October 5, 2014 - Rest Day in Manang

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5 - October, 2014 - Rest Day in Manang

Today is about acclimatization.  Everyone spends an extra day in Manang and tries to get up high during a short morning hike before an afternoon siesta.  They take their altitude seriously here, even having afternoon briefings on AMS, HACE, HAPE and so on.  Without really thinking, I figured I should order the "American Breakfast" - two eggs, toast, ham(spam), potatoes and muesli.  Soldiered through it all but the spam and spuds (funnily enough little bits of spam ended up in my lunch – hmmm). Chhongnuri and I hiked up to the Chongkor Gompa overlooking the town but I wanted to get to at least 4000 meters, the altitude of our next town.   So I bid my guide adieu and followed yak tracks up to an abandoned yak herder's corral and buildings.  There was a chorten still higher that I reached with some effort and decided to make it my highpoint.  Stellar weather let me have a good view all the way to Manaslu.  Annapurna 3 towered above me with a huge icefall between it and Gangapurna to the west.  It was just me, the flapping prayer flags and faint roar of the river far below as I drifted off.  After some time a huge shadow passed by which turned out to be an eagle wheeling on the rising wind.  I took it as a sign to depart and raced the afternoon clouds back to the valley bottom.  As I write this, I'm having a nice mint tea alone in the toasty warm hotel restaurant watching/hearing the thunderstorms pour over the range.  The tea is helping to counter the repercussions of the rather large chocolate croissant I just ate;  it's the first town that is teaming with bakeries which are hard to resist when suffering from dal bhat-itus.  I may even be lured into a yak burger this evening being the restaurant's signature dish.

manang Village