PRICE
From US$ 2996 pp

DURATION
22 Days (20 Days Riding)

DEPARTURE DATES
Dates on request for private groups


GROUP SIZE
Min 2 – Max 12 

Ultimate Himalaya – Annapurna & Upper Mustang

2 of Nepal’s High Altitude XC Adventures in One Epic Journey 

This unique tour takes in the very best of both tours and perhaps offers the ultimate mountain bike tour in the Himalayas. It’s a journey to lose yourself in the rich and diverse culture of mountains, discover the different ethnic groups and lifestyles, changing landscapes and panoramic mountain views and ride mountain bikes. The trail also links up some of the best single tracks, flowing ride sections, and some of the most epic climbs in the Himalayas.

If you are looking to hide away from the modern world and spend some quality time with your mountain bike, then this is the tour for you.

Highlights

 – Crossing the Thorong La Pass

 – Mountain Biking one Of the Worlds Longest Downhill

 – Exploring the hidden wonders of Lo Manthang

 – Journeying through the Deepest Gorge in the World

Who’s it for? Riders who are looking for a challenge amidst the Himalayas. Bike Packers

Length: – 22 Days (20 Days Riding)

Fitness Factor: – Intermediate to High, there are some long carry or pedal -sections.

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

Comfort Zone: – Authentic and Local



Day 01: Arrival in Nepal

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: Warm-Up Ride in Kathmandu

Join us on a warm up ride exploring some of the best trails in the Kathmandu Valley; test your bikes and your gear to make sure everything is ready for the journey ahead. In 3 to 4 hours of riding we will cover around 40 km at a steady pace exploring the rural parts of the valley, single tracks and sightseeing at some temples and return to Thamel for lunch, last minute bike adjustments and final packing for the trip.

Accommodation: 3 Star Hotel (BB)

Meal Inclusions: Dinner

Day 03: Kathmandu to Besisahar by Vehicle

Starting the day at 8am we meet at our workshop for freshly brewed Himalayan coffee and then load up the bikes for the 6 hour drive to Besisahar. We stop along the way to enjoy the views and take some lunch. On arrival in Besisahar we take some time to explore the town and we also meet our porters and finalize our trip preparations.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 04: Beshishar (760m) to Tal (1700m) Distance:- 37.4km

Today we ride, a little more than a 1000 meters of uphill. The trail takes us along the Marsyangdi River, it’s a beautiful section of the ride and 100% rideable. In Tal there is some nice scenery with steep sided valleys terraced with farms and small villages. Tal is situated in a deep gorge and you can see cascading waterfalls along the way.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 05: Tal (1700m) to Chame (2670m) Distance:- 22.6km

A challenging climb makes this one of the longest and hardest sections along the trekking trail. The terrain is rugged but fun. There is great jungle and river scenery so take this stage steadily and enjoy the ride.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 06: Chame (2670m) to Manang (3540m) Distance:- 29.7km

The trail still climbs but becomes more rideable today as it widens back into a jeep track. The jungle opens up into the arid mountain region and you can get great views of the Himalaya as you ride. It’s a good idea to take it steady to allow your body to acclimatize.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 07: Manang Rest Day for Exploration and Acclimatization

Take a day to acclimatize and prepare for the hard days to come. Short hikes can be taken to explore the nearby area, visit high altitude lakes, rest, relax and chill out in Manang, maybe you will not want to leave! From here you will be heading into the true mountain wilderness. Manang is home to the Manangi people and here you can sometimes see the ancient sports of archery and pony racing.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 08: Manang (3540m) to Thorong Phedi (4450m) Distance:- 19km

A short and gentle climb today from Manang to Yak Kharka and then on to Thorong Phedi, takes time to admire the mountain views. There are a couple of sections to carry your bike but for the most part, the trail is rideable.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 09: Thorong Phedi (4450m) to Muktinath (3760m) via Throng La (5416m) Distance:- 22km

Beginning from around 5am in the morning, you have to make the long haul carrying and pushing your bike up more than 1300 meters to Throng La, this is one of the most challenging parts of the ride that will define the true spirit and passion of any mountain biker as you battle the altitude and the cold. But you will not just be gasping from the altitude, but also gasping in awe as this section of the journey proffers excellent rewards with magnificent views from Throng La of the snow capped mountains and superb technical downhill on the other side that will have you grinning from ear to ear, or if you’re a bit 3 nervous perhaps browning your trousers! Alas you will arrive to a warm welcome and rest at Muktinath. 50% carrying, 50% rideable.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 10: Muktinath to Samar (3660m). Distance:- 32km

Today we enter the restricted region of Upper Mustang. It’s an uphill stretch from Muktinath through Chhyonggur and up to the GyuLa Pass at 4077 meters and is 80% rideable. Here there are panoramic views of the snow capped mountains. After a short section of steep downhill we follow an undulating ridge trail down to Tetang at 3040 meters, more than a 1000 meter descent on superb single track. Pass an ancient Mani Wall and cycle on down to Chhusang. From here there is a slight climb and river crossing to reach Chele on the opposite river bank where the river passes through a rock tunnel and then a steady climb up to Samar.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 11: Samar (3660m) to Ghami (3520m) Distance:- 23km

A hard day of riding, leaving behind the river bed we climb into the hills. Four passes lay between us and Ghami, so yeah there will be a few ups and downs today as we cross Nyila La at 4010 meters, Dajori La 3735 meters, Bhena La 3860 meters and finally Yamda La at 3860 meters. Nyila is one of the most scenic passes on the trip with stunning views of the entire Mustang Region and the Annapurna and Nilgiri Mountain Ranges. After the pass we head down a secret trail, known only to our guides that takes us to the Gami where we will stop for the night. Gami is one of the most beautiful villages, situated on the river side with fertile land ripe for growing Phapar (A local Wheat). Nearby the village is an old Monastery that you can visit as well as the local hospital which is supported with aid from Japan.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 12: Ghami (3520m) to Charang (3560m) Distance:- 27km

