Continue to publish the photo-reportage of the LJ-user SE-Boy : For the second day was unstable weather. In the morning it was clear, but soon the mountain brewed regular afternoon compote of low clouds, so far, however, snow-free, and stressed the dismal fog, gloomy Pakistani-administered Kashmir, leaving gray ceiling above the already narrowing valley. Only on the surrounding slopes eye pleasing spot of autumn - the forest here and there was a colorful, dating anxiety-red weed so bright lichens on the rocks.
Cold breath of eight-increasingly fettered our breath, and black-and-white world of the mountains finally appeared in all its glory - we had to cross rolled rough tongue of a glacier, the edges of which with superhuman strength were once bent and turned outwards up.
1. Shepherd guards the sheep. The left arc is bent edge of the glacier.
Glacier. Nothing else even on the approaches to eight-does not understand how the world is alien to the mountain man. When standing on the edge of the moraine, to survey clearly delineated in width and infinite length in the chaos of frozen feet, instinctively think about it. That is a huge dragon lying on the floor of the quarry and occasionally stir the skin on the back (the glacier slowly but moves), or wave, disorderly raging in the midst of the hurricane suddenly froze from the cold icy mountains, but the powder on top of one gray crushed stone ...
Somehow in this world fit into the locals - if agreed with the dragon, so he is not dropped them when the skin wrinkles. Conductor Samandar Khan calmly finds passages between boulders, voids, lakes and rivers of the glacier. Thanks to him under our feet relatively solid ground. Following is a small porter Abdul soschurennye narrow eyes give his face a little mischievous expression, as though he was always laughing and takes life with humor, albeit behind a heavy load. Even a donkey can be seen, knows how to behave here.
2. Descended to the glacier.
By focusing on that, God forbid do not stumble and do not fly to the next crack, making their way slowly forward between the mountains of ice, rocks the size of house, piled helter-skelter, and think about yesterday.
On the eve of the afternoon, even when we doskrebyvali tablespoons of broth, flavoring unpretentious taste of cheese purchased in Islamabad, Abdul walked. He squatted down in her traditional Pakistani clothing - a long shirt to his knees like a skirt attached to it a certain recklessness - looked at us and smiled. Abdul did not know English, but understood some words addressed to him, so the dialogue comes down to our monologues, or we communicated with gestures.
He waited until we had eaten, he took a plate and spoon and went to the creek. This was unexpected, but tolerate such was absolutely impossible. With cries of "Abdul, wait, we are to mine!" We rushed after him. Dish does not give away, and laughed every time we tried to pull them out of hand. His laughter was soft and tender - so adults laughing as they watched at their feet, crawling children. We are helplessly turned to Samandar, who had followed with interest what happens.
- Leave this part of his duties - he said. - The porters on expeditions always wash all the dishes, gather wood, make fire and cook food.
"Well, so the pipes! - We thought to myself, grabbed a few more dirty dishes, and went after Abdul. I knew it was actually made - the porters not only carry your cargo and make all of the above, but even wash clothes, as I recall, in Nepal, told me a nasty Swiss grandmother, who in his eyes told the porter that he was a savage, living in Stone Age. "You know that you can give the porter his underwear, and he washed it well?" - She was advising me to mentoring tone. For this phrase would spit in her face.
However, what is taken from European trackers and mountain climbers, we were jarred with Ksyusha, because not brought up their children in the country of the Soviets. I then repeatedly explained to Samandar, so that we can not, and in the end we won the right to wash dishes at a time.
3. Rocks and ice - what? To appreciate the scale of the glacier - in the right corner of the two men and a donkey.
The river, which originates somewhere very close to the mountain was cold so that the soap does not mylilos. Had to use sand on the beach to wash away the grease on plates, and then for a long time to lather up your hands, feeling out of them completely lost sensitivity. Hands Abdul obesformlennye years of hard work, were used to such adversity. We, for instance, clutching his head, seeing as he takes off from the fire pot with zakipevshey water, taking it below the bottom of the palm.
