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Oct 31, 2014,

Arrived in ABC (Annapurna base camp). Ascended over 1000m above 3000m today and luckily have been feeling fine. Gotta thank the Spanish guys for encouraging me to do it. Had a beautiful sunset. Met them at MBC (Machhapuchhre base camp) Serious mountaineers, they left Himalaya village at 6:15am and got to ABC at 9:30am, spent some time there and already back to MBC by 11am. They definitely don’t have the fanciest gears. No camelbak just plastic bottle hooked to the side.

It’s cold here. I have most of my layers on. Rented 2 more layers in Deurali and I think I’ll make it. The warmth of tea/hot pouch only lasts 1/3 here (time-wise) compared to at Himalaya. Not sure why but been so sleepy even before noon.

I really liked talking with the 2 Spanish guys at MBC and here in ABC met another 2 Spanish (turned out they were the ones that refused to sleep together on the double bed that Emily and I snatched in the end yesterday).

Man it’s just past 6pm and my eyes already so heavy.

fall foliage, Himalaya, Deurali, walking to MBC, Machhapuchhre, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

reminds me of New England fall

waterfall, Himalaya, Deurali, walking to Machhapuchhre, MBC, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek,

waterfall, tall cliff, Deurali, walking to MBC, Machhapuchhre, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

The trail opens up after Deurali. This is my favorite part. Started seeing snow on the mountains right next to the trail I walked. And after MBC it is like tundra, with snow still on the ground. First time I’ve seen such scenery, like Alaska though I’ve never been there.

Deurali, valley, walking to MBC, Machhapuchhre, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

Deurali, valley, walking to MBC, Machhapuchhre, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

tundra-like, Machhapuchhre, MBC, walking to ABC, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

fog, snow-capped mountains, Machhapuchhre, MBC, walking to ABC, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

Left MBC at past 12:30pm after lunch. The fog kept rolling in and sometimes opened up to reveal the imposing insurmountable summit of Fishtail. So ngạo nghễ: Here I am and I challenge you mortal beings. I walked really slow and steady and focused on my breathing ’cause I was worried about getting altitude sickness. Saw people work to make the trail up here! Fog was quite heavy by the time I got to top, and from the sign couldn’t even see the guest houses. Got a room easily unlike the night before.

Machhapuchhre, MBC, walking to ABC, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

humor on the trail

kids making snow man, tundra-like, Machhapuchhre, MBC, walking to ABC, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

ice-man?

tundra-like, Machhapuchhre, MBC, walking to ABC, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

workers making trail, tundra-like, Machhapuchhre, MBC, walking to ABC, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

trail workers at 4000m

trail worker, Machhapuchhre, MBC, walking to ABC, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

tundra-like, foggy trail, Machhapuchhre, MBC, walking to ABC, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

Annapurna base camp, ABC trek, Annapurna sanctuary, welcome sign

4130m

Fog thickened, could only see about 10m from the dining hall’s window. White snow covered boulders, and black birds that look like crows.

And then suddenly around 5pm, pouf! all the fog gone. The sky was blue and I could see why the Spanish guys encouraged me to go up and spend the night. We’re in an amphitheater surrounded 360degrees by mountains, snow-capped summits. I cannot describe in words. And luckily not too crowded/noisy here, but too cold to stay outside to admire and contemplate. Halucinante! Have never seen these beauties so close up and personal before. The world is so beautiful and I’m in love! The sunset lit up Fishtail first in a yellow glow, and then an orange burn. I’m so happy to be here. Can’t wait to see the sunrise tomorrow, but of course first have to survive tonight.

sunset, Fish Tail, Machhapuchhre, base camp, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

Fish Tail (Machhapuchhre) from dining hall

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Oct 30, 2014,

I’m definitely losing steam. Could barely beat the recommended time.

Walked for almost 6hrs, most of it before lunch and after a small breakfast b/c they didn’t hard boil the eggs 😦 Gave it to the Australian guy, and his Indian wife was as disgusted as I was 🙂

Chomrong, walking to Sinuwa, trail along terraced fields, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

Chomrong, walking to Sinuwa, steep stairs, Gurung porters, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

Chomrong, Sinuwa, Bamboo, Gurung man, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

Sinuwa, Bamboo, walking to Dobhan, Dovan, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek, Gurung man

Sinuwa, Bamboo, Dobhan, walking to Dovan, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek, Gurung man

Stopped at Dovan for lunch and the clouds were forming. I rested an hour and decided to move forward though they have western style toilet there! Made it to Himalaya village right as the clouds descended. Only 2 small guesthouses and almost didn’t get a room. Was thinking might have to sleep in dining hall with porters and guides. Luckily in the end got to share a room with 2 Spanish guys (serious mountaineering people) and share the bed with a mixed Chinese-American girl (hapu born and raised in China speaking Chinese fluently).

view from Dovan, Dobhan, snow-capped mountain, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

Dovan, Dobhan, walking to Himalaya, wet trail, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

Dovan, Dobhan, walking to Himalaya, small stream in the fog, Annapurna Sanctuary, ABC trek

S texted earlier saying another typhoon coming! Things have been going pretty ok so far and I wonder what’s gonna happen now. Definitely need to find a coat to rent before climbing up tomorrow. This seems like a tiny village though so I really wonder. Everyone keeps asking my destination and I keep saying I’m gonna walk as far as I can, it all depends on the weather.

Yesterday didn’t have sound sleep at all. At times I even thought I wasn’t sleeping. So many dreams, thoughts, all jumbled coming in and out. I don’t remember what they were anymore but remember thinking at that point why I was even dreaming about those things.

For sure I’d have a much harder and slower time if I had all the warm clothes and snacks. But then again I shouldn’t go up higher if I can’t get a jacket tomorrow. No sleeping bag hasn’t bitten my ass yet, thankfully. Blankets and my thermal pouch (amazing!) has been enough and I even got too hot. But it’s gonna be much colder tomorrow. People would probably think I’m crazy for being this unprepared.

And I really admire these older people I see on the trail in their 50s carrying all their gear! Anyone older than that even walking this trail (w/o pack) is also amazing. Power to you!

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