Gilgit, NW Pakistan 28C, rainy
Gilgit is the capital city of the Gilgit-Baltistan district. It was an important city on the Silk Road. It is considered as a Buddhism corridor from which many Chinese monks came to Kashmir. Now the population is about 10 000 where
71% is Twelver Shia Muslims, 17% Ismaili Shia Muslims and 12% Sunni Muslims. It feels like a melting pot of tribes, religion, culture and traditions; sometimes tens but mostly a friendly and peaceful atmosphere.
This is our third day here and we have been all over the place preparing for our expedition; getting bamboo sticks at the junkyard (the strangest place in Gilgit), getting red fabrick for the sticks, shuffle for Basecamp, ropes, tarpelin, gas, SIM card, 16 meters mattress, postcards and stamps (yes oldfashion), groceries, oil, flour, a new stove for BC, washing powder, spices, exchange of money. We have been to the obligatory meeting with Department of Tourism for registration of our climb, we have visited old friends, been to a 700 years old shrine and already had 3 free taxi rides, lots of mangos, milk tea, phrata and coffe. We have had the neighbours goats visiting us for breakfast, a taxi ride together with 16 meters of mattress in the backseat with 3 persons underneat. We have had a car breakdown in the middle of nowhere, dinner with friends and several visits to the shoemaker.
Now we are testing the tents, packing and doing the final preparations before we head up to Minapin which is the last village before we start our climb.
We plan to arrive Minapin later today and head for Base Camp tomorrow. We will have two days trekk over the Minapin Glacier and arrive BC hopefully the 21st of July. The weatherforecast tells us it will be rain Friday so we hope we are settled in BC then. We hope the weather will be clear by Saturday so we can start climbing to Camp 1. But we will carefully monitor the snow conditions before we start climbing.
Now we feel the mountains are waiting for us!!!
I am unsure about further internett access but I am happy to have Irene, Maria and Jentesport to forward my Sat phone messangers to you.
Stay tuned and enjoy your summer!!
Greatings from NW Pakistan and the Diran Expedition Team
Buy your awesome Aclima gear at www.jentesport.no
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