Saturday, November 14, 2009

activity week - kuari pass - 2

I am trying to post more pictures from my hike. The fact is, I took some 800 pictures and I am rather fond of fifty or more. The setting was very generously picturesque, which helped. The above picture was taken at our first view of Kuari Pass, which is the low spot in the top right corner of the picture, on the second ridge, directly above the tree in the foreground. This was a couple of days in to the hike.
Below is a picture of the trail right at the beginning of the hike. Our jeeps dropped us off the first night just across the river from the small village that is visible in this picture. The trail we walked is part of an ancient trade route linking Tibet and India. Much of the path (Darab figured it to be 58 kilometers that we walked) was constructed as shown in the picture, with shale or schist slabs stacked on edge to give a rough but very durable trail. It was not always easy to walk on, but I suppose that in the monsoon rains it would nicely help to meet one's need of not falling off the mountain.

We saw a great deal of this rock, schist, a metamorphic of shimmering appearance. In some places, the path was covered with a fine sparkling dust looked wet in the sunlight. Often there were heaps of it shining beautifully and crushing together like some forgotten treasure.

This is a picture of tufts of grass where people cannot be bothered to gather them. In India, it is no easy task to venture beyond the territory of the ubiquitous fodder cutters. Just when you feel like a rugged adventurer, you see some ancient lady carrying a ten-foot tall pile of grass on her back.
This is the pass from right below. We still had a few zigs and zags, but we could see victory in the blue of the sky. Of course, we still had a great deal of climbing to do after passing the pass, which inspired one student to note that reaching the pass was somewhat anticlimactic. I told him that was the whole point of a pass.


  1. incredible. Thanks Nate. We'll have to have an "India- the scenic view" evening when you guys get home next summer. :) mamma/Karin