I knew it would be tough, but I underestimated how amazingly beautiful it would be!
Cycling in Nepal 2014 Paul
Four Days Cycling Kathmandu Valley
Nepal is a small landlocked country located in the Himalayas bordered to the north by the People’s Republic of China, and to the south, east, and west by the Republic of India.
The mountainous north of Nepal has eight of the world’s ten tallest mountains (including the highest point on Earth, Mount Everest) and more than 240 peaks over 20,000 ft (6,096 m) above sea level.
I was there for six days in November 2014 at the end of three weeks in India. My main goal was to go cycling for four days in the mountains surrounding Kathmandu, but, as always, I managed to soak up some of the culture and take a photograph or two.
Update: In April 2015 this beautiful country was hit by devastating earthquakes, destroying thousands of homes and severely damaging many of the ancient buildings that so enthralled me only five months earlier. My thoughts go out to the gentle people of Nepal. Thank you for making me feel so welcome.
Why I ever thought cycling in Nepal would be anything but tough I don't know, but the pain was well compensated for by the sheer beauty of my snow-capped surroundings. Nepal is a magical place and I really hope I can return to discover more of it's unique qualities. It was everything and more than I expected.
This was day three of a four-day ride around the rim of Kathmandu Valley, Nepal and although I was finding it easier than day one where I struggled with the rugged terrain, I was still lagging behind my guide Y.B.
With comfort come a certain degree of bravado. Sometimes with bravado comes mishap. And so it happened. I became complacent and was dumped, not once but three times in short succession either onto the road or into the grass by the road.
Some days it seemed difficult to just stay on the bike with the bush track seemingly conspiring at every turn to dismount me. Other days it was just sheer torture pushing myself and the bike up a 6 kilometre dirt track at the end of an already exhausting day.
Bringing their sticks and wooden toys that they had been playing with just previously, the three boys and a girl cautiously edged forward to take in the strange site that we seemed to present. If the boys had been a few years older, then it would have been our bikes that held their interest, but here it was clearly the biscuit packet on the ground next to me that was their main focus.