Annapurna Trekking: 3rd Day Poon Hill to Maludai Viewpoint Nearly Killed Me!

Our family Annapurna Base Camp trekking (Annapurna Sanctuary trek) adventure is now on the 3rd day. These areas are so beautiful, and I can almost say they are easy to access for non-professional trekkers, even with kids; it’s totally okay. Also, you will get used to the trekking, your leg muscles and body getting strength and as well as the trekking routine.

The night before, our guide, Mr. Ram, told us that if the weather were good, we would go to Poon Hill to see the sunrise. My husband (55), our son (9), and I (50) were discussing this while checking the weather updates in the Poon Hill area on our iPad, using the guest house wifi. Our neighbor and friend, Rex (58), was quite excited to join us (a very energetic guy; I was actually jealous of him). However, Mr. Ram said that if the weather was good, he would knock on our doors at 5 am.

Hahaha, 5 am!? I believed it’s not gonna happen according to the weather report on our iPad.

But my husband’s voice was echoed….

‘Honey, Sweetie, you have to get up! Mr Ram knocked on the door!’ my husband woke me up…..

…..seriously….really!?

We woke up our son and changed into warmer clothes, including neck warmers, beanies, knit gloves, and fleece. We had purchased the beanies and gloves the day before in town. Additionally, we layered on light down jackets

And it was pitch dark outside.

Then we went down the stairs, Mr Ram was waiting for us then asked us;

‘Did you bring your head touch?’

‘Whaaatttt??’ I said (with a bit of my morning cranky voice, sorry).

I didn’t say this, but obviously not, Mr Ram! You didn’t tell us, and there wasn’t such a thing on the lists you gave us.

Mr Ram responded with a reassuring ‘OK, OK.’ Then, he kindly took off his headlight from his head and handed it to our son (Mr Ram is always kind). We were using the torch function on our iPhones.

As we stepped outside, we noticed quite a large crowd gathering. It seemed that the Poon Hill sunrise option was quite popular here. In the bitter cold and darkness, we began our trek towards Poon Hill, with an iPhone torch gripped in my right hand and a walking stick in my left.

The climb was quite steep with stairs. Poon Hill was quite famous for its breathtaking view of the majestic Annapurna mountains at sunrise. You can imagine how beautiful it would be. However, before reaching that picturesque moment, we had to keep climbing for about an hour. Along the way, several fellow trekkers caught up from behind, and we politely stepped aside to let them pass. But I couldn’t help wondering myself: why are we doing this so early in the day?

Actually, I’m not the type of person who likes to get up early to go running or go somewhere… especially this early.

As we continued, some fellow trekkers overtook us, their heavy breathing echoing in the crisp morning air. When they were overtaking us, their breath carried an overwhelming smell… What did you have last night?! Did you eat a bucket of garlic?! OMG… Anyway, that was all the early morning’s fault…. My apologies, but my patience was almost zero.

Poon Hill is Definitely a Popular Place in the Himalayas!

After about an hour of climbing the stairs, we finally reached the summit of Poon Hill View Point and where the faint light of dawn, so no longer needed the torch function on my iPhone. A sizable crowd had already gathered, all facing towards the Annapurna mountains, which were faintly in the distance at that time.

Our son had arrived earlier with Mr Ram and Rex, who was now busy setting up his manual film camera on a tripod while chatting with others. Mr Ram kindly purchased a hot chocolate for our son (all drinks included in the trekking fee).

There was an observation deck from where you could see three mountains in western Nepal: Dhaulagiri (8167m), Annapurna I (8091m), and Manaslu (8163m).

By around 7:15 am, the mountains were becoming clearly visible.

Wow, it suddenly struck me that I was truly in the Himalayas as I was looking upon these majestic mountains; I was deeply impressed, but if I’m being honest, I had expected the mountains to be much closer. In reality, they were quite distant. And I was chatting with my husband about whether it had been worth the effort to get up at 5:30 or not.

Nooo, yeah, it was worth all the effort to climb stairs, of course, Yes!!

After we had enough of looking at these mountains, Mr Ram instructed us to climb down the way we came and return to our guest house for breaky. I felt a bit concerned about my knees as we climbed down these stairs, but fortunately, everything went smoothly.

Then our son started complaining, ‘My stomach hurts…’

Oh no… seriously? Must not be good to have that too sweet hot chocolate so early?

We told Mr Ram about our son. He then spoke to the porter brothers who had accompanied us without backpacks. Mr Ram asked the elder porter to carry our son piggyback down the stairs. Our son looked a little bit happier (haha), but obviously, with his stomach hurting, his eyes were watery, poor little darling.

For breaky, we ordered an instant noodle soup for our son to soothe his stomach. My husband and Rex ordered the set menu, which included fried eggs, toast, and stir-fried potatoes with tomato sauce. As for me, I chose the mixed vegetable omelette, which had become my standard breaky wherever I went; it’s simple yet delicious. haha.

