Rating – Red – Long climb, over 4500m elevation gain in 5 – 6 days.
Best time to Visit – April to November.
Access – By road (8 Hours) from Kathmandu and Besisahar and then ride starts.
Accommodation – Tea houses
The panoramic valley of Manang and the trails that connect the several villages around is a journey to be had. Trails in Nagawal, Braka, Khangsar all scream of an epic ride with an epic view. Make your way up to Tilicho Lake which is the world’s highest altitude lake situated at an altitude of 4,949m from sea level and the ride gets gnarly and demands the best of skills. End up in Yak Kharka and the view of Gangapurna, Annapurna along with a peek at the trails that leads to Thorang Phedi is visible. Manang has trails that can be done by riders with moderate skills to some trails that require pro level skills. One thing that’s consistent with the access to the trail is that you need to have a good level of fitness to hike a bike in high elevation as the downhill might be exhilarating but the views while pushing the bike up is a motivation like nothing else.
Annapurna circuit is a beautiful and popular place to mountain bike as it takes you through distinct regional scenery of rivers, flora, fauna and above all – mountains. Lamjung, Manang, Mustang and Myagdi are the regions the bike tour will pass through in which Lamjung and Myagdi are lowland areas as they are below 700m. Manang and Mustang are of higher elevation. The traditional route for this circuit is going counter-clockwise from Besisahar to Beni through Thorung La (pass) at the height of 5416m. The route goes past the Manaslu (an 8,000-plus meter peak), Annapurna II and IV, Annapurna III and Gangapurna, and, of course, Annapurna I and Dhaulagiri — passing through the world’s deepest gorge in between those two 8,000-plus meter peaks ending in Beni. This is a “Teahouse Mountain biking,” meaning there are villages, friendly locals with lodges to eat and stay in along the entire route.
Once over the pass you enter the Mustang Trails Region