He smiled almost always seemed to have any adversity the way for his entertainment. Smiled as helping to pitch a tent, when preparing a meal, when unsupportable weight slowly and surely in his black dress shirt, climbed the steep glacier to the pass. It seemed as if his life is easy and carefree. Only later we learned that of Abdul, and a second porter Rahim each of eight children ... What do they earn a lot by local standards, when employed in expeditions or drive tourists, but in fact it's even a penny can not be called ... What else time, they are not unbending, plow a field or inject at home ...
4. On vacation. One of the photos, Abdul, made after the pass.
Many children - it is both trouble and joy. At the high infant mortality rate, especially here, where the "doctor" - a beautiful English word, abstraction, one child can not do. In addition, children are a crutch for old age. First, the whole family provides the father, then when he dies, its responsibility to undertake the eldest - a son or brother, father, or, more likely, the husband of her eldest daughter, if only girls in the family. May be helping the community - in the high villages people are one big family.
But these same children, on the other hand, the curse of Pakistan. The fifth most populous nation in the world, the desert, it can not provide all its citizens. Hence, poverty, the literacy rate for men has only recently exceeded 50% (of women's better not to speak). Permanent war (in the West torn by decades of war, Afghanistan, in the north - Kashmir), which has to take a most active part, lead to the radicalization of Islam against the background of a terrible bitterness and intolerance.
I have long been fascinated with the question, what other than purely political reasons, due to the constant conflicts in "hot spots"? On this particularly interesting to ponder when you're on the hot spot to wade with a backpack on the glacier, the more so as you walk a few kilometers from the border "line of control", where the atmosphere is always turbulent. However, the range of five-and shestitysyachnikov on the left hand - a reliable barrier to military people, all the while calling them our guide.
5. On a glacier near the frozen crest. Trouser leg rolled up, as hot.
It is understandable that people crowding leads to tension, it is clear that on the basis of different religions and nationalist hatred sprout flowers and, as a rule, it is heated from outside. In the absence of the instigators of people of various religions manage to live in peace even on a small plot of land. Recently, more and more attacks on Islam by the people of other faiths. However, firstly, to remember always the most correct rule is: religion is bad, bad only fools who it wrong (read - dogmatic) practice. This rule applies to any and all kinds of religions, including atheism.
Second, you can not even get rid of the thought that if the era of the Crusades in Christianity had to temporarily shield and sword, the same period in Islam, which is 600 years younger, took place at the time of ballistic missiles and Kalashnikov. I do not know what the Crusades were in the older religions - Hinduism, arose in opposition to its rigid caste system of Buddhism.
For a long time lacked the "third", but there is nothing you can do, because need a mathematical mind to properly consider the statistical data. Humanities like me it is not given. And this "third" was found, when found out about Gunnar Heinsohn ...
6. The glacier on top.
7. The last few houses in the village near which we camped.
8. The largest and richest house in the village.
9. After the glacier, we began to descend into the valley on a steep and sloping, but well-trodden path.
10. Here are committed out of place to meet separate donkeys loaded with fragrant juniper. At this height are still growing juniper trees, which lets local people for firewood, but above the day to collect a small pile of firewood, it is necessary hours to comb the surrounding hillsides.
Going down to the river, we saw on the shore next karavanchik eshachkov-drovonostsev, but this time accompanied by the drivers. As it turned out, had gone ahead the most docile of the donkeys, while the remaining had the power to shove into the water.
12. We crossed the river easily.
13. Guides and porters sat down and began to look with anticipation to the drivers. One of them went to the other side and took the animals, which pushes and kicks, two remaining on this side of the boys were herded into the water. Donkeys resisted fiercely and silently.
But this happiness ended. Two donkey clicking river, managed to get rid of the burden and joy had fled. Judging by their pryti, mahouts have to catch more than one hour. We also need to go further.
