On the first day of his Great Himalayan Trek, photographer Sudin K.C. was lost in the jungles of Chyang Thapu. It was dark and raining in the jungle, he had to suffer leech bites, and somehow make it through the deserted, spooky night. Starting from the Eastern region, K.C. trekked to the Far Western region, in 100 days, clicking pictures of people of different cultures. Of his hundreds of such photos, 12 are currently on display at the Himalayan Java Café, Mandala Street, Thamel. One photo in the exhibition is of an old Kulung Rai man who is a high-altitude shepherd and lives near his livestock. The shepherds wear a traditional jacket called “phenge” made of stinging nettles. In the oral history of the Kulung village, Lord Shiva wore one of these jackets after the creation of the universe.
“I wanted to know how Nepalis live in various circumstances. There are many cultures buried behind these mountains and hills. This trek’s main motive was to capture these cultures in photos. I wonder if these culture will be in existence forever but my photos will surely be there,” says the photographer.
Another photograph is of woman carrying wood from the Birendra Lake in Manaslu glacier. “I thought I’d help her and offered to carry it till her house but the basket was so heavy that I could barely lug it for five minutes. After that she let me know that she got this and carried it home herself,” says K.C.
While he was on the trek, K.C. was unable to bathe for 17 days. Despite smelling terribly everyone he met on the way was helpful. “The people welcomed me as if I was their own. They even allowed me to stay in their home. This shows true nature and hospitality of Nepali people. In such a short time I felt a strong bond of with those people.”
The photo exhibition will run till the end of the first week of February.