Day 4 Great View at Poon Hill and Getting Lost a Second Time on The Way to Tadapani
This morning, I got up early to hike up to Poon Hill at 6:30am to see the view. The hike was hard because of straight ascending again, It took an hour and half to just get there. But the view was breathtaking. It’s funny that an hour and half would the be most I would hike for an entire trip in the States, now this was just a morning excursion from the main one.
After coming back from Poon Hill and getting breakfast, I left the hotel at 10:20am. And guess what I got lost again! The road to Tadapani split to two ways. I didn’t see any signs. Actually there was a blue and white mark but I didn’t know what that means back then. I chose the way down. It was really muddy and misty. The stone road was very slippery. I fell down once.
Luckily this time, I didn’t go too far until I met a local who was working on her farm. I learned from my experience now that it was better to ask. “Tadapani, this way?” I asked, pointing to the direction where I was going. She replied, “T-A-D-A-P-A-N-I?” I said, “Yes.” She said, “No. The other way.” So I had to head back again. It seemed like I couldn’t get out of Ghorepani.
I was getting discouraged. I thought maybe I should hire a guide at Ghorepani. I couldn’t do this by myself any more. I trekked back to where the road split and went to the way going up. By then, it was already noon. If the way going down was the wrong way, then the other way must be the right way. I thought, but I was no longer sure anymore.
I was looking for signs, hotels or people along the way to confirm that I was truly on the right path. But there was none. This route was very desolate. After a good half an hour to an hour, a couple with a guide came from the opposite direction. I asked them if this was the way to Tadapani. They said, yes. I was overjoyed.
The rest of the trip, I was pretty much by myself. There were only two other groups on the road until I reached a rest stop towards the end. I got a hot drink. There were two other groups at the restaurant. It started raining then. When I asked a guy how to get to Tadapani from there, he said I was welcome to join their group. They were going to Tadapani as well. So I did.
We reached Tadapani at 4:20pm. Something unexpected happened. At the hotel, I ran into a group of Chinese people from Northern China, where I was from! We became friends right away. They poured hot tea for me, and we talked about everything that has happened on the trip. They were going to ABC too so I could tag along. Yeah no more getting lost again, hopefully. I hanged my clothes up over the stove and ordered dinner. I had a hot shower afterwards. Man I felt so lucky.
Day 5 Meet My New outdoorsy Chinese Friends
The next day I went with my Chinese group, which consists of a couple in their early forties and the younger sister of the wife. The couple were very experienced outdoor enthusiasts. They were planning on going to Everest Base Camp actually. But the weather was not good, and they couldn’t fly. They waited in the airport for two days and decided to come to Annapurna Base Camp.
We had the same trekking route. They started a day later than me. But since I wasted a day in my trip, we were on the same schedule.
The husband is a college professor who taught outdoor survival skills, especially how to read map. He also volunteered at this group that searches people who get lost in the wild. He taught me how to read contour lines on the map to tell what the day of trekking would look like, how much going up and how much going down. Magic! Lol. I had no clue on what the day of my trekking would look like until I got there previously.
The wife is every experienced with outdoor activities. She told me her experiences in the desert and some mountains in China. They had all these gears, like small solar panel to charge their phones in emergency situations, water purifier, and a small tank of propane to boil hot water. They wore quick-dry clothes. Each of them has two hiking sticks.
You get my point. I was taken care of by going with them. We left Tadapani at 7:40am and got to Chomrong at 3:20pm. As we approached Chomrong, the view was beautiful!