Today was to start with an “optional “ walk up Gokyo Ri (5360m) – but with the promise of good views of Everest and better views of the Gokyo lakes the option of omitting it did not warrant a second thought!
A wake up call at 5am and I had had a great nights sleep with only 1 diamox trip to the toilet! Breakfast was a super-sized bowl of porridge and jam followed by toast and washed down with “black tea”.
Leaving at 6.15 it took about 2 hrs 30 mins to the peak – an ascent of 600m, with great views of the lake, the sunrise on the peaks to the north and west as well as close up views of snow Cocks (an overgrown partridge), as well as yaks rising from their slumbers.
A very tough walk to the top from where we had good views of Everest and Nuptse and for me a harder walk down because of my knees.
We arrived back at the hostel exhausted but exhilarated and filled our bellies with carbs ready for the afternoon trek across the glacier to Dragnag at the base of the Cho La Pass!
Our bags came a different way and I can’t blame them as parts of the glacier were interesting going! It is covered in a mix of scree and a very fine powder like grey talc which puffs up with each step. The glacier is in retreat and as such hardly moves, our walk across it took about an hour and a half cross what was in effect piles of scree and talc with a few pools of glacial water and odd sections of ice that had been exposed.
Very happy to arrive in Dragnag where an early night is in order as we have a 4.30 wake up tomorrow morning for the Cho La Pass. Yaks cannot make the crossing and as such we are spilling our bags into what essential items we need for the next 48 hours and what can greet us closer to EBC.
Good food, a quick wash and time for bed!