Paul Pottinger’s Adventures from the Top of the World

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Still in Kathmandu…

Everest 2015  •  March 27

Well, the weather in the mountains is notoriously fickle, and today was no exception.  Rainstorms over Kathmandu last night were of biblical proportions, and this morning at 4:30 AM when we left things were still not looking great, but clouds can lift any time, so we headed to the airport in hopes of flying to Lukla where the trek begins.  This is just a 30 minute flight, but it saves days of driving and walking on inhospitable terrain.  Sadly, the clouds were just too heavy over the mountains, and so we have to try again tomorrow.

Blake kills time at the airport while we await news of the weather up high.
Blake kills time at the airport while we await news of the weather up high.
These guys are convenient, but dangerous and a big part of the bad air quality in KTM.
These guys are convenient, but dangerous and a big part of the bad air quality in KTM.
He knows where the good stuff is to eat.
He knows where the good stuff is to eat.
This was to be our plane for the flight to Lukla... cancelled due to cloudy weather up there.
This was to be our plane for the flight to Lukla… cancelled due to cloudy weather up there.

No worries, this gives us a chance to see a bit more of Kathmandu, including the Boudhanath Stupa.

The Boudhanath stupa is one of the most holy sites in Buddhism.
The Boudhanath stupa is one of the most holy sites in Buddhism.
Traditional Tibetan prayer flags stream from the top of the temple.
Traditional Tibetan prayer flags stream from the top of the temple.
The eyes of Buddha are watching.
The eyes of Buddha are watching.
The monastic life begins in boyhood.
The monastic life begins in boyhood.

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Hundreds of these wheels surround the stupa.
Hundreds of these wheels surround the stupa.
The prayer wheels are filled with holy scripture, and are meant to be spun clockwise, to help send their philosophy throughout creation.
The prayer wheels are filled with holy scripture, and are meant to be spun clockwise, to help send their philosophy throughout creation.
Colors are vivid on the temple grounds.
Colors are vivid on the temple grounds.
Every nook seems to have spiritual significance.
Every nook seems to have spiritual significance.
Sculptures are often adorned with flowers, paint, and gold leaf.
Sculptures are often adorned with flowers, paint, and gold leaf.
Not sure why this French tradition has come to KTM... but it makes for a fun photo.
Not sure why this French tradition has come to KTM… but it makes for a fun photo.
Feral pooches are everywhere... and sleep anywhere.
Feral pooches are everywhere… and sleep anywhere.
Many shops surround the stupa.
Many shops surround the stupa.

Video above of our visit to the Boudhanath.

Great team, great guides, great support staff… great expedition!

14 thoughts on “Still in Kathmandu…

  1. What a fascinating country. Your wonderful photos make me feel like I am there with you. Hope the weather clears for you tomorrow. xox

  2. Hey Paul! This is Hillary Liss–have we talked about that I lived in Nepal for 2 years from 2001-03? Well, I did. And I am beyond jealous right now. Anyway, these pictures bring back lots of memories and that flight to Lukla is one of my favorites (not). I always just stared at the “flight attendant” and if they didn’t look panicked, I decided not to either. Also, at check-in when they ask your weight, I always added 10 pounds because I was sure that someone else was lying about their weight in the other direction and I wanted a fair representation of the total poundage on the plane. Please go find Luann Freer at the Everest Base Camp/Himalayan Rescue Association tent when you get to EBC and tell her we work together. She founded the clinic there and is a rockstar. And one of the funniest people you will ever meet. Tell her I sent you. Have an amazing trip and we’re all cheering you on with full O2 sats from the lowlands.

    1. THANKS HILLARY! This is great, in all respects. We will likely grab a helicopter today, because the backlog of fixed wing flights is crazy. THANK YOU for the recommendation to Luanne, I will take you up on that! And, yes, thanks for being a non-Pottinger on the blog thread, that is certainly welcome! OK, here we go…

  3. PS Isn’t it good to know that someone not related to you is occasionally looking at your blog? I notice a lot of comments from the Potty gang! 😉

  4. Your photography is fantastic. I agree with Gloria that it feels as though I am right there with you! If Blake was the recipient of the backpack, it is nice to put a face to the recipient. Take care. Looking forward to many more fantastic pictures.

  5. Your friend Hillary’s comment is ace! If I’m ever flying to Lukla I will be adding a stone 🙂

    Hope the weather clears for you!!

  6. P2 – Great to read about your adventure. Lots of vicarious excitement back here at UW. Looking forward to your return with a beard like your comrade, Blake. Stay safe! Fred

  7. Paul, Doug E Fresh following you closely on this most amazing of adventures. Blake looks like he hasn’t shaved since Aconcagua. I can’t imagine a stronger duo than you two. Rock on, brother.

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