December 30, 2010
Trip to Mansarovar and Mt Kailash was on our mind for last several years. This year, all stars were in line and we were able to make this trip with a great success. We were lucky that we had very good company of fellow Yatris for this trip. We were also lucky regarding selection of Himalayan Glacier Trekking Company. They did a fabulous job managing our trip and Lina Patel did a great job organizing our group.
Our trip began in Kathmandu. Kathmandu valley has three major cities. Kathmandu Bhaktapur and Patan. They all have very beautiful temples and durbar square. Great Stupa at Budhnath is worth mentioning. We had a chance to do Puja at holy temple of Pashupatinath .
It took us about 5 days to reach Mansarovar. This was a very difficult journey due to poor road condition and numerous land slides. Walking over landslides, some of them active land slide and traveling in trucks between land slides was in itself experience of a life time. We think Mansarovar is really out of this world. It is difficult to describe the beauty. It is surrounded by snow covered peaks. You can see Mt Kailash clearly from here. We had very quick bath (dubki) in freezing water of Mansarovar. Staying in tents at the edge of water had its own charm.
Next we started Mt Kailash Parikrama..In Buddhist religion also this is considered very important. They call it Cora. We were lucky enough to be able to walk about 32 miles in 3 days. Second day of Parikrama is the most difficult part. We started about 6AM and reached Dolma La Pass at 19500 ft around noon. We think being so close to Mt Kailash is worth all the hardships of this journey. Immediately after Dolma La Pass beautiful Gauri Kund is visible. Sheer ruggedness of this area is amazing. Going down from Dolma La Pass we walked through falling snow initially and rain later. We were very happy to see our SUVs at the end of our 3 days grueling journey.
This has been an experience of a lifetime. We were lucky that we were able to complete this journey. We met another group of Yatris on our way, who had to turn back from middle of Parikrama due to poor weather condition. For us this was a Pilgrimage and a trekking adventure, which we are very glad that we undertook.
Rakshika and Kashyap Thakor
Santa Rosa, California
October 4, 2010
Parents: Arvind and Sangita Patel
At age 26, Nisha recently completed her journey to holy Mount Kailash, and Lake Mansarovar. She shares her story with Leuvas across the country…Congratulations to Nisha!
12 days, 19,500 Feet, and 32 miles later…
I decided to embark on the Mount Kailash/Lake Mansarovar Yatra in May of 2010 after graduating from law school. I envisioned it being a great release after sitting for the Illinois Bar Exam at the end of July. Yatra means a Hindu pilgrimage to a Holy place associated with Hindu epics such as the Mahabharata and Ramayana. According to Hinduism, Lord Shiva and his wife Parvati reside at the summit of Mt. Kailash. Lake Mansarovar, sitting at almost 15,000 feet above sea level as the highest fresh water lake is a symbol of purity. In the Hindu religion, it is believed that one who drinks from the Lake will go to the bode of Lord Shiva after death and one who baths in the Lake will be cleansed of all his sins committed over a hundred life times. The following is a brief account of my three-day trek around Mt. Kailash.