, 7 May – from Num to Seduwa

Descent  49m;  6km in 4:30; altitude at night: 1572m

DSCF1406a Num Seduwa

 

It is necessary to take back the good habits after 3 hours of expectation and pay the last seat which remained desperately empty to be finally able to leave. Finally 4 hours of jeep between Khandbari and Num on an chaotic track opened five years ago. This time, we are lucky because the rain does not fall.

   DSCF1406DSCF1406b

The trek begins only towards 1 pm after an inescapable dalbath in Num, giving strength enough for the route. I have to get used again to the bag, which destabilizes me at every false step.

The descent from Num is vertiginous. It avoids a real cliff which falls in the Arun’s bed.

I have difficulty following Sanjaya, been used to the path. We arrive shortly before the nightfall in Seduwa. Our friends wait for us there and reunion  will be celebrated  with the local Tongba (beer of millet which continues to ferment with the successive additions of hot water in the mixture).

A turista takes shape in perspective. It is unfortunately a good idea to avoid Tongba and  Chang unless if the water being used is enough boiled or was chemically treated before.

Thursday 8 and Friday 9 – Interruption of the trek.

Stay at Friends Of Nature’s farm between Chyaksa and Tashigaon

It is an ideal opportunity to enter Sherpa’s houses and share their everyday life. My friends translate but it is not need for words to appreciate the tchang prepared by the hostess in front of us. The principle is  to never let glasses empty. They have to be always full. We also attend the distillation of this beverage which will take the name of Rocksi to Arack or still Local. The cold source is situated in the superior pot and must be regularly changed to allow the condensation of the distillate. Contrary to Tchang and Tomba, this drink is completely safe for the digestive system.

In the farm of Friends of Nature, we shall also kill the chicken which will improve considerably the dalbath. On these lands, the experiment of the kiwi culture began in spring. It will soon be a source of vitamins for all the populations of the valley (approximately 4000 people)

DSCF1410DSCF1446

DSCF1447

Saturday 10  May – from Seduwa  to Tashigaon

Ascent: 628m 8.45km . altitude at night: 2200m

DSCF1407 Seduwa Tashigaon

We continue to walk in rice fields and I discover my first leeches. They hang on to soles or to clothes when we touch them. They infiltrate then under clothes to quietly drink the blood. They are plenty between Seduwa and Tashigaon but I’ll not see them any more afterward. To avoid them, it is necessary to walk at maximum on stones and avoid the edges of paths.

The country remains peaceful and hot.The overcast weather does not allow to distinguish the surrounding mountains.

In Tashigaon, we celebrate my solo departure the next day with a lot of beers. The manager of the park warns me on the difficulties of the route and makes me understand that it can be wise not to go up to the Base camp. I note it but I burn with impatience to get stuck with myself finally in the real difficulties of the route.

DSCF1487

DSCF1470

Sunday, 11 May – from Tashigaon to Kongma

 Up at 5 20, departure at 6 20. Arrived at 13 45, Ascent: 1429m 6.45km

altitude at night: 3629m

DSCF1495 Tashigaon Kongma

The ascent from Tashigaon to Kongma is practically continuous, in the forest. I take advantage for the last day in tropical atmosphere. Birds answer in the infinity. The last rhododendrons illuminate with red brightness the path. The steeply track is an obstacle. You should not try to go faster than of reason. The air is not still lacking but the path already dilutes in separated series of stairs on which feet, still clumsy, look for an often uncertain support. The ascent is long. It is necessary to be patient. It is the price to be paid to escape, maybe, the mist which surrounds anything when the sun begins to give.

There are few houses on the way, some farms among which one allows the provisioning and even a lunch when it is opened.

I meet a Sherpa  with a high-alcohol breath. I shall learn afterward that they find the energy there to carry their heavy loads.

I find Kongma without the snow setting we had left, there is a little more than one year. The almost vertical walls I cross today were then covered with snow. I feel more at ease.


 DSCF1497

 DSCF1509

Monday, 12 May – In Kongma, acclimatization day

I hesitate to stay but I need to be reasonable. The good weather invites me nevertheless to leave. I met the day before my first trekker. He comes down from Makalu and indicates a beautiful antenna from Shersong: the crest to be taken staying on the left to overhang the base camp at 5300m or a bit more in the direction of the peak 3. In clear weather, by settling there we can discover simultaneously Makalu, Everest, Lhotse and Kanchenjunga. I would not go this time if I can go towards the East Pass which is the objective of my project.

