Tibet

The first time I ever saw Tibet

By TOMATSU NAKAMURA, explorer

I was always fascinated by unknown places. I first climbed peaks in South America, but it wasn’t until I moved to Hong Kong and travelled to China’s Yunnan and Sichuan provinces that mountaineering became my lifetime obsession. It was seeing the Yulong Xueshan – or Jade Dragon Snow Mountain – for the first time that sparked my interest in Yunnan and eastern Tibet. These regions have an incredibly vast and complex topography that holds countless unclimbed summits. It deserves a lifetime’s search. The peaks are magnificent and fascinating, and many of them will remain enigmas for generations. I’ve taken part in 37 expeditions over 25 years – but one particularly stands out. In 2009, I set off to explore four valleys in Tibet. It was unchartered territory for me. On the trek, we reached a lookout point at 4,070 metres which had the most magnificent view I have ever seen: Lake Jambo Tso, completely surrounded by stunning peaks. Some argue that scaling these unclimbed mountains is an experience of the past. It’s not. I’ve dedicated my life to them – and I’m not stopping yet.

Tamotsu Nakamura is an explorer.

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Discovery online brings together all the inspirational travel writing from our two inflight magazines, Discovery and Silkroad. Be sure to look out for the print editions when you next fly with Cathay Pacific or Cathay Dragon.
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