From the beyond Nepal

привет из запредельного Непала Report trekking to Annapurna Base Camp in October 2011.
A year ago, we listened to stories about unusual Kirill Yasko tour in  Himalayas during our first pilot campaign in Turkey. Nepal seemed to us something transcendent, very remote and almost unreal. The desire to see the highest mountain on Earth was stronger than fear of the unknown potential dangers and we decided. For nearly a year we lived in anticipation of this moment - the meeting of our group in Boryspil and subsequent trip to that incredibly beautiful and diverse country, which has already been read so many reviews of other travelers.

Charges lasted until the last day. And here we are with two backpacks, alert forthcoming, we stand at the airport Boryspil. The group was quite large and motley and not what made the acquaintance, but just remember the names of all was a challenge. Packed with backpacks and taking the necessary things in your hand luggage for the night at the airport in Sharjah, we said goodbye to the rainy Kiev and flew skyward.

Arab Emirates at night burned bright lights, and the plane sat on the Arab Airlines landing. We brought a modern airport, where passengers were the main one you want, but do not chalk face. Our group looked very strange on the background of children of the desert and the Hindus. In their society, spread the oilcloth on the floor, we tried to fall asleep Pokot, to give us something to pass the time. There was a long-awaited morning, and we're moving in the flow of Nepalese and Indians in Sharjah flight - Kathmandu. Nepalis greeted warmly and asked where we're going to go where and when they heard that we were going to conquer the Annapurna base camp, they were expertly answered that this is a very good route, and quite pritsokivali language.

Another 5:00 somnambulistic sleep on the plane and, finally, we have begun to decline. The plane overshot the layers of dense clouds, and we first saw Nepal. The sight was stunning: the green hills were covered with huge cascades of rice fields, mountain rivers and roads, which curled streamers, the hills were dotted with points of the entire small blue and white houses. Houses were everywhere, and the impression that this is not the village, and some villages the people who settle where they want. Huge hills interspersed with valleys, and mountain rivers flowed into the valley.

фудкорт в аэропорту Шарджи вид из окна самолета холмы Непала (от 2 до 3 км в высоту)

The plane landed and we were in Kathmandu. What can I say about Kathmandu - it just stuns the stranger his Hindu color, dirt, disorderly movement of all modes of transport and people, as well as on the streets of the habit can be deafening sound of an abundance of horns (but this time you get used to).

In view of shell-shocked U.S. Marines, we are turning heads and soaking up the other world in all possible receptors that reached the bus. Immersed, we went to the chaotic streets of Kathmandu to the tourist part of town, district Tamelo. We were settled in the hotel and after that, did not come to a consensus what to do next, the group ran away on business. Our little group first of all got used to the Nepalese kitchen and then went in search of the missing equipment, frantically bargaining with sellers. After such an eventful day, and understand that tomorrow we will have more than 8 hours to go all over the Kathmandu Valley streamers, we safely cut off.

Тамель - туристический квартал в Катманду Mandala Street - одно из немногих спокойных мест

The morning began before dawn. And here we are with backpacks and empty streets of Kathmandu dawn and mysterious, and only the shadow of huge fruit bats periodically sweep at the height of the treetops. Finally there is a bus, we ship our belongings and set off towards the unknown. It was very difficult to determine when it was over urban area, as small houses were everywhere throughout the road to Pokhara itself. The bus was comfortable enough, and was equipped with ultra-modern model of parking sensors in the form of a boy who, if necessary parking would jump off the bus and started from behind nastukivat fingers shifrokod distance to the nearest object.

The road ... You've got to write a lot, but I will describe only a few bright moments. Many could not see through the windshield at the virtuosity bus driver, because the heart goes to the heel of his maneuvers on the wrong side. Rules of the road almost no right-hand traffic and crazy drivers confidence in the fact that almost no sense to drop the speed cornering serpentine. And the most surprising - motion interaction between participants. The fact that we took over the senseless bibikanie different kinds of pipes, turned out to be a system of signals on the road. Honks signal almost all the phrases: "I back, miss," "Well, what are you turned off the road", "I touch", "hello, how are you", this is supplemented with a system of gestures of drivers from the windows. But the most touching I found an inscription in English See you (See you), and Please horn (Please signalte!) On the back of any leading cars.

