A group of 21 trekkers led by All Hands representative Ashley Coral flew to Lukla today morning to begin their trek to Everest Base Camp, 5357m. Twelve days trek to the base camp of world’s tallest mountain is considered one of the adventurous treks across the world. The mission named All Hands on Everest has 12 Americans, five British & one each Canadian, Filipino, Vietnamese & a Bulgarian. Canadian Italian Actor Giacomo Gaanniotti also is the member of the group.
“All Hands Volunteers is US based non-profit organization empowered by volunteers who are expert in addressing the instant and long-term necessities of the communities suffering due to the natural calamities. They respond right away to such disaster hit regions, make attempts to recover what they have lost and renew these communities with innovative ideas to bring them back to normalcy.”
The trek that takes these young trekkers as high as Kalapattar, 5545m will be led by our veteran trek Guide Nima Tamang. Before their departure the group yesterday evening had a brief session that focused on safety measures trekkers should remember during the high altitude trek like Everest Base Camp Trek.
“Two foreign climbers lost their lives on Everest because of altitude sickness. Australian Climber Dr. Maria Strydom & Dutch Mountaineer Eric Arnold died on the way back to base camp after their successful summits of world’s highest mountain, Everest.”
After two consecutive devastating years that took lives of 16 Sherpas because of icefall avalanche in 2014 & killed 19 mountaineers at Everest Base Camp because of the avalanche triggered by 7.9 magnitude quake in 2015; 2016 seemed to be a very positive year. However, tragedy continues this year as well.
“Mt. Everest is always there but lives lost can’t be revived. We offer our sincere condolences to Dr. Maria Strydom & Eric Arnold; May their souls rest in peace. We would pray almighty to offer their families the courage to bear the enormous pain losing their loved ones.”
Eric Arnold was on Everest Expedition to raise the funds for Project MinE; the project that researches on incurable disease ALS, which is a rare neuro-muscular disease. Dr. Strydom with her husband was on the mission to summit 7 highest peaks of seven continents.
“We Nepalese never miss an opportunity to boast about Everest. However, for few families across the world Everest has not favored. Everest has nothing to do with it. It is there because it has to be there. There would not be mountaineers without mountains. Mountaineers take challenges to conquer this world’s highest mountain, which in adventure world is a massive achievement & while undertaking the mission it offers the highest degree of adrenaline rush.”
Dr. Maria Strydom & Eric Arnold
Photo Courtesy: Himalayan Times
We salute Maria Strydom & Eric Arnold for their courage & success in achieving the summit of Everest. We are also very grateful for their love towards Nepal & Himalayas of Nepal that brought them here with the passion to scale Everest.
“Entire Tourism fraternity of Nepal at the moment is celebrating the success of 330 successful summits but more than that we are mourning on your untimely demise. Once again may your souls rest in peace.”
Canadian traveler Alejandro Jose Terrones recently went for Lower Mustang Trek. He spent three days in Lower Mustang trekking around the Apple Orchard & the Windy City, Jomsom.
His experience during the trek that took him to Kagbeni, the gateway to Upper Mustang & Muktinath, the revered shrine for multiple religions was wonderful. He shared few beautiful lines after the completion of his memorable journey in the foothills of Annapurna & Dhalagiri.
“Though the car trip to Jomsom from Pokhara was much longer than expected, the entire trip was wonderful. The most beautiful moments of the trip was trekking to Muktinath.
The services of Explore Himalaya were very much appreciable. The staffs & the guides were excellent. Hotels they used were in very good locations. I would highly recommend Explore Himalaya Travel & Adventure for a trip to Nepal. I would recommend Mustang Trek and would suggest fellow travelers to go for more than three days trek to Mustang.”
“Everest Skydive Expedition Spring 2016 undertook during the month of May. The dropzone of Everest Skydive 2016 was Syangboche Airport. Including legendary skydiver Omar Allehgan, Emmy Award Winner for Aerial Photography Wendy Smith the crew of ESD 2016 Autumn had Thomas Noonan, Paul Henry de Baere, Ian Edward Atkins, Pablo Parazoli and Jean Phi Audhuy. Bibek Pandey & Dik Bahadur as usual were the Nepalese support team of the event. Fred Wiilliams, Brain Karuse & Fara Barnes as observers, ESD 2016 had three clients- Michael Tucker, Kim Marsh & Berigette Marsh.”
