I’m not sure how much of this story has reached the wider media, but on Saturday morning an avalanche in the Annapurna mountain region of Nepal creating a flash flood in the Seti River, wiping away homes, livestock and sadly has resulted in human fatalities. At the last count 19 bodies have been recovered with 50 bodies still missing, including 3 Ukrainian trekkers. The search for survivors continues.
This story highlights the unpredictability of events in Nepal. All around the weather is hot, which is quite normal for this time of year, but there have been tremendous storms brewing for the past week. In fact, Karen and I chose to cut our trek short due to an impending storm and witnessed this again first hand on Friday evening. We must have watched the lightning dancing in the clouds, backed by deafening thunder, for about 40 to 50 minutes before the heavens opened and the rain lashed down.
Our journey back to Kathmandu from Chitwan on Saturday morning was halted by an accident along the route. A transporter carrying UN vehicles, possibly en-route to the disaster area, had overturned creating a crowd of Nepalese onlookers, which is usually the case when anything vaguely interesting happens. With only one main road into Kathmandu from Chitwan and Pokhara, it was just a case of waiting until a crane had righted the transporter allowing us to go on our way.
Nepal is a country of extremes. The mountains are higher, that goes without saying. The storms are greater, especially during the monsoon, but the flip-side is the landscape is beautiful and varied, the weather is great if you visit at the right time and the people are possibly the friendliest you will meet on your travels. An amazing place to visit if you ever get the chance.