As we drove through the window flashed scenes Nepalese rural life, the children riding on huge bamboo swings, then she combs her hair old grandmother in the yard, then someone clears, someone cleans, someone to feed the children, someone to clean . And the noisy flocks of running around children, as well as melancholy cows along the road, were a regular feature of the landscape.

торговец фруктами

By the afternoon we drove to Pokhara. Landscape filled with tropical colors, has become more green. Feva Lake, along the coast, we proceeded to our hotel, it was obscured by the huge banyan tree trunks and their branches - the roots were drawn to the turquoise surface of the vast body of water. Finally we arrived, settled in the hotel, came to themselves, and not wasting a minute, went to conquer Lake Feva. Broke up on the boats and was buried in quiet waters of the lake to the Hindu temple, which is located on an island in the middle of the river.

On this day in this temple was held celebrating some festival (as it turned out at home, it was a celebration of Vijaya Dashami, personifying the beginning of the harvest period), Hindus beauty struck on the forehead, a huge queue of people with offerings to the goddess Durga, the mother-lined at the entrance to a small temple. Armed police stood at the entrance to and strictly followed the appearance of the congregation, so as not to miss the non-believers.

лодки на озере Фева в Покхаре коровы тут действительно неприкосновенны

I was blown away by the reality of this action. It's one thing to know about Hinduism from books, but quite another to see how the Hindus brought as sacrifices to the gods of roosters and goats, pray and call the brass bell, like flower petals and burning incense chadyat, see statues of the gods, splattered with red paint and ashes. In our century, the morality of Western society denies this, but here taakoee.

Having enjoyed an acquaintance with Hindu beliefs, we swam to the other shore of the lake, on a cliff top which was a Buddhist stupa in the world. To reach it, it was necessary to stretch the weakened muscles of the legs and go up to 500-600 meters along a path passing through the green rainforest. From habit, we, of course, soaked with short stops and reached the top.

The stupa was huge, and it was something simple and harmonious. At the top of the hill, from where beautiful views of the lake, you could see how tiny boats scurry about on the water surface. People came with their families and sit in front of the stupa, like come on a picnic. Someone took off sandals and climbed the stairs to the ranks of the gold Buddha. Enjoy the views, we went down and buried in the twilight to the opposite shore of the lake. At this ended our meeting with Pokhara. Already the next morning the broken bus, painted in the Hindu style, bouncing up and down on bumps, bringing us to the top of the track to the shrine of Annapurna ...

вид на Покхару с холма

Dawn found us on the road, the low sun rose crimson, and light it it is not blinding, but our bus at the time puffing and shaking on a dusty road in Nayapul. We arrived at Nayapul, a small village, sort of a staging path where the start and end with walking tracks. Were noted on the check-point and slowly crawled to the iron bridge over the rough mountain river. Had breakfast at a restaurant near the bridge and the new forces have begun our journey. First, the road began as a fairly wide trail that runs along the edge of the hill along the shoreline of the river. The sun was hot, we were full strength and boldly marched forward.

On the road we met the small balcony where you could sit down and rest or to buy water. A little further on the landscape began to change, began to appear cascading rice fields, green has become more, and the first bridge. In fact, when we were going to Nepal, I was pretty sure that most of the track will look like a rocky landscape with sparse vegetation red clumps and strong winds, but as it turned out that 80 percent of the track are jungles and rain forests. Simply breathtaking landscapes open up to you, hit the scale and grandeur of the Himalayas. Powerful rumbling mountain streams and waterfalls, which are beginning to leak out of the clouds, and of course the white tops of snow on mountain tops.