The day is long in Kongma. I take advantage of it to do my first laundry and have an a little less superficial wash. It is necessary to recognize that it is not easy to remain a little bit clean on this route. From Tashigaon included, there is no water source a little isolated except the possible toilet …

I order chapatis for the breakfast. Bad idea because the owner understands chiapati. She begins to prepare some Tibetan tea. I won’t confuse anymore  » chiapati  » Tibetan tea and  » tchapati  » bread

DSCF1524

Tuesday, 13 May – From Kongma to Dobate

Up at 5 30, 4°C in the room. Departure at 6 40 Arrived at 14 00. 

Ascent 290m in 7.53km; altitude at night:3900m

DSCF1525 Kongma Dobaté

If there were only four passes (Kongma, …, Shipton, Keke) to arrive to Dobate with Shipton peaking at 4234m, the walk would be almost a formality. But the snow is always there with more than one meter in thickness in certain places. It spreads on the longest part of the route. The path remains often well indicated but endless sinking up to the thighs is exhausting.

The weather quickly becomes cloudy and the fog fills all the space. A short and unreal moment, peaks 6 and 7 appear. I get closer to the high mountains!

I meet three yaks coming down in the direction of Kongma. When it will be necessary to follow the same way, each of their steps forming a column of space in the snow down to the ground will be a trap still slowing down my progress.

DSCF1534

DSCF1538        DSCF1540

  DSCF1545

Icy snow walls must be crossed with the help of hands to reach the third pass. The path has disappeared under the snow and the trek is similar to climbing. I begin to understand the negative words of the park’s manager in Tashigaon.

The lake preceding Keke La is partially covered with snow and ice. Ice cracks under my foot and a shoe fills with water. I hurry to go out and to empty it but the damage is done.

The descent towards Dobate where the husband of the Kongma lodge’s owner waits for me, Pemba Sherpa, is more serene: the snow almost disappeared and the red and yellow rhododendrons alternate.

I shall spend a good evening there. His English allows us to exchange on his life and on my project. I have some difficulties understanding how he can live so isolated and far from his family. Apparently, this situation suits him very well. Many families are, like him, separated during the autumn and spring seasons between Tashigaon and the high valley pastures leading to MBC.

I dry my shoes and my pants close to the fire and drink tea without counting.

DSCF1556     DSCF1562

DSCF1564

Wednesday, 14 May – from Dobate to Yangle kharka

Descent -256m in 9.6km; altitude at night 3644m

Up at 6:05; 0°C in the room; departure at 7:20 arrived 14 15 in the rain.

DSCF1567 Dobaté Yangle Kharka 

The weather is beautiful in the early hours and mountains appear by stealth, for a little while … During the copious breakfast made of pancakes and tea, Pemba warns me that a rockslide destroyed a big part of the track leading to Yangle Kharka, the only hamlett opened before MBC and thus an inescapable stop. He prepares two additional pancakes for my lunch.

I find a waterfall shortly after Dobate and I take advantage of a ray of sun to take a great shower.

I change the first set of batteries for the GPS. The descent towards the Barun’s valley complicates and I believe to be in the collapses described by Pemba because I am sometimes in an almost vertical channel which has to be the bed of a torrent when it is raining. It is not the case and it is only a stimulating appetite walk compared with the long kilometer of unstable rocks that waits for me along the Barun!

At noon, the rain begins to fall. At first insignificant then expanding. After the forest, the grazing appears and the path becomes easier. I arrive to Yangle Kharka at the right time because the rain doubles intensity and I would not have stayed dry a very long time in these conditions.

DSCF1570    DSCF1573DSCF1574

Yangle Kharka seems very boorish for a hamlet at this low height. I am so far from Annapurna!

Sad and long afternoon to try to warm myself close to the wood fire where will be prepared my evening dalbath. This simple thought kills my appetite. Everything is dirty and nice here. The rain prevents any serene vision for an immediate future.

