AnneMarie and Andrew

Annemarie and Andrew – Trekking Asia

Pokhara: Peace Pagoda

Posted on Apr 9, 2014

It’s been 9 days since we arrived back in Pokhara after trekking to Poon Hill and Base Camp, almost the same length of time as the trek, and we haven’t done any walking. In fact, we haven’t done anything noteworthy at all. So we decided it’s about time we stretched our legs. Especially as we start the longest and possibly the most difficult trek in a few days time. Overlooking Pokhara is the World Peace Pagoda. It sits on top of a hill which can be reached by walking around the bottom corner of Phewa Lake or by rowing across. We decided to take a rowing boat one way, climb the steps to the stupa, then walk down through the forest and back into Pokhara. This was also the first clear view we’d had of the mountains in about 3 or 4 days. The haze has gradually got worse as the temperature has climbed, but often big, white, fluffy clouds just sit on the mountains anyway. Pokhara had experienced a torrential downpour the afternoon before, 30 minutes I’d extreme rain and a massive thunderstorm. Overnight another two huge thunderstorms had rumbled through, along with a lot more rain. All that rain had emptied the clouds and reduced the humidity and removed the haze which had blocked our view for so long. As we left the hotel the air temperature was about 26° but because of the intensity of the sun it had a real feel of 33°. Hot! Getting the boat one way means we had a ‘rower woman’ to row us there and bring the boat back. This would have been great if she hadn’t nagged us quite a few times for a ‘dollar tip’. I kindly informed her that we’re British and don’t use dollars. We’d already paid 400NPR ($4/£2.40) for the boat so either she wasn’t getting a fair cut of the money, which isn’t my problem (I think that giving tips to low paid workers just exacerbates the problem and condones poor wages and treatment, anywhere in the world!), or she was getting a fair cut and just wanted more of my money. Either way, she understood what we really meant… which is more than Annemarie who was sat at the far end of the boat taking photos and didn’t understand what the woman was saying. From the shore to the stupa is about 1,000ft (330m) and is almost all steps. We’ve done this trip before, the day before we trekked to base camp, but it was about 10° cooler then. This time the heat made it a horrible experience. We were panting, dripping and...

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