It seems that Nepal is becoming an adventure capital for tourists and in keeping with this theme Himalayan Single Track introduces a new package “Heli Biking”. Fly high above the Kathmandu valley, hover over World Heritage Sites and tourist attractions well above the crowds, noise and hustle and bustle of the city. Get a unique bird’s eye view of the living breathing culture of Kathmandu, seeing where the modern meets the ancient, then fly over the rural fields and above the National Park on the rim of the Valley. From here the skies open up to rolling valleys and the snow capped peaks of the Himalaya.
Chisapani, our destination, is a Traditional Tamang Village nestled on the edge of Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park on the Kathmandu Valley Rim. This small village boasts some of the best views of the Himalaya possible from Kathmandu and in itself is a worthy place for a day trip or overnight stay. The snow capped peaks march along the horizon and seem so close you can almost reach out and touch them. In Chisapani you can visit the local Cheese Factory and Buddhist Monastery and enjoy some local Nepalese Tea before starting your ride.
From Chisapani two trails snake their way back down into the Kathmandu Valley. The first is a fast and fun unused jeep trail. Beginning with four kilometers of gentle descent passed the Natural Dhaps (Wet Lands) and then drops down through un-spoilt Rhododendron and sub tropical jungles alongside the fast flowing waters of the Nishnumati River. It’s fun and scenically beautiful. As we emerge out of the jungle there is a section of technical single tracks followed by another steep and fast descent back down into the Valley. The ride concludes at Sundari Jal, a great place to visit the “Beautiful Water” as its name suggests, have a picnic lunch or visit the Sundari Mai Temple.
The Second Trail is a more direct descent, steep and fast. But first you have to push and carry a little bit to get to Borland Bhanjyang. From here follow the trekking trail as it plunges downwards. Hard packed clay that can be a bit slippery in the monsoon but in the dry season it offers the chance to pick up some speed as you pass through the jungle, by small villages and then onto the long stone stair case that spurts you our at Mulkharka. This trail is defiantly for experienced mountain bikers and is most enjoyed on a full suspension bike.
If you are an adventure seeker looking for something new, then you should put Heli-Biking in Nepal on your adventure calendar for 2012.... email the team at Himalayan Single Track for more information. Chisapani is just one destination for Heli Biking, throughout 2012 we will be writing about other destination in opening up for the ultimate downhill rush....