DSCF1578

Thursday, 15 May – from Yangle Kharka to Shersong

Ascent  : 1071m in 12.91km; altitude at night:4715m

Up at 5:08 3°C inside  Departure:  6:10 arrived at 14:46

DSCF1586 Yangle Kharka Shersong         

Departure after a breakfast of pancakes and tea. I subscribe to pancakes because it seems a speciality of the region. I order it also for my lunch to save my reserves. And it is so famous after the perpetual dalbath …

The next accommodation is situated in MBC and requires a 1200m ascent. All the farms are closed between. There is a real risk of mountain sickness. We know how that begins with a big migraine and nausea. You never can tell how it will finish. Back in Khandbari, my friends will tell me that they were very worried because they had heard, from authorized source, that a French had died in MBC during his sleep. They thought that it was me …

Thanks to my equipment, I plan to stop to Shershong (with none shelter place). I shall not make there my second day of acclimatization as expected because it will be made at MBC at two hours and 200m ascent from there.

The valley must be magnificent when the weather is clear. It is not the case today. The sun remains hidden very often and thick layers of fog hang on to the trees of the valley and the abrupt hillsides of mountains. It’s a pity but, normally, the weather should improve with the height…

DSCF1587      DSCF1588

DSCF1593

In Yak Kharka as in Langmale, buildings are actually closed with padlocks. Refuge is possible however possible in adjacent shelter if necessary.

A silent kid follows me during dozens of minutes. I go nevertheless very slowly for him. He will be joined by his father and his brothers. They go  to the second base camp where, it seems, more than 200 people prepare expeditions to overcome the summit of Makalu. I imagine, in my long solitary walking, the kinds of traffic jams which have to reign there. I have never understood this paradox: so much personal effort to find themselves finally crowding in places so empty, mineral and majestic. Each to his cup of tea!!

DSCF1602

DSCF1606       DSCF1610

The air begins to be lacking and it is necessary to manage the beatings of my heart which is now beating too fast with the slightest effort. Stops are necessary more and more often. No matter, I have time.

I arrive under the snow to Shershong and I find a water source at 150m from the camp. I set up my tent  for the first time without any problem. The weather clears up in the afternoon, enough so that peaks 6 and 7 appear in an supernatural environment. These enormous cliffs, so close, set the tone of what will be my environment from now on.

My first autonomous evening in these conditions gets me a compensatory happiness for the past efforts and a strong motivation to continue towards the Barun’s glacier …

I have to erase a big migraine with some Ibuprofen and I have the impression that my heart is going to stop because it beats very slowly. These almost 1100m of ascent at this level are too important. The night will be difficult and long with numerous awakenings because of my difficulty to breth: I went up too fast.

DSCF1613     DSCF1618

DSCF1623

Friday, 16 May -From Shershong to the Base camp of Makalu    

 T internal 0°C; T outside-7°C Up at 5:10 Ascent 126m on 3.57 km

Departure 8:07 arrived 10:00; altitude at night 4841m 

DSCF1625 Shersong MBC

It is Sylvie’s birthday. I wish her Happy birthday by the thought.

At the exit of Shershong, I locate the crest which leads to the high pastures above MBC, described by Philippe in Kongma. If I do not manage to progress towards East Pass after MBC, I shall go up to discover the chain from Everest to Kanchenjunga …

I get ready quite slowly because the road will be short today.

The weather clears on the road. It bodes well. For the first time, Makalu appears to me, majestic and wearing a curl of clouds. We shall not leave each other during 5 days.

DSCF1632

  DSCF1634

 

I take advantage of the sun to get washed a little less basically than usually. I also dry tent and sleeping bag, wet in Shershong.

I go in recognition of the path, following Barun’s glacier afternoon. It begins well drawn (stop at WP413). I cross in great shape my first 5000m during this exploration.

The lodge is very basic but the atmosphere is friendly. Carriers come to spend the night and we share our dinner there. It is -1°C at about 4 pm and I am afraid of lower temperatures higher, when I shall be alone.

DSCF1758DSCF1640

Saturday 17 May – From MBC to Sandy camp

Ascent: 359m on 5.16km; altitude at night: 5200m

Up: 5:08 Departure: 6:08 arrived: 12:20

DSCF1641 MBC Sandy Camp

I stop at 7:30 to protect me with sun cream: the sun is present and burns as soon as it gives to these heights. The weather will remain totally clear during my stay above MBC. This respite is a big chance which will allow me to benefit completely from extraordinary and always renewed spectacles.

