We woke up at the crack of dawn. I walked outside to be greeted to a view of mountain peaks. It was incredible. I had never seen anything so beautiful. After breakfast we had to pack up and head out for our day of walking. This was the biggest town we had stayed in. The climb down through the town had coffee shops and bakery’s all along the path. One cafe was playing music and it was so strange to hear music out loud as we had walked in silence surrounded by nature for days. This town also had some of the cutest dogs we saw in Nepal. As usual once we got to the bottom of the town we started to go up. It was a tough climb today as we had a young women behind us bad mouthing us for using a Sherpa. She had very strong opinions on it and it did affect us that morning making us question our choices. I just hope the young lady had brought all her own food and drink cos they are also carried up the mountains every day for the tourists like everything you use on the trek. The sun was also on us the whole way up the morning climb. I was relived for a break and a cup of tea at the top. The next part was through a wooded area and down some big stone steps into Bamboo for lunch. There were lots of trekking groups at this spot. We met a lovely young man from Korea who gifted us some Korean soup to keep us warm. It was just a short two hours to our tea room for the night. At this tea room all the guides and sherpa’s were in a separate dinning area and watching TV. We chilled out in the dinning area most of the night writing in my journal or playing cards. We tried to get a early night but the couple in the next room to us had a huge row…and lets just say the walls are paper thin so we heard every word of it.
Today for me was one of the toughest days as I would have to face my fears. I have a fear of height which comes from the fact I am extremely clumsy and fall over a lot and have bad balance. After a familiar breakfast we headed out. Fish tail mountain in the distance getting closer each day. We slowly climbed up and around big boulders then we came to a crossing over a water fall. The bridge was made of bamboo sticks and to say it did not look safe was a understatement. My natural instinct is to automatically get on all fours so I don’t trip up over my walking boots. MK and Raju glided over the stick bridge and I brought up the rear crawling across. I did loose one of my water bottles it fell out of a side pocket on my bag. I watched the rapids carry it away and over the edge…this did nothing for my fear! I told myself… I had made it, well done! Then came two more bridges each one looking a little less safer then the last. The last bridge was over a giant waterfall and I had this funny feeling in my stomach that this is where the walker had fallen a few days ahead of us. I was right… Raju held my hand over the sticks and MK said it looked even worse with two people on the bridge as it was bending. Raju was incredible to get me over all 3 bridges with no tears. MK was in disbelief how well I had handled them all. Safe to say all I could think about was I would have to cross them again on the way back down. It was hot on this day and by the time we arrived at the tea house I was feeling sick. Raju advised me to eat a whole bowl of garlic soup…as he had just got me over the most 3 terrifying bridges I had ever seen I did exactly as he instructed. This night was extremely cold and I had everything I owned on in bed to try get some sleep as tomorrow we would reach Annapurna base camp.
It was a steep scramble up the back of the tea house after breakfast then a flat walk through a valley along the river. Everyone had slowed down as the high altitude was now hitting us. We did not take any altitude medicine when we were in Nepal we just let our bodies get used to it and we were okay. As this was the final push to the base camp it just seemed to fly by. We had made it to our tea house for lunch but it was still mid morning so after a cup of tea we pushed on to have more time at base camp. It was a long steady incline up to the camp and we were going slow which made a short distance feel so long!
Finally we reached the sign at the bottom of the tea house and took all the photos so we had proof we had completed the walk. It was a bit emotional to know that we had completed this hike and with all the issues we had in Kathmandu it just felt incredible to finally get here. The view from the back of the tea house was surrounded by mountain peaks. I had never seen anything like it. Along the edge of the path prayer flags where hanging everywhere one girl was playing the guitar and everyone was just taking in the beautiful sunset!
It was pretty hard to catch your breath at this tea house we really did not do much before bed. It was a long night as high altitude makes it hard to sleep….and if you know either of us sleeping is not something we struggle with. It also makes you need the toilet so we couldn’t sleep and had to keep using the bathroom. Not a lot of sleep was had. We got up for sunset and again the views were indescribable. Despite being exhausted, ache legs, feeling sick it all seemed to be worth it watching the sun rise over the mountains.
Now to get back down…