Finally, we left Lhasa after the
third day of seeing so many temples and monestary's and monks. We headed to
Xigatse which is the second largest town in Tibet and it was the former home
of an important Lama - Altitude 3860m). The drive was all on paved roads - and
even though we criticize the Chinese, they have done an amazing job with the
roads, bridges and planting trees all the way. It makes you wonder what they
are getting out of Tibet.
The drive to Tingri was not
so great because of the major road works that are taking place. They are
building a highway all the way to Everest Base Camp. It took us over 12 hours
to drive 300km. It was incredible to see the way they were building the roads
all by hand. Very difficult at this altitude. Sadly, we had to say goodbye to
the South African team that were traveling with us. They stopped at Zegar (New
Tingri), to head off to climb Lakhpa Ri (7045m). We enjoyed their company, and
they were wonderful people that made us change our minds about South Africans!
They were nearly all in the medical field, so we had many interesting
conversations about the effects of altitude. Personally, I had entertaining
conversations with Mike, the vet. He warned me about my two dogs (a German
shepard and a staffy). He thinks in less than a year, they will eat each
other. I hope not before I get back - as I nearly cancelled the expedition
when I heard this news! Nevertheless, all conversations were equally
We arrived in Tingri after
dark. The altitude here is 4340m. It resembles a small town in the wild west
in the 19th Century. One Barber, a brothel, general store, blacksmith, and
horse carriages tied up down the street. Today we are resting and
acclimatizing. Jenny and Francoise went to have their hair washed, and Stewart
got his head shaved (with Gillette razor blade). Jan went out for a walk and
we haven't seen him since - we'll check the brothel later on :)
Russell and the Sherpas are
already at Base Camp, setting up for our arrival tomorrow.
Normally, you can see Everest
from Tingri, but it is now raining heavily (with a bit of hail), and we are
all inside resting. Jenny is helping me to type this email, as it would have
taken me 3 days in order to finish it!
Next news from Base Camp
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