PRICE
From US$ 1620 pp


DURATION
10 Days (08 Days Riding)


DEPARTURE DATES
Departure Dates on Request


GROUP SIZE
Min 2 – Max 12 

Jomsom/Muktinath – The Apple Brandy Trail

Experience the Most Popular Short Mountain Biking Trip in Nepal in the Lower Mustang Region.

This 10 day mountain bike trip in Nepal can be tailored to meet your riding skill level from Intermediate to Advanced. The riding starts in the Scenic Hill Station of Nagarkot, hitting some awesome Enduro Single Tracks through the jungles and rice fields. Next, the tour takes the rider to Pokhara, the laid-back lakeside paradise, and the Peace Pagoda Trail. The highlight of the trip is the 5 days of riding high up in the Annapurna Region on the Jomsom-Muktinath Trail. This journey showcases the magnificent of the Himalayas, the rich and vibrant culture of Nepal, and some of the best bike trails in the world.

By far and away from the most ridden trail in Nepal, this short mountain biking adventure takes you into the heart of the Himalayas and rips down some of the best trails in the Lower Mustang region, including the famous Lubra Valley Trail. The route follows the raging Kaligandaki (Black River), famed as being part of the deepest gorge in the world, splitting the massive peaks of Annapurna and Dhaulagiri.

The upper part of the gorge is also called Thak Khola after the local Thakali people who became prosperous from the trans-Himalayan trade and are famed for their delicious food, apple growing, and the making of local Apple Brandy.

Our trail climbs up to Muktinath at the foot of the mighty Throng Pass on the route from the Annapurna Circuit. From here there are many options for some amazing single track and downhill riding, past ancient monasteries and traditional villages. Bump along on cobble paths and get your feet wet in ice-fed streams. This is undoubtedly one of the most spectacular short mountain biking holidays in the world. If you ride with the HST Team we will take you on trails other companies don’t know to hidden lakes, villages, and single track descents. You have to try it once in your life.

Highlights

 – Lubra Valley Trail

 – Mountain Biking one Of the Worlds Longest Downhills

 – Exploring the Apple Farms and tasting Apple Brandy

 – Journeying through the Deepest Gorge in the World

Who’s it for? Riders who are looking for a fun mountain biking trip amidst the Himalayas

Length: – 10 Days (08 Days Riding)

Fitness Factor: – Intermediate

Skill Factor: – Medium Skill Level on technical descents and loose rocky surfaces. Confidence on exposed trails.

Comfort Zone: – Authentic and Local



Day 01 – Arrival in Kathmandu

Upon your arrival in Nepal, a member of our team will meet you at the Airport and transfer you to the Hotel. We have a meet and greet with the Guide/Trekking team for a trip briefing and gear check. We also treat you to a welcome dinner of Nepal’s Traditional dish Dal Bhart (Rice, Lentil Soup and lots of Yummy side dishes).

Accommodation: 3 Star Hotel (BB)

Meal Inclusions: Dinner

Day 02: Nagarkot Enduro Riding Day

Head to Nagarkot, without a doubt, Nagarkot is the best place to ride Enduro inside the Kathmandu Valley. The trails vary in difficulty and distance, but they are all fun. The tour includes a full-day shuttle, for as much single-track fun as you can handle. The trails run through the jungle and rural rice fields and villages and boast stunning views of the Himalayas. Trail rating would be blue and black, the rider needs some decent skills to enjoy these trails.

Accommodation: 3 Star Hotel

Included meals: Breakfast/ Lunch/Dinner

Day 03: Fly from Kathmandu to Pokhara

After Breakfast we leave the hotel and drive to the airport, where we catch a 25 min flight to Pokhara. Pokhara is a chilled out lakeside town at the base of the Annapurna Himalaya. If time is sufficient, we ride to the Peace Pogoda, a 2 to 3 hour round trip with a short yet steep climb and a super nice single track descent to the Lake. Stay overnight in Lakeside.

