Thursday, May 26, 2011

Nepal-Tilicho Lake Base Camp to Yak Kharka (Day 97)

We woke early and the weather looked stable enough to get out but certainly not promising to head up to the lake.  We packed up quick and hit the trail to get out of there.  Anja paid the bill and was appalled to find a 7,000 rupees bill or $50 per day.  Probably $40 of it was just for water.  Since we had not brought a water filter with us we were ordering lots of tea.  Definitely, I would highly recommend a top notch water filter for anyone going to Nepal.

Anja had told Brenna we would wait for them but fearing our weather window would close I was having none of it and set us off on the trail first from the hotel.


The trail was surprisingly easy to walk on as the snow had not melted any or been consolidated yet so it was soft and fluffy as we walked not hard and icy as I was fearing.


The weather was ok but looked like it could change at anytime.


We made it a ways from camp and the weather was turning in our favor with a little sunshine coming through so we stopped and waited for Brenna before the landslide section as that was where we all had been most worried about.


Yaks on a snowy trail.


The group caught up after about 30 minutes and we headed to the landslide together.


Everyone was happy to be headed downhill as the temperature warmed.


We waited for Brenna and Marcos to finish through the last of the landslide and bid them farewell and headed off down the trail.  I was thinking we’d head back to Khangsar and rest for the night as we liked that hotel.


Once we got to the shortcut location the weather was much nicer down there and it was so early we thought why hike an extra 2.5 hours so we went for it.


Looking up at base camp things still looked cold and poor.  We were happy to be out of there.


The short cut took us through an old abandoned town on the ridge top.


The views from the ridge top were amazing as we looked down on Yak pastures and up the valley we were now transitioning too.


We could see Khangsar below as we hiked across the field.


We just wondered through this pasture on no trail.



We climbed over a little rock wall and found this trail.


We gained the top of a ridge with views down to Manang.


There were funny trail markers like rocks with Yak painted on them or arrows on the trail.


From the the ridge we saw what I’m guessing were impalas below.  This was pretty much the only wildlife we had seen so far on the trek.


The trail down from the ridge was pretty grand.


We were again looking for a bridge over a river far below us as we knew the main trail was on the far side of the valley.


We found the bridge.


We were happy to gain the main trail and headed to Yak Kharka.


In Yak Kharka we got a nice room with attached toilet at around 2 pm.  It had been a 5 hour day and we settled in for the night and got dinner.  In the dinner hall the guesthouse guys were playing this odd shell, dice, and coin game.  The game was played you roll the dice, move your coin (or coins if they are stacked), across that many shells, if you land on an opponents coin stack with less coins they are knocked off the board and you roll again.  It had started snowing hard in the afternoon and we were happy to be relaxing indoor where it was not snowing indoors.

We went to bed making plans to head up the next day.  The snow, the adventurous trail, wildlife, and warmer weather it had been my favorite day so far.

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