Fly to: Kathmandu, Nepal
Internal Transfer: 2 flights to Nepalgunj 1hr & Simikot 50mins
Visa required: Yes if British plus a remote access trek permit
Time Zone:+5hrs45mins GMT
Day 6, 15/06/10: Humla & Limi Valley
Up at 5am with some rather uncomfortable stomach cramps; after a visit to the hole in the ground all was not looking good. For some reason I woke up this morning feeling quite dehydrated so it was lucky for me that there was some grape flavoured hot tang knocking about.
Today was probably the first day that it truly felt as if we were on an ancient salt trading route. As we made our way to Kermi we passed numerous sheep caravans; where each sheep was loaded with its own saddle bag containing 12kg of salt.
The scenery here was glorious, an isolated piece of paradise. Here the waters were a vibrant shade of turquoise; as if worn by time the ancient trade route literally carved its way through the valley wall and beautiful waterfalls spouted from the skies above. Though only briefly touched upon this place felt heavenly.
From this serene enclosure, eden's garden, it wasn't long before we were scaling the valley sides once more. Small villages could be seen scattered sporadically at the top of the mighty gorge. Apparently those villages positioned high up on the hillside are populated by Buddhist communities as they believe to reside high is to position oneself within touching distance of nirvana.
As the day progressed the sweat poured, it was so hot and the little available shade made the walking difficult at times. As we reached a small cluster of houses a little girl ran outside, with joy in her face she called over to me (in Nepali), "white lady don't cry, look beautiful mountains". Quite an astute little girl because most of time I don't even associate with the word 'lady', so to hear it out here was actually very touching. I can't however claim the tears in this instance as they were purely the freeflowing tracks of sweat.
Desperate for some protection from the sun's piercing rays, I mustered up all my creative energies and transformed one of the silk scarves into a very decorative but equally functional turban. On the soles of my feet the friction had long started to burn & by the time camp was reached I was feeling delirious, weak and very dehydrated.
Once again there was little protection from the sun's intensity and what breeze there was merely passed by without contact. My stomach cramps returned and I was struggling somewhat with my eating, instead all my efforts focussed on quenching this insatiable thirst. Flies were rife here covering everything in sight including us and it wasn't long before I made my retreat into the comforts of my tent (which turned out to be even hotter but at least here I could stretch out my weary legs).