In the afternoon of the fourth day of our trek we saw lots of yaks and a nomad family.
But first we had to get out of our tents. It was cold on our lake campsite. And due to the surrounding mountains there was no hope for any sun to rise and warm us up.
We had breakfast in our green dining and socialising tent on the right.
This purple container was set up under the parasol at each of our campsites. It contained warm water for us to wash with. It was just a thin trickle that came out and I tried to use it very sparingly… but it was such a wonderful luxury in this cold weather!
Once we got going and were out of the shade, the weather improved.
But unfortunately, towards lunch time, clouds started to form.
Our guides pointed out some yaks coming down the mountains. Yaks like it cold, so during the warmer months they live higher up in the mountains. But it seemed that now it was just cold enough for them to move further down.
We could spot them in the distance. I got excited because I had really wanted to see a yak. Well, what I actually wanted to do was hold a razor in my hand and pose with one. But apparently they’re a bit dangerous and we were told not to get too close. So that didn’t happen. Oh, and I didn’t have a razor with me either. Unprepared!
Anyway, it turned out, that we crossed paths with the yaks.
They were all around us suddenly. They were nicely decorated with these tassels on their horns.
And then we saw this little hut. A nomad family lived in it. They seemed to be the owners of the yaks.
Ganga, our guide, asked them if we could have a look inside. And they were happy for us to go ahead.
They had a fire inside and it was super smokey. One of them was churning yak butter which they would sell. We were told that yak products are expensive and the source of income for this nomad family.
Finally we arrived at our last and highest campsite.
After this gloomy afternoon and another extremely cold night, we were happy to see the sun again on the last day of our trek. I certainly felt my energy return – although I don’t think it was purely because of the sun. The prospect of returning to a warm hotel bed and having a hot shower later today was helping a lot with my energy levels.
Here I am at the highest point of our hike. 4210 meters. And I think I was even wearing fairly clean clothes in this photo!
Michelle’s energy levels were also soaring on that morning!
Here’s our group at the highest elevation of the Druk Path.
Of course we put up more prayer flags. As an avid reader of this blog you will have learnt in a previous post that it’s crucial to put these flags at high points, so the wind can carry the prayers across the valley.
And then all we had to do was walk down and down and down and down. Timphu, our next destination is at 2,320m. I don’t think we walked quite that far down but it was definitely a lot of downhill walking for a lot of hours.
For lunch we stopped at Phajoding Monastery which is at 3960 meters.
Lunch was provided one last time by our wonderful chef. Except that we sat on the benches of the monastery instead of at our luxury dining table.
We went inside and looked around. No photos were allowed inside.
And then we carried on walking down for what felt like a long time.
And there it was! Our dining table was set up by the parking lot at the trail head. Some wonderful Bhutanese tourism staff had prepared food and drinks for us. The cake says: “Congrats for successful trek”. How sweet!
And then finally we got back on the minibus and drove to our hotel in Timphu.