Sunday, December 30, 2012

Nepal 2012 Chola Pass to Loboche

Chola Pass is just a pass - it's not a mountain and it's not a summit. 
But it was the toughest physical climb to date on this trek.

The distance is a long 12 miles (19 kms), and the vertical climb is 5098ft (1553 m) with a 52% slope. It's cold with slippery snow and ice, and the terrain is more rugged than we have experience before.

We start before daylight, knowing we have a long day ahead of us.

It takes us hours to climb out of the glacial morraine. As we scramble to gain elevation, the views open up wider and farther.

Snow made our ascent slippery, and wet when we fell.
For those of us who feel a strong connection with the Natural World, this place had a powerful connection.  Strangely, in a space half way around the world from our home, it felt like we belonged here.

When we arrived at the top of the Chola Pass, the views were spectacular.  We could see  Amadablam and Cholotse in the distance.  

Hogus took a break from riding, and sat to contemplate the view.

Climbing Team posed for a group picture, then headed across the ice.

Having reached the top, we thought the remainder of the day would be easy. 
But there is no easy in the mountains. 
For the last 3 hours we were exhausted, and it was a struggle to keep plodding forward, just one step at a time. The massive size of the mountains, combined with the relentless demand for power from our legs, made us feel small and humbled. But the ever-changing views of these majestic mountains motivated us to keep moving.

It took 11 hours to reach Loboche.  Even our guides, Ganesh and Sanjay, said they were 'just a little bit tired', meaning it had been a grueling day for all.

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  1. paul enjoy, an happy new year. May you new year be fall of all you want to achive xx debbie

  2. Great posts Paul. Enjoying the adventure from a distance. Will try to reach Nepal next summer, but not to this altitude on a mountain bike. (: