Thursday 1st June, Phortse, approx. 3850 MASL
Today was a day of superlatives.
I’m not going to be able to describe it all and do it justice, so I’ll try and simply grab a few of the good bits and give you a sense of how the day unfolded.
It was another early start, I was probably awake around about 4:30, then we were on the road by about 7:00 AM. It was another up down up day, And although the first 3 hours or so up to our lunch break was fairly difficult walking, the scenery was spectacular.
Our first treat, within minutes of leaving at lodgings, was to be greeted by a yak train. Day four wars of our arrival with their tinkling bells. These lumbering beasts are really quite magnificent, and you'll see in the video below That as they ambled by it was my responsibility to ensure that I got out of their way and not the other way round.
The early morning air was crisp, And having exited the settlement next to last night’s lodgings, we took the left hand path heading up to gokyo lakes. The next couple of photos show the extensive retaining and repair work which has been undertaken on this section of the path.
After about ¾ of an hour we rounded a bend To have the full spectacle of this part of the world laid out in front of us. The photo below does not do the scene justice. The early morning mountain air we’re still quite hazy, and since I took this photo facing into the sun, the lens has picked up a bit of sun flare. Over towards the right Ama Dablam peered down on us from her 6800 metre perch. On the left we could see the village of Phortse, which was to be a final destination for the day. Thyangboche, yesterday morning’s departure point, sits high on a ridge somewhere between the two.
On a couple of occasions a Himalayan vulture appeared from the shadows in seemingly effortless effortlessly glided around chasing thermals, sometimes below us sometimes above us. They were joined by dozens of black crows similarly whirling around on the updrafts.
After a couple of hours of walking, we reached our high point for the morning, where we stopped for a tea break.
From here it was a steady down, down to the Bhote Koshi and up to the village of Phortse.
From the path up to Phortse.
The events at Phortse were quite amazing, and too hard to describe in a shortish post from my phone. I'll post a few pictures, and then aim to write a more comprehensive post later, probably from Kathmandu.
L-R Lakpa Thering Sherpa, Phutashi Sherpa,
Tashi Lhamu Sherpa
Back up hill tomorrow (Friday), then onto Namche. Until then.