Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019

Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019
On the Archduke's Path in Mallorca

Tuesday 7 June 2022

November 2004 - The Annapurna Circuit - Day 4

Camp at Bhulbhule (840m), with Manaslu in the distance

Thursday 4 November
Bhulbhule to Sange (1136m)
Itinerary: DAY 4 Sange (1,136m) Continue to Ngadi (930m) with views of Manaslu, Peak 29 and Lamjung Himal. Then crossing a suspension bridge over the Musi Khola we gradually climb to a ridge top village of Bahundanda (1,311m), literally meaning "Brahmin hill". After a short descent and passing through terraced fields we continue further on the east bank. We cross the Marsyangdi once again to the west bank to arrive at Sange. (5 - 6 hours walk).

[Diarist: Sue]
Our first full day on the Annapurna Circuit. Routine is a 6 am wake up call - "Tea, coffee" and we get tea in bed. Then, water for washing is brought in two bowls, steaming. 

We dress and pack the kit bag and day sack. Then breakfast is leisurely - banana porridge, toast and omelette. Porters receive their loads and the tents are taken down. We set off at 8 am, in the shade of the valley, through the village where Sanjeev pays a 'Trade Union' toll at a small booth. 

The trail is a busy one, with trekkers, porters, mules and locals ploughing up and down. There is much of interest - large spiders sit in the centre of big webs, luckily higher than the path. Bird song can be heard above the river near an overhanging cliff.

There were a few long waterfalls. The ripe rice fields saw activity of cutting the stems, threshing using buffalo etc. Between the fields, soya beans were being picked and laid beside the path. When the sun reached the path at 9 am, the rice fields glowed yellow and it became quite warm.

Marsyangdi river

Many tea houses line the route, with names such as 'Sore Back Restaurant' or 'Himalchuli View Guest House'. At about 11:30, a stop for lemon tea - this was a delaying tactic to prevent us from arriving for lunch too early. 

We watched two 'buteos' - large birds of prey circling above. 

Lunch was in a restaurant in a village on a ridge - Bahundanda. Our arrival was sweaty as there was a steepish climb to it. Lots of squash before lunch arrived. Cheese and veg on toast, tuna, curried potato and coleslaw, and squash with cumin seeds. This is served by Sagar, a 16 to 17-year old kitchen boy with a lovely smile and a very polite manner. He does serving for us at each meal. [Our team uses the restaurant's facilities to cook our own food, ensuring cleanliness.] 

A descent follows lunch and views are of lovely terracing all along the valley. We have lost the snow capped Manaslu that could be seen for a lot of the morning. 

The path is good, but involves undulations, frequent stream crossings, and stepping between steps or boulders. Much of today has been deep in vegetation, with lots of trees and shrubs to be seen.

Crossing one stream, Mark spotted a green 5-inch long praying mantis, which didn't take too kindly to Martin's stroking!

Rice fields

View towards lunchtime village - Bahundanda

Harvesting rice

Paddy fields after lunch

Flour mill

Sweetcorn drying

Brahmin hill

Camp was reached at 4 ish, our yellow tents across the river from Sange. A large suspension bridge leads across to houses nestled close in to the hillside. Martin and I explored briefly before our washing water arrived, followed by tea, then dinner at 6:30. Tomato soup and prawn crackers, then vegetable spring rolls and other veg. We splashed out on beers.

Camp at Syange (1136m)

NB Chortens seen today, around which you walk on your right hand side. 

Which came first, the chicken man or the egg man? (Relating to porters carrying live chickens or trays of eggs.) In this case it was the chicken man. 

Then UNO - Lindy won - in bed for 9 pm. 

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