The camp is pitched on the edge of the spill and the dried-up river bed three hundred meters from the village Latbu or Latobo (who both calls), which is nestled in a huge rocky parapet. Behind it starts Nanga Parbat. Immediately approached the locals in the form of three men, Abdul kneaded dough into the oil and the burner instantly baked several cakes chapatis. Over tea flowed leisurely conversation in Urdu. Tortillas dipped in melted butter and ghee were sent to their mouths with a loud smacking. It was obviously the meaning of life, weather, and grief. Women on the sites involved in harvesting.
14. Floods. In this time of year is filled with water, only a small sleeve.
Abdul had first to say that today, washing dishes, so we decided to collect firewood Ksyusha - last night, they quickly ran out, and it was very cold. This time, like how to sit by the fire, so did two salable.
15. Fragrant juniper, as I remember, we have cut down is prohibited.
16. Kashmir. Near the border with India. Height 3530. Peace and quiet. Ksenia and wood.
Night for a long time sitting by the fire and asked about the life and Samandar customs of Pakistan. He in turn asked us. The next day we finally smiled on the sun, and the world immediately changed - other colors, other mountains, insanely bright lights.
17. Peaks Shaigiri and Lala
18. River Jhelum (it Gidaspov). Here the Macedonian army defeated the Indians along this river lay our way to Nanga Parbat.
Early in the morning I pick out of the tent. Day promises to be wonderful - not a cloud in the sky. Spitting on the washing, we Ksyusha go to the other end of the valley to photograph the top of Nanga. Here, at 3500, the sun heats the earth's surface, and barely raised a breeze. But upstairs is mad storm - he vomits and mosques get caught on the top of the cloud.
19. Village Latobo and upper slope Rupalskogo Nanga Parbat.
20. Nanga Parbat - "Naked Mountain". At the top of a slope so steep that the snow does not stick. On the last meters climbers have to deal with climbing
21. Apical teeth
22. The top of Nanga Parbat is hidden in the mist.
Before breakfast Ksenia said that she needed to wash your hair. Heat the water and with full litrovkoy boiling water going to the creek. Here I am in a free piece of plate mix hot and cold water and pour Ksusha on its head. Local women working in the areas, look at this action, opening their mouths. Not only that Xenia is not covering her face because she is a hair shows all around. According to Muslim orders, so you can not do.
After eating, we collect tents and leave. Today we must get to the end Rupalskoy valley and climb to an altitude of 4000 meters. Weather still holds, but judging by the clouds of "smoke" type, in the evening sky will tighten.
23. Front end Rupalskoy Valley.
Interestingly, the mountains bordering the valley, seem large, but compared to Nanga they look like is not very much. However, with eight thousand of everything will seem small. For example, the glacier which we crossed the day before, just huge to move it, it took about forty minutes, if not more.
24. Yesterday's glacier.
25. While the heat can go barefoot, even though leather soles of habit and because of the large weight behind quickly get tired. Samandar Khan, looking at me, sometimes shakes his head.
26. From there we came from. On the right bank are our porters.
27. Last caravan donkeys with firewood. Above the trees will be gone.
28. Soon, as promised, the weather begins to deteriorate. We climb higher and higher, dyhalki not enough, and the air becomes so cold that has quickly become a mujahid, so as not to chill the throat.
29. In the last willow grove Samandar cuts us with Ksyusha on a stick. Although we do not use them, take with us just in case. When we leave the edge of a glacier coming from the peak of Laila, the weather spoils final - the low clouds begin rolling in the snow and the wind so cold that we put on a jacket.
30. We go on the side wall of the glacier, here comes the difficulty. Some time ago, came the collapse, scree still fresh, and there is no trail. Something like balancing on a slope - go for seventy feet down the glacier as something not desirable. Sometimes we climb up into little pockets where you can see a well full of trails that go to dizzying heights. This is cattle, but that's what? It is so cold that cows and sheep do not survive. Soon it becomes clear - we meet Tso - a cross between a yak cow. Apparently, they feed on the red grass, and chill them uneasy.
