Tibet trek with Tibetan Yak is an essential relationship between the trekkers and Yak.
Yaks known as “Yak ‘’ in Tibetan and English and it is a very special and unique animal of Tibet. Yak can also considered as the brand of Tibet. Tibetan domesticated yak and yak raised Tibetan. There is a Tibetan proverb which says: Where there are Yaks, there are Tibetans which describes such an interdependent and inseparable relationship between Yaks and Tibetans. Animals are the most important friends of mankind, and yaks are the most important friends of Tibetans.
There are two very large wild Yak skulls that were found in Maqu county of Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Region in Gansu province. After the scientist testing, it shows that the skulls fossils has over 45,000 years history which proves that the wild Yaks survived on the Tibetan plateau earlier than the humans.
Tibetan people domesticate the Yaks for their needs and it has more than 4500 years history. The wild Yaks are always bigger size and much more aggressive, angry and dangerous while the domesticated Yaks are smaller size and more loyal and friendly to the people.
For thousands of years, the Tibetan people have been living with Yaks and they used Yaks for almost everything, especially in the olden days. The Tibetans used Yaks for clothing, food, shelter, transportation, farming, war, entertainment, Medical item and religious tools so on.
Tibet trek with Tibetan Yak was very popular in the olden days that when the Tibetan people traveled from one place to another, they used Yaks for their transportation for goods and also for the older Tibetan people, they also used Yaks for riding when they could not walk for a long distant travel. Yaks as a means of transportation on Tibetan high plateau dates back to at least 2000 years ago. We can also find Yak’s pack saddle in Shangshong in Ali prefecture in the western Tibet and some of them have a thousand years of history as well.
Today, since there are more and more roads and vehicles developed, there are less and less Tibetan people who use Yaks for their transportation unless a very few Tibetan nomadic areas but the way of Yaks as using for transportation is changing and nowadays, Yaks again become very important for another type of transportation for tourists in Tibet and Tibet trek with Tibetan Yaks become very essential and inseparable relationship with travelers from all over the world and Tibetan Yak.
Tibet trek with Tibetan Yak is very unique and authentic and there are treks around Mount Everest base camp, Tibet trek from old Dingri to Everest base camp at the elevation of 4000-6500mts with Yaks and Everest base camp to Everest Advanced Base Camp, Kangshung valley trekking from the east Everest side, Mount Kailash trekking etc.
Why Yaks are very famous for the transportation in Tibet is because Yaks are said that they never get lost when they traveled from one place to another and Yaks do not have to sleep, they can travel from day till night. They can remember their geographical position very well from the starting to the starts.
For domesticated Yaks, there are two different types of Yaks, one is the male Yak and another one is the female Yak but in Tibet, we call Yaks for the male one and Dri for the female one. We don’t call Yaks for the female one. Most of the western guide books, they still did not divide this very well and many western tourists always say that I like Yak butter tea or Yak butter etc. For Tibetans, it is very strange when you say Yak butter or Yak butter tea because Yak is the male one from which you can not get milk or butter but it becomes kind of common in the touristic cities or towns in Tibet.
In the domesticated Yaks, Tibetans use male Yaks for transportation, plaughing fileds and female Yaks, known as Dri for milk and butter.
Yak meat, yak milk with high protein, low fat characteristics, is the main source of nutrition in the Tibetan high plateau and in the olden days, the Tibetan nomads, they completely live on Yak meat, Dri butter and milk as there were no vegetables in the nomadic area and people very less travelled to the longer distance like Lhasa where they grew vegetables.
Tibet trek with Tibetan Yak in the Tibetan nomadic area is something that you can not miss when you trek in Tibet. You can see how important Yaks are for Tibetan people in their daily lives.
Tibetan nomads use Yak hair or Yak wool use for weaving their big nomad tents which was their home for entire life in the olden days but nowadays, they used it only during summer time in most of the Tibetan nomadic area as they have small houses in the lower altitude place in the winter time. Yak wool made tents has a very special characters that it does not get very hot when it is very sunny and it does not get cold when it is windy as it is a wind and water proof. During the sunny day, the Yak wool tent automatically shrinks and reveals small dense holes which can give very comfortable fresh air and sun inside the tents and when it is raining, the tent itself automatically tighten to each other and blocks itself the hole and it becomes a complete water and wind proof.
Yak skin is a good leather raw materials, was made into various kinds of daily necessities. Yaks leather is used for boat to cross the river, jacket, shoes, dram etc.
Yak horn can be used for Tibetan medicine, snuff box, decoration, milking containers, religious tools, butter containers, handicrafts etc.
In the life of people on the Tibetan high plateau, yaks are everywhere. Yak known as the “Plateau treasure” Domesticated yak is honest and simple, loyal in nature, feelings of compassion, strength and courage. A Tibetan scholar wrote: “For the plateau humans, the yak is an ancestor forever, a grandparent, a brother and sister, a child, a friend and friend, a neighbor and relative ”
In the thousands of years, the Tibetan and yak get along. The yak is not only a material phenomenon and a lifestyle, but also Yak gradually enters the spiritual world and becomes a yak culture. This not only includes both historical culture, animal husbandry culture, artifact culture, funeral culture, ecological culture, but also includes the plateau Tibetan literature, art, music, dance and other aesthetic culture which also involves religious and philosophical culture.