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A Walk on the Clouds

18 May 2010

Filmmakers Anna Colom and Fernando Ferré are in Nepal’s Himalayan highlands near Khumbu, working on an MRG-commissioned film project. Here they share their experiences as they trek to the top of the world.

Finally we are back from the Khumbu Valley, one of Nepal’s most mountainous areas. We have spent ten days of trekking and meeting great people while shooting the documentary on how climate change is affecting indigenous peoples in the area.

We took a propeller plane from Kathmandu to Lukla, where the trek started. We had a frightening landing in one of the most dangerous runways in the world: it is a short airstrip at 2886 meters of altitude, in a ‘flatted’ hilltop.

Lukla airport, Nepal
Lukla airport, Nepal

Along with Anna (director of the film), Lhakpa (Sherpa guide), two porters and two Nepalese Liaison Officers, we started our 10-day trek that took us through awesome valleys, full of pine tree forests and white water rapids up to the Imja Glacier at 5010 meters of altitude. Once there, we could only see rock, ice, water and the highest peaks in the world, of more than 8.000 metres of altitude, like knives pointing to the sky.

Lhakpa, a Sherpa guide, with the towering peak of Lhotse
Lhakpa, a Sherpa guide, with the towering peak of Lhotse

Everest, Lhotse, Makalu… wherever you looked at it was impossible not to feel so small in comparison to these tremendous walls full of snow and ice. AMAZING!

Anna and I were very lucky that we did not suffer the symptoms of high altitude sickness: from headache and lack of appetite to blood coughing. We met a few people on the way that had to be taken down to Kathmandu by helicopter.

Sherpa people are friendly and smiley, with deep traditions and a simple lifestyle: farming potatoes, herding yaks, walking long distances to collect water and rising a healthy family are their every-day tasks… all of this framed in this unique tough, remote but superb landscape.

Sherpa Woman in Khumbu region, Nepal
Sherpa woman in Khumbu region, Nepal

Above are some pictures of our hard days in the Khumbu region. We have not posted pictures or videos of the interviews, since the production rights belong to the NGO Minority Rights Group, who is commissioning the film project and making all of this happen. I really appreciate it and thank them for this opportunity. – Chueco Ferré

Original post and more photographs here.

This article reflects the sole opinion of its author and does not engage MRG’s responsibility.