Nepal!! Woohoo!!!

Trip Start Apr 17, 2006
Trip End Apr 16, 2007

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Saturday, March 17, 2007

A Glorious hello from Glorious Nepal!!! We made it from Delhi on a 15 hr ,overnight train and then a 3 hr bus to the Border!! Its was a experience getting here, but was worth all the waiting! We arrived at the small border town of Sunali, where we halted our journey for a nights rest. It was a dirty, unappealing town and hardly what one would expect, having arrived into Nepal!! But luckily, we already knew that this place was in no way a reflection of the rest of the country.... We merely stayed here so we wouldn't have to do a further 9hr bus journey after our lengthy jaunt from Delhi!!..... It was interesting crossing by land from India into Nepal and was surprisingly smoother than had predicted. A funny part of the evening was when Lou went in search for some Tonic water,to accompany our Gin (naturally)!! On the border you are 'sort' of allowed to walk freely back and forth to India/Nepal to visit the various shops etc... We asked in some shops on the Nepal side, regarding getting some Tonic and they simply replied 'you will have to go to India for that'!!!... So back to India we went! Having walked casually (if not apprehensively) onto the Indian side, the shops there advised that we would 'only get Tonic in Nepal'!!!...... So back to Nepal we went and eventually after our country hopping, we tucked into to a well deserved G&T!!!
            The next day we made for the town of Pokhara, which was about 9hrs on a local bus,of which we were 2 of only 3 western people traveling. Having recently looked further into the implications if land crossings into Nepal, it seems that the many of the borders are advised as a bit of a 'no go' area and air travel should be a preference to going by land!! Huh, what do they know anyway!!?!!?!........
No room left on the bus!!!, Pokhara............., Nepal
          We made the beautiful and lengthy bus journey to Pokhara without much fuss!! Although the incident that was presumed to be a bomb on our bus, was something worthy of a giggle. We were happily chugging along on the bus through the countryside, when an enormous explosion occurred on the seats just to the right of us!! Everybody screamed and tried to run off the bus. What was thought to be a bomb, turned out to be an exploding tyre!!! Tell you what,for a tyre exploding, it ripped a hole in the floor of the bus and made all of us passengers get messy pants!!! 
           Excitement over, the arrival into Pokhara was one of delight. The town is situated on the edge of a big lake and had unbelievable views of the snow capped mountains, belonging to the Annurpurna mountain range! We settled in nicely and sighed a relief to be in such a gorgeous place, especially after the effort of getting there. For an extra $100 we could have flown from Delhi in just 1hr!! Hard to believe, but where would the fun be in that option!! 
Us enjoying the sunset...........Pakhara, Pokhara............., Nepal
              We explored this relaxed town and surrounding area. We also went on a few local hikes. We thought we had better attempt a few warm up hikes, before our adventure into the mountains for real. We had been debating for days on which company/guide to take us on our 4 day trek. In the end we decided to go it alone!! Well, alone now being 3 of us, having acquired another trekking companion, in the form of a dutch girl, named Sandra. She was the 3rd person out of just the 3 of us, that was on the bus from the border. 
               Our trek eventually got underway... Our chosen trek was to be over 3 night's and 4 day's, in a area that covered the beginnings of the Annapurna range and would take us via the famous 'Poon Hill'. Our maximum height was to be 3200 mts and the trek is renowned for its continuous ascents and descents. Nice thought when Dan was having to play porter and carry our equipment filled rucksack. But this hardly seemed to matter, with the prospect of finally getting into and seeing the Himalayas!! What excitement!!!
Our trek begins............, Pokhara............., Nepal

           The first day was physically and mentally tough (especially considering our lack of required fitness). We were advised that the first day involved a steep ascent up "SOME" steps?!?! Well after nearly '3000' steps......, taking into account having already hiked for 4 hrs with packs on, we certainly welcomed the guest house (or tea house in Nepal terms), with great delight!! We were totally exhausted!! The tea, followed by beer and a huge meal was like the best gift ever.... 
           Anyway.... i could truly go into great detail regarding the next few days of our trek... But for your sakes i won't. It was completed safely and on time and we were very proud of ourselves for completing it on our own, without guides or luggage porters. To sum it all up,it was tough,but amazing and took us 3 days for aching bodies to get back to normal. We literally couldn't walk the day after its completion!! But naturally all this effort was undoubtedly worth it. Even getting up at 4am to reach the summit of Poon Hill for sunrise, seemed irrelevant for the rewards gained. The views were breathtaking! 
Snowy  Annapurna Mountains.....Pakhara Nepal, Pokhara............., Nepal

Its pretty hard to describe in words to be above cloud level and see such views. Even throughout the entire trek, we had constant views of the 8000mts moutain range. We  passed through villages where time has stood still. We crossed through forests, over bridges, where the river surged below and had the fun of even being high enough to hike through the snow!! To top it all off, we have on camera, a classic video filming of Lou gently trying to cross a 'small' stream and slipping on a log and landing on her butt into the water!!! How we laughed! Can't wait to show the video to you all..
Us playing in the snow!!!, Pokhara............., Nepal

          Well to Kathmandu it is to be. Another long and perilous bus journey on mountainous roads, with suicidal drivers. Thought we'd keep the best and tiring part until last!!!! Might need a holiday when we return!!!!...........      &nb sp;   
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