Himalayan Travelogue Part 6 – Moonlight Lodge and the Yeti Skull
I’m re-posting my Himalayan Travelogue posts from one of my other blogs, given my upcoming adventure, hiking the Appalachian Trail, I thought these might be an interesting look back as I prepare ~ Rev Kane
Today we start to go uphill, after doing some walking and crossing several suspension bridges we really started to climb, and at the two and a half hour mark we stopped at what I started calling a Himalaya Rest Stop, where several local women were selling fruit to the trekkers. I was excited to make friends with one of the ladies and buy the “last banana” at least the last one until we were up the trail I’m sure. The stop had a much bigger significance however, it was the first spot where we had a view of Mt. Everest.
As the day closed we arrived at Namche Bazaar (11,315 ft) essentially a giant swap meet in the middle of the mountains. Namche is the place where Tibetans who have walked over the mountains, often in sneakers, come to sell their wares. The village also has internet shops, bakeries and most importantly hot showers and the last sit down toilets on the trail.
Getting to Namche was great and I was thankful for an acclimatization day the next day as I wasn’t feeling great, but then again, 11,000 feet, a tough day walking and a bit of sunburn will do that to you.
The next morning has me very excited, I’m a big believer in Bigfoot and its Himalayan cousin the Yeti, to the point that my brother and I produce a website related to this and related topics, www.dystopiantimes.com. I’m excited because today we will visit a Gompa in Khumjung where they monks have a purported Yeti Skull.
Acclimatization day does not mean rest day, in fact the goal is to go up a thousand feet or so and then come back down to sleep lower than you climbed. We climbed up above Namche with amazing views in the clear November skies including Ama Dablam, Everest and Lhotse. The crazy thing is way up here on the mountain at 12,000 feet we came across a dirt airstrip and actually got to see a plane take off, it was wild.
We walked to Khunde for lunch and visited one of the mountain health clinics and then the big attraction for the day, the Khumjung Gompa and the Yeti Skull. Arriving at the Gompa we had to make a donation to get the caretaker to open the case with the skull in it, but once he did we got to get up close to the small glass container that contained the skull. Unfortunately the glass and the lack of light made getting a good shot almost impossible so here’s my best one below:
I’m a big fan of cryptids like the Yeti, but I’m also a scientist and the fact is the Khumjung skull is not a Yeti skull, it has been previously investigated and it turned out to not be the real deal, the link below can give you more information. The history of the skull, and a link to a picture of Sir Edmund Hillary with the scalp and it’s debunking. All in all it was still a thrill to be in the land of the Yeti and be talking to people who truly believe in its existence.
On the way back to Namche we stopped and took some photos including my favorite one of me in the Himalayas and here it is.