Waaw! We had an amazing 5 days in the Singalila National Park. In a nutshell: We climbed from 2100 meter to 3600 meter and back to 1600 meter in 4 days and covered 55km of paths in the mountains. Highlights were the amazing views of some of the highest mountains in the world, including Mount Everest and Kanchenjunga (both more than 8500 meter high), meeting interesting/funny people in the lodges we stayed and all the yummy noodle and rice dishes for lunch and supper.
On the flipside, we were freezing cold at least a few hours a day and the Indian toilets and showers, i.e. holes in the ground and buckets of water, were challenging to say the least. Most special about this trek which made it different from previous hikes in Europe was that we were so close to the local people and nature. At night we would sit in the kitchen of the lodge next to the wood fire where the food is being cooked around a little pot of burning coals to get warm while still wearing 3 tops and a winter jacket, wondering how the locals can endure this. Some locals were just wearing slippers without socks.
|Yay! We made it to Sandakpu. Little morning walk at 6am before breakfast to see Everest in all its glory.|
|Lots of children and young people in the villages on the way.|
|Very happy, exhausted and trying not to be cold. Temp 4 degrees inside.|
|Sunrise in Sandakpu. Spectacular but oh so cold at 5.30am.|
|Market in Rimbick, the last village of the trek.|
During the day we saw so many cats, dogs, cows and baby goats in the villages we passed through. In one lodge, the baby goats were sleeping in a cardboard box inside, and in the morning both the village cow and the mother goat came inside the kitchen looking for the little goats. We are now officially ready for Macchu Picchu, but even more ready to leave the cold and soak up the sun in Thailand.
Photo left: Wangchuck and Doinka, the friendly couple with whom we had a great homestay while in Darjeeling. Wangchuck was also the organisator of the trek.