Annapurna Sanctuary trek (part 5) Jhinudanda - Pokhara
Pothana Travel Blog› entry 9 of 33 › view all entries
Woke up to another gorgeous morning and a lovely view from the breakfast table, but just not feeling it today. I've never done a trek over 5 days before and its taking its toll. Back pack feeling like its got some new boulders hidden at the bottom, but set off at 8 for a final full day of trekking. Thankfully, the 1st couple of hours provided the 1st good length of flat path as we followed the valley through pretty fields of flowers that looked like bluebells and trees showing autumnal red colours with still plenty of waterfalls to walk by. Views of the mountains slowly receding but still looking impressive and visible over the closer hills.
Made good progress and the bridge crossings at least have handrails to cling on to as it tries to bounce you over the side in to the rapids below.
We carried on when Harka got a phone call. Normally used to letting him be pace maker steadily walking behind him, when he sat down, I wasn't stopping.
The rest of the day was supposed to be undulating, but I didn't see any down. The climb up to Tolka was another tough climb, but not feeling so bad knowing that the hard work was nearly done. Made it in to a very pretty lodge for lunch that had originally been planned for that nights stop before Harka decided it would be best to get as far as possible in case the Maoist strike continued and we needed to walk back to Pokhara. Had a long leisurely lunch before carrying on to Deurali. This time Harka stopped again for a long chat with a local guest house. Starting to wonder why he was stopping so much.
We made it up to Deurali to find Luc waiting for us. He had arrived 2 hours earlier and had filled his time drinking raksi. After failing to persuade any of us to stay, he was heard settling his bill and staggering behind us and shouting after to me to sing to him.
Day 10 - Home time. Having walked much further than originally planned on day 9 in case strike continued, we found the strike had ended leaving us just a quick 2 hours down hill trek to Phedi to complete. Feeling sad to be leaving such a beautiful area, but ready for the comfort of a bed and en suite hot shower. Comfortable walk although some sections of steep downhill steps that could still be dangerous, made it back to our taxi pick up point. We were back in Pokhara by lunch time and after quickly checking back in to Yeti Guest House, went out for lunch with Harka for some fine dining Nepalese cuisine. Introduced to buckwheat which had the consistency of dough, but very nice with a daal bhat-esque lunch. washed down with Nepal whisky, a good celebration to end the trip before Harka left for kathmandu. Harka insisted on paying, but I followed protocol and gave him a generous tip for being such a star putting up with my bad days. Happy departure and commitment to meet up when I got to kathmandu, I was on my own again.
Good to just catch up with civilisation and made contact with nearest and dearest before a pre-arranged meeting with Luc for a bit of pool. Predicatably he was drunk again. After a quick beer, followed him to a hidden pool hall he knew of. En route called in at a cafe where he knew some of the clientelle. His friends were a Spaniard who travelled to Liverpool often to visit his Buddhist teacher about 2 hours away, and an English guy who refused to acknowledge he was from anywhere. Quickly ready to leave, I left them to their marijuana and Luc walked me on to the pool hall. It turned out to be 1 snooker table which was being used. I left Luc arguing to get use of the table and walked back to the main strip and a quick beer at the Busy Bee. It might be touristy, but I know where I stand !!