Occasional Climber

Mountain culture – Roof of the World

Glance. At the Saturday morning market, Namche Bazaar, Khumbu
Yaks on the trail near Dusa, Khumbu
Early bird - a friendly dawn encounter with a porter, on the trail near Bahundanda (1,310m), Annapurna Circuit
Chhongbi taking a breather - fair enough! En route to Imja Tse Base Camp, Khumbu
Kami and Chhongbi, keeping warm in the cook's tent beneath Kongma La, Khumbu
Hard physical work is still the norm for most people living in the Nepal Himalaya, Bahundanda, Annapurna Circuit
A little above Gopte, Jimmy Lama copies Buddhist scriptures from his out-door office at about 3,500m, Helambu
The Abbot of Ghyaru Gompa proudly shows off two of the thousands of tablets held at Ghyaru Gompa, Annapurna Circuit
Buddhist texts, inside Pangboche Gompa (3,985m), Khumbu
A huge mane boulder at the top end of Namche Bazaar, with Tamserku behind, Khumbu
Even the mani stones are white washed in Marpha, Annapurna Circuit
Meaningful art - a beautiful example of the countless carved mani stones placed along the trail, Annapurna Circuit
A closer inspection of the mani wall outside Kyanjin Gompa reveals some impressive individual slabs, Langtang
A Himalayan bill-board, or more precisely, “bill-boulder” on the trail below Jharkot, Annapurna Circuit
Time to pray; time to shop; times of change, Boudhnath temple, Kathmandu
Teng Kangpoche and Panayo Tuppa, with prayer flags, outside Thame Lodge, Khumbu
The view northeast from Nangkar Tshang (5,000m - directly above Dingboche). Makalu (8,485m) is left of centre, Khumbu
Prayer flags radiate outwards, looking more like an Octopus than the Boudhnath temple, Kathmandu
Watchful eyes at the Boudhnath temple, Kathmandu
A closeup of carved figures adorning a temple, Durbar Square, Kathmandu
Local Newars, with their characteristic pill-box caps, in Bhaktapur Durbar Square, Kathmandu
An old Newari in contemplation, Durbar Square, Bhaktapur, Kathmandu
Ang Kin Zum, 77 year old mani stone carver in action, upper Pangboche, Khumbu
Window on a different life. A small Sherpa boy ponders a picture of my Kiwi family, Dingboche (4,410m), Khumbu
At the Saturday morning market, Namche Bazaar, Khumbu
At the Saturday morning market, Namche Bazaar, Khumbu
At the Saturday morning market, Namche Bazaar, Khumbu
Rupee for your thoughts. At the Saturday morning market, Namche Bazaar, Khumbu
The 'Tight Five' - gompa urchins keeping an eye on things as we explored Langtang Gompa
Happy kids near Ghat, Khumbu
Another earthquake damaged chorten, on the ridge between Dingboche and Pheriche. Towache (6,367m - left) and Cholatse (6,335m) loom above, Khumbu
Inside a small Hindu shrine, Nagarkot
The Swayambunath in silhouette, on the approach from the central city, Kathmandu
Dog and pony show, on the approach to the Swayabunath, Kathmandu
Prayer wheels, worn by devotion, Kirtipur, Kathmandu
The Swayambunath temple is beautifully decorated with intricate bronze sculptures, Kathmandu
The Swayambunath temple is beautifully decorated with intricate bronze sculptures, Kathmandu
Butter lamps inside the main chamber of the Swayambunath, Kathmandu
Hindu diety in one of the many shrines in central Kathmandu
Hindu diety in one of the many shrines in central Kathmandu
The Swayambunath temple is beautifully decorated with intricate sculptures, Kathmandu
The Pigeon Temple, between Thamel and Durbar Square, Kathmandu
Yak dung pellets out to dry so that they can be used as fuel for fires, Namche Bazaar (3,440m), Khumbu
The Kanchenjunga massif, dawn, Pelling, Sikkim
Monk chanting, Sangachoelling Gompa, above Pelling, Sikkim
Monk praying, Thongsa Gompa, Kalimpong
Samdruptse, Namchi, Sikkim
Guru Rinpoche's hand, Samdruptse, Namchi, Sikkim
Looking back across the Tingri plains towards the trail leading to Khumbu La and the Solu Khumbu in Nepal
A young farmer from the small village below Pang La, on the trail to Everest Base Camp
Mother and child outside the beautifully decorated Kumbum – house of 10,000 Buddha images, Gyantse
A local woman passes time as she rides the ferry across the Yarlung Zangbo Jiang. Somewhere on the far bank lies Samye Gompa
It’s hard to guess just what age the old folk of Tibet are, but their leathery faces tell a story of an adaptable people in a harsh land
A local beauty poses in the Bakhor, outside the main entrance to the Jokhang, Lhasa
An old local lady enjoys the cut and thrust of bargaining in the Barkhor, Lhasa
Soldiers cap, made in China. Plucky urchin, made in Tibet, Lhasa
The now world famous Potala. Today it looks different from how it did here in 1992. The lake is gone and replaced by a huge concrete pad; and the buildings surrounding it have become predominently large modern concrete Chinese structures, Lhasa
From the shadows of seven centuries, a Buddhist deity looms out over a broad yak butter lamp, inside the Jokhang, Lhasa
The moon light catches the guilded rooves and sculptures covering the Jokhang, Lhasa
Buddhist symbols on top of the Jokhang are silhouetted against the last glow of the sun, Lhasa
Pilgrims, many in their “Sunday best”, gather at Tsurphu Gompa to witness the ordination of the monastery’s reincarnate
Pilgrims at Tsurphu Gompa
Pilgrim at Tsurphu Gompa
Pilgrim at Tsurphu Gompa
"What's going on... let me see!" This inquisitive, bright-eyed, little Muslim "Top-gun" symbolises the future of his mountain people. Hushe village, Baltistan
At 3,050 metres, on a roof in Hushe village, two young Balti women play distractedly with two toddlers. Like alpine flowers, their brightly coloured shawls make a happy contrast with the grey tones of their rocky home, Baltistan
Children, Hushe, Baltistan
On the outskirts of a village, a young Balti girl adeptly handles the dual role of baby sitter and cook's assistant, Baltistan
Behind Skardu Rock beside the Indus, a group of young shepherds bring home their goats at dusk, Baltistan
Evening prayers at Jula camp. Mango Gusor in the distance, Baltistan
At about 4,000m on the little shelf of our makeshift “acclimatisation” camp, at the head of the Skoro valley, Baltistan
Hussain, our youngest porter at 22, working his magic in the cook tent, Concordia, Baltistan
A matter of pride - a fine example of the lovingly decorated vehicle frontages seen frequently through the clouds of dust along the Karakoram Highway (and throughout Pakistan)    Mountain culture > NZ North Island > NZ South Island

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