17 October 2014
Tashi Delak Everyone,
Hello from the Sunrise Lodge in Phakding, our accommodations for the evening. We are sitting outside in a courtyard surrounded by fragrant marigolds, which is surrounded by prayer wheels and prayer flags, which is surrounded by tall granitic crags, lush junipers and towering mountains. Needless to say, we are enjoying our afternoon tea in an exceptionally beautiful location.
Our flight in to Lukla was clear and calm, which is ideal when you approach one of the smallest airstrips around. In Lukla we met the rest of our Sherpa team, enlisted the help of supremely strong Nepali porters, and began our trek to Phakding. Along the way we visited Pemacholing Goomba, a serene and improbable looking monastery built into the side of the mountain; it was opened to us by a Buddhist monk who has taken a month vow of silence, yet his presence and smile spoke volumes of his character.
After the monastery we continued along down the stony path to the tune of bells ringing off of Yak's necks. The unclimbed South Face of Kusum Khangkaru loomed impressively in the morning sun as we crossed rivers via hanging cable bridges. Small Nepali children freely offered us songs sung and flowers picked as we leisurely strolled along.
So far the weather has been welcoming, and we hope it continues. Tomorrow we leave early in the morning for the famous historical trading post of Namche Bazaar, continuing our acclimatisation and cultural acclimation plan.
Cheers from the Ama Dablam team,