Discovering Nepal 19 October – 17 November, 1982
Nostalgic Nepal: Reliving a Remarkable Holiday
We began our journey at London Heathrow airport where we flew over eight hours to reach Bombay, India. After a short layover, we were on the second stretch of our expedition and boarded a plane to Katmandu, Nepal.
Twenty-four hours of travelling and an enormous time difference did not slow us down. We arrived in Nepal and the following morning at 7am we boarded a bus headed to Swayambunath and our trek had officially begun.
We were now three days into our venture and the first stop we made was to the Tibetan Refugee Carpet factory. Later in the day, we went to Pashupatinath where we saw a saffron robed priest guard the entrance to a sacred temple.
On day four, we reached our first campsite—Tortorre. Over the next few days we continued our tour in the sweltering heat. We passed banana trees, rice fields, and when the sky was clear, we caught our first glimpses of Phangu, Manaslu, and Himalchuli.
Continuing on, we passed through tiny Tibetan villages. In one village, we were lucky enough to see a local making a Ferris wheel for the area’s children. Upon its completion, the villagers blessed it by sacrificing a cockerel. Shortly after, the locals danced for us as part of the Hindu festival that was going on.
As we reached day ten of our travels, we arrived at the Eastern bank of the Marsyandi. It was at this point in our trip that we were briefed on the horrors of altitude sickness, which we would likely experience on our climb to Pisang.
The following day we reached Camp Pisang. Houses in the surrounding area were all joined by ladders and the earth was very bare and dry. The Tibetan people were small and quite wrinkly. We stayed one night and then continued our climb further up the Pisang. We were enchanted by the sensational views of the Manang valley, the Manang Airstrip, and the snow covered peaks all around us.
It was now almost two weeks into our travel and we had reached Braga. From there, our next feat was climbing 1,500 feet up the valley side to a Gompa with a great view of Annapurna III.
When it was time to descend the mountain, we were in for a real treat. One of the villages was partaking in a Buddhist festival. Four boys were banging on drums and blowing horns while the older gentlemen were dressed in colourful Tibetan attire.
Kids were wearing devil masks and three of the town’s youth had percussion rifles. It was certainly quite the production and a fascinating site to see.
Time progressed, and we had now passed the two week mark. We were at an altitude of approximately 16,500 feet and the combination of the extreme height and blistering cold (ranging from 8F-24F) was beginning to affect us all.
We proceeded slowly up the mountain until we finally reached Throng La. At last, we were at 17,700 feet! We snapped some breathtaking photos of the Eastern sky and then began our walk back down.
The next week we spent at different campsites engaging with the locals and captivating our senses with the different sites and smells of the small villages.
Three weeks into the journey, we found ourselves walking down the Kali Gandaki, crossing over a suspension bridge and climbing up the steep valley of Madi Khola. It seemed like we would never reach the top, but hours later we finally arrived at Chitre.
Upon our arrival we only found about ten houses and some children who were delighted by our arrival.
On the 26th day of our expedition, we boarded a plane that took us about forty minutes away to Katmandu. Once we landed, we immediately continued on to Shankar—the first sign of civilization after more than three weeks!
Wow, what a difference a clean set of clothes, a shave, and a hot shower can make. We spent the afternoon relaxing and walking to a few shops before getting to the hotel.
We spent our last day walking around the markets again and snapping a few more photos. Now, almost four weeks after starting our trip, we were packing our bags to head back to India.
The final leg of our tour took us to New Delhi. We stopped at the Biria Hindu Temple, and then went on to the Raj Ghat, where Ghandi was cremated. This was just about the end of our trip. We explored a little longer, but the next day we boarded our flight back to London. What a trip!