Along the way porters overtook us, laden with baggage of foreigners who travel light. After crossing the river we were on the other side of the valley and became more clearly visible stone steps, which we started briskly climb higher and higher. The first ascent was given to hard, but his legs stubbornly dragged the body up with a backpack. At the top of the hill village located Uleri, where we stopped for the night in one of the loggia. During lunch we had a little acquaintance, and as soon as it got dark, we first saw the snow-capped peaks, hanging over the green hills.

Names are displayed exactly as loggias that is really true for the lodge, ie, if the balcony is BestViewLodge, it is a loggia with the best views, if TopOfTheHillLodge, it is at the top of the hill, if HungryEye - so in this lodge can be tightly snack .

начало трека Саша уходящий вдаль носильщики

The next morning was an early rise and we are starting to run for the track. The road from Uleri began to zigzag on top of a hill, and we began to dive into groves of rhododendrons and ferns. Our large group broke into two smaller ones, walked faster front and rear - more interesting.

All day long we slowly moved along the edge of the green hills, admiring the nature of the foothills of Himalayas.

Our second day ended in the village Gorepani. Located at an altitude of 2860 meters, it was a transit point to acclimatise and ascend to a still higher point called PunHill, which is located at an altitude of 3,200 meters above sea level. We stayed at the lodge, where, according to Cyril, a magnificent view of the Annapurna mountain range and Mount - eight-Daulagiri. Recovering after the transition and a snack, we went to inspect PunHil. Weather in the afternoon was, as usual, and the cloud from the observation tower at PunHile could not see anything. In the morning, it was agreed that if the visibility is again rise to the PunHil to see the entire mountain range in the rising sun. However, waking up in the morning, we found the cloud in the sky, and only the brave squad pulled himself together and race with a crowd of international tourists rushed to try to see this spectacle. Fortunately the weather cleared up, the clouds stretched, and opened his eyes before the blinding form of snow-capped peaks of Annapurna and Daulagiri. Plenty nafotografirovav our sleepy faces against the snowy slopes, we collected our bags and started to climb up again.

The stone steps then turned to the roots of rhododendrons under our feet, then again became stones. Tiered slopes of green hills as if they were separated from the glittering peaks layers of cirrus clouds. Somewhere in the distance came a rumble, a small plane appeared on the background Daulagiri like a tiny toy, he dove between the hills and flew along the river towards Pokhara.

Южная Аннапурна Даулагири буржуйские туристы (налегке)

That day changed climbs hills, the landscape has changed, we first went to the pass, and then from there down to the bottom of the gorge. Along the mountain river we were almost to the end of the gorge and then climb up, the waterfalls were replaced by forest.

At the end of the day we could walk through the rainforest and go to the lodge on the edge of the cliff. This forest was special, so thick in the upcoming twilight as if he was breathing. Themselves have stopped talking in a group, and we walked in silence, listening to the breath of Nepalese forests. In the end, the forest ended, and we were on the high ground at the edge of the cliff, where there was our current abode - a loggia with a lawn and views of Mt Fish Tail. That night in the bathroom lodge has been discovered and released from a huge web of stick insects, as well as some members have been bitten by land leeches.

ступени в джунглях спасенный палочник (насекомое)

From early in the morning we had a bite and headed down to the river, our path lay in the village Chomrong. On the way to Chomrong we had probably the longest and the steep rise of all the sites where we had to go. Based on the trekking poles, we walked the stairs up and up. And here we are on top of the pass, and a pair of vultures leaving a peak in the valley, and around the huge green wall of hills.

So far we have come to Chomronga, fog, mingled with clouds covered the entire green passage, and a whitish sky haunted us until the end of the day. Chomrong - this is no ordinary village, it is unusual in that it is the last staging post before the straight road to the foot of Annapurna, on the road all alone, she is clearly on the right bank of the gorge, along a mountain river and ends at the base camp of Annapurna. Therefore, in Chomronge can finally buy bottled drinking water (this is the last place on the track, where there is one), eat a classy apple tart with cinnamon and ginger tea, drink it and then back down, and completes all final climb up to the small village of Sinuva.

