“We sit together the mountain and me until only the mountain remains” – Li Po
Here we are at 13 thousand feet and we have just finished the fifth day of our trek. Surrounded by giants we can unload our backs and unload our hearts. We have no noise of the rushing cars and cares of the city up here in the cold clear air. All that we have here are is the sound of the river and the fog that is slowly wrapping its self around us. If we could see it the glow of the sun on the mountains slowly fades from its brilliant white through the warm colours to end in a purple magenta barely being sliced only by the highest rocks.
The mountains usually are the last thing in the valley to go to bed but tonight our camp is still ringing with the sound of clinking pots, ringing bells and ripping sound as people unzip their tents on their way to dinner. Such sounds have been our symphony accompanying us through the whole trek. It is a very nice distraction from the yelling and honking horns of India. Here we sit with ourselves and the mountains, maybe the occasional pack animal that decided the grass is better right in between our tents. Dinner with the mountains always tastes fantastic. Maybe because the food is just better, maybe it is the company, maybe it is the thin air. Most likely though it is that we are all hungry after a long day of hiking. When we finish eating the world is dark, all of the dzo and the horses have gone to bed. It becomes just us our light and the ever inspiring presence of the mountains reaching up to catch the stars. Laughing the stars just tumble and scatter out of the way of the massive peaks. Ever the same this game of tag is played all throughout the night without interruption. Our tents however look like the stars that have been caught. Glowing beacons in the otherwise dark night, lanterns guiding us to our beds.
Early in the morning these gentle giants bend down with glowing faces to greet us. White snowy peaks with grey stone beards the constant presence all around us. With frost on our boots we climb out of our warm cocoon to see the first rays of the sun light fire to the world.
The snow reflects the light and we bask in the rosy glow of the morning. Breath stolen away by their majesty we walk to breakfast rubbing sleep out of our eyes and the frost out of our bones. As we eat breakfast the day fully blooms right around us. The world warms and brings activity and energy to all around. We pack up our things and head off along the small stream towards the next night spent with the kindly keepers of the valley.