Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Fascinating Valleys

Valleys fascinate me. It may be because of Ziro, which is a valley though many people prefer to call it a plateau. Valleys everywhere remind me of Ziro.

This is a real plateau in the Peruvian Andes. Hours of driving through this vast expanse of plain area on the Lima-Huanuco highway gives the impression that the hilly roads have ended, until one starts descending again to Huanuco! No trees except for lots of shrubs. The picture below is taken in November which is summer in the southern hemisphere. This area is, naturally, snow-covered in winter.

Paro valley in Bhutan could be a replica of Ziro. Same vegetation and landscape - pine trees, gentle hills, paddy fields, small winding roads.

Mechuka in West Siang district, Arunachal Pradesh has the same landscape again – pine trees, ferns, gentle hills, but much higher snow-covered mountains in the background. No paddy fields. Most areas resemble dry millet-cultivated areas (lyapyo) at Ziro. Walking on the tracks is sheer pleasure. Though motorable roads are being constructed to connect all the villages surrounding Mechuka town, these tracks will continue to be used in the years to come.

Kathmandu valley is much bigger. The city has grown big, really big. The outskirts still retain what the old-timers say signify the valley that was.

German valley in West Virginia, USA. Entirely different vegetation, but same looks to laymen like me. Same landscape. Makes one really homesick.