Wednesday, December 8, 2010

4/10/2010 Friday Day 15 Chhomrong to ABC (Annapurna Base Camp)

I had a good night’s sleep last night, and woke up to a beautiful day around 6:30ish. We got our stuff packed into our Henry Cactus packs and had our typical porridge and Tibetan bread whilst enjoying views down the Modi Khola valley.  We left by foot this time at 7:20 and set off with a blistering pace. We first had to descend 300m or so down to a bridge at the bottom of a tributary river. We passed numerous tourists battling away with awkward use of trekking poles.  I laughed to myself when I saw breast stroke style of trekking pole being pulled off.  Ollie and I thought we would place a bet to see when we would pass the annoying English group that stayed in our hotel. We thought we would pass them by at Bamboo, a reported 4 hours away, but we passed them 15 minutes into our hike, they supposedly had a half hour head start.

We climbed back up side of the valley and got into our rhythm. The track was mostly at a steady gradient but often would have steep climbs followed by steep descents to get around small streams or slips.  We got to Himalaya and ate some muesli bars and pressed on to Deurali at 3200m. 

Ollie bet me to Deurali good and proper. For lunch we had fried potatoes, lemon tea and a pizza to share. Wow what a pizza, this pizza had a generous coating of cheese, with tomatoes, absolutely delicious!  We continued upwards with the goal of getting to ABC. 

Around lunch time the orographic clouds began to fill the sky and soon we were in complete overcast. This had the benefit of keeping the temperature nice and cool which help us at our fierce pace. We got to MBC and then an hour and half later reached the clouded in ABC. 

We ended up having to share a double bed in the store room as this was the last room left at ABC. An hour after arriving the afternoon cloud dissipated and we were spoiled by 360 degree views of surrounding mountains.  I watched the spectacular sunset over Machhapuchhre and Annapurna South. Annapurna South was still covered in cloud which was refracting with a brilliant mix of red and orange.   

Back inside we got our dinner. I only managed a few momos so ended up sharing the rest with Ollie as I was still full from lunch and ABC celebratory chocolate that I had been carrying since Kathmandu.  Dinner was good and I’m looking forward to getting tomorrow finished off, hopefully we get back our bikes and drag them down to Jhinudanda and finish the day at the hot pools with a glass of coke.  

Chhomrong to ABC was a climb from 2170m to 4130m ~ 2000m over 20km,7:10 hours walking.

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