Today was the beginning of the second half of the trek and completely different to anything we have done so far. In fact, if it wasn't for the altitude, the route, which took us right along the edge of the huge Tso Moriri lake, was more like a coastal walk than one in the Himalayas. It was a lovely, particularly in the morning before the heat got up, and the views across the lake to Lungsher and Chamser were fantastic particularly as they changed as the sun moved round.
|Looking back to Korsok
The path follows is an ancient trade route and progress is marked by ancient mani walls - piles of stones intricately engraved with prayers in Tibetan script. Like the prayer wheels these mani walls have to be passed on the left. It was interesting to see how far people felt obliged to go out of their way to comply with this tradition and whether or not they were willing to tempt fate. Swen from Sweden was particularly keen to walk in a straight line so we may have to watch out for his wellbeing.
|A coastal path?
The water looked very inviting and as it got hotter increasingly tempting. It's not supposed to have any fish in it although a couple of Germans who had camped on the beach told us that their toes had been nibbled when they went in it. Early in the afternoon Christine, Dr Nick and Swen almost simultaneously leap into water only to climb out again seconds later. They all claimed in was wonderful but their speedy exit suggests otherwise.
|Across the Tso Moriri
We met a young couple, Russians I think, carrying enormous rucksacks. The woman looked miserable in the heat and the man was just a bit defensive when we offered sympathy. They set up camp alongside ours and, after a discussion have stuck a deal with the pony men to carry some of their load (they are going the same way as us). Apparently it involves 6 kilos of flour which suggests an excessive love of baking. Observing the Russian's behavior has already become a new topic of conversation in the mess tent.
|The Pony Train