31. Until dark to get a parking lot - the base camp Mazeno. Quickly, as far as shortness of breath and dizzy (4050 meters all the same!), Put up tents. Praise be to Allah, and those who have laid down here the wall of the wind! Hiding behind it, We stretch from the top canopy, and I was horrified look at Rahim, who goes to the river for water. Throws snow pellets, the temperature near zero, and even wind up in this wind does not want to go. Dishwashing Rahim also booked. At this time we agree, not resisting. But undertake to cook dinner. Ksenia commands that where and how to pour and cook, cut fresh cabbage - riches make soup, how it can be nourishing cabbage, noodles and a couple of cans. The meat at this altitude is no longer to cook.
Samandar with the porters take out beams of some greens and at one point make stew out of it with lots of butter. Here and vitamins, and fat. Greens can not recognize, but excellent stew eaten with bread priberezhennymi pre-chapatis. Just in case, get more crumbs and cheese.
Another unexpected gift. Someone from the held here earlier prepared a small bundle of firewood. Goodness knows how long it had to expend to find firewood in the surrounding bare clones. Enough of them to sit for half an hour in a small fire, when it was quite dark. Samandar asked when I replace the sandals for shoes. When I say that just before the pass, he again shook his head and suddenly grabbed me by the ankle. "You have warm feet" - he exclaimed in surprise. Damn, of course, warm! If I'm cold, I get dressed and obuyus - I'm not a masochist to endure the cold. Simple yet warm enough.
Soon disagree on tents. At this point in the action begins to enter a contingency factor, which I did not take into account when preparing for the trip. There were a few mistakes, they have significantly influenced the outcome of the event, but more on that later.
32. Enjoy a slice of chapatis.
Polutoramestnaya tent - it's an opportunity to feel the larva or, if you will, fur seals, which washed up on shore - clumsy, cold, and shortness of breath completely discourage the desire to get out of the sleeping bag. But there is a time for reflection on all sorts of interesting topics. For example, where else can touch my breath?
And they have turned for the night in the frost on the tent fabric, water is returned to the face and sleeping in the light of the morning sun. Until we finally got wet, this rapid water exchange were to be interrupted. Judging by the thickness of ice, liquid lost decently.
33. Guess what it is.
Every waking up in the mountains, in general, fairly routine. The first thing you think that now have to wash in cold water, then out of the tent pulls all the armor - mats, sleeping bags, etc. and decomposed in the sun to dry out. And then you can think about breakfast. This is if you want to have breakfast at altitude.
Special desire was not there. First, the height of the affected, and secondly, dehydration. It acts on the entire body, including the water goes from the gut, and many walkers on the high mountains and climbers do not know firsthand what is constipation. But, by the way, on the eve of peristalsis was all wonderful, that made me that night in the snow and cold wind to climb up the hill in search of seats.
Insatiable desire to "sit comfortably" led to a lot of research of the slope in the light of a flashlight. In the end, was found by a failure of protected cliffs. Over this failure and I joined up.
Night. Pakistan. Kashmir. Himalayas. Height of four thousand and a penny. On the slopes of ice flowers bloom first. At the bottom of noisy mountain stream. Conductor, on his knees near the tent, and offered prayers to Allah, despite the bad weather. And I'm sitting here and, sorry, shit hole in the Himalayan marmot.
The groundhog is clearly not expect such baseness. "In bulk do not get that right at the entrance to the house, so even decorate this glamorous pink toilet paper - the tourists have lost conscience." Perhaps such thoughts were with the unfortunate rodent in the morning when he saw us warily, standing in a column near the entrance. This is despite the fact that groundhogs know what a toilet - in their burrows have special rooms, restrooms.
34. The only thing I can say in excuse, I did not expect, of course, to ease nature, and even conductor reassured, saying that as a rule, the outputs from the den of marmots few.
In general, it is unclear how they live here - there is almost no food - not enough to swear by herbs, beast to gain weight before falling to sleep, and how much of the surrounding slopes have izlazit in search of food, it's frightening to imagine. To be precise, it is not a Himalayan, and the red marmot, which along with Himalayan lives in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and the food seemed really tight - in clever books written that they fall into hibernation in September.
