Limited Accommodation Options

I'd arrived at Sarchu, the tent site, evening was fast approaching, the light was going

My face is pale and looking a bit pinched, I'm cold and as I'm at 4200m (13,800 ft), I've got a thumping headache - and this is AFTER descending 30km from the mountain pass. I spot a suitable tent place and head off the road

I rapidly negotiate for a tent - all the while the bloke was looking back up the road for the rest of my group or even a husband, unable to take at face value that I was alone. I got his last tent, and took the Enfield over to the blue tent in the corner

Finally able to smile, but as I crawled inside, the nausea hit me big time, I barely had the energy to drag my panniers in and pull out my sleeping bag. I fumbled around, found my acupressure wrist bands (great for any kind of nausea but usually I use them for my chronic motion sickness).

I emerged once, just briefly, holding out my metal water bottle (thanks to Dave at Anderwerks in Calgary for that bottle), it works amazingly well as a hot water bottle. The guy managing the site filled it with hot water for me, and so I lay back in bliss, as the blocks of ice that were supposed to be my feet gradually thawed out - yep folks, don't forget the rivers I'd been crossing earlier. My feet were still soaked from them.

Fighting altitude sickness, and with no appetite to eat anything, whilst also feeling completely drained I drifted off to sleep clutching a sick bag and my Kriega hydration pack.

(please note, this was another case of don't tell my Mum how bad it actually was - or at least not until I was home safely).

Wet feet

Can't you use sealskinz socks and/or goretex lined boots?


Yes, you're right, I should have taken my Sealskinz (for the uninitiated, these are waterproof socks), I hadn't realised how deep the water was going to be. In my defence, everyone who lives up there and who does this trip said that this year there is a LOT more water and it shouldn't be as bad or as deep as that - I was just lucky!

Waterproof boots would not have helped as the water was above my knees at times - not forgetting that when I'm solo on river crossings I have to wade through the water a couple of times to find the best way through. So my feet get wetter than when I can just ride through. Next year I'm definitely packing the Sealskinz :)