Hiking from Lubhu to Godavari via Lakuribhanjyang and Chapakharka
Lubu – Lakuri Bhanjyang
6th Sep 2009
Adam Manandhar, Alka Bajracharya, Anup Basnet, Basu Dahal, Bhaskar Shrestha, Bipin Karmacharya, Chetana Shakya, Jeny Amatya, Paras Babu Tiwari, Prabin Poudel, Robert Thompson, Roshan Raj Tamrakar, Sandeep Pradhananga, Suresh Maharjan
The first phone call that I received in Nepal was from Alka Bajracharya inviting me to join the hike the following morning. After 27 hours of sitting on a plane I couldn't think of anything better than a hike with new and old friends. The morning of the hike I was so excited that I woke up 2 hours early and paced around the hotel lobby waiting for the D2 van. After we collected our party from different parts of Katmandu, breakfast was the number one priority. Like all of the meals I've had in Nepal, breakfast was delicious. I could have stayed at that little shop eating jery puri all day but, as we say in America, "the show must go on".
I think that I enjoyed the drive to Lakuri-Godavari just as much as the hike. Many of my pictures were taken from the car as we zipped through Katmandu into the outskirts. I'd be lying if I said that I wasn't little startled by the lack of traffic rules, signage and signals. At one point, Anup Basnet suggested that I remember where we were going because I would have to drive us home. I don't think the day would have ended so well if that were true.
The last time I was at such a big HILL, I took a lift to the top and snowboarded down the face.
I made the beginners mistake of referring to our destination as a mountain. The team was quick to inform me that there are no mountains in the immediate area and that they call them hills. So, after arriving at the HILL, I was a little worried. The last time I was at such a big HILL, I took a lift to the top and snowboarded down the face. I felt better as we began to climb and I found that the pace wasn't as quick as I thought it would be. (I think the team might have slowed down a little to make me feel better..)
As we hiked terrain remained pretty consistent. I was wondering if we would ever wander off the beaten path and then I heard someone say "Shortcut!". Normally I would associate the word 'shortcut' with something better or easier. I quickly learned that if someone says "Shortcut" on a D2 hike it’s about to get a lot harder. We may have saved some time by taking the short cuts but they definitely weren't easy to negotiate.
Several times during the hike I could feel my energy waning but the beautiful view provided more than enough fuel for me to keep the pace of the other hikers. I have seen so many pictures of the other D2 hikes but nothing compares to standing on the trail and seeing it for yourself.
After a quick but slippery descent, we all walked around the small village at the base of the hill. It was my first time seeing a natural public pool and the flagged temple behind the shops was quite a site. We finally settled in a little restaurant down the road. I felt like I earned all of the food and drinks we ordered. It was nice to relax and chat with all of the members of the team. I will never forget the experience and want to thank everyone who was involved in making it happen, especially Alka and Anup, who came out of hiking retirement for my arrival.
Even though it was chilly Sunday morning, I was heated up by excitement of my first hiking from the office. Thus I was eagerly waiting for all the hikers to come. But only few people turned up at the office. The rest of the pack chose to ride the van along the way to our destination. The hiking destination was also changed due to the weather condition. After some discussions regarding the trail to be chosen, we finally came to a mutual consensus and thereby headed for the hike.
First we picked up our Guest Mr. Robert Thompson “Bobby” from Yak and Yeti Hotel who was also eagerly waiting for the hike. Then we picked up others hikers along the way. After all people had been picked up, our coordinator led us to have breakfast at Patan Durbar Square area. The mesmerizing beauty of this historical heritage truly made our morning even more fascinating. Unfortunately we didn’t find any open restaurants there since it was quite early in the morning. So our coordinator decided to go Jawalakhel to have our breakfast. There we had a typical Nepali breakfast that included “Jeri, Swari, Tarkari “and tea.
After staying there about half an hour our trip resumed. While heading towards Lubhu, we got the chance to view pleasant green rice fields on both the side of roads. We could saw numerous brick chimney out there, fully operational and thus helping spread air pollution. At Lubhu we got a chance to closely observe the Newari society and culture.
Our driver, Mr.Ram Dai dropped us at Lamatar which was the starting point for the hike. We were equipped with all the necessary stuffs such as food, mineral water, first aid box etc and started our hike. After that we just follow the un-pitched road up to hill. There was a good road to hike in the middle of the jungle which has really made us easy to find the path. There were almost no people walking along with us. But we were pretty assured that we had chosen the correct path to our destination.
Anup Dai was busy mingling with our guest and helped a great deal in sorting out all his queries.
Anup Dai was busy mingling with our guest and helped a great deal in sorting out all his queries. We walked for about an hour and then we saw a women heading upward. We asked her path to Lakuribhanjyang to be fully assured. She confirmed that we were heading to right path and also suggested a short cut route to peak. We followed her way and continued our hike.
After 3 hour of continuous walking finally we stopped at a small tea shop where some of us had tea and others had rice beer including our guest. To a great surprise, when I was having my tea, I found that I was sucked by a leech. Even though I threw the leech out from my body, the blood didn’t stop so I had to put my hand over the wound to stop bleeding further all along the hike, which was really frustrating.
Neverthless, we were enjoying all the challenges
After that we again started our journey. On the way we got a chance to see different natural landscapes and mushroom farming. We also met some school students from the “Chapakharka Primary School”. After spending few minutes there we headed to see the paragliding point. We were excited to have got this opportunity to observe the paragliding spot but unfortunately when we reached there we found that paragliding service was shut down due to the security reasons. Thus we returned back from that place and then started to descend down to Godawari. To my bitter surprise, the descend was unusually tougher than climbing the hill. Neverthless, we were enjoying all the challenges. In addition our team members also started to figure out some short cut routes which could take us to Godwari relatively soon.
After 6 hours of walking through the jungle and observing the natural beauty we finally stopped at a restaurant to have our lunch. Before we had our lunch, Anup Dai took us to see the Fish Farm and swimming pool in Godawari. After that we had some snacks first and then had our lunch. I guaranteed that all had enjoyed their lunch because all were exhausted and hungry I guess.
After spending an hour and half we left that place and returned to the office.
Thus our one day Hike was completed with full of enthusiasm, adventure and excitement.