Gokyo to Phortse: Amazing hike down the magnificent Gokyo valley

Gokyo @ 4,800m to Phortse @ 3,800m (dist: 17,5km, asc: 440m, dsc: 1,390m)

The day started early with some night & twilight shooting around Gokyo lake (see earlier post). Bag drop for the porters was 7am and breakfast soon after. The banana pancake I had was great and my first sweet breakfast option in Nepal so far. We departed for Phortse by 8.45am with stops for tea at Na and lunch at Thore (Dahl Bat, the main local dish).

The hike was very pleasant given it was mostly descent and I consumed two full audiobooks (“Mr Ibrahim and the flowers of the Koran”, “Nurejews dog”; both in German) and started a third (Ed Viesturs “K2: Life and Death on the world’s most dangerous mountain”). Everything else was keeping busy with the camera given so many picturous views the valley offered. Take a look!

A very special welcome close to Phortse was given by seven large birds (eagle/vulture type) that circled above our heads and started/landed on a rock nearby. Hard to capture, but stunning!

Once in Phortse, our porters met us (the laggards) at the village entrance. Apparently it’s not straightforward to find the lodge. Once at ‘Phortse Resort’, I was positively surprised. Good side (and warm) common room, decent bedrooms (be it that the design with pink walls & pink bedding with hearts is debatable) and decent menu for meals (even “Kaiserschmarn” on offer). Prices for general products / services did improve a little, but not as much as the altitude drop would suggest.

Phortse Resort, Phortse




Hot shower



Billy says it’s worth it. Jo might take a second one in the morning






Mobile signal 


3G strong signal




500ml, 250ml for R450




After dinner there was time and signal to all my son Alexander who is staying with my parents for two weeks over Easter. They are opening the BBQ season today and the boys are staying out in the garden house. Adventurers all over!

Team update: Luka, a friend of Berny, Rory, Sami, Michael and Jo has joined us today. Further, no major illnesses anymore across the team. 

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