While Xenia, crept to the hole, shoot a marmot from the camera, I made the above operations with a sleeping bag and other belongings from the tent and switched to ice flowers. Illustrators "Snow Queen" clearly lacked realism, for ideas worth out of Kashmir. Such beauty had not ever seen, and the conductor is also considered the flowers in amazement.
35. Agreed on what caused the bloom began to wet snow at temperatures near zero and very strong wind. In the morning sun, the flowers almost instantly melted away, but luckily I managed to save the marmot from becoming a model and robbed Ksyusha camera.
37. If you look closely, you can see that, like raindrops, these colors need basis, for which you can hang on and from which to grow.
Sluggish breakfast and nakipyativ water path, packed backpacks. The question "where next?" Samandar said right at the top of the slope at the foot of which we slept. We had to go to the crest and on it to go further north towards the Wakhan Corridor. Climbed up a long time. As if there were nights of acclimatization - to breathe, that your locomotive.
38. On the ridge. Bottom left flowing river.
Crest of this rested soon in a strange kind of a moraine - whether it was a continuation of the moraine, or glacier, such a custom. In any case, there was no clear-cut channel, the surrounding area was totally chaotic terrain like giant bulldozers plowed.
39. Samandar Khan at the crest. Behind the peak Shaigiri.
Perhaps the chaos arose from the collision of our glacier with a more powerful dual glacier in ancient times they had met at right angles to each other. Anyway walk here from the unpleasant - trail disappears completely at all, and it was only possible to navigate to the location of the peaks, and even snow on the surrounding slopes clearly indicate where the north.
40. Snow on the north side does not melt.
41. Double Glacier in the form of a bowl. Red Line - our path and direction.
Of course, in our case, fortunately, the snow was much less (on this side of the pass), and, of course, we were not such a straight line as shown.
Walk on the glacier is always in trouble for what it is going. Although this was an unusually quiet. Morena is even worse because on top of snow, rock is - the stones of different sizes, piled helter-skelter. And right would that account for backpackers jumping and climbing on these rocks, the worst part is that even a fragment of rock the size of a house may become unstable and escape from under his feet. Yes, and that at the bottom - it is not clear - I had to bypass several glacial lakes, not to mention poluzamerzshih streams.
But the gray and dismal stone chaos increasingly offset by the opening up of mining and heavenly views and emerald green lakes.
42. The scale does not convey. In the foreground near a large stone can be seen the lake. It is of such dimensions that it is necessary to swim.
43. A monstrous wall - the joy of the climber. Right peak Laila. Icefall visible peak supply is located below the glacier.
44. Icefall more close-ups. Horror!
45. Life can only see a halt when to sit down and look at the slender layer of soil on the rocks.
46. Bivouac on a relatively flat, not cluttered debris of mixed-site. You can only sit in the sun - even warm. But in the shadows is very cold. In the background is a wall of gray ice moraine.
47. The right hand of the six thousandth of icefalls something like a frozen tidal wave.
We stopped for the night at an altitude of 4700 in a place where once again someone has laid a protective wall against the wind (thanks, folks!). Barely shed a backpack, I feel like shook his head. As always: while physically working, the manifestations of the upcoming gornyashki invisible. But is it worth staying on vacation ... We feel shitty - 700 meters - too big climb of the day. Place quite dull, even water, which should be in a nearby lake, there is no - all vymerzlo to the bottom.
I sit and wait, when will faint because the installation of tents in such a state would end any dizziness or vomiting. In Ksyusha roughly the same feeling. After about fifteen minutes getting better, just barely put up a tent. Porters, seeing our state and help. Now it is best to drink and sleep. Drown the snow on the burner, something sluggish chew, and I think that there is no escape: the amount of mistakes when planning a trip, finally reaching critical mass, we have already two days to disentangle effects on the pass, they will emerge in full. However, about this tomorrow.
48. To pass right and left. In the photo porter, whose name we did not remember.
To be continued ...
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