A few weeks ago I packed up and headed out of town to add to a photo series I’ve been working on for a while. My target was to spend a few days camping with Tibetan nomads on the Gangjia grasslands. The beautiful thing about western China is that there are still nomads living their lives in much the same way they have for thousands of years…for the most part. Add cars, motorcycles, cell phones, stereos and a few other modern gadgets to the mix and an interesting juxtaposition starts to take shape. Such is modernization on the Tibetan plateau.

We found a small hill near a few nomads (check out the pano) out grazing their sheep and yak and settled in for the evening as the last rays of sunlight beaming over the hills turning the grasslands a brilliant florescent green. A few locals stopped by to see what we were up to and, as custom dictates, invite us to their tents for a meal. The fact that were complete strangers and foreigners didn’t matter to them – a testament to the kindness of the Tibetan people.

As we prepared to catch a nights sleep the temperatures plummeted. Recent rainstorms had made evenings on the plateau humid and cold – around 35 degrees in late July. Winter never really loosens it’s grip on the high places of Tibet. At 12,000 feet and any source of light pollution more than a half days drive away, the stars put on a show.

Around 3am I was woken up to a herd of yak sniffing around our tents – one was tripping over the tent wires which made me laugh. How many people can say they have had a yak trip over their tent wires?

Camping with nomads on the Tibetan plateau is one of my favorite things to do and is always a real cultural treat. I walked away with a lot fewer pictures than I had hoped for and really only added two decent images to the series I’d been working on, but on the whole I couldn’t really complain!