Accommodation: 3 Star Hotel

Included meals: Breakfast/ Lunch/Dinner

Day 04: Flying from Pokhara to Jomsom (2910m) and Biking to Kagbeni (2800m). Distance 14km

Wake up for sunrise and hopefully catch a glimpse of the mountains before we head to the airport. It’s about a 22 min flight to Jomsom, above the Pokhara valley and deep into the heart of the Himalaya, take a peek out of the window for fantastic views of Dhaulagiri and beyond. The flight is simply breathtaking as the plane’s wing pit almost touch the snow capped peaks, fly right between the Himalayan giants and you feel your adventure has really begun as the small plane banks left and touches down in Jomsom. In Jomsom, we have breakfast and spend some time getting the bikes ready for the journey. Enjoy an easy acclimatization ride of 14 km to the beautiful Tibetan village of Kagbeni. The road is mostly flat and traces the Kaligandaki River right up to the boundary of Upper Mustang. Stay overnight in Red House, one of the oldest Inns in the region

Accommodation: Teahouse

Included meals: Breakfast/ Lunch/Dinner

Day 05: Biking from Kagbeni (2800m) to Muktinath (3760m). Distance 18km

Get up early to see the sunrise and have breakfast. Today we cycle uphill for the most part. Leaving behind the beautiful village of Kagbeni, warm up your legs and start to climb. We follow the trail on the north side of the gorge and climbs up on a dusty jeep track towards the foreboding Throng La Pass. We stop and explore the ancient monastery at Jhong and have some lunch basking in the sunshine and enjoying the mountain Views. The final push after lunch is short and we should arrive in Muktinath around mid afternoon. Spend some time here exploring the Monastery and Temples, two of the holiest in Nepal. Stay overnight and enjoy the local culture of this bustling town.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Included meals: Breakfast/ Lunch/Dinner

Day 06: Biking from Muktinath (3760m) to Tuckuche (2560m). Distance 32km

Our day kicks off with some brilliant downhill and after yesterday’s challenge, you will welcome fun jeep tracks and trails with a mostly downhill gradient! We have to start early as the wind gets up after 11 am making riding a bit more challenging. Chill out on this section and enjoy the views. For experienced riders there are single track options. Savor the moment as you whizz past trekkers, the Himalayan wind in your face and miles of downhill before your wheels. Once in the river Valley it’s a 6km flat stretch to Jomsom followed by undulating trails along the river to Marpha. In the wind this can be a bit tough riding, but stop and enjoy the views along the way. Take lunch in the beautiful and ancient town of Marpha famous for growing apples and making apple brandy! The trail rolls into Tukuche, a lovely old village on the river side. Take some time to explore the cobbled lanes and explore the Thakali culture. We stay overnight in the well furnished German Bakery. Apple Brandy is a local product and a good after dinner nightcap to relax your mind and body after the day’s ride

Accommodation: Teahouse

Included meals: Breakfast/ Lunch/Dinner

Day 07: Biking from Tukuche (2560m) to Tatopani (1190m) – Riding Distance 36km

Again we are going downhill today. The trail starts out gentle and flat and wind’s in and out of the valley sides, through pine forests and small villages. Following the river, there are good views of the snow capped peaks. Stop at the lush waterfalls at Rukse Chaahara (Waterfall) for lunch. After here the speed picks up as the trail drops some 1000 meters with sweeping curves and plunges, rocky sections and bumps that you will love. Arrive in Tatopani the cobble lined village famous for its rejuvenating Hot Springs. Once in Tatopani you can enjoy a soothing bath in the Hot Springs and perhaps a local massage will not go astray, or a cold beer for that matter.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Included meals: Breakfast/ Lunch/Dinner

Day 08: Biking from Tatopani to Ghaleshwor and Drive to Pokhara

A ride of around 22 km on open jeep track, flat for the most part but a few up and down hills. The valley opens up near Beni and we cross the river for the last time, rejoining the main road. From Galeshwor we drive to Pokhara. Option to ride from Naudhanda .

Accommodation: Teahouse

Included meals: Breakfast/ Lunch/Dinner

Day 09: Fly to Kathmandu

Today we transfer you to the Pokhara airport for the short 23min flight to Kathmandu. A member of our team will collect you from the airport and transfer you to the Hotel. Take some time for last minute shopping or exploring this vibrant city.

