By Kevin Grange
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Additional resources for Beneath Blossom Rain: Discovering Bhutan on the Toughest Trek in the World
Even among the Bhutanese, Lunana has an aura. One of the eeriest places was the dzong in Chozo, just before Thanza Village. Our guides told us that no one may ride into the dzong courtyard, no matter how high their rank. ” “Oh,” I said, making a mental note to stay away from Chozo Dzong. ” I assumed Marie would mention the towering mountains or lush forests of Bhutan but she didn’t. “We had two porters in the 49 Lunana area,” she said, “a young girl and an older female relative. Christy and I made friends with them and on the day they left us to go back home, they stood by the side of the path as we started the long descent from the Lunana District and they sang to us.
She had written two successful memoirs and numerous travel articles and traveled to most everyplace that began with a D as in Dangerous: Mozambique, Rwanda, Madagascar, Borneo, Burma, the Congo, Papua New Guinea, Iran, and Libya. She’d also done a six hundred–mile solo kayak expedition on the Niger River from Mali to Timbuktu, and dodged grizzly bears on an eight hundred–mile bike ride through Alaska to the Arctic Ocean. Given the nature of her trips and the descriptions I’d read of her in the media, I expected Kira to be 30 loud, rough, and tough, but when I first met her in Bhutan, she was sitting shyly on the couch in the hotel lobby with her hands politely folded across her lap.
Thus, someone doing the Snowman Trek is, at once, afforded the experience of a monthlong expedition with the ease of a day hike. Best of all, since less than 120 people attempt the trek each year, it is rare to see another group of trekkers on the trail, which means, you’ll 24 have a half million steps of scenery and sweet interaction with the Bhutanse villagers virtually all to yourself. As I trod past perfect yellow blossoms of mustard plants and over red doma-stained rocks, I fell in line with Joe, our fit and knowledgeable guide, who was the kind of guy you’d book a trip to the grocery store with because he made every experience so fun.