Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Hot, sunny, hilly bike ride

Around May 14 I biked from Kathmandu to near Kodari by the Tibetan border to revisit The Last Resort, a place where you can bungee jump, canyon swing, and do other awesome adventure activities. Elisabeth and I had gone there a few days before and I wanted to go back for another canyon swing (so fun) and a FREE fourth jump on the canyon swing (on each progressive jump you can do crazier things). We took a bus there the first time and mostly slept so I forgot how hilly it was. (One friend says, duh - the Himalayas are hilly, what do you expect! - but it's not really the Himalayas around Kathmandu!! Yet she has a point that I probably should have realized that in general Nepal is so hily!!!) Anyway, it was a 110 km ride, I left at 6 AM and did not think ahead about the extreme heat, sunnyness, and super hillyness. So needless to say it was quite a challenge.

I got a flat tire about 1.5 km outside of a town called Banepa (near Dulikhel) - look up "kathmandu valley map" if you are intersted. That put me about an hour behind while finding and getting it repaired at a local shop. 15 Nepalese Rupees for the tire patch and their labor. That's about 20 cents, and I tried to give a little more but they refused! Most of the time as a foreigner, people try to rip you off, charging anywhere from 3-10 times (yes, 10 times!!!) normal prices!!

I needed to arrive at about 2 PM to be able to do a jump. At 3:30 PM I still had 5-10 km to go and it was all uphill. I arrived at the bottom of the roaring river and it was obvious to me that to be jumping off bridges above that river I still had a ways to go! Since I was so late, I rested for awhile as a puzzled local kid came and sat next to me, probably curious why I was so beat. We shared some snacks and I rode about 20 minutes to the nearest town and hopped on a 4-hour bus back to Kathmandu. Yikes!

But this is good fun and good prep for the ride to FL for SOIL/Haiti! I guess that's the only reason I'm posting it on this site!!!!

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