Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Day 11 - Yangle Kharka to Langmale Kharka

I woke up early after a good night of sleep. I think spending a second night in the same bed really helped me sleep.

This was the view from my room when I woke.

I went outside  to take pictures of the sunrise.

It was about 6am as the sun was hitting the top of the peaks.

This is the teahouse before sunrise.

The building in the foreground is a government shelter that could be used if the teahouse was full.

It's a basic shelter with no floor or doors - not somewhere I would choose to sleep.

This is the view down the valley.

The yak were wise to have moved to lower ground just before this storm had arrived.

The local Sherpa folk didn't look like they were appreciating the snow as much as we were.

These guys were carrying loads down the mountain - possibly equipment from one of the expeditions that had been on the mountain in recent weeks.

We spent some time taking pictures and enjoying how nice everything looked covered in snow.

We had tea and noodles to warm up after taking pictures.

We then packed our bags and had our real breakfast.

For breakfast we again opted for fried rice. It was much easier to eat than Dal Bhat while your stomach was still asleep.

This was our bill for the two nights at Yangle Kharka.

It was about 10,000 NRP for the three of us including the 4 beers we drank while there.

I didn't write down a translation but I think it was:

Bed (private room): 500
Dinner with Yak: 500
Dinner w/o meat: 400
Bottle Beer: 550
Can Beer: 400
Cup Tea: 50
Noodles: 80
Breakfast (fried rice): 300

After breakfast we set off up the valley.

With the fresh covering of snow the trail was not always obvious but strongman knew his way pretty well.

Longman set off a few minutes after us and apparently lost the trail for a bit - hard to understand how as we'd left a good set of elephant tracks..

After a couple of hours we passed the hut at Yak Kharka.

This was the destination on our original itinerary but we decided to carry on to Langmale Kharka.

There were some interesting stream crossings on the route - not too challenging but it would be difficult to get warm if you did slip off the plank.

The snow coverage was also getting thinner as we got above the elevation of the storm.

This is the teahouse at Langmale Kharka.

It was tucked into a sheltered corner of the valley and hadn't received much snow at all.

This was a simple but comfortable teahouse.

There were glass windows - something we hadn't seen elsewhere on the hill.

It was well stocked with duvets and mattresses.

We sat and had tea with the old codger who ran the teahouse.
He was a real character.

He wanted to give us one teabag for three cups of tea - he called it Sherpa tea.

Some of the teacups were a bit dirty so he washed them in a pot of water sitting on the ground. A few minutes later we noticed goats drinking from the same pot.

Longman arrived sometime later - I guess he wasn't enjoying the altitude so much.

I think there were many days when we surprised our guides by the speed we walked - most days were marked as 5-7 hours on the itinerary but we were typically finishing in 3 - 3 1/2 hours.

We only stuck with the original itinerary to be careful not to ascend too much in any single day.

We arrived to the teahouse at around 11.30am.
The German group arrived about 3.30pm and setup camp in front of the building.

Their team cooked in a leanto shed on the end of the building. The was an amazing smell of garlic and spices as they cooked.

Our guides cooked dinner in the owners hut and brought it over to us in the teahouse.

It was basic Dal Bhat with potatoes and green leaves of some description. The green vegetable must have been hung to dry somewhere and it was almost as chewy as the yak - we named them yak leaves.

I was surprised to learn they grew the potatoes themselves.

Weather: I think this was the first real three hat day. It was nice in the afternoon as the teahouse was in a sheltered spot out of the wind. By about 1.30pm the temperature plummeted and we retreated inside. I guess the altitude was around 15,000ft

Accommodation: I think this place deserves a 3 cup rating. The building was well constructed and well stocked. Food was basic but you'd expect that..

1 comment:

  1. The hut also had an amazing assortment of leftover expedition gear abandoned by well funded international expeditions. I'd bet if you were so inclined you could get some really good deals on it.