Exploring Pikey Peak
I love the mountains. Perhaps because l was born in the Sierra Nevada of California, or because I’m an avatar of Shiva: as one Sadu type suggested recently — the high country calls to me. Directs my travels. So it was only natural that l would return to the solukhumbu after my sojourn in Kathmandu. With my bike and full compliment of camping gear in search of dirt. Rideable trails that is. Ideally any way. Starting with a loop recommended to Matt and l by our friend Mads, Which we had skipped because Matts knees weren’t up to it in the aftermath of hiking to Gokyo.
There are no trails designed (or maintained) for biking anywhere in this incredibly steep country, so any ride is going to include some unrideable sections — some pushing or carrying. This particular route is one Mads does professionally — with paying guests — so l knew there was some good riding to be had. But those guided trips have a large support team — porters for both bikes and gear. I’m no stranger to carrying my bike, but the approach to PIkey peak was to be my first experience doing it in the himalaya. The trip began uneventfully enough — retracing our route to Ringmou. All rideable (still super steep and muddy in spots) and getting better all the time — in the month or so (l really spent that long in KTM) since we had been on these roads, the road builders had made significant progress in landslide and mud abatement. About 4 days in the clouds which had been following me all the way from the city reached critical mass — and l was treated to one of the heaviest hail-storms l have ever experienced.