Tibetan pilgrims would amaze me daily on this journey. The photo above shows what they carry. I had a chance to speak with the 3 pilgrims in the photo above.
Looking toward the Chugu Monastery I saw in the distance pilgrims huddled around a small fire. I believe they had carried small pieces of kindling as there is no wood to be found. Though they probably needed every bit of food and drink they carried for their journey they were quick to offer tea. They had no shelter and their travel kit consisted of a small burlap sack (pictured left) and a white woven plastic sack( pictured middle), thats it. As I approached, their smiles warmed me. It was a stark contrast to our camp here next to the holy lake. We had state of the art 4 season tents, down sleeping bags rated to 15 degrees or warmer, and a truck to carry our gear and food. Still we suffered and believe it is just a testament to how soft our spirits are becoming with all the material we have. Really, I probably would not last 3 days with what the Tibetans in this photo carried, yet there they were big smiles and laughter booming as they as they walked past our cozy lake camp. I found out that they had already walked 5 days. At this point I would guess they had another 5 days to make it around Kailash, then 5 days home. All done with a burlap sack and a white woven plastic sack. What were the contents? I believe....... mostly strong, wild spirits.
This is a photo of the North side of Shishapangma, the 14th highest peak in the world. In 2014 I will be leading a expedition on the South side of the mountain. Email me if you would like to join this trip.