We walked from town of Tagong into the mountains with a guide and stayed with a Nomadic family for the night. What an experience! Such gracious hosts, big smiles, very hard working and a very simple life. I don’t think I would be cut out for it for sure. I enjoy a hot shower and to pretty much never have one is not my cup of tea. I can manage with a natures toilet but not without my hot shower.
We stayed with a family that had 3 sons and 1 baby daughter. Even though the family didn’t speak English and we don’t speak Tibetan, you learn to communicate with gestures and charades. Learning how they had 3 sons and a daughter was pretty entertaining, LOL.
We had a simple dinner of fried potatoes and yak butter tea. The potatoes were awesome. I have never seen someone cut potatoes so little by hand. They looked like shoe string potatoes. Luckily we had enough left over to have for breakfast so I was saved from eating tsampa again!
This was one of the coldest nights on our trip. The nomads were so sweet. There had been so much rain that the ground was just going to be cold and damp no matter what you did. The husband laid down a plastic tarp and used all their special blanks that have been wrapped in plastic to keep dry. They made our bed as comfortable and as warm as they could. I literally had all of my clothes on as well as my hat, gloves and scarf. I never got warm. It was one of two nights that I wish I had remembered to bring those toastie little hand warmers.
When the sun goes down everything slows down and when the sun starts to come up the nomads were up and working. Momma with baby girl strapped to her back were milking the yaks. Mr Nomad QG (their teenage son who was just the cutest thing) was out doing Nomad stuff and watching baby girl. She obviously loves her big brother. Poppa was out rounding up our horses for our gorgeous ride back to Tagong.
Once we finally got everyone on the right horse, we were on our way. Our 3 mares all had babies so they came with us as well. I LOVED our ride back. It was great to be on a horse again. It was such a beautiful day. The mountains if Tagong are absolutely gorgeous. They are huge rolling mountains. The sky was clear and crazy blue. We got lucky and made it the several hours back to town with no rain until the last 1o mins or so. I would have loved to stay longer to do more riding. My travel partner, Liz was done with that one ride! She was a trooper but riding long days like that aren’t for everyone.
So if you are ever in the Kham District of Tibet be sure to take the time to stay overnight with the Nomads and go horseback riding in Tagong. If you can handle more time on a horse I would have them take you all over mountains. It would also be worth the extra cost if you find someone who spoke English. There was a guy working at Zhilam who was from Tagong and a horseman, had we known that at the time we would have tried to have him be our guide. He had been super helpful during our stay.