After spending 3 nights in Lhasa we took the next 3 days making our way to Everest base camp and 2 days making our way to the Nepal border.
Hotels with either no showers or baths in the room, dirty sheets just smoothed out by the hotel staff to make them look clean and no heat made us once again appreciate civilization.
Unmatched was the terrific scenery and village life that unfolded out our van windows and on our frequent bathroom stops.. Since being advised that drinking copious amounts of water would make it easier to adjust to the altitude we were able to stop every 30 minutes or so.
The brown treeless mountains were reminiscent of those in Baja and Palm Desert however they had a life of their own with every color of brown swirling around with reds, oranges, black and grays thrown in. Goats, sheep and Yak dotted the Valleys and Mountains like spilled pepper on a white table cloth.
The common mode of transportation is a tractor much like an oversized rototiller with a seat and wagon in tow full of people or their necessary wares for the day. Secondary is a horse and buggy. Men and women are hunched over at the waist working the fields with rakes made for 3′ people. Women squat washing clothes in a bucket or garbage ridden stream dirtier than their clothes.
The maximum altitude we achieved was 17,296. We felt as if we were walking with cement boots with a elephant on our chests – slow steady calculated steps were required.
Rounding a turn on the Gola Pass, through the dry brown mountains, Mt. Everest magically appeared! Karma was on our side for it was a clear day. We all felt younger, giddy with excitement – wide smiles and a few tears. It was stunning. This magnificent white mountain stood out even more against the muddy brown horizon -awe inspiring to say the least.
By the time we reached base camp hours later the clouds had started to settle in. We sat and tried to soak it all in while watching the mountain draw in the clouds until it disappeared like a magician’s rabbit.
Here are a few photos…