Himachal Pradesh – Himalayan Harvest

Harvest season comes early to the Himalaya. Apricots and apples can be found in abundance from north India to Pakistan. This week’s look at Himachal Pradesh focuses on the season of growth and harvest in the Ropa Valley. The apricot harvest began in August and villagers collected them from the trees, herded them into baskets, and took them to their roofs to dry. The first fruits of the barley season were being collected as well, and flour would soon be milled from the roasted barley.

In this first photograph a woman tends to field surrounded by apricot and apple trees.

In the next photo women are roasting barley, which will be ground into flour for a variety of cooking needs. In between photographs I couldn’t resist eating it by the fistful. The freshly roasted barely tasted like popcorn.

This woman is climbing an ancient ladder, a doorway to the rooftop of her house, while balancing a bowlful of barley from the fields.

Neighbors pause to chat at the end of the workday in the village of Giabong in the Ropa Valley.

A woman carries a freshly filled basket of apricots towards her home.

Apricots are placed on the roof tops to dry. They will later be sold in the market in places as distant as Reckong Peo and Shimla.

One of the finest things about people in the Himalaya is the hospitality, and that there is always time for tea. This Kinnauri woman in the village of Giabong is preparing to wash dishes after making, and drinking, some chai.

If you enjoyed this post I’ll hope you’ll peruse the previous four posts from Himachal Pradesh. You can also find all of the images from this project starting here.

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5 thoughts on “Himachal Pradesh – Himalayan Harvest

  1. Russ im a huge fan of the way you lead your life travelling and clicking. What camera do you use? and what lens? id like to buy an SLR, but im not loaded. can you tell me whether i should buy the entry level cannon or the nikon. also how should I split my budget between the camera and (if needed) any other lenses. id like to do travel photography/ street photography mostly.

    • Thanks Adi, I’m using the Nikon D700. I think the glass you buy is even more important than the camera body. I tend to use prime lenses quite a bit, a 20mm, 35mm and 50mm mostly. A good zoom lens can be nice for street photography though. I’ve been using a Nikon for years and I recommend it, but Canon and Nikon are close enough that you can just pick the one that seems to suit you. It helps to get them in your hand and feel the controls, etc. Once you start buying lenses it’s probably the brand you’ll use for life. Hope that helps and I’ll be glad to answer any other questions. Russ

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