Today was a long long drive with multiple passes to get to Mongar. Unfortunately the weather has not been kind and we saw only glimpses of the Himalayas through the clouds. It was rather galling to be travelling in brilliant sunshine and still not be able to see the mountains.
The forests we passed through changed with the elevation and at 3610 metres we came across a national rhododendron garden and even patches of snow.
We stopped for tea/coffee and were all huddling around a wood stove because it was freezing.
The weather closed in and it began raining; then sleeting. The road got a bit treacherous as the black top had been lifted, then the rain got considerably worse and before you could blink the ride got rather hairy. Our driver was brilliant, negotiating mud that was deep enough for us to get stuck and coping with the slippery slurry that was washing across the road. I must admit that I had visions of us skidding & going over the drop as there was precious little room to manoeuvre. I couldn’t actually look out of the window for a while.
But as soon as we crossed from Bumthang region to Mongar we hit blacktop again and all was well. Which was fortunate because we still had to come through are really narrow section… imagine the Buller Gorge where it is only 1 lane wide, at an elevation of 2500 metres with a sheer drop on the cliff side. Actually that’s a bit generous the Buller Gorge has crash barriers J
By the time we stopped for a late lunch around 2pm we were down to 985 metres, the sun was out and it was hot.