We left Gilgit and moved to the Diran Hotel in Minapin lat/lon, a cozy place with white chairs in the manicured orchard amid scenes of recklessly scattered majestic mountains. Sitting in an orchard at 2,055 meters and staring at a 7,788 mountain (Rakaposhi) is not an everyday occurrence. Pakistan has some of the sharpest elevation differences in the world. Nanga Parbat, at 8,125 meters, dominates the scenery on a section of the KKH, towering 7 kilometers above you.



We decided to do nothing for two full days and then hike to the Rakhaposhi base camp, an easy two day hike, before venturing on to Rush Phari, a 5 day hike to 5,098 meters.


The village of Minapin is very small and aside from the hotel there are no facilities. A few small stores sell cigarettes and candy, but bread and other food is not available. Even the hotel buys all its wares directly from the farmers. Sarah made bread for the trek the night before.


I wandered around to find the start of the trail the day before we left.




In the evening, the moon rose over Rakaposhi.



After 15 days of abuse on the roads here, the bike deserved a rest.