LUKLA - PHAKDING
A quick stop in a local tea house for breakfast and our walking was underway. Our three duffel bags, now reduced to 5kg each were strapped together with some rope and expertly balanced on Pasang's head. This is the method which most of the Sherpas get goods up the mountain! Their unassuming strength will never cease to amaze me! Our walk was only small inclines with quite a few descents, mostly passing through village after village. We dropped to get our security passes and to spin our first of many prayer wheels. 3 turns to cleanse the soul then on our way. It was a relatively easy 3 hour walk to Phakding with a stop for lunch close to the end. The food was good so far, omelettes and porridge for breakfast and veg noodles and spring rolls for lunch. Our tea house for the night was "The Sherpa Eco-Home" and we had a cosy three bed room with electricity and western toilets with running water. Dinner, a heat by the stove and off to bed. This doesn't seem too bad!!
13 April 2017
KATHMANDU - LUKLA
We had a 5am wake up call to get to the airport for our flight to Lukla, where our trekking would begin. This is notoriously one of the most dangerous flights in the world as it flies directly through the mountains. My confidence was not high on us making this flight today as the lightning illuminated the tiny airport terminal the thunder shook the windows. The terminal was a lot more impressive that we had anticipated and with our Guide Phurba in control we had our boarding passes and were ready to go by 8am. Luckily the weather cleared up and we made it to Lukla on a smooth and spectacularly scenic flight. The airport approach was out of this world and with the excitement and adrenaline overpowering the jet lag we landed and were ready to start our trek. Here in Lukla we met our porter, Pasang who looked no older than 18 without an inch on him! How he'd manage to carry 3 bags for 16 days was a mystery to me, and really still is!!
12 April 2017
After a long sleepless flight from Glasgow I arrived in Kathmandu. The evening was still light so I got my first glimpse of the Himalayas and the city as we came in to land. After filling in the immigration and visa forms and paying the visa fee of 40USD it was a smooth transit to the hotel where Casie and Sarah were waiting for me. The drive was a stark reminder that I was no longer in the western world. The traffic was manic and streets full of people and dust. Our hotel was basic but the most luxury we would see for the next 3 weeks. A quick trip for some dinner and an unsuccessful search for an ATM for some Nepalese rupees and it was straight to bed for an early start the next day. No time to see Kathmandu but looking forward to seeing what lies beyond the city.