The trail continues through Phakding. Cross the bridge at Phakding and the trail then undulates 1.5hrs to Benkar. Trail is through forest and there are good views up to Tramserku across to the right. Cross the river again at Benkar and climb up through Monzo (stop for tea here or earlier by waterfall lodge) and Chomo to Jorsale at 9,200ft where the entrance to the national park is. Sirdar will pay the entrance fees (if this was not done in Ktm). Lunch in Monzo or Jorsale depending on the time. The trail then drops down for 15mins to the Dudh Kosi which it crosses by suspension bridge. Walk along the left hand bank for 20mins then cross over onto a stony area by the river. Walk along the beach for 20mins then enter the forest, climb steeply up for 15mins and then drop down steeply for 5mins to the bridge crossing the Dudh Kosi before the big climb up to Namche. Cross the bridge and then climb the very steep switchback trail for 1hr to where there is a ruined teashop. If clear you can see Everest and Lhotse on the way up at one of the corners before the teashop if you peer through a gap in the trees. The trail continues climbing, less steeply now for another 1hr to Namche at 11,300ft. Stay at the hotel/ lodge in Namche Bazaar. Good views of Tramseku and Kwongdi Ri from Namche. Namche has lots to offer nowadays. The lodge has phones, e-mail, showers, bar, laundry service, shop outside. Showers, beer, mineral water, cold drinks, phone. Namche has lots of equipment and souvenir shops and there is the possibility of hiring extra equipment if it is very cold (especially on December and March departures make sure pax have enough warm stuff – may have to buy/rent s/bags/fleece liners/down bootees). If pax are cold in Namche make sure they hire/buy extra stuff as it only gets colder from here on up. Temperatures can drop to minus 15C in autumn to minus 20 in winter). There is also a PO in town (closes 2pm), postcards, all types of souvenirs, check-post, museum, dentist, sherpa cultural centre, excellent bakery with good bread and apple pies etc etc. If you are there Saturday morning get up early to see the Saturday market. There are often lots of tibetans in a field in the middle of town selling all sorts of things from carpets to fleece goods and solar panels. Stuff is incredibly cheap at the Tibetan market and it is fascinating to meet the Tibetans.
Good bridges today !!!!
Birds – white capped river chat near river, Himalayan pyes, pied wagtails and plumbous redstarts.