Trek to: Hilsa & cross the Nepalese border into Tibet
Internal Transfer: Landcruiser to Purang (aka Taklakot)
Visa required: Yes if British plus an Aliens' Travel Permit
Currency:Chinese Renminbi (RMB)
Time Zone:+8hrs GMT
Day 6, 26/06/10 - Mt Kailash, Tibet
It was a long trudge up to the Drolma La pass (5,630m) this morning, the weather stayed overcast with a few snow showers. It was an emotionally charged day, seeing how many pilgrims were out here. At times I looked on with disbelief as people incapable of physical exertion somehow discovered, through their faith an inner will and determination to succeed.
The pass was covered in hundreds upon hundreds of multi-coloured prayer flags, the rocks dressed with different items of clothing. Apparently to sacrifice ones clothing means that those clothes will be available to the person during the transition period after they expire (die). The atmospheric energy generated during our time at the Drolma La (approx 5,630m pass) was in itself a paradox, a sensual mix of intensity, caused by the physicality and serenity resulting from euphoric states of consciousness.
After crossing the pass and descending past Thukpe Dzingbu (Lake of Compassion) an intense emotion enveloped me. From behind my sunglasses ran a thousand tears, as I watched small Tibetan children (5/6yrs old) gently guide, support and nurture elderly members of the Hindi, Buddhist & Bon communities over high altitudes and challenging terrain.
At times I found it difficult to restrain myself as infirm pilgrims took out their frustrations on the Tibetans guiding them, the atmosphere here was intense. My emotions ran from anger to a peaceful & complete sense of acceptance; I was amazed at the humility and patience shown by these people - for me it is they who are the true inspiration out here.
Our camp this evening is at 4,700m by a lovely wide river and what makes this pitch so very special is that no-one else is here, our yaks are cooling off in the icy waters and tonight we will experience the Tibetan full moon, bliss.