|through Kara-K chi Pass (3360m) were they do coal mining it should be another beautiful place but as you can imagine the coal mining spoils many places still interesting and especially the area where some families live in what you could call caravans without wheels - made of corrugated iron and on stilts but permanent not very cosy looking I'd rather a yurt. Our next camp and no shower as yet! was near a creek but not clean enough or big enough for washing Hiro and I prepared dinner _ I did a big dish of what started out as baked apples apples are one of the main crops around here and ended up as apples with the filling over the top and done on the gas cooker - improvisation is paramount in camp cooking. Hiro's meat sauce to go over rice was well received tho' we do have a couple of people who don't like anything spicy - so they just didn't eat as much. Headed up the road to a small village that had a hospital to deliver a suitcase full of supplies brought from Canada by our Chamila (an Indian / Canadian from Ottawa) the parcel was really appreciated and many photos were taken - I went bread shopping for our lunch and managed to find some fresh pasty type things which were filled with potato and onion they were delicious (so said Carol). Camera battery died so no photos and our next excitement was more snow this time much thicker in fact we had a white out while driving through the Utmek Pass 3323m. Then the Alabel Pass It was beautiful and we got to stop at the top of the pass and play in the snow this time quite deep and really fluffy as it was still falling. all above us was white except for the cows and sheep huddling together - again unseasonal snow and the locals bringing their animals down much earlier than usual. I didn't stay out too long as not really dressed for it and had put my hat in my suitcase - a t shirt and jacket are not really appropriate for snow apparently. The bottom of the pass is known as 'Many Flowers' and the main income is from honey so lots of road side stalls selling it. followed the Chichkan River to the Tolstogul Reservoir Where we camped for the night - I actually went in for a swim mainly to get a bit clean took the soap with me but didn't wash my hair wasn't sure if I'd be able to get it dry. the water was quite OK not too cold but the bottom was very weedy - the water was actually warmer than at our last hotel with a pool.