A new morning just under the sky of Thare Pati. The high altitude air is humid as always, the clouds hang low, but what is actually high here? We're at 3.700 meters without noticing it. Those who ascend to the Himalaya often get problems with altitude sickness. But those who walk slowly, not always upwards, so that in between also repeatedely down, can avoid these danger to a large extent.
After breakfast in the cold lounge, surrounded by the cold smell of the extinguished iron stove, we go up the mountain right behind the lodge. And then down again. Fog and rain accompany the hiking train, hardly ever other hikers come towards us or overtake us.
For the children in the few houses along the way we are an event, so rare that they don't even unwrap the sweets wqe give them before they put them in their mouth.
After the grass-covered ridge of hills there is forest again, and on top of the forest there is a stunning trail again, which leads up to the high alpine pasture of Ghopte at 3,450 metres. This is not the end of the trail: to Dhubichaur it goes up another hundred metres. Nevertheless, a comparatively short day, because there is no lodge closer to the pass.
Meanwhile, leeches are appearing more and more often, whose trickery in penetrating the clothing knows no bounds. The little animals are about the size of a match and they move around like a Romanian gymnast: up front, stuck in the back, making a bridge and so on. When they make it to the skin, they bite, almost imperceptibly. The body volume then inflates three or four times. These vampires are a nighmare, every few minutes we have an alarm of one member of the group who has one of these strange animals on his skin.
The removal becomes a bloody affair, but, say the local experts, there is no danger, they really just want to suck and carry no viruses or pathogens. Nevertheless, every discovery of every leech is good for great excitement: everything peeps along your own body, everything shakes and searches.
The day's destination is Phedi, a place in the fog that cannot be recommended to beach holidaymakers. 3,650 metres high and zero view. The prayer flags at the stupa in front of the house hang sadly. In front of the lodge there are also some ruins of an Italian jet that crashed here a few years ago. A macabre memorial that makes you happy to still have your feet on the ground.
The sequel of this story is here
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