Day 16 – Day 21: Tatopani to Nayapul
We reached Tatopani by bus from Jomsom. This might have been the riskiest road I have travelled on, being beset by landslides and also being so narrow that the buses have to blast out warnings to oncoming traffic to permit a mutual passing place through consensual pauses. Its state is only as good as the temporary repairs made after the last monsoon. Perhaps there is a plan to make it more stable and secure.
We were hiking up from Tatopani in the Kali Gandaki valley, when we became aware of the lesser visited trail towards the Khopra Ridge. We accepted the intriguing possibility of exploring it. The lower reaches are through thick forest. These beautiful pausing places where trekkers and porters can rest had been lovingly constructed in perfect harmony with the silvan environment.
The ageless stone paths give reassurance. We are in a landscape of memory. Surely we came here before in our reading of some classic fairy tales?
The following day we break out on to the ridge, with the huge gulf of the Kali Gandaki valley on one side, and Annapurna South now perceptibly closer. The Khopra Community Lodge has occupied an obvious position.
A trail leads further up the ridge, though we are not taking it this time.
The following day we are walking through pine and rhododendron forest.
The dawn walk to Muldhai point above the Dobato lodges the next day is mostly clear …
… for a while.
We made a long walk out that day, from Dobato Lodge to Ghandruk, and then to Nayapul the following day. Farewell for now, to the varied landscapes and cultures around Annapurna.