All You Need to Know About Sherpas 

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Overview

Guides for mountain treks are now commonly referred to as Sherpas. Sherpa is not a synonym for occupation, though. The highest mountains in Nepal are home to the Sherpas, also referred to as Sherwa, a Tibetan ethnic group. They are also native to Tingri County and Tibet’s Autonomous Region. Two Sherpa root words are combined to form Sherpa or Sherwa. The words shar (“east”) and pa combine to form the word sherpa (“people”). This refers to the emergence of their ancestors from the east.

Sherpas are mostly famous for Trekking and Climbing. And if you look at it, most of the climbing guides from Nepal are Sherpas. Not only guides, you will find mostly sherpas during the Everest base camp trek as porter. 

Culture and practices 

The Sherpa language is unique because it is widely used. It is occasionally written in Devanagari or Tibetan script, though.

To engage in their religious practices, Sherpas build gompas. The first monastery in the area to practice celibacy was Tengboche. You can find many of these monasteries along the mountain trails in Nepal. You can infer that Sherpas reside nearby based on this.

Buddhism followers make up the majority of the Sherpas. The Loshar festival is their main celebration. Gyalpo Lhosar is the Sherpa name of Lhosar. On the English calendar, it occurs in either February or March. To mark the occasion, guthunk and chhyang (Tibetan beer) dumpling feasts are held. The kitchen, where the family eats, is particularly well-cleaned in the home.

Mani Rimdu is another festival that is observed there. Typically, it occurs in October. The Sherpa attaches importance to the festival. In the Tengboche monastery, it is widely observed. It is celebrated with stunning views of the Ama Dablam mountain in the Everest region. Monks participate in symbolic dances to mourn the festival. They perform demon-slaying acts while dressed elaborately.

Sherpas hold a variety of superstitious beliefs. They also think that spiritual leaders can reincarnate. Sherpas have a strong belief in hidden treasures and valleys. They have a strong faith in the Yeti. For centuries, people have held the yeti to be real. Traditional paintings frequently show the Yeti as a human-like creature with long, shaggy hair.

Clothing 

Tibetan attire resembles that of Sherpas. Home-spun wool and silk are being replaced more and more by manufactured materials. Today, many Sherpas dress in pre-made western clothing.

Traditionally, men dress in kitycow robes that end just above the knee.

Chhuba, Tolung, Raatuk, Kanam, and Tetung are the names of these clothes. To put them on, do the following:

  • Chhuba – A pouch-like area known as the tolung is made by tying a cloth sash called a kara around the waist. You wear a pouch called a tolung with a Chhuba. It can carry and hold small objects.
  • Raatuk: An inner blouse worn with Chubba 
  • Kanam: Pants worn with Chhuba 
  • Tetung: An outer jacket

Women also typically wear Tongkok. They are floor-length wool dresses with long sleeves. They layer angi, a sleeveless variant, over a raatuk in warmer weather (blouse). These are worn with metil in front and gewe in striped back aprons in vivid colors. An embossed silver buckle known as the kyetig is used to keep the clothing together.

Conclusion

Sherpas are well-known for being accomplished mountaineers and local authorities. They were helpful to early explorers of the Himalayas. Sherpas also run most lodgings in the Everest region. Sherpa settlements can be found along the EBC trails. Moreover, the Sherpa community is the heart of the Everest region.