Day 90 : Chame
Then I was on the trail which I walked when I was at the age of 12.It looked different,for instance, road construction, alternative trekking route and people. After walking for 45 minutes, I reached to Qunche.I was glad that even after not seeing me for last 8 years,owner of Royal Mountain Guest house recognized me. .He is very good friend of my father,thus,it was like family and he insisted me to eat lunch there and start my trip ahead. After a while I reached to Dhanaqyu and from here I had take new route via Timang as old trekking route was destroyed due to road construction. It took me 3 hours to reach Timang and 2 more hours to reach Chame; headquarter of Manang district. Annapurna Circuit Trek well known among trekkers so you don’t have to worry about good food and lodging facilities in all stops.
Day 91: Pisang
My father has been working in Annapurna Region as a trekking guide for more than a decades. I stayed in guesthouses wherever he did and they all treated me not as a client but as their own family member. Thanks to my father for creating wonderful relation with these people. After leaving Moonlight Guest house, I headed towards Pisang.I reached to Dhukur Pokhari after 4 hours of hiking after crossing Bhratang.After lunch there, it was 45 minutes of slow walk to reach Pisang.Hiking was easy as it didn`t consist any heavy ascend nor descend.
From Pisang there are two ways to reach Manang. One was lower route via Humde airstrip and next was High route via Ghyaru. When I was for the first time in this region I walked across high route so this time I decided to walk lower route.High route consisted steep ascend till Ghyaru which made trail few hours longer than walking via plain lower route.It took me four hours to reach Braka;the joining point of high and low route and then one hour more walk would take me to Manang. On the way you will be rewarded by breathe-taking views of Annapurna II, Annapurna IV, Lamjung Himal, Mt.Gangapurna , Tilicho Peak and many other snow caped peak and inspiring nature experience.I found low route also very much fascinating.
Day 93: Rest day in Manang
I have been trekking for last 92 days so I thought I need one more day rest in Manang.It can be useful to explore more about Manang v illage.Manang is a himalayan village from which district name “Manang” is derived. For the trekkers, hiking to Chongar view point can be good acclimatization day. Drop from the village to bridge and climb up along left edge of Gangapurna Glacier Lake to reach Chongar View Point from where you can have amazing view blue Gangapurna glacier. Though I didn’t have specific measurement of glacier, I noticed decrease in glacier length to some extend than my last visit. After short day trip, you can enjoy apple pie in Tilicho Bakery.
Day 94 : Attempt to Tilicho Lake
I had immense interest to witness Tilicho Lake situated at the altitude of 4920m (only the lake in the world located at such altitude). Unfortunately I couldn’t make my step there. I walked for 2.15 minutes to reach Khangsar till which trail was perfect. I took popular lower route but its more dangerous due to difficult traverse across steep and unstable graveled slopes. After one and half hour, suddenly I mistook my footing and twisted my left knee. After few minutes rest, I could still feel pain but thought was not so serious problem. But I didn’t dare go ahead along that scary trail, since I was alone. I didn’t want to ruin my whole trip due to my knee, thus, came back to Manang and had good rest.
Day 95 : Thorang La High Camp (4926m)
When I woke up, I had no pain but descending from staircase made me feel my knee. Thus,I thought walk more.You might think I was fool when I say I want to walk two camps with twisted knee. Actually I was trying to ease my descend from Thorang La next day.I knew after Thorang La,I would encounter steep sloppy descend. My point was if I could make it to High camp then I could take more time to descend slowly.When I told some tourist on the way that I was to reach High camp same day,they responded “You crazy.carrying such a big backpack…??…dont you feel altitude…???”But I made my way to the High Camp after 6.5 hours walk excluding my lunch time and rest duration.Stops before High Camp were Yak Kharka,Ledar and Thorang Phedi.
Day 96: High Camp-Thorang La (5416m)-Muktinath (3700m)
At altitude of 4926m,I didn’t feel cold but still didn`t have good sleep. Started walking around 5am and 2.5 hours of climbing made myself to top at Thorang La.I disliked weather condition as it was snowing and heavy wind blowing in opposite direction making me and other trekking fellows difficult to walk. At the top I could see prayer flags flattering and sign board-stating congratulation for successful attempt to Thorang La.Besides bad weather I could see people taking photograph for their lifetime memory. Sometime later weather got bit better so I didn’t miss to get history-making picture with prayer flags. Then slow descend to reach Muktinath then Ranipauwa(15minutes walk) where guest house were available.It took me 4 hours of walking and about one hour of rest in several places.
Day 97: Muktinath to Kagbeni
Muktinath to Kagbeni was short walk of 3 hours.In the morning I went to visit Muktinath Temple and religious shrine of Muktinath.This place is religiously important for both Hindus and Buddhists as it consisted temple and monasteries respectively.
Annapurna Circuit then drops down to Jomsom and finally to Pokhara but I was not ending my trip there as my next destination will be Upper Mustang/Lo-Manthang region.
Catch you soon till then wish you happy and safe travel.