I went to Nepal just a few months before the earthquake in May 2015 and wanted to sell photos to raise funds for the relief effort. We have Nepali friends whose houses were damaged and needed urgent help to make repairs before the monsoon. Some of their houses will need completely rebuilding but the urgency was to get new tin roofs in place to keep the rain out. We’ve sent funds to different agencies and also direct to our trekking guide, Kancha, who’s been buying building materials for family and friends in his home village.
Landslides in Nepal
Of course, rebuilding the damaged infrastructure will take years. Nepal is one of the world’s poorest countries and suffers landslides every monsoon season, landslides that sometimes sweep away whole villages and frequently destroy the road. On both occasions when we’ve travelled overland from Nepal to Tibet the road had been destroyed and we’ve had to trek carefully across the landslide for a couple of hours. After the initial landslide there’s often a delay in repairing the road because remaining boulders are often precariously balanced and may keep falling for several weeks – at night the ground cools, contracts slightly, and the rocks become loose.
Not only have houses and roads been damaged but schools, temples and watercourses in many places have been badly affected and areas of agriculture have been lost along with the essential irrigation systems. Having said that, 80% of the country was unaffected and reports from friends suggest that Nepalis have been getting on with life and getting back to business with the resilience you witness in everyday life there.
Photos of Tibet and Ladakh
I initially posted some photos of Nepal that you can buy to help raise funds and I’ve since added more photos of our Himalayan travels on a permanent page on the website. I first went to Nepal in 1980 and in the last 15 years we’ve made several treks in other regions of the Buddhist Himalaya: in Ladakh, Zanskar and Spiti, in northern India, Mustang in Nepal and Tibet, including Mt Kailash and Tsaparang in Far Western Tibet. These are all regions where Tibetan Buddhism is practised, regions and cultures to which we’re repeatedly drawn.
Trekking in the Himalaya
If you want any information about trekking in these areas I have another website that describes some of the routes we covered: www.himalaya-diaries.co.uk
I’m also happy to be contacted for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org