Their roving race next year (November 2011) is going to be in the famed Annapurna valley… famed for its outstanding beauty and famed for its dramatic elevation rises – from 1,000 m to over 7,500 m in just 30 kms. In no other place do mountains rise so quickly and due to this sharp rise in altitude the area of Pokhara has one of the highest precipitation rates of the country – over 4,000 mm/year.
This will be an extreme event…
The climate is sub-tropical but due to the elevation the temperatures are moderate: the summer temperatures average between 25–35 °C, in winter around 5–15 °C.
RacingThePlanet’s roving events began in 2008 and are held in diverse countries, climates, terrains and cultures. This year their 2 roving races are in Western Australia and Taklamakan, a desert in central Asia, China.
But it has long been the ambition of Mary Gadams, founder of RacingThePlanet, to race in Nepal. “It’s been in the back of mind for many years now. Nepal is one of the most beautiful countries in the world, and it combines the key elements of a RacingThePlanet event: awe inspiring landscapes, a variety of technical terrains, a challenging climate, and a wonderful culture that competitors will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in.” she says.
Although the course isn’t expected to rise above 3500m, competitors will face a great deal of altitude change throughout the event.
Mary continues, “It’s always fascinating to see who is attracted to different locations, and in Nepal we expect a lot of endurance athletes who are excited about the opportunity to get off trail in an area where this is not usually possible, some more accomplished athletes who have challenged themselves on mountain courses before but never in such a remote and exceptional setting, and of course, we hope to welcome back veterans of other RacingThePlanet events who are looking forward to tackling a race in a completely different environment.”
“This race is going to be a totally new experience for us” she concludes, “We’ve never staged a 250km event in such a mountainous region, and doing it for the first time in the Himalayas is just going to be fantastic.”
Many believe Pokhara to be the most beautiful place in the world and it is already well known as an adventure centre. The event is expected to take place in the northwestern corner of the Pokhara Valley, which is a widening of the Seti Gandaki valley. The Seti River and its tributaries have dug impressive canyons into the valley floor, which are only visible from higher viewpoints or from the air.
It will begin just outside Pokhara, the third largest city in Nepal and one of the most popular tourist destinations in the country. The distance will be approximately 250 kilometers over seven days. The altitude is not expected to go much above 11,000 feet, and the course will venture close to a region called Mustang. Competitors will sleep in both tents and tea houses supported by highly regarded Sherpa along the way.
Registration is open now, so if you’re interested, please go directly to their website.
The charity supported from this event will be the Child Welfare Scheme. It provides education, health care and social opportunities for disadvantaged children in Nepal. Yet another worthy cause…
But that’s all in the future. If you would like to see a little more about their upcoming Sahara Race in October, please follow the link below…