Having crossed the Thorung La we are now in another drainage, that of the Kali Gandaki. It is much dryer than the Marsyangdi valley that we were in before the pass. It also seems much more prosperous. The Kali Gandaki is a broader valley so the road construction has been more successful in producing a reasonably good road. Fortunately, the Annapurna circuit trail often leaves the road and wanders through less accessible towns and countryside.
Don has rejoined us. He flew from Pokhara to Jomsom this morning and walked today’s short stage to Marpha. He is still suffering from a cold, as we all are, but it is great to have him back.
Marpha is an old but well organized town. It is surrounded by apple orchards, which find their way into a variety of products such as dried apples, apple cider, and apple brandy. The town is dominated by a large monastery with excellent paintings, some 400 years old, and a great view over the well-used rooftops of the town.