DSCF1644

DSCF1658

I have to leave the path which leads to the second base camp because I have to go to the left to join Sandy Camp. This hypothetical camp is not situated on any map and was located on GE. When I leave the path, it becomes chaotic, on the back of the glacier.

DSCF1652

DSCF1656

I progress now in the unstable rocks and I join the line of break between the glacier and the hillside on the right bank of the glacier. It is not the best solution because it is a zone of fallen rocks where the progress is difficult and dangerous. I constantly think that a broken leg means the death now. Nothing very heartening. I recognize finally Sandy Camp’s location in an overhang of small hundred meters. I knew that climbing would not be simple there and I had planned to go up by forming zigzags on the slope. It is not so simple because rocks, from all sizes, fall down and slide by pulling others with them. Nothing holds. I choose to go up by the bed of a waterfall, thinking that stones will form a more coherent set, thanks to the flows of water. Nothing changes it. On the contrary, the simple fact of putting my foot somewhere diverts sometimes the current  towards me.

I am not proud when I get, dipped, to the top. The experience is not to renew!

There is so much collapse here as there was of avalanches in the valley surrounding Dhaulagiri. It is necessary to become used to these new songs of the mountain.

Accéder à Sandy Camp est un exercice délicat: éviter de déplacer de trop gros blocs de granit en progressant

Accéder à Sandy Camp est un exercice délicat: éviter de déplacer de trop gros blocs de granit en progressant

  DSCF1671

Sandy Camp is a magnificent terrace of fine and white sand, a real paradise for a sunbathing in an environment of snowy peaks, in the crystalline sound of the near torrent and in front of unchanging Makalu. Afternoon passes, enjoying the simple pleasure of the sweetness of the sun and the fantastic view on Lhotse (8516m),  Lhotse Shar (8393m), Everest at 18 km (8848m), Shar Tse (7591m), Shar Tse 2 (7457m) .

DSCF1678part

DSCF1673

My heart beats now too fast without making any effort. Everything will be back to normal in the evening and the migraine is not there.

It is 15°C in the tent in 17:00. My fear of low temperatures at high height was not founded.

DSCF1681

Sunday, 18 May – From Sandy Camp to the Camp of the Pass

Ascent: 273m in 3km;  altitude at night: 5473m

Up at 4:56 T=2°C inside, -5°C outside

Departure 6:55 arrived at 14:30

DSCF1677 Sandy Camp Camp du Col

DSCF1685

The setting-up time is now more important than in lodge because it is necessary to unsettle and to tidy up all the equipment and to prepare the breakfast (muesli + milk 100g and cappuccino with Brittany biscuits)

The weather is fair and I follow the road planned in my GPS It brings me up while staying on the flat which goes along the Barun’s Glacier. I saw dozens of times the profile of this mountain which I have the impression to know by heart. I find cairns sometimes. It really had to be a path a long time ago. The condition of the garbage at Sandy Camp reminds me that it was not used for several years.

The first part is made without too much difficulty. The descent towards the glacier and the moraine leading towards the East Pass is much less easy because the slope is too important for trying a direct descent. To try to join the glacier by staying on a horizontal is not more possible because the wall of the hillside becomes more and more vertical. I once fall, taken by the weight of the backpack. Arrived on the moraine, I continue to follow my GPS points but the ground is always so unstable.

After a fruitless attempt of progress towards the foot of the main glacier going downhill to East Pass, I decide to stop on a sandy location which  was a formerly camp, that I baptize Camp of the Pass, for lack of any better name. The location is ideal to plant the tent, always in front of Makalu, but higher and higher with regard to it.

vue sur l'amont du glacier avec le Cho Polu au fond, but ultime du trek Makalu 2015

vue sur l’amont du glacier avec le Cho Polu au fond, but ultime du trek Makalu 2015

Le Makalu, majestueux et définitivement dominateur

Le Makalu, majestueux et définitivement dominateur


DSCF1701

I saturate with meals of dry sausage and tasteless couscous. It will be necessary to vary the menus the next time. I dream about a tomato soup …

It is today one first record : my highest ground night, at 5473m … And everything goes well.

