Trek Report – October 2014
The October 2014 trek departed from Norfolk to Heathrow only just making our flight to Delhi as the result of an accident on the motorway. Our party consisted of six fund raising trekkers, Mandy, Gill, Emma, Debbie, Martin and Simon and two trustees David and Andy meeting up with Gyaljen and Catherine in Kathmandu. The Thamel House for a meal was our first night destination whereby we all sat cross legged and enjoyed a traditional Nepalese meal. The following day we all left for a fantastic sightseeing tour with Gyaljen taking in the Monkey Temple, Durbar Square and the Boudhnath. That evening we again experienced the Nepalese cuisine which included Cashew nut curry, Mo-Mo’s and Everest Beer.
The trek which was planned for 9 days departed from Tumlingtar then to Yaphu and on to Gontala returning to Tumlingtar then to Kathmandu for a couple of days sightseeing and shopping before flying home.
We met up with our party at Tumlingtar which included 17 porters 4 kitchen boys and 3 Sherpas plus of course Gyaljen and his two sons.
The weather was generally kind throughout the trek with some days being hot and humid making conditions a little tougher than normal.
All of us found the first couple of days a challenge due to the change of altitude and the steep Nepalese terrain. We all quickly adjusted to conditions supported by the Sherpas.
The first night at the Ghurkha Base in Khandbari was more Glamping than camping but was a useful first stop for us to get to know each other and visit the hospital in Khandbari to look at progress and establish what was required to ensure the x-ray machine NIN funded is put to work.
Day 2: found us trekking to Angla which was a long slow ascent with camp being set up at 1600hrs followed by a cooling wash in the stream and the appearance of the odd Leach which sent shivers through most of us……’. It’s the way they move’ !! Somehow Gyaljen managed to locate beer in the middle of nowhere which to say the least was very welcome and calmed the nerves.
Day 3: a steep decent to the river crossing our first suspension bridge followed by lunch and a cooling wash in a stream with Martin down to swimming in his Y fronts.
The trek to Yaphu proved hard, hot and humid but was worth it when we arrived as we all received a wonderful welcome with our garlands and Tika presented by the local people.
Day 4: Breakfast then up to Yaphu Hospital to meet Urmila our HA. A meeting ensued with trustees agreeing to fund various requests at the hospital and a pay rise for Umilla. Leaving Yaphu on a decent we had another ascent to the pretty village of Walang. Dragonflies and Butterflies abound and with camp set up it was dinner then bed with a water shortage taken care of by our team.
Day 5: This proved to be a tiring day with the long ascent to the Sherpa village of Gontala.
Fantastic views made it worthwhile and the welcome we received incredible with garlands, tikas with vast quantities of Sherpa tea and chang (homemade alcohol) being provided by the villagers. We were then treated to a fantastic evening of Sherpa dancing and singing with the whole village attending the party.
Day 6: we were invited to the local monastery and to our Sherpa’s homes for tea or chang! This proved to be a really interesting day for us seeing how the Sherpa’s lived as well as meeting their families.
Day 7: Pasangs house for tea before our ascent to 10000ft spotting a wild Yak on the way. We descended for the rest of the day taking in some amazing views before setting up camp at Gyaljen’s cousin’s house with tea set on the cleared vegetable patch.
We all went to sleep listening to the sound of laughter as Gyaljen entertained his family and our porters into the early hours.
Day 8: The sunrise at 0530am was amazing with snow-capped peaks and amazing light changes.
The walk down to Tampko School was slow and enjoyable with time to take in the sights and sounds. We all met with the Headmaster and after receiving a garland and tikka were given a tour of the library to see books NIN had previously supplied and some of the class rooms.
Day 9: Leaving camp at 0700hrs we started on a long decent with a few trips and falls along the way. Some amazing views and a stop under the suspension bridge to swim in the cool waters of the river which was a fast flowing tributary to the Arun River some 100 meters away. We had a welcome visit from a Kingfisher and some amazing butterflies.
After a long walk along the river we camped at the school in Chewabasi after Gyaljen skilfully negotiated our permission with the locals .Our dinner on this evening will always be remembered as our cook somehow created Scotch eggs and stuffed peppers from his dwindling larder.
Day 10: A long walk along the sandy river bed to our last stop Tumlingtar arriving at our hotel around 1330hrs whereby we had a celebratory soft drink to toast our success.
Our last meal prepared by our cooks was a fantastic chicken curry with a chocolate cake as pudding.
Day 11: We all said our goodbyes to our Shepas, Porters and cooks before setting off to the airport and our flight to Kathmandu which proved fantastic with great views of Everest and Makalu.
A really successful trek that I am sure will be remembered by all that took part for a long time to come. Thanks to everyone from all the Trustees for making this a really special trek.