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Eastern Himalayas

Deqin, China


Deqin is the last stop before Tibet. Its and ugly town crammed into a crease between the Yunnans highest mountain ranges, it is at 3500 meters above sea level West from here is the himalayas proper but the surrounding countryside is equally beautiful with great valleys down to the Mekong river and snowy peaks and glaciers reaching 6800 meters.
The countryside and trekking there in is the reason to visit this remote outpost and it was well worth the trip. So much so in fact i stayed here for a week in a tibetan guesthouse in the countryside village (about 10 houses) of Raringkha.
The first destination on arrival though was further from Deqin town, another village called Felai Si where you could apparently get stunning views of the local mountain range. We arrived there in the evening and stayed in a cheap bed with the intention of getting up at dawn to watch the sunrise on the mountain peaks.
We were very fortuante as the next morning after rising at 6am the view was clear so we watched unimpeded as the high peak of Kawo Karpo mountain turned from snowy blue to a warm orange. After breakfast we caught a taxi back towards town and jumped out at Raringkha and Tashi's mountain lodge a traditional tibetan house where we would base ourselves to do some trekking.
To my great surprise the place was run by 2 Irish fellas one of whom had just been travelling when he was offered the job and had then invited his mate, a trained chef, to come and help him run it.
The place was beautiful with big comfy beds and huge kitchen dining room with a warm stove and plenty more areas to relax in.
They kept pigs and chickens and the communal meal in the evening was excellent. We had Paella the first night!!!
When we arrived there was only another Belgian couple there making 6 guests in total
but the place soon filled to 12 with the comings and goings of other travellers and families over the week. Er yeah intended to stay a few days up here but with such a comfortable, chilled out place to stay it soon turned to 6 night, though only Nick and I stayed the last 2 getting an extra trek in for good measure.
A couple of walks where done while we where here one a 2 day effort that we did in 1 from Felai Si the aforementioned viewpoint down (very steeply) to the Mekong river then up the other side and across to the Migyong Glacier. Sadly we didn't get up to the glacier as we had arrived to late but the views where cool all the day.
After a rest day (and a bit of archery, the Irish guys had a bow) Danny and Kiki went back South whilst Nick and I stayed a couple more nights and did another day trek up the mountain behind the lodge. A tough 3 hour climb up Yak trails for us too the snowy ridge at 4500 meters with Deqin and the surrounding villages specks below. The altitude here really began to take its toll with deep breath in not really resulting in a lot. The last hour up in particular, probabably only about a kilometers steep walk, was especially hard.
The views though where incredible with a 360 degree panorama of the surrounding mountains.
Long bus ride back to Lijiang tomorrow morning, then up to Sichuan via a lake! Cant travel North from here as originally planned as the roads around tibet are closed to travellers.



permalink written by  Dan on April 22, 2008 from Deqin, China
from the travel blog: Been there, Dan that!
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welcome back dan, sounds a great trip, looking forward to the pics.xxxxx

permalink written by  carol atherton on April 22, 2008


is that a beard you have there?

permalink written by  helen on April 29, 2008


No i dont think so. I bought a scarf in Lijiang. I did try growing a beard but am unable to muster up anything around my mouth, so it looked a bit odd!

permalink written by  Dan on April 30, 2008

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