DSCF1703

DSCF1706      DSCF1708

DSCF1709

Monday 19 May – From the Camp of the Pass to the East pass’ Belvedere and return

final altitude 5850m;  ascent: 377m in 1.8km

Up at 5:08 Departure at about 8 am. Arrived at  10:00

T =-1°C inside T =-10°C outside

It is only when having unsettled and tidied up my things that my look is attracted by the slope which faces my camp in the direction of East pass. It seems to me obvious that from this height, I shall have a good point of view allowing me to decide on the way to be followed. I have a choice to be made: either come down towards the MBC to join the heights above Shersong, the antenna recommended by Philippe in Kongma, or go up towards East pass today if I find a more or less safe passage.

Half an hour has to be enough. I do not even take water.

DSCF1711       DSCF1712

un des glaciers du Makalu

un des glaciers du Makalu

Without bag, the ascent appears to me a soft escapade. A crest masks other one and it is necessary to go on climbing to hope to have a finally clear view. I need 2 hours to see finally appearing the mountains’ circus  surrounding East Pass. The glacier is enormous, inescapable and spotless. To cross it alone and without appropriate equipment seems to me totally irresponsible. The bell of return has just rung. I am at 5855m. A helicopter takes brutally me out of my dreams. It is the first contact in three days. It was on the way to the second base camp of Makalu when the pilot saw me in the middle of nowhere. He comes towards me and I make a sign meaning that everything goes well. Everything goes very well even because I taste the success of my project as a gourmet in the various small dishes in the delicious flavors.

DSCF1726pan

Sherpani pass, at the bottom to the left, appears to be a wall of unbridgeable ice. East pass, at the bottom to the right, seems more feasible after the long ascent of the glacier!

DSCF1730       DSCF1731

DSCF1734

What I do not still know is that I am just at the middle point between my camp and a summit rising in 6072m, easily accessible and from which Baruntse is completely visible. It will be for next time …

Down to the camp, I plant my tent on the same location … That misses a little of anticipation. We shall do better next time.

The weather covers little at the end of afternoon, enough to worry me a little bit.

Tuesday 20 May – Return to the Makalu Base camp

Descent: -632m in 7.28km, altitude at night 4841m

Up at 4:48,  T =-1°C inside-10°C outside. Departure 7:25. Arrived 17:45

I guzzle my fourth extraordinary breakfast. The road will be long and difficult today to join MBC.

There are two important difficulties to overcome because I do not want to try the low way by the meeting place of the side glacier where I am with that of Barun. I go back up on the plateau which leads to Sandy Camp without finding my way back on the way out. The GPS gives me a big service. I come down from the plateau towards the Barun’s glacier by preferring to slide on a glacis of bits of gravel and sand. Everything leaves with me but the advantage is to have the same speed which allows to plan and to avoid the biggest pebbles.

DSCF1745

This time, I prefer to avoid the masses of fallen rocks by progressing on an uncertain line on the back of the glacier in the direction of the path to the second camp of Makalu. I avoid so much as possible hollows and bumps formed over the centuries by the slow advance of the glacier.

DSCF1750      DSCF1752

Marcher sur le glacier, c'est poser les pieds sur des blocs de granit en équilibre instable

Marcher sur le glacier, c’est poser les pieds sur des blocs de granit en équilibre instable

  DSCF1755

My jeans will not take out whole there, torn in legs and on buttocks and my fingers of the left hand will superficially be cut, due to rubbing on granite rocks.

I arrive really exhausted but happy to see again human beings in MBC after more than 10 hours of walking. Excellent evening when I celebrate my victory with the local vodka.

Wednesday, 21 May – from MBC to Yangle kharka

Descent -1197m in 16.43km

Departure 7 :20 arrived 15 :15  Altitude at arrival: 3644m

At noon, the drizzle joined in. The return at the low heights is synonymic of overcast weather apparently. But nothing more can affect my morale now.

My times of walking are too long. The ideal is 7 hours for one day. But Sherpa make in one day what I travel in three. It’s difficult in these conditions to find coordinated places of stays. They go from MBC to Tashigaon in only two days …

I saw, this time, a shepherd installed in Shershong under a roof of covers recently settled. The farm of Langmale was also open and it would probably have been possible to take a meal or at least some tea there.

