Best Place to Pitch Your Tent

After five hours of uphill struggle on the second day of the classic Himalayan trek from Paro, site of Bhutan's international airport, to Thimphu, the country's capital, your muscles will burn, the blood will pound in your ears, and your breathing will approximate that of someone with advanced emphysema. But when your guide urges you on, trust him—for it is at about this stage that you reach the 3,810-m-high ridge above Lake Jimilangtso. The setting sun bathes the mountains in an unearthly rose, and Venus is visible against a violet sky. The sheer beauty of it strikes you dumb. On the...

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