Take Only Photographs, Leave only Footprints: The Final Leg, Day Six Hiking in Nepal

nepal day 6 hike
After a good overnight rest at Tolka, my guide and I followed our daily routine and started our hike early towards the destination of the day- the town of Duerali.

I think he get so used to my daily questioning about the trail, whether if it’s going to be easy or difficult. So instead of waiting for my inquiries, he voluntarily briefed me on what to expect twice daily, before and after each hike.

The Day 6 trail began with an hour walk uphill followed by mostly flat and downhill terrain, since we are now officially moving further away from Annapurna mountains and circling our way back to Pokhara.
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike

As expected the first part is always the most difficult, adjusting the body momentum to move uphill. It is indeed always a test of patience, I have to keep telling myself that it I am almost there, I just need to move forward.

Once we reached a considerable height, I had to look back and see the inspiring Annapurna mountains once again, for the last time that my camera lens can reach up close.
nepal day 6 hike

After only thirty minutes walk uphill, I stopped by at one of the guesthouses at the village of and bought a bar of Snickers and bottled water.

I had a brief discussion with the lady shop owner and asked her why she seems to be all alone. She told me that all her children are at Pokhara attending university, only she and her husband are managing and staying the guesthouse and the shop.

If you hike in Nepal, with no specific route in mind, it is common to see family run guesthouses and shops. The price maybe doubled than the usual price in the city. It is acceptable for the obvious reason that it takes great effort to bring the goods up in the mountain. The higher you are, the more secluded place on the mountain side, the higher the price of goods.

It is good to pack a few supplies but it is also good to buy from these shops. The profit they made from a cup of tea or a bar of chocolates makes a considerable difference on their lives, it buys education for their kids and eventually will lead to a better live and better nation.
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike

As promised by Sujan, after a few minutes of continous uphill route passing by a forest, we arrived at the town of Pittam Duerali.
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike

I was disoriented when I saw this signage. Welcome to Pokhara? Wow, we must be very close.
nepal day 6 hike

After Pittam Duerali, the trail is almost comparable to a walk in the park.
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike

Since the trail is relentlessly easy and I know that after non-stop touring across these mountains, Sujan is longing for a quick vacation and to do some clubbing at Kathmandu, something a young man like him badly needed before he went for another hiking job. After few minutes discussion we came to agreement to end the hike today instead of prolonging it into one more day, officially changing the seven days hike into six.

Pushing ourselves to complete within the day, thirty minutes prior lunch we arrived at the village of Pothana. Further validating our earlier decision, the weather remains to be cloudy and what was supposed to be an amazing view of the smaller mountain ridges towards Pokhara was nowhere to be seen.
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike

My guide went inside the small checkpoint, handing out our papers and mentioning that we are now officially ending our trail.
nepal day 6 hike

Almost sprinting, within less than an hour we reached Dampos Duerali. This was supposed to be our stop for the day.
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike

Final checkpoint and stamp on our TIMS card, we continued our descend towards the town of Pedi where the main road towards Pokhara intersects. I can hear the sound of motor bikes and pick-up trucks from this point onward, an indication that we are really close to finishing the hike.
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike

Supposed to be easy going downhill? But after two hours straight walking and no stopping, these final leg of the route mainly made up of steep stone steps leading to Pedi is a painful, knee trembling experience.

I have to tell myself once again “almost there” and I can’t help but smile and admire at the same time whoever meticulously built this stone staircases.
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike

Entering a residential compound gate, an entrance to the final set of stairs that will bring us to the main road and a glimpse of the town below.
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike
nepal day 6 hike

The old lady washing clothes at the final step will be my final reminder of the completion of this incredible journey.
nepal day 6 hike

A taxi arranged by our guide was waiting for us. For once I was happy to hear car noises and move without having to take any steps. Most importantly, not having to carry my backpack.

With an afternoon glow, it feels like I have accomplished something that I am longing to do in a long time. This might be the easiest route but what makes it memorable are the people I met and those brief conversations we had.
nepal day 5 hike

Will I comeback again for another hiking in Nepal? In a heartbeat I would.
A high five with my guide Sujan. Mission Accomplished. “Time to go dancing”.

Day 6:
Tolka – Pittam Duerali – Pothana – Dampos Duerali – Pedi – Pokhara

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13 thoughts on “Take Only Photographs, Leave only Footprints: The Final Leg, Day Six Hiking in Nepal

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