This trip is so Epic we only offer it once a year, it’s that time of year when the crazy cat Neil Cottam comes out to Nepal and joins us as one of the leaders for this journey along with our very own Santosh Rai. We don’t think you will find a biking trip like this offered by anyone else in Nepal, its a hard trip to manage and to participate in…but we dare do it, because the area is so damn beautiful and the trails so amazing it deserves to get bikers.
Fundamentally it’s an adventurous bike packing trip which means that you’ll be travelling light and carrying your own kit, it’s what you might call a “wash & wear” adventure. You’ll be serviced in very simple teahouse accommodation and you will experience real rural Nepal at its most remote.
The Rara Lake National Park is heavily forested with ancient pine and once there you will enjoy loamy forest singletrack in abundance. It is a pristine and stunningly beautiful environment, and is rarely visited by foreigners (less than 200 per year on average).
Getting there is another matter. Rugged trails and high passes mean that you will enjoy plenty of hike-a-bike along the way, and thrilling descents as a reward for your efforts. Depending on your available time and experience there are options to take some easier sections of jeep road.
Day 01 – Fly Kathmandu to Nepalgunj. Overnight in Nepalgunj.
Day 02 – Fly Nepalgunj to Jumla. Overnight in Jumla (2500m).
Day 03 – Jumla to Chautha (2800m) – 34.5kms. The day starts early with a baptism of fire – a 1200m climb out of town. The first 600m on trail followed by a further 600m of steep hike-a-bike to Daphe Lagna Pass sitting at 3700m above sea level. A fantastic descent follows and swoops you all the way down to your lunch spot at Khali Goan. An even faster 12km descent follows and spits you out into a river carved gorge. Some stiff climbing on jeep road and a scrambling descent will see you arrive in the remote village of Chautha and your first taste of the simple life.
Day 04 – Chautha to Rara Lake (3000m) – 31km. A mix of jeep road and single track begins with a steep ride out of the village. Eventually the gradient eases and short section of smooth (and welcome at this point) jeep road leads to single track and the easiest pass of the trip (45 minutes) – Ghurchi Lagna (3480m). Further climbing up to high alpine meadow is rewarded yet again with a thrilling plunge through the forest and out onto the banks of the majestic Rara Lake, your home for the next three nights.
Day 05/06 – Explore the myriad forest trails and striking ridge lines around Rara Lake, take the chance to relax a little, or enjoy an early morning hike to take in the stunning views across the National Park.
Day 07 – Rara to Sinja (2490m) – 29km. A challenging start awaits you. After skimming the north shore of the lake for a kilometer or two prepare to shoulder your bike and climb high above the lake. At the summit you will enjoy one last view of the tranquil waters before beginning a descent of epic proportions. A short, but steep and technical (also hike-able), trail leads you down into a remote and uninhabited valley with a delicious ribbon of single track. You will flow downwards for a long time. A short hike down a rugged path is followed by more single track until you hit the jeep road and cruise towards Sinja at the end of the day.
Day 08 – Sinja to Chalachaur (2980m) – 12.5km. With weary legs today can seem harder than it first appears. Pretty much uphill all the way. Fortunately you will be distracted by the beauty of the trail and the many delightful hand-carved bridges you will cross on your ascent to Chalachaur, a remote two-house village set in a beautiful glade.
Day 09 – Chalachaur to Jumla – 23km. Another tough start will see you pushing and carrying for a while until you hit the abandoned jeep road and spin steadily to your final summit of the trip – Jaljala la 3585m. Split your snacks, congratulate each other, maybe swap some high fives, then prepare for a fast and furious 15km descent all the way back into Jumla, a great end to a great trip. Overnight in Jumla.
Day 10 – Fly Jumla to Nepalgunj – Nepalgunj to Kathmandu.
Recommended kit list (essentials):
- 35 liter rucksack or bike packing luggage.
- 2-3 season sleeping bag and sleeping bag liner.
- Lightweight waterproof jacket and trousers.
- Softshell jacket and trousers and a lightweight base layer set (Long johns/long sleeved top – merino wool is ideal). Depending on the time of year we might also recommend a Down Jacket.
- Two sets of cycling wear.
- Flip-flops or extra footwear for when you want to kick off those cycling shoes.
- Camera and sunglasses.
Exclusive Group – 6 People
Price – US$1490 per person, all inclusive (except for Bike and Gear)
For more information send us an email. firstname.lastname@example.org