Transhumance begins in northern Taplejung

Taplejung, December 16:

Villagers from Olanchungola, Ghunsa and Tompe in the northern part of Taplejung have started to migrate towards the lower and warmer places along with herds of yak to avoid freezing cold there.

“The residents of the mountainous areas have started migrating towards warmer places. They have brought with them herds of yaks loaded with their belongings, food, clothes and utensils,” said Pemba Sherpa, who came to the district headquarters Taplejung, from Phale of Lelep VDC. He said that the villagers avoid the freezing cold winter by moving to the lowlands at Gyalal, Phale and the surrounding areas.

Residents of Olangchungola move down to Chene, residents of Topkegola move down to Papung, those of Ghunsa move to Phale and Gyanla while the women and the children go farther to the lowlands from there, he said.

The males members of the families live in tents and engage in preparing milk products from the yak milk and sell their products at Taplejung bazaar. During summers, the villagers live in their own villages and go to Tibet to sell their goods, he informed.

“I am planning to sell ghee, hardened cheese and other milk products worth Rs 20,000 during this winter only,” said Phursung Sherpa, who came to Taplejung bazaar with his yak from Olangchungola VDC.

Sherpa said that his herd of yaks earn as much as Rs 20,000 every year by carrying loads in the district headquarters.

According to him, the yaks ferry loads of cardamom to Taplejung bazaar and take food items while returning to the village. The women who occasionally live in Papung, Phale, Gyanla and Chene involve themselves in spinning and making woollen cushion.