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  • Writer's pictureVoita

Peek-a-boo with Monsoon

South of KTM is a hill that has good 3.000 feet on the city and it's been on my hiking radar ever since I made a landfall in the valley. It wasn't raining in the morning - but the clouds hung really low, engulfing most of the mountain. With a sad heart I had to admit that today's not the day to climb... that high.

clouds / Jamacho

The closest forested edge of the valley to Thamel lies 3 miles west and has been turned into the Nagarjun Forest Reserve. Its top has half the altitude of Bhasmasur, the southern giant, and sits in comfortable 7.000 feet, which gave me a running chance to snatch some views if I make it all the way.

First stop however was Kathmandu's swing by the lonely tree. I reached minutes ahead of monsoon's first outrage. It's few hundred feet above the valley and offers amazing views, whether you're swinging or not. I sat down, got my coffee order in and readied to film right on time as the monsoon raged across the valley.


Single Tree swings

One minute I see Kathmandu.

The next I see nothing.

It's quite the sight, especially as I am hiding uder a roof.

Soon after the views are back with patches of lingering rain here and there.

The landscape changes so dynamically that I could never get bored.

monsoon over KTM

with Swayambhu hill

I moved on, divining my path from marginal suggestions on maps. Countless scooties passing me up and down hinted that I'm on the right muddy path. I didn't fancy hiking 1.000 feet up through a jungle. Especially when the monsoon circled back for seconds.


path into the clouds

/ road warrior

At the top of the park is Jamacho, a viewing tower and a small temple. Rain was closing in again, from three sides. But I beat one more time by couple of minutes.



Jamacho shrine

"exsuuus' mii ... 4 o'clock, go down! and ... filming not allowed."

Guy selling snacks caught me off guard with his directives in clear contrast to freedom of movement. But since I acted as a red mark for the monsoon which was homing in and I had a decent enough timelapse already, I laughed it off and went down. In a heavy rain - seems we ended our game pretty even, after all.

Jamacho views

Turns out, if you go from the front of the hill, as most people would, you're entering via a military area and there's a fee to enter. My little outmanouver was free, with only few leeches hitching a ride up the hill. (My bloody leg kept bleeding, I swear, until 8 in the evening!)

military entrance on the edge of town

From there it was all downhill and Pathao directly to my favourite restaurant for dinner. Who could resist?

Biryani / workspace

PSA: New free to access pictures are on Flickr! Check them out, and if you liked the post - send a ❤️ below. Thanks!

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