Namaste to Kathmandu!
Last August my sister and I tried to discover Dolpo for the second time. Three years before we started our first try also with our good friend and guide Biri but with another agency. We were not successful because the monsoon rain was too hard and destroyed the trails and our dreams to reach Dolpo from Jomsom.
Traveling in Nepal in the rainy season is always a risk, but we had no other possibility. This time we organized the trekking with the “Himalayan Glacier Trekking” but again with our old friend and guide Biri. All was well organized, and we had a very nice and careful crew.
With full of energy and optimism, we were flying to the extremely hot Nepalganj. We were lucky to reach Jumla with a small airplane at the second try. Normally a Dolpo trekking starts from Juphal but the airport of Juphal was under construction, and therefore we started from Jumla. This means some days were walking more before we could reach the Phoksundo National Park.
We were in a good mood and good condition for the difficult trekking. Some little problems like flea bites – every morning we were collecting the new ones – sometimes heavy rain and little pains here and there, we holder out without problems.
Our way guided us through a long and difficult canyon before we reached Rigmo village on the wonderful Phoksundo lake. It was an incredible view, the big blue lake in the middle of the steep mountains. The trail on the lake is very beautiful but also a little bit dangerous. It is better to make no wrong step because otherwise, you will find yourself many meters down in the lake. But nothing happened, and we enjoyed the beautiful day. In the next two days, we had to overcome a long canyon and the high pass with a meter to reach our destination, the Shey Gompa. We were so happy when we reached the Gompa, and we were sure that we could also do the rest of the long way to Jomson.
But then all our dreams and plans were destroyed. Never we could imagine that we cannot continue our way because of robbers who made the countryside dangerous. The lama of the Shey Gompa warned us to follow the trail to Saldang because a group of masked men attacks all travelers, local people and tourists as well.
With a sad heart, we decided to return the same long way back, but I think it was the right decision. We reached Dunai and had to solve the next problem. How to come back to Nepalgunj? The trails down through the mountains were very dangerous because of the monsoon, and we were happy to get the possibility to fly back to Nepalgunj with a helicopter. Two men of our crew and two porters were running down by foot with a part of our equipment, and we were flying with the helicopter. Biri was coming with us.
It was a very interesting and exciting flight with an incredible view of the mountains.
Finally, we reached Kathmandu. Happy that we were back in good condition but also sad that we could not see more from Dolpo. Therefore Dolpo is still a dream for us, and maybe we can try the adventure again in a few years. This trekking was really an adventure and a journey in an unknown and hidden part of Nepal.
Gudrun and Birgit!