As I mentioned in previous posts, the guest house menus were essentially identical everywhere, with slight variations depending on these guest house owners.

Unexpected 6 Hours Hill Climbing to Dobato!

After breaky, we packed our belongings into two large backpacks for the porters. While we were eating, Mr Ram advised us that we would be at a slightly higher altitude, so we should report any feelings of illness. He also warned us that as we were climbing up, it would get colder, so we needed to keep our jackets easily accessible. I rolled up our jackets and packed them into my husband’s backpack, as I didn’t carry any backpacks myself; I only had a waist pack to carry my OM-D camera.

Who Would Expect the Hardest Moment of My Life

According to Mr Ram’s explanation, the Muldai View Point was a relatively new route, which meant that the path resembled more of an animal trail and appeared quite similar throughout. As we walked along the path, trying to maintain a steady pace (I tried to walk as fast as possible but very slow), I couldn’t help but feel a bit confused;

‘Is this the right way?’

As a result, there were fewer rocky stairs but more steep slopes to navigate. Upon reaching what seemed like a summit, we really enjoyed spectacular views, just like the exact characteristic of Nepali mountain climbing. It was at this point that we truly began to enjoy the experience (much better than Poon Hill…. sorry still bitching about that experience).

The photo below shows a rest area (as always, the rest of our group was waiting for me and my husband. I was the slowest person; even our 9 years old son was faster than me).

Okay, our son was a typical kid, even when we were just taking a break. He started playing.

After reaching a place called Deurali in Gundlach, we stopped for lunch. I noticed several other places with the same name along the way. By this point, I was already exhausted and found myself speaking less, focusing primarily on walking and trying to distract myself from the fatigue. I also stopped taking photos, so I apologise for the lack of images in this area.

Even my husband asked me, ‘Don’t you want to take a picture for your blog?’

I just replied, ‘I don’t care.’

I love taking photos, not even for my blog. Nepal, you just killed my artistic motivation; I totally underestimated you, Nepal trekking!

After we had a quick lunch, we restarted climbing, not even remembering what I had eaten.

After a while, we noticed that Mr. Ram, Rex, and our son, who were walking ahead, had stopped and were waiting for us. Upon seeing us approach, Mr. Ram called out to our porter brothers, who were trailing behind us. The boys swiftly caught up and exchanged words with Mr. Ram.

Okay, what’s going on?

While Mr. Ram and the porter boys were engaged in conversation, Rex told us that the upcoming climb would be extremely steep. Therefore, the little one would be carried piggyback to ease the climbing, and it’s getting late.

Really?! Is it really that hard?! OMFG!

Okay, that’s good… but carry me too?!

I didn’t say that of course, but I thought about that! Really!

After a brief conversation, Mr Ram took one of our large backpacks, while one of the porter brothers piggybacked my son, securing him tightly for the climbing ahead. It was a dramatic moment, as we prepared for the challenging climb.

After continued walking, I had no idea how long, we entered a wilderness-like area blanketed in fog, there were no trees. This stark landscape was a clear indication that we had climbed to higher altitudes. The harsh conditions, characterised by the absence of trees, illustrated the challenges of vegetation growth at such elevations.

The chill in the air was so intense that it felt like snow might arrive in about two weeks’ time. The biting cold and barren landscape brought back memories of a hike I took in Hakone during my elementary school years, filling me with a sense of nostalgia.

As we were continuously walking up the hill, the porter boys quickly overtook us.

I took a picture of them while they were sitting in a picturesque position with the mountain peaks emerging from the clouds in the background.

And Mr. Ram was waiting for us, we were climbing very slowly (yes, because of me).

Mr. Ram patiently waited for us as we climbed slowly, yes I was very slow. And he said to us,

‘Right now, the temperature is 0 degrees.’

Hahaha, 0 degrees… of course, it’s freezing cold! After living in Australia for 20 years, I haven’t experienced 0 degrees for bloody ages!

I couldn’t really remember how I arrived at Dobad’s guest house. By the time we reached it, it was already dark, and I had lost all motivation to take pictures. I was utterly exhausted.

Feeling a slight headache and the back of my neck, we quickly made our bed in a dimly lit room upon arrival at Dobad’s guest house. Dinner was a blur, and I couldn’t remember what I ate. After returning to our bedroom, I prepared to get into bed. I put on the beanies and layered on a down jacket to stay extra warm inside the sleeping bag. Despite still having a lingering headache, I took a painkiller medication and simply went through the motions. I was utterly exhausted, feeling as though I were nearly dead!

My husband was genuinely worried about me, as I found myself in tears from sheer exhaustion, not sadness. Sensing his concern, he asked me,

“Are you okay, honey?”

And my answer was

“Piss off!”

But it’s my beloved husband, and he laughed a lot.

OMFG, seriously, is trekking in Nepal really this bloody hard?

I was so exhausted and tearing up, and fell asleep in a second.

To be continued……. to the day 4

Scroll to Top