Chaudapheri camp

Chaudapheri camp is a way station on the Rache La trek. This is part of the old trade route that joined Bhutan, Sikkim, and the lowlands of Bengal. The camp’s odd name was explained as a travelers’ direction. This is the point you get to after fourteen turns on the road after leaving Lava. So I suppose this is a fairly old camping spot, much older than the forest rangers’ cabin that you see here.

The mule was dozing in the middle of the mud churned up by jeeps. After it noticed us it walked closer and, in its mulish way, wouldn’t go away until someone fed it banana skins. I was reminded of a description of mules I’d read, partly in preparation for this trip, “However, when it comes to the mountain paths on the roof of the world, the transport mule is about as nimble as the Fat Boy of Peckham on a tight-rope. He falls down; and when he falls down, he falls off; so do your boxes. It is better to use three mules to carry 360 lb. safely, than to employ two and watch them fall over a cliff.” (Frank Kingdon Ward, in In the Land of the Blue Poppies) In these days of 30 lb. limits on baggage, I suppose I’ll only ever get to use one fourth of a mule.

Author: I. J. Khanewala

I travel on work. When that gets too tiring then I relax by travelling for holidays. The holidays are pretty hectic, so I need to unwind by getting back home. But that means work.

11 thoughts on “Chaudapheri camp”

  1. Hauling 60 kgs and happy with being fed banana peels – that’s a contented life 🙂
    The camp doesn’t have a documented route on google maps, do you reach by jeeps, or walk? These places are so beautiful! Last visit we could not focus on the areas around Lava, I see there are many nature camps – need to plan better next time.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. As a person who loves all equines I would agree that is it better to lightly load the mule and not have it fall. In the Yukon Gold Rush horses were used as pack animals and they were so overloaded and badly treated that they often fell over the cliffs edge. There is a pass called Kicking Horse . It is said that the horses threw themselves over in a suicide as their lives were so wretched.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I think they are known for being sure footed. But if they are loaded up with too heavy a load they may struggle to balance it. They may also get too tired and then they will stumble and fall.

        Liked by 1 person

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