подвесной мост парящий гриф (или как их там правильно?) Чомронг - город яблочных пирогов

How much effort it took us to crawl to Sinuvy! Force left us desperately rearranging the sticks, we stubbornly crept upstairs. And finally, a long-awaited vacation. Sinuva was covered in fog. While we were settled, it was dark, and we saw a kaleidoscope of various moths, occupied sites next to the light sources.

The next morning, we as usual, got up early. After breakfast, we gathered together and tramped to the village of Bambu. The weather was sunny, but due to the nature trail we walked under the trees. It was not hot, but it overlooks the green slope of a nearby ravine, huge waterfalls flowing from the top and fell into a lush mountain river. At this time, above us loomed the cusp Machapuchre, snowy peaks shone like incisor teeth huge, dazzling the eye.

Since we moved a few race teams that competed with us since the beginning of the track, the Poles in the pants - samosbrosah Japanese, fully crewed ekpipirovanye porters behind. Having Bambu, Dovan, we reached the village with the name of the Himalayas. After this village, began to increase height, and the road began to go into alpine meadows to the foot of the glaciers. The village is just buzzed by a count of tourists that were in it together. We curiously watched the faces of people who returned with ABC recently.


Snack, we went to the final destination of our journey today - Deurali village. The road went back up stairs almost lost form and turned into pieces of rock fragments, laid so that the leg had at least some opportunity to find support. Disappeared already familiar traces to track mules and buffaloes. And the familiar green landscape began to fade, rare understorey conifers and rare trees began to surround us.

At the end of the road had to overcome two small bridges over rushing mountain streams, which flew with the sound of a passing train from glaciers in mountain river. Then it took perseverance and courage, to hand crafted by fragile bridge made of sticks laid down earth and grass, without any hint of a rail, quickly run over borne down with tons of ice water. What is striking landscape clearly shifted to the alpine meadows, immediately after the bridge over the first mountain stream.

Double-breaking bridges, we reached our camp site. Deurali was closed dense fog for the first time it became cold, but the height of our camp has been like the top of Poon Hill, 3200 m of beds for the night was a little, and especially do not have to choose, lay all seven in one room.

мостик с травкой

 The next morning we woke up earlier than usual, today was to get to the end point of our trip to the FAA. With flashlights in the predawn haze, we puffed and walked. Our next stop was dictated first and foremost need to acclimatize, was the base camp Machapuchre. The road was nearly leveled and flush with the edge of a mountain river, we walked through it, trying to discern the contours of houses in the distance BC. Finally we saw Lost houses on a hill, and the sun began to rise.

When we got to our parking place morning mist disappeared, and in front of us opened a view of Annapurna South and Machapuchre. Forgot to say, before the final ascent, by a vote, we decided that most will spend the night at the highest point of the track, and some people will spend the night at base camp Machapuchre where, if anything, it will be possible to descend to those who overcome altitude sickness.

We breakfasted in the loggia, rest and went towards the top of a steaming Annapurna South. Although we left the extra things in the room lodge on the MBS, it is still going was tough. Despite the lack of significant recovery, the rate of progress was extremely low. Perhaps this fault were also surrounded us landscapes. Huge scope and incredibly close and such monumental snow-capped mountains, whose height exceeds 7000 meters. Brightly colored clothes of tourists stood out from the glittering snows of Annapurna. Of vegetation around the mountain were only red bushes that grow everywhere. Between them a narrow path beside wagged with black boulders and slowly led us to the FAA.

Less than a couple of hours, as usual white haze enveloped the top, and all plunged into the mist. And here we are on ABC.

For the rest day on the ABC, we found a well-known monument, the pyramid climber Boukreev repeatedly conquering Everest, but gained their rest in the snows of Annapurna. Pyramid was shrouded in a web of prayer flags, and in depth was a small stone tablet on which was knocked out of his famous phrase: "Mountains are not stadiums where I satisfy my ambition, they - the temples, where I profess my religion."