I meet my only group of carriers of the day. Seen their drunkenness, I do not have to be any more far from Yangle Kharka …

DSCF1759      DSCF1763

DSCF1765

It is not either by going down it that I was able to admire this magnificent valley. I spend an excellent evening with my new friends. Here the words are not necessary to feel integrated into the family by sharing the meal together. Some words as lasso (thank you) or salti (ni) (friend) cause true laughting and the conviviality is very there.

Thursday, 22 May – from Yangle Kharka to Dobate            

Ascent: 256m in 9.9 km; Alttude at night: 3900m

Up at 5:45 departure 7:20 arrived 15:00

The weather is as yesterday and on the way out covered. The ascent towards Dobate is terrible even with my bag having lost more than 2 kilos.

DSCF1773      DSCF1782

DSCF1787

The evening with Pemba and carriers will be a big reward of the efforts of the day. I discover the traditional sucutti, the yak meat dried by fire and placed again in the flame to be tenderized. Taste and share without moderation with the local Arack. The social life, in its original sense about which I am fond of is there. It is like a fabric warped day after day by the tradition. Everybody takes a place here in the warmth after the efforts of the day. Extraordinarily, I am included in this precious fabric. We don’t to think about anything, we enjoy simply the present moment, together.

DSCF1793 DSCF1795

 

Friday, 23 May – from Dobate to Kongma

Descent -271m on 8.73km altitude at night: 3629m

Up at 5:35; departure 7:12 – Arrived 14 :45

Depature after review of my « exploit » by looking at photos with Pemba. He remember me that he had told, on the way out, by analyzing the drawings of cooking on my pancakes that my trek would be a success. His grandfather taught to him to read the future in this way.

It is the day of four passes. Everybody told me that the snow melted since my first passage. It is true that the path is a little more visible. It will be necessary to fight all the same step by step to move forward in the soft and thick snow on several kilometers, in the drizzle and the fog sometimes.

I look for the crampon lost on the way out without finding it.

DSCF1801       DSCF1804

DSCF1814

I find the warm atmosphere of Kongma where I shall spend a new exceptional evening. A dinner guest shows me his invaluable booty: he has in his pocket three yarsagumba, collected in the region of Yangle Kharka. It is about caterpillars infected by a mushroom which eventually kills them. Middle plants middle insect, this is a medicine with numerous virtues in particular the increase of the sexual capacities, that the rich Chineses buy at a high price, up to 5000€ / kg.

DSCF1820

Saturday 24 May – from Kongma to Tashigaon              

Descent: -1429m on 5.7km; altitude at night: 2200m

Up at 5:15 departure 7:30 arrived 13:30

I leave shaved but always dirty. I shall wait to find a waterfall to take a shower on the way while the temperature appreciably went back up.

In Tashigaon, the guesthouse is unfortunately closed because its owner left with helicopter to Kathmandu. I am disappointed and I go to the guesthouse where we stayed in March, 2013. The atmosphere is more hoisted and the exchanges more limited although cordials.

DSCF1838        DSCF1836

DSCF1844

Sunday, 25 May – From Tashigaon to Seduwa   

Descent:  -628 in 8.7km; altitude at night: 1572m

I find no more leeches on the way. I find Dawa in his school in Chyaksa danda where he took the place of Head teacher during my trek. It is an excellent news which we shall celebrate in family that evening by getting away the neck of one of its chickens in Seduwa.

DSCF1879       DSCF1875

  DSCF1882

DSCF1873

 

Monday 26 May – from Seduwa to Num

Descent:-49m in 4.8km, altitude at arrival: 1523m

Up: 6:55; Departure 7:45 arrived: :12:30

We shall never enough say that this abyss to be crossed between Seduwa and Num is a torture because we already believe that trial is finished when it is necessary to go up by an steeply ascent furthermore of 700m, in the tropical torpor.

DSCF1904

I arrive while a jeep goes away for Khandbari … It will be necessary to wait patiently that an other one fills, during three long hours. I would have preferred to spend this time in the company of my friends in Khandbari. We have so many things to be said ourselves …

DSCF1959pan4

DSCF1975        DSCF1968DSCF1986

 Annex GPS points

you can find the complete Excel spreadsheet on tab GPS/Tableurs – Spreadsheets

gps blog p1 gps blog p2

DSCF1678

Publicités