Accommodation: 3 Star Hotel

Meals: Breakfast

Day 10: Departure from Nepal

Today we say farewell and transfer from the hotel to the airport for your outbound flight

Accommodation: None

Meals: Breakfast

VISA INFORMATION

Entry visa to Nepal can be obtained either from the relevant embassy or consulate prior to your departure or at the airport on arrival to Nepal.

Visa on arrival can be applied for via the Immigration website. Just fill in the details online and then print a copy and bring it with you. Payment is made on arrival.

Visa on Arrival Fees:-
15 Days – US$30
30 Days – US$50
90 Days – US$125 

ARRIVAL INFORMATION

The international airport in Kathmandu, Tribhuvan is located about 7km from the city center. Most of our package tours include an airport pick up. Other options are to get a pre paid taxi from the desk at the airport. The rates are fixed and fair.

INSURANCE

Travel Insurance that covers evacuation from above 5000m is required for this trip. The current entry rules to Nepal also require your insurance to cover Covid related issues. Personal travel insurance is compulsory for you to join this trip. You must present a copy of your policy upon arrival in Nepal. Two companies we recommend for travel insurance are World Nomads and Covermore.

BRINGING YOUR OWN BIKE

On the Annapurna Trip, the trails are a mix of rocky sections and powdered dirt/sandy sections, the trails are generally very dry and abrasive in most places. There are long climbs on most days and some bike carry and push involved in some places. Along the trails there will also be some river crossings.

Days comprise of an average 4 to 5 hours riding and plenty of time to explore and take photos.

We recommend the following specifications:-

• Full Suspension 110mm to 130mm travel xc bikes are ideal for this trip.

• Tire recommendation is 2.2 to 2.3 something like a MAXXIS High Roller or Schwalbe Nobby Nic or equivalent is ideal for this trip.

• Tubeless is recommended and we also recommend you bring a little extra Liquid.

• Hardtails are also okay for these trip’s if that is what you ride.

You should provide for your OWN BIKE:-

Chain Links, Spare Chain

Dry Chain Lube

Mech Hanger or Drop Out for your model of bike

Brake Pads for your Model

Brake fluid for your Model of Brake

FOOD/MEALS

The food on the trail is pretty good. Menu items vary for the local staple Dhal Bhart (Rice, Lentils, Veg Curry, Spicy Pickle and optional Meat Curry) to Noodles, Pasta, Rosti, Eggs and all kinds of soups and locally made flat breads, Oats and Potato dishes. Fresh Fruit is generally limited in these areas.

Vegetarians and Vegans are not a problem at all, there are multiple menu items for both requirements that are filling, nutritious and high energy. Though we do recommend you to pack nuts, dried fruit and relevant energy items. If you have any dietary requirements, please contact us before the trip.

A note on food related Illness:- Most people coming to Nepal get some form of stomach upset. But there are ways to avoid this, in most cases it is not from the food in the teahouses, here are our tips to stay healthy:-

Stay away from oily food in the mountains. Most of us are not used to lots of oily food for every meal and combined with the physical exhaustion, cold and altitude it can lead to upset stomachs. Try and choose light options like Dhal Soups, Soups, boiled and poached eggs, hearty porridge, pasta and rice (non-fired) dishes. Be careful with your hands, wash, sanitize and wash again!

DRINKING WATER

This is an important topic, the tap water in Nepal is NOT SAFE to drink and mineral water bottles are an environmental hazard and we do not like our clients to use them. HST is trying our best to eliminate the need for disposable water bottles.

Our office in Kathmandu has free water refills. You should bring along some form of water purification. HST will not be purchasing bottled water for this trip.

ACCOMMODATION

During the biking leg of the trip you will be accommodated in TEA HOUSES which are a form of mountain lodge. Standard varies from place to place, rooms are simple in some cases we get attached bathrooms, in others bathrooms are shared. Rooms are not heated, but are clean and comfortable and have the following:-

• Limited Internet and 3G is available in 70% of the areas. The signal may not always be fast but it is there.

