flew to Luckla to enter the Sherpa region.
Phakding, March 29, 2006
The members of the Andalucía Everest Expedition started the
journey in the disorganized airport of domestic flights in Katmandu, where
they boarded a Twin Otter DHC-6 plane of Yeti Airlines towards the Himalayas,
with capacity for two pilots, fifteen passengers and a flight attendant. In a
40 minutes flight they have been able to see some of the emblematic peaks of
Nepal on one side and woody mounts and paths with scattered houses on the
With eight backpacks and other three packages of
audiovisual material that have required an overweight fee, the expedition has
flown East of Katmandu to Luckla, a town located at 2,845m of altitude with an
airport located between the mountains, with a nerve wrecking landing strip of
only 500 meters uphill. The complex is surrounded by an exaggerated military
presence. In this town they saw the first yaks and the majestic tones of
white, gray and ocher of the greatest mountain system of the planet. The
greens in the vegetation and the purple and yellow flowers add the rest.
There are some parts of the route with a worn pavement,
granite houses chiseled by hand with wooden window frames and tin roofs
painted in blue surrounded by little orchards in the available spaces of the
hills. Craved or painted stones with Nepalese characters and drawings, and
religious Buddhist flags are especially interesting along the path. There are
also abundant shops, bars and tourist lodges in the zone.
entered the Sherpa region - the natural park of Sagarmantha - with some
porters, going through stony paths that slither along the Dudh-kosi river
valley. There are cascades, moraines, peculiar drawings on the stones of this
paradise for geologists, hanging bridges. In summary, a trek of some four
hours until they got to a lodge in Phakding.
leave to Namche Bazaar (3,450m) at daybreak, in the heart of the Sherpa
territory. On the way they will be greeted by rhododendrons, huge firs and
ups and downs. A breathtaking landscape that will repeat for the next seven
days when they get to Island Peak's base camp.
the chief of the Sherpas in our trekking. He is 30 years old, two children -
the mean in this ethnic. He has been to the summit of Island Peak. He is a
professional on mountain matters from March to October. Kancha looks like the
one in charge of the four porters that are helping us. The younger one is
Nima, 26, and today he has worked with enthusiasm helping cameraman Dani Bueno
on his complex task over here, with the worst yet to come. The Sherpas are
kind, ready for service and with nice manners. They carry the loads in
baskets that support with they front. They dress half traditionally, half
western. They are very happy with their work and they have learned to live of
the attractiveness of their especial geographic situation. They have opened
shops and businesses like lodges and diners. Men and women carry beer, drive
yaks, work the soil and take care of their little ones with captivating eyes.
There is a lot to learn from them in the next days.
from Spanish by Jorge Rivera
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