Along the edge of the glacier we climbed Annapurna South at an unprecedented height - 4300 m. We were trying to see through the thick veil of ice fog, but the shroud of swirling milk and did not give us that opportunity. Finally, the gods took pity on us Annapurna and the fog lifted a little. Revealing a part of the glacier, where jets of water gushed into the canyon, at the bottom of which was a mixture of the remnants of rock and ice melting. The glacier cracked, and periodically, somewhere knocked off chunks of ice, and the sounds of shifting ice sheets echoed through the gorge. After such a feat our little group came down and totally exhausted fell asleep.

край ледника мы

The night was restless and cold. In the morning all the thermal insulation means came into play. As it turned out, during the night the temperature drops below freezing and still in the dark when we left, putting up all that was possible, the moonbeams could see that a thick layer of frost covers all the objects around. The sun had not risen, and the only moon lit amphitheater snow-capped peaks that surround us. Star diamond necklace going out over the tops of Annapurna. It began to dawn, the moon is eclipsed, and the colors began to show peaks pastel shades. At the same time, a few showers before our eyes, came down from Annapurna I. Despite a sufficient distance from the source of the avalanche, thunder rolled peal of falling snow in the silence of the frosty air.

Sunlight has continued relentlessly to fill the entire space, and we moved to the ridge that rises above the level above the base camp, to see how the sun's rays touch the icy peaks and peaks at some time to paint them the color of molten gold.

звезды над Аннапурной рассвет на АБС

Puffing, with stops, we walked along a narrow path running along the ridge. Then the trail disappeared altogether, and replaced by huge boulders. Boulders also were gigantic sypuhoy, stones began to move along with us down. Overcoming this site, we found ourselves at an altitude of more than 4400 m above sea level. Hence the houses loggia at the base camp seemed matchbooks, and have been around the space and the mountains. And dawn rays touched the tops and tops sparkled red-golden light.

The sun rose above the mountains, and soon began to shine white cover. We began to descend. The rise was nonsense in relation to the slope. Boulders were driving under the feet, legs and listened hard frost on the stones, which had previously been an icy crust, made wet and slippery rocks. After a while we went down and immediately rushed to restock forces, eating breakfast.

высота 4435м

Today we had a long descent. According to plans, we had to overcome the distance that we went for 2 days, rising to the top. According to preliminary estimates, we had to go to Sinuve in the dark. To save time, we met again and hit the road.

His legs were already in good shape, and we quickly overcame the route from ABC to the village of Himalaya. But there is still a way from the Himalayas to Sinuvy, the distance is approximately the same as that part of the way that we have already overcome. It was decided to stop for lunch in the gation. Waiting for dinner and we all spurred on in a wild pace to get there. After dinner, we went to the roadblock Dovan - Bamba.

Weather was deteriorating right before our eyes, and began to drizzle drizzle, but we got a taste for jumping to trekking poles through the roots of trees as a small group of fans of parkour, we raced on a track through the jungle soaked race with the weather. Having reached the village of Bambu, we realized that there is still a fairly large part of the way and screaming "Namasteee!" Ran forward. Who would have thought that Bamboo is lower than the village Sinuva. Forces left the party, the rain came steadily, and there seemed to step stretching into the sky. The climb was fantastic, but that line was crossed.

And our group with two flashlights on his way winding path in the night rainforest. The first sign of the near demise of today's journey was a conductor with a flashlight Sasha, who came out to meet the second part of the group to provide all possible assistance. Following his appearance, the village lights glimmer in the darkness Sinuva ...

The next day was a continuation of yesterday in terms of mileage and the speed of descent. The last general point of a route by which we went to ABC, was the village Chomrong. After it went our way rapidly down to the hot springs. The jets of hot water pipes and beat filled the small pool, and next to the roar of rushing mountain river.

After swimming and lunch descent continued. As a result, we came to a long suspension bridge named NewBridge. Having crossed it, the road has ceased to bristle with sharp descents and climbs, and we made it safely to the village Landruk.

