The Mission Trek to Langtang-2017- Road to Recovery
By Stephen Lee Aug 18-26 2017
The country of Nepal borders the mystical land of Tibet. Stories of the Yeti, Tibetan Lamas, and brave mountaineers, swirl into your mind when you step foot into these pathways and trails that marked past history and intrigue.
The cultures and lifestyles of both the Nepalese and Tibetans have blended through the generations, being neighbors and traders for several hundreds of years.
Our team of three, Scott Clinton (missionary to China), Joe Lai (native to Taiwan and photographer) , and myself , with our Nepalese guide , Cable, and our porter, Binod, left Kathmandu on a early Friday afternoon on Aug 18th to venture you to the region of Langtang
我們這個團隊總共有三個人，史考特 柯林頓（主要負責中國的傳教士），喬 賴（本土台灣人及攝影師），我本人，還有尼泊爾籍的嚮導 凱波，以及我們的腳夫 畢諾。在8/18禮拜五的下午離開了加德滿都帶著大家前往藍塘探險。
Our arduous 7- hour jeep ride into the town of Syaphru Besi . It is only 117km by jeep to our starting point but it is the longest 117km that we've ever seen.
From here we began our 30 km walk, taking a total of 49 hours of trekking in 7 days , climbing from 1160 meters to 3870 meters. Whew… I lost between 3-4 kilos on this trip!
In 2015, the village of Langtang was completely destroyed by an avalanche that flattened the entire homes and tea houses from the earthquakes of 2015.
Hundreds died and were unaccountable for. Bodies forever buried beneath the rubble.
Our attempts to go there was to bring some donated clothing and Bibles to those who were still suffering and in need. But more importantly to bring comfort and healing to those who would receive it .
Overall we saw 40-50 people healed , 30 of them coming to receive Christ, and distributed over 500 tracts and 11 Bibles were given away and clothes being donated to the needy.
Nepal Avalanche Carried Half the Force of an Atomic Bomb
By Ellen Barry, NY Times, Dec. 18, 2015
NEW DELHI–The avalanche that buried the popular hiking village of Langtang in Nepal this past spring struck with about half the force of an atomic bomb, according to a study published this week in the journal Science.
A strong earthquake on April 25 touched off the avalanche, sending stone, earth and snow cascading down onto the village, which was crowded with backpackers, guides and their families. About 350 people were killed, many of them foreign tourists.
The impact was equivalent to the detonation of 7.6 kilotons of TNT, the study estimated; the bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945 was equivalent to about 16 kilotons.
Some survivors of the disaster in Langtang have described seeing boulders the size of cars demolishing buildings or being borne aloft by a torrent of wind and snow. When the cloud settled, only one structure in the village remained standing, a house that had been tucked into the mountainside under a rocky overhang.
International search teams sifted through the debris for weeks afterward, looking for bodies or other remains, but nearly 100 people are still listed as missing.
The new study, the work of 64 scientists, concludes that a mass of ice and snow six and a half feet thick fell off a cliff and “became airborne,” plummeting more than 3,000 feet to the ground below at a final speed of about 200 feet per second.
The air blasts that accompanied the avalanche exceeded 200 miles an hour, as powerful as the deadliest tornadoes on record–enough to blow stone houses from their foundations. Among the forensic evidence available to scientists was a small forest that had been flattened by the blast of air as far as 1,300 feet up the opposite slope of the valley, according to Jeffrey S. Kargel, a glaciologist at the University of Arizona who was the lead author of the study.
“Their limbs were removed, their leaves were removed, their branches were removed–in many cases, the bark was removed,” Mr. Kargel said. “It really resembles the Hiroshima blast zone, and no wonder–the energy is of the same magnitude. It’s really horrifying.”
The study’s principal conclusion is that over all, the damage from the earthquake could have been much worse than it was. Despite the quake’s great strength–its magnitude was 7.8–it caused fewer landslides than some experts had expected, and it did not cause any of Nepal’s glacial lakes to burst out and sweep away bridges and villages with torrents of debris-filled water.
This may have been because the quake shook the ground at a low frequency, producing “comparatively gentle swaying, not the rapid ratcheting that the high frequency causes,” Mr. Kargel said.
Joseph M. Shea, a contributing author of the study, said he had often done field work in the Langtang Valley before the quake, and that he had been powerfully affected by the data about the destruction there.
“It must have been a massive wind,” said Mr. Shea, a glacier hydrologist at the International Center for Integrated Mountain Development in Kathmandu, the Nepalese capital. “It would have been horrifying for the people there. The wind would have been the first thing that basically hit them.”
This is one of many stories and testimonies that we recorded .
His name is Pasang, who was a Tibetan monk from the age of 10. He left the monastery a few years ago and having met us, he gladly received Jesus after being healed of a shoulder problem.
More importantly, we saw the healing of his troubled heart, and being set free from condemnation and the confusion that beset him. Having not lived up to the expectations of his family and friends serving as a monk a lot weighed on his shoulders.
His family survived the 2015 earthquake but scores of his friends and other members of the community died.