the sky had
been clear at least intermittently at night, when morning came there
was a few
inches of snow on the ground, on our tents, on everything.
was announced that we would not move
upward, but would stay another day at Deboche. So
far, we had been on track, more or less, to follow our
of hiking to Kala Patthar and then crossing Cho La pass into the next valley.
The snow changed all
It meant that the pass
closed, if not to us, then to the yaks that we depended on. We
could still go to Kala Patthar, weather
permitting, but not over any of the high passes.
|Morning in Deboche
the snow did
not mean we could not leave camp. Up
ahead was another famous monastery: Pangboche. Where
Tengboche is the largest, Pangboche is the oldest
monastery in the
We traveled as a group,
none of us had been much beyond Deboche. I
hurried along, trying to keep warm. The
snow was thick on all the branches, and as the tallest I
more than my share of snow down the back of my jacket. I
was using my hiking sticks for the first
time this trip, and they came in handy for knocking snow off the trees
Before long we arrived
Or at least we were at
lower end of it.
The monastery is at the
far upper end, several hundred feet higher.
The monastery was set up similar to the others: an outer courtyard and a inner sanctuary beyond. We all took off our shoes and entered. It was smaller and simpler than Tengboche. There was a large collection of sacred texts, and a much more modest set of statues. As before there were rows of benches with robes, drums and horns ready in the back, and food offerings set out.
performing some ritual in the courtyard, which involved burning some
It made a wonderful
I had to get away from the thick smoke.
|Monks in Courtyard|
instead of going out again into the damp, I went up to the dining room
our camp, basked in the feeble warmth of the stove, and wrote in my
I was happy to get an
additional rest day: I was in no hurry to go higher.
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