• Power and access to charging – All teahouse have this and you can charge phone, cameras and lights. In some teahouses a small charge is applicable for this (100nrs). But the electricity is very limited. Carrying a Power Bank or spare batteries is recommended on this trip.

• Hot water is available in all teahouses, but can vary depending on sunshine (some places is solar). Hot water is not automatic so please tell the guide you need it and he will make sure the hotel provides it.

Hotels in Kathmandu and Pokhara are 3 star with all facilities.

CURRENCY

The NPR – Nepalese Rupee and it comes in denominations of 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 and 1000 Notes with 1 and 2 paisa coins. Most places in tourist areas like Kathmandu and Pokhara will accept USD, EURO, POUNDS and other major currencies.

For travel in more remote regions like Annapurna and Upper Mustang you should carry local currency in smaller denominations.

ATM’s withdrawing up to 30,000nrs at a time can be found everywhere in the tourist centers of Kathmandu and Pokhara and also there is one ATM in Jomsom and Manang. Beware the local banks charge 300nrs to 500nrs per transaction above any charges your own bank may charge you.

MONEY EXCHANGERS

Can be found all over the tourist areas and you can negotiate a little for better rates. On The street money exchangers give a much better rate than banks and hotels.

CREDIT CARDS are accepted in bigger hotels and business, the local service charge is normally 4%.


What is the risk of Altitude Sickness?

Our itinerary is set up to allow for acclimatization. As long as the riders take it steady, most people only suffer mild symptoms which are manageable. 

How will my bike be transported?

Bikes are transported in our Twin Cab Bolero with a padded tail gate. Our drivers are all professional and caring when it comes to looking after bikes. When the bikes go on the mountain flights to places like Jomsom, the wheels are removed and the bikes padded and placed in the cargo hold. 


What Happens if I get Sick?

If you get sick, you have options that include, returning to either Pokhara or Kathmandu with a member of our support team, staying and resting in place for a day or using a support vehicle to travel to next destination. It depends on severity of sickness and options available to the group at the time. For serious illness or accident, immediate Helicopter evacuation will be undertaken. 


What level of training do the guides have?

All our guides hold the Government regulation trekking guide license as per the Law of Nepal. On top of this, as per our own company policy, Himalayan Single Track is the ONLY mountain bike company in Nepal to have international licensed mountain bike guides either through the MBLA Scheme or the MIAS Schemes. This is because to date Nepal Tourism sector does not have a safety regulation standard for mountain bike guides. On top of this all our guides have Valid wilderness first aid certification. 

Is tipping expected in Nepal?

Tipping is not compulsory but it is expected and very much appreciated. 

What sort of food is on offer in the guest houses?

Teahouses have a wide variety of simple and hearty foods like Momos, Chow Mein, Rice dishes, pasta, eggs, vegetables and curries as well as breakfast items, porridge, cereal, omelets and local breads. 

Do you cater for Vegetarian’s/Vegans and Specials Diets?

Yes we do. Options are many in Nepal. Please inform us prior to the trip so we can make sure your dietary needs are properly looked after.

Should I take Diamox?

Taking Diamox (medication for altitude) is a personal choice, though it is a good if idea you are worried about the affects of altitude. It should be taken in advance of the trip. Please consult your Doctor before taking any medications. 

What happens if my bike breaks?

Our guides will try their best to fix the bike. Where possible a replacement bike will be brought to you, though given the remote terrine of Nepal, this make take an extra day or so. 

Do you take pictures of the trip?

Most of our guides will take photos of the trip for you. We also have specialized photographers/Videographers you can book for the trip if you need to. (Extra Charges Apply)

What if the mountain flights don’t go?

All mountain flights are weather dependent. If the flight does not go, you will get the option to drive on the same day or fly on the following day. 

Do I need a sleeping bag?

In most cases a sleeping bag liner is sufficient. In the colder months its a good idea to bring one. Blankets will also be available at the teahouses. We will send you a packing list relevant to the trip with full details once you have booked.

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