A great day of riding, with just one big climb up to Chinggel Tharsang Choyla Pass. From the pass at 3870 meters, there is some really nice single-track downhill riding along a little-known trail used by local people and their livestock. . The ride is a welcome change from the days of climbing and crossing passes. The scenery opens up and there are fields of mustard and barley in the right season which makes for lush pockets of greenery and grazing Yaks. It is also one of the most scenic days with the ever-changing colors of the landscape from yellow and browns to reds, grays and blues as the sun moves across the Himalayan sky. Charang is a nice village with a really beautiful 400 year old Gulpa Sect Monastery filled with friendly Monks who like to play football. The Monastery is also home to the oldest library in the region of Lo. Charang is a great village to hang out in and snap some photos.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 13: Charang (3560 meters) to Lo-Manthang (3810m) Distance:- 18km

From Charang we have to cross Lo La Pass at 3810 meters, just before Lo- Manthang. This pass is also known as “Windy Pass” and from here you can view the walled city of Lo-Manthang, your first tantalizing view of this kingdom lost in time and your penultimate destination. In June and July, the time when the crops are almost ready to harvest makes for the most dramatic scenery. The barren brown landscape is scattered with fields of vibrant green and gold rolling with the wind under the vivid blue sky of the Himalayas, a truly memorable scene. The ride is easy if a bit of a long climb, about 25 km total riding distance. You will enjoy the open jeep track trail and should arrive in Lo-Manthang by lunchtime. Lo-Manthang is perhaps one of the most interesting places in the Himalayas and a couple of days spent here sightseeing is well worth it. Visit the Royal Palace where you have the privilege of having tea or perhaps dinner with the King of Lo himself, what an experience! In the afternoon there are three interesting Monasteries to visit, one of them is over 900 years old and displays some of the most beautiful Thangka paintings found in Nepal. The intricate details and vivid colors of these paintings is a stark contrast to the wide-open spaces of the region.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 14: Rest Day in Lo Manthang or Exploration of Ghom

Today we ride up to Garphu. Follow the upper reaches of the Kali Gandaki River, crossing over several of its tributaries. Here you will find Ghom, a cave tunneling into the mountainside which is the historical site of a Monastery and the cave of one thousand windows. The beautiful scenery and isolated Tibetan culture make this day trip a worthy experience. The way back from Ghom is a beautiful single track through traditional villages. This truly is a place to lose yourself in history, rustic architecture and mind-blowing landscapes, one could easily roll back in time 100 years or more here.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 15: Biking Lo-Manthang (3810m) to Yara (4232m) Distance:- 18km

Today there is a super nice single track with mountain views and really steep and sandy single tracks. The ride takes us uphill through a canyon to Yara where we will have lunch. After lunch we ride loop out to Luri Ghumba and then return to Yara. The round trip is 50% uphill and 50% down, around 2 hours return, but Luri Ghumba is worth a visit, this tiny Monastery is nestled high into the cliff face. This is a challenging route for good riders with skill in loose trails with some exposure.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 16: Yara (4232m) to Tangbe ( 4840m) Distance:- 16km

The starts with some really nice single track and beautiful landscape. There is a long climb of about an hour and a half after crossing the river where you might have to push some. We finish our day as we roll into Tangbe, which is a simple and remote village. Tangbe is a tiny village with very simple accommodation. You can enjoy the feeling of being really remote and isolated.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 17: Tangbe (3240m) to Chhuksang (2800m) Distance:- 25km

To start the day we have to push and carry for about 2 hours 3 hours 1000m uphill to Pha totally pushing or carrying, followed by 2 to 3 hours of single track which undulates along the ridge line, before an EPIC descent down to Chhuksang. The scenery on this day is also Epic. It’s a ridgeline descent, with some short climbs, and amazing views. Some of the best views of Annapurna, Dhaulagiri and Nilgiri can be had on this day.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 18: Chhuksang (2880m) to Jomsom (2980m) Distance:- 38km

Leaving Chhuksang we have two small passes, Dajori La (3735M) and Taklam La (3624M). Along the way the route passes the sacred place where the ancient art of Sky Burial is carried out. Here you may see the rare Himalayan Vultures soaring in the sky. Continue cycling down to Kagbeni where we can enjoy a nice Illy Coffee, get our permits checked for the last time. Ride on the last 11km to Jomsom.

Accommodation: Teahouse

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 19: Jomsom (2980m) to Tatopani (980m) Distance 52km

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. 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 stayed overnight in the well furnished Dutch 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

Meal Inclusions: Breakfast/Lunch/ Dinner

Day 20: Tatopani to Beni and Transfer to Pokhara. Riding Distance 26km

From Tatopani we continue on to Beni where we meet the transport and return to Pokhara for some civilization.

Accommodation: 3 Star Hotel

Meals: Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner

Day 21: 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/Lunch/Dinner



Day 22: 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 visas 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 are involved in some places. Along the trails, there will also be some river crossings.

Days comprise of an average 4 to 5 hours of 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 trips 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 from the local staple Dhal Bhat (Rice, Lentils, Veg Curry, Spicy Pickle, and optional Meat Curry) to Noodles, Pasta, Roti, 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 its 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 a 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 are available in 70% of the areas. The signal may not always be fast but it is there.

• Power and access to charging – All teahouses have this and you can charge phones, 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 are 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 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.

ATMs 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 businesses, 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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