Saturday, February 19, 2011

Village of Pidmo

I repeat myself but last night was really very cold. When I got up at 6.30AM, it was snowing lightly outside. Arun asked me “Shilpa where did you take away the blue sky?”. Manish had told us earlier that snowfall is not good for Chadar, because when it snows the temperature is not very low and Chadar might be broken.

For a change from Porridge we had “Puri and chana” for breakfast. I was beginning to get sick of porridge by now and was really happy to know that most of my fellow trekkers shared the same feeling. We started earlier than usual today at 9.15 am.

I realized later that Snigdha had a major fall on the ice right in the beginning. After we started, we had to climb the rocks again. The porters took us on a wrong path and it was very risky and difficult to get down on Chadar. Satya and Mohan some how managed to come down with help of porters and when I tried the porters pulled me from all the directions and I lost my step but finally I managed to get down. Later on Lobsang ji suggested some simpler way and everybody got down from there relatively safely.

We were all happy that we were able to get down without much issue. As we progressed ahead on the Chadar, I heard somebody was calling my name and realized it was Mohan. He asked to me remove my overboots and give them to Snigdha as she was struggling with the very slippery ice today. In the sub zero temp, it was an effort for me remove the shoes. Later on, we came to know that she didn't need my shoes, she just wanted help with the ointment or spray on on her lower back which was hurting terribly because of the falls.

The next part of the Chadar was good. We just sailed through. The beauty around could not be explained in the words. I saw so many Rabbit Ear ( like Auden's Col ) formations around in the mountains. However on some sections we found the Chadar was about to break so Lobsang ji made us to hurry to cross.

I had started feeling hungry because it was already 1 pm and there was no sign of the lunch point. Finally I could see some porters had stopped and realized that it was lunch time. This place was called as Hanumil. The village of Hanumil was a little above the banks of the river, but was mostly deserted. It was a grassy meadow on the banks of the river, and there was fresh snow all over. It looked simply majestic and beautiful all around. After lunch, the later part of the walk was not on Chadar rather it was on the well marked trail. We climbed on towards the trail and saw that the fresh snow had covered most part of the trail. I asked Lobsang ji about how many days old this snow might be had been and he said might be about a week old. We were walking on a well marked trail with the majestic snow covered Zanskar ranges around us.

We took a break of about ten minutes near the Mani wall ( Prayer wall ) just outside the village. From this point the village of Pidmo was very clearly visible. There was one more route directly going towards Nerak through mountains. After walking for about an hour we reached the village of Pidmo. The village was in a small valley surrounded by magnificent snow clad mountains. Some kids playing outside and after lot of cajoling they allowed us to click their snaps.

We had planned to stay in one of the village houses and it was nice to see a bukhari again. After a while Subbu went to play football with the kids and came back bruised (not physically but mentally) as he had lost badly to the kids. In the evening, the entire gang gathered near the bukhari and had hot dinner. It was very comfortable inside the room. The chatty group that we were, we had a lot of stories to tell and jokes to crack.

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