Photo Credits to Paul Henry de Baere
First Flight Load – 07:44- 08:05 AM
2 solo jumps by Omar Allehgan & Paul Henri,
1 tandem jump by Pablo Parazoli with Jean Phi Audhuy
Second Flight Load 09:00- 09:15 AM
1 tandem jump by Thomas Noonan with Kim Marsh,
1 solo jump by Paul Henry
Third Flight Load 09:25- 09:40 AM
1 tandem jump by Pablo Parazoli with Berigette Marsh
1 solo jump by Wendy Smith
Recce Flight Load 10:24 AM
Fred Williams and Brian Karuse took off on a flight for Baruntse Recce
Fourth Flight Load 16:57- 17:12 PM
1 tandem jump by Pablo Parazoli with Michael Tucker,
2 solo jumps by Paul Henri and Jean Phi Audhuy
Fifth Flight Load 17:25- 17:41 PM
1 Tandem jump by Thomas Noonan with Fara Barnes,
1 solo jump by Wendy Smith
“For trekkers craving to see unique ancient celebration like Tiji & contrasting landscapes in the restricted territory of highland Nepal Upper Mustang would be an ideal destination. The fabled walled city & the ancient kingdom of “Lo”, Upper Mustang has so many special features, which stands out the region from rest of other trekking destinations of Nepal. Arid & windswept wide valleys with colorful small hills having wonderful myths of Buddhism, Upper Mustang probably is the only region in Nepal that practiced sky burials in the past.”
Tiji Festival also known as “Tenchi”. Locals consider this festival more as a prayer for world peace. The festival doesn’t have a fix date. Every year the date is fixed for the three days festival after the new Tibetan calendar is released. Celebration that prays for the world peace itself signifies Tiji importance.
The three days festival in process of establishing the world peace takes place inside the Wall City of Lo-Manthang. Several dances including mask dances are performed by the monks during the festival. Locals from six different villages of Lo- Manthang gather in the venue where they are accompanied by hundreds of foreigners who come to observe the festival. In recent years the popularity of this celebration has taken heights. This year the festival was held from 3rd to 5th May, where more than 1000 tourists from different countries made their way to Lo-Manthang to participate in the occasion.
On the first day, a large Thanka Painting of Guru Rinpoche is displayed against the wall where the stage is set. The Thanka is said to be displayed to public only on this day of the year. People bow to the painting of Guru Rinpoche which they describe would eliminate illness and diseases establishing good health to them and their family throughout the following year. A huge prayer is done inside the monastery earlier in the morning which denotes the starting of Tiji Festival, which is also an annual occasion.
Later, the monks arrive to the stage and take their places respectively. These monks play the music through various instrument assigned to them throughout the festival. Monks would also perform their dances inside the fix territory made of three circles in the venue. The head dancer performs from the inner circle while the supporting dancers perform on the outer circles.
The head dancer has to go through a huge cave meditation for 3 months to be ready for the festival. It takes him a total of 3 months for the preparation of this dance. Day 1 of Tiji highlights monk dances.
On the second day, another large Thanka is displayed in front of the venue which is also displayed only once a year. This day, the monks perform various dances including mask dances. A lot of mask dance take places on this day as well. Later, in the afternoon, the king of Lo-manthang also attends the festival. The locals honor the king by playing musical instrument. Unfortunately, due to sickness, the king could not make his presence this year.
On the final day of Tiji, the monks continue their mask dances. This is the main day of Tiji. It is the day to establish world peace. So through their dance performances, the head monk takes the process to the end. As one of local monks described, it is the process of killing the evil spirit that you own in yourself. You have to kill the negative factors inside you to establish peace. So the process sees the killing of the demon inside you.
In the occasion of the termination of the evil spirit, the locals fire gunshots which are obviously just for the purpose of celebration. The festival comes to an end, as the head dancer lead the evil out of the Wall City.