Thursday, January 3, 2013

Day 3 Annapurna Circuit

Syange to Tal via Chyamche

We departed Syanje around 9:00 am with a leisurely start and a nice stroll to Jagat.  We met our first fellow tramper today, a young man from Europe who, like us and contrary to Nepalese advice, was also without a guide.  We stopped and had coffee together.

dbBrad in front of a mountain in Nepal rising 4000 meters above me (2.5 miles straight up)
From Jagat we hiked on towards Chamje but got separated along the way from our new hiking friend.  Our pace was just a bit slow for him.  I felt bad loosing him because he was so excited when he found us, to enjoy some English speaking company.

An amazing waterfall with water cascading down over 1000 meters.  Reminded me of some of the spectacular waterfalls I saw in Doubtful Sound while tramping the TeAraroa trail across New Zealand.
In Chamje we had a leisurely lunch.  Of coarse by now we were realizing that things in Nepal are always leisurely   There is no quick lunch as all the meals are cooked on wood fires at the same pace they've been cooking for centuries.  Although the food is fresh, hot and often quite good, it is anything but fast.

Yessi models her GreenGiant backpack and pants.
Somehow, here again, we ended up on the wrong side of the river, probably due to another massive bridge construction project.  We found ourselves high above the town of Tal which was down by the river on the other side and without a bridge.

So we backtracked a bit and descended a steep side trail to arrive at a vehicle bridge which took us to a Nepalese military camp about 1/2 hour walk down the valley to our destination.  It was getting late but the setting sun and evening light made for a nice stroll into town where we found lots of tea houses for hikers, most of them closed for the season.

Our town of Tal, far below us and on the wrong side of the river.
We picked a tea house using a process similar to selecting a book in an airport -- by the cover!  It's hard to know the difference between the inns and the menus, which we were finally figuring out were pretty much all the same.  It comes down to the woman in the kitchen, the children, HF (Hustle Factor of proprietor) and things like overall size, potential views from rooms and light.

An amazing road cut into the side of the mountain.  Death is eminent for anyhow who steps off the trail at any point.  I can't help hugging the edge and contemplating the hang-time possible from such an act!
Our tea house decision wasn't the best, though we did have a toilet and hot water for showers, but the food took a very long time to arrive and was awful in so much as you can ruin fried rice grown less than 1km away.  But the views were terrific and we had a great time in each others company.

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