AsiaNepalLukla

Chukhung - Thyangboche – Namche Bazaar – Lukla

Lukla Travel Blog

 › entry 13 of 17 › view all entries
Namche return
Although a lie-in would have been great, Chukhung was behind us fairly early. Adventure almost over, we would simply walk back down the valley over 3 days and 2 nights, in time for our flight back to Kathmandu. First stop was Dingboche for coffee - indoors for a change, one very poignant poster caught my eye, advertising Rob Hall's Adventure Consultants. Rob died on Everest in the famous storm of 1996, able to talk to his pregnant wife on the other side of the world before he died, but unable to reach safety a few hundred metres below - RIP all.

Pangboche this time was a lunch stop rather than overnight. No rest for young Sumba though - accommodation at Thyangboche is always limited, so he was sent on once again. For us, we had a pleasant break in what I think was my favourite lodge of the whole trip, with real care taken over the food and service.
Not that tired!
Then, just before Thyangboche the clouds began to close in, so the final chance of a distant Everest pic was snapped up before we kicked up the hill and round the corner to be greeted by Sumba and his trademark brilliant smile - he'd done us proud once again and bagged the last few rooms in a packed lodge. Next to me at dinner were a fantastically friendly NZ couple who, unlike the vast majority of us, were carrying there own gear without porters and off to Ama Dablam base camp. Lovely, lovely people - travelling for me is about the people not the places!

The pace we descended the valley on our journey home left us with plenty of time for sightseeing and, arriving out the outskirts of Namche well before lunch the following day, we had plenty of time to explore a local mountaineering museum.
Lukla airport closed
Old newspaper reports related the first ascent of Island Peak - made by none other than Sherpa Tensing Norgay, testing equipment for his Everest climb - fantastic to make even a tenuous link between ourselves and mountaineering history.

Our third visit to Lukla the following day found a very different town to the one we had left the week before. Weather had kept the airport closed for three days straight, and the town was full of trekkers with international flights to catch and nowhere to go. Plus, no ATM, so a roaring trade was being done by local traders willing to do VISA advances (with a whopping commission on the back!). Every airline office was mobbed by people taking about waiting lists and the chances of clear weather - an atmosphere of anticipation hung as low as the clouds. The rule in Lukla is that, even though you might be able to find some cheap beer in a shop on the street, you weren't allowed to drink it in your lodge, so groups of down-jacketed trekkers happily stood in groups to kill time. As ever, I had a small world moment and bumped into a Canadian couple I last saw on the way up the hill, and we compared notes. The rules were simple - if our flight arrived the next day, we would jump straight to the front of the queue and be on our way. But, if it was cancelled, then we went all the way to the back. I had a couple of days' spare at the end, so wasn't that fussed, but Lukla was a one-night town at most!

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Namche return
Namche return
Not that tired!
Not that tired!
Lukla airport closed
Lukla airport closed
Lukla
photo by: halilee