Punji Pass Trek Day 1
Trip Start Dec 26, 2003
94Trip End Mar 28, 2005
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We spent an entire day making this journey, taking the bus back to Gupis, changing there and getting another bus on to Taus.
At Taus is the splendid Five Stars Bakery, which has an excellent selection of trekking foods and is a great place to stock up if you are coming from either the Ishkoman Valley or from the Mastuj side and continuing. At the time of writing, the owner had a great stock of pasta, instant noodles and other useful items. He listened to us and is likely to add porridge and soup.
From Taus we hired a jeep to take us on immediately to Darkot (pricing a bit random, but 1,000 to 1,500 Rs) and the next few days proved just how important it was to get to Darkot in a day and get hiking
The jeep driver finds us a family who are willing to rent us a side room in their house, which is useful as we arrive in the pitch black of night in an unlit small village.
Day 1: dep Darkot (3180m) 0750 arr Boimoshani (3960m) 1600; 6h walking, 2h10 rest; ascend 1200m
The weather today was identical to yesterday, cloudless blue skies in contrast with the mixed weather we had received in Nichagh.
There were a reasonable number of people on the trail for the first couple of hours as we debated whether to do the Atar Pass or the Punji Pass. We decided on the Punji as nobody on the Darkot side knew the route over the Atar. If you plan to do the Atar, start from the Ishkoman side as the people on that side know the route, whereas the Darkot people had no clue.
The quality of the trail is good and it is a very pretty route. The 1,200m ascent was achieved with what seemed like straightforward ease. We just walked and arrived at or destination.
The campsite at Boimoshani was literally freezing, somehow the geography of the area conspired to make it cold and we were hiding in our sleeping bags before dark.