Friday, November 14, 2014

Bandhar to Goli Gompa

We woke up in Bandhar valley and ate a good breakfast. After making sure everything was set up for Didier's helicopter evacuation we decended further into the valley. A great downhill awaited us along this trail. Riding on the cliff edge we rode very fun jeep tracks down the mountain. Marcus showed off his aweinspiering bike skills by clearing some rather extreme trails that one would think only a mountain goat would attempt. At the bottom of the valley we reached a river. We rode along the river before we began our 1500 meter acent. The incline was about 15% and was really challenging. At some parts the monsoon had destroyed the road and we were forced to climb straight up between the switchbacks with the bike on our backs. On the way we stopped at a small house for some noodle soup and some snickers. A good and needed energy boost before we continued our climb. At this height we began to feel the effects of the altitude I started to climb fast as I could to reach the top. This was a big mistake, not yet accustomed to the height I did run the risk of getting altitude sickness. Tangi, our guide, caught up with me and reminded me that this was not wise. I took his words to heart and put my ego and sense of competition away. We were a team, and who ever made it to the top first did not matter as long as we all made it.

After even more and more and more climbing we finally arrived at Goli Gompa. We were to stay at a small famely house and they greated us with open arms. They prepared to slaughter a chicken to celebrate our visit. We shared beer, food and good stories that night as we made a big camp fire on the patio of their house. At this altitude, 3000 meters pluss, getting anything even water is a big challenge. Everything has to be carried up.

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