Langtang village destroyed by avalanche

:-( Details on the 2015 Nepal earthquake are still emerging.

I trekked Langtang in November 2014.

The 2014 Nepal snowstorm disaster had just happened, killing at least 43 people including at least 21 trekkers. That was in Annapurna and Dhaulagiri. :-(

I loved Langtang village in 2014. Everyone did.

Langtang Village 2014


Robbie Barnett relays information from Austin Lord on the Modern Tibet Facebook page:

“The village of Langtang was the site of the largest single catastrophe, as the entirety of village was completely buried by an avalanche that came from thousands of feet above on the southern slopes of Langtang Lirung and Langtang II.

Smaller settlements on the outskirts of Langtang, such as Chyamki, Thangsyap, and Mundu were also buried. It is impossible to determine exactly how many people died there, but the estimate is perhaps over 300 people in total.

The handful of survivors, roughly twelve locals and two foreigners, walked down to Ghodatabela below after spending the night of the 25th in a cave – thus there is no one at Langtang itself. This avalanche is perhaps 2-3 kilometers wide …

Above, at Kyangjin Gompa, there were reportedly fewer casualties (perhaps 5-10) yet many injured. …”

Sad. Sad. Sad.

But there are a few miracle stories to celebrate. Pemba Tamang, the 15-year-old who was rescued after being trapped for five days under rubble.

And 4-month-old Sonit Awal pulled from underground.

baby rescued Nepal

Brave Mountain Lion Fends Off Group Of Hikers


The Onion:

A local mountain lion came face-to-face with a group of hikers and made it out alive, sources reported Monday. Wildlife officials are crediting the courageous cougar’s quick thinking, catlike reflexes, and 150 pounds of coiled muscle with successfully fending off the human foot travelers. …


NEW – Kings Canyon High Basin Route

Andrew Skurka:

Seven years ago I thru-hiked with Buzz Burrell the Sierra High Route, which parallels the crest of the High Sierra between Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Park and Yosemite National Park. Its 200 miles represents less than 1 percent of the total miles that I have hiked, yet the experience proved to be one of the most influential: it revealed to me the grander sense of adventure when off-trail. …

A few months ago in “Short is the new long,” I wrote vaguely about my future backpacking plans. Rather than single expeditions lasting multiple months and covering thousands of miles, my emerging interest is shorter routes that showcase a single topographic feature like a mountain range, watershed, or canyon system. Not only are such routes more practical for a husband and home-owner, but they can sustain a higher level of overall awesomeness than longer trails or routes, which invariably include mind-numbingly boring “transition” miles between worthy sections.

Today I’m thrilled to introduce my first original project, which I stitched together over two summers. The 124-mile Kings Canyon High Basin Route circumnavigates the upper watershed of California’s Kings River and is encompassed entirely within Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Park. It’s an instant classic, and I believe it’s at least on par with the original, Roper’s Sierra High Route, for being the finest route in the High Sierra. …

Two-thirds of the Kings Canyon High Basin Route — specifically, 82 of its 124 miles — is officially off-trail. Five of these segments are longer than 10 miles, and one extends for 21! Save for the very beginning, very end, and 11 miles on the High Sierra Highway (aka John Muir Trail) in the middle, its on-trail miles are typically on lightly traveled pathways deep in the backcountry. …

Finest route in the High Sierra? Introducing the Kings Canyon High Basin Route.


If interested, here are the best links:

Kings Canyon High Basin Route and Kings Canyon High Basin Route Guide – Download $25.00

Rattlesnakes and Bald Eagles by Chris Townsend

Andy Howell – a review:

Chris Townsend walked the PCT over 30 years ago. Back then the trail was a reality but it was nowhere near as popular as it is today. I think the year Chris hiked it only 11 people completed it. It has taken 30 years for Chris to produce this book and it seems he only embarked on the task after encouragement from his new publishers, Sandstone Press. Sandstone should take a bow as this is a very fine book indeed. …

cover… what makes this a joy to read is the sharing of Chris’ discovery of life on a trail like this, the beauty of the desert, the joys of the high mountains, the fascinating variety of the forests and the glorious wildcamps along the way. I wish I could describe this all a bit more eloquently but you’ll just have to go and read the book! …

This is very firmly recommended.