October 21, 2006:
Dole to Namche Bazaar
Got up around 6:30 am. Both groups staying in the lodge got up late, so it was quiet for a long time.
Had breakfast, the dreaded toast and pancake. We left Dole around 8 am. It was an easy walk to
Phortse Tenga mostly through a rhododenron forest. As it snowed last night, the trails and the trees
were covered in a small layer of snow. It was real pretty. Also, there were a few waterfalls.
After reaching Phortse Tenga around 9:30 am, we had the last big climb of the trip: Up to Mong,
about 400 meters difference in altitude. I was really tired and fatigued. Probably the low point of my
trip from a physical point of view. So, halfway up to Mong, I was resting (again!) trailside when
somebody familiar came storming up the trail: Papa Manfred!! He was as surprised as we were. He
had his three pass trip behind him (Renjo La, Cho La, Kongma La) and was still going as strong as
a bull and looked as fresh as the last time I saw him. Unlike me, and I am 27 years younger than
him!! Anyway, we continued up together to Mong, at my snails pace. We reached Mong at around
11 am. Had lunch in one of the lodges where, of course, everybody knew Papa. Several pictures of
him hung on the walls as well. After lunch (fried noodles with egg), we said goodbye again as he was
going to Khumjung and we were going to Namche (and I was probably too slow for him). Also at
Mong were the 2 German couples I met in the lodge in Dingboche.
The weather now turned from bad to
worse. Going down from Mong towards
Namche Bazaar we first had snow, then
rain/snow and after we reached Sanasa,
it pretty much rained all the way down
to Namche. We stopped in
Kyangchuma where I bought 2 Tibetan
necklaces for my sons.
When we arrived in Namche I was toast. We were again at the Ama Dablam lodge where I had the
same room as a couple of weeks ago. I took a shower, shaved and then went to the internet cafe to
check e-mails and tell my family that I was back in civilization.  The lodge was not quite full and I
met several nice people, amongst them a Canadian who just started a three year trip around the
world. I showed them the pictures I took and he and his trekking partners wanted me to send them
a CD with my pictures.

Had a good dinner, tomato/noodle soup, momo and apple pie and, of course, BEER!!! Three of
them. I could tell that with every sip of beer my strength returned.

Went to bed at 9:30 pm (WOW!! That is late!) and slept ok although the cough I had developed
since Gokyo was bothering me. I also had a blister on my lip which started the last day or so.
Kangtega and Thamserku from
Papa and I in

Path from
Mong to