у горячих источников в ДжинуДанда Кирилла цапнул йетти

Our balcony belonged to the family of mountain people, Gurung, and by evening they gave us an idea. Village children performed traditional dances, and at the end of the evening the children pulled out almost all of us on an impromptu dance floor.

The next day we moved in the shock temperature to a final destination of our journey, a village Nayapul. We quickly went and came to the end of the track a little bit ahead of schedule time. Even I could not believe that our journey on foot over so quickly.

Once you have booted into the bus, we went to Pokhara. In Pokhara part of the group remained for further rafting. The remaining 8 hours were in Kathmandu.

The next day we visited as many as four sights of Kathmandu. The Hindu holy temple Pashupatinah, a holy place for Hindus, because once the god Shiva in the form of a deer jumping over the hills and broke off his divine horn, at the crash site which was built by a Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva.

The ancient Hindu shrines, Sadhus, aggressive monkeys, cripples and the incredible painting on wood and stone on the themes of Hindu gods - everything is there. In addition, on the banks of rivers flowing through the temple complex, there is a Hindu cremation, because the proximity to the holy place is considered important for the local population. Very significant is the location of nursing homes in the territory of the complex. The yard was littered with this institution churbakami wood, which burned around the corner from the dead, wrapped in a white shroud. In short, this place leaves a peculiar sensation.

Пашупатинах Садху - святой отшельник

Another attraction was the stupa Buddanath. Buddanath Stupa is a major center of Tibetan Buddhism in Nepal, as well as the most peaceful and harmonious place in Kathmandu. Around the stupa in a circle have active Buddhist monasteries. The smell of incense, the sounds of chanting is transferred to a different world of contrast Nepal. In a world of harmony, peace and contemplation. This place has so much to him that, while there, time begins to run quietly. The wind rustles the boxes people twist prayer wheel - life is full of simplicity and freedom. Part of this sentiment we brought with us.

ступа Будданатх

Then our way led to a mortar Svayabudnath, also known as Monkey Temple. The place where the religion of Hinduism and Buddhism co-exist in peace and harmony. Hindu altars stand beside Buddhist stupas. The monkeys here feel real masters. And besides, this is the highest point in Kathmandu, with a magnificent view of the city's neighborhoods.

молитвенные барабаны HDR Катманду

Not long walk, we went to the last points of interest - Durbar Square. Here lives the living goddess Kumari, the incarnation of Shiva's wife - Parvati (also known as Kali.) We were brought into the court and, coincidence, the goddess appeared to us. Little girl dressed in red - black clothes unblinking eyed colorful crowd of tourists a couple of minutes, and then silently disappeared behind the carved shutters. Tourists in the response gave her applause. In spite of the beautiful pagoda and statue of Shiva in the form of the deity with swords in their hands, the area was crowded with people, the movement did not stop for a minute.

The next day was the freestyle program and breakaway small groups, we decided to pay another visit to the stupa Buddanath and go to Patan Dubrar area. Patan Durbar Square is a beautiful and private transportation alternatives for travel to Kathmandu Durbar Square. A large area of ​​old buildings in the Hindu style, black and red pagodas. On this excursion in Kathmandu has been completed.

королевская площадь Патана

So imperceptibly, the last day in Nepal came to an end, things are assembled, souvenirs bought and we're going to the airport. Five hours of sleep, and we are in the cartoon, and there already, and Kiev.

Now, the fact that we've been there, it seems so irrational. In our gray cities, under the clatter of the autumn rains, steady hum of urban transport and quiet faint rustle of falling snow so hard to imagine that somewhere out there in life is not clogged hollow frame, and continues to be the same as it was a hundred and even thousands of years back. Our campaign for a long time we dreamed, the Himalayas did not want to let their pilgrims, even after we've already got used to the rituals of urban life. But we know we'll be back there once again to be part of something like that, that so difficult to be explained in words.
Denis Teslenko (text), Marina Sklyarov (photo). Kharkov, 2011.