Going from Lhasa to Kathmandu by bike.
  • Day37

    Keep calm and travel on

    October 21, 2018 in Germany ⋅ ☀️ 5 °C

    To finalize this journey: Thank you to everybody who followed this. And especially to everybody who gave some money for the Faradgang! We closed the funding yesterday and collected an amazing amount of 480€. See the transaction to Faradgang below.

    Stay tuned for the next trip. We got a lot of empty pages left in our passports.Read more

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  • Day35

    Traffic Differences

    October 19, 2018 in Germany ⋅ ⛅ 6 °C

    So now, as we are home again, it's time to compare the different styles of traffic we experienced. Let's have a look at China traffic first:

    In the cities traffic is running much slower than what we are used to in Germany. It's easy to go with the flow on a bike. The vehicles are very diverse (remember the post about e-mobility?). As there are so many e vehicles it's surprisingly calm in Beijing though they have a lot of traffic.

    There are three things to watch: They are allowed to turn right at red lights. And they do! They always turn left, even if other vehicles are on the lane they have to cross. And they don't look when they go into the road. That sounds hard, but as everything is quite slow it's manageable.

    One thing came to my mind just today: People are going more steady than here. You don't have this speeding or overtaking 10 meters in front of a red light. Also we didn't se any big cars racing. Also as a cyclist you can just go on the street. Just occupy a lane, even go side by side, nobody complains. They change to the other lane. A very different experience!

    Outside the cities of course the traffic runs faster, but also here: You can take you space. Going about 900km on mostly federal roads we had less dangerous situations than on 2 hours of Bundestraße in Germany... they really stay behind you if they cannot pass!

    Nepal is much more chaotic. The main rule seems to be: Go until something blocks your way. If you want to get onto another street you slowly push forward at the crossroads. While you do so the traffic will curve around you until it is not possible anymore and then it's your turn.

    When you want to cross a road you have to start walking. There will be a channel opening for you. Keep on walking slowly but steadily, cars will go either in front or behind you.

    Nonetheless traffic is dangerous in Nepal, especially outside of the cities. The roads are awful, busses and trucks a speeding and overtaking, there are a lot of roads in the mountains. I remember an article in the newspaper last year saying that between january and february there were 90 fatal accidents alone in the Kathmandu valley.
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  • Day31

    Air from the Mount Everest

    October 15, 2018 in Germany ⋅ ☀️ 19 °C

    Remember the little bottles with "Berliner Luft" you can get in souvenir shops? We brought some air from Mount Everest. The Bottle was opened at the Basecamp. That's what is left at Berlin nearly sea level.

  • Day30

    Fun stuff

    October 14, 2018 in Nepal ⋅ ☀️ 22 °C

    This is a collection of things I found remarkable during the trip.

    - A spitting bowl in a Chinese hotel
    - Martial arts cat
    - The most common WiFi password in China (8 is a lucky number)
    - Interesting English
    - A sign in a men's toilet
    - Caterpillar fungus in Lhasa. Google it ;-)

  • Day30

    Fun in temples

    October 14, 2018 in Nepal ⋅ ☀️ 21 °C

    Hindu temples are very lively places. There are market stands at the entrance and every body is chatting and having fun. And all parts of live are represented. The carvings in the struts represent daily life scenes. And specifically in Shiva temples there are a lot of sexual connotations. And Kamasutra images. Even between animals. Very different to christian churches were these things are not talked about....Read more

  • Day30

    No light, no water and a hole

    October 14, 2018 in China ⋅ ☀️ -2 °C

    We were prepared for simple accommodations in Tibet, but our favorite was definitely in Menbu. Our guide described it to be the best hotel in town. Which was probably true...
    Unfortunately there was no electricity in the town and no canalization. So we used candles. And bought some water in the store to wash. And while the locals just peed in the yard, we were able to use a hole-in-the-floor toilet.
    We also had a candlelight breakfast because the tour on the next day was 140 km and included two passes, so we had to get started early😜
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  • Day30

    The friendship highway is paved

    October 14, 2018 in China ⋅ ☀️ 9 °C

    That is what the tour description says: The friendship highway is completely paved so it is possible to ride longer tours in a day. Problem is just: The friendship highway ends at the Chinese border. And then you have to go on a super bad dirt road. It's also the road all the trucks going over the border have to use. The trucks are impressively off-road capable!

    So we had two tours: One with very good roads where you can drive a short 70km stage within a few hours. And then three days of technical mountain bike training where you need a whole day for the same distance.

    But at least we finally looked like we have been riding a lot.
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  • Day30

    The food post, part 3

    October 14, 2018 in Nepal ⋅ ☀️ 21 °C

    When we passed the border to Nepal, we finally said goodbye to noodle soup. And don’t get me wrong, we both love noodle soup. But in the remote tibetian villages noodle soup meant noodles and water. If you were lucky they had some spring onions on top and there was Chilli on the table.
    But in Nepal there was Dhal Bhat and indian curries, flavoury momos, dosas, bananas and coffee and last but not least a selection of good beers. Mmmh... What a change.Read more

  • Day29

    The food post, part 2

    October 13, 2018 in Nepal ⋅ 🌙 18 °C

    The further we got out of the cities the simpler (and not better...) the food got. Usually it was noodle soup in the morning, sometimes tsampa. Tsampa is barley flour, which is mixed with yak cheese and sugar and buttertea (it's way better than it sounds). In the evening it was normal sizhuan food, five or six dishes which are shared in the middle of the table and rice. One evening we went a hotpot restaurant, that was really really good. I think everybody ate too much. But we compensated with Schnaps From the big glasses on the counter. In these glasses the Schnaps is aromatised with spices, sometimes with snakes and reptiles.Read more

  • Day28

    Travelling local

    October 12, 2018 in Nepal ⋅ ⛅ 24 °C

    Being fed up with taxis, we tried a local bus to get through Kathmandu. Its only a fraction of the price of a taxis and no one wants to sell you anything. But it can be crowded. They seem to pack the amount of people of a Doppeldeckerbus in one van at times😉. And you have to ask around for the right bus. No schedule and no signs on a bus. But a boy shouting out the destination and hitting the site of the bus to signal the driver to stop or go on or watch traffic. So all in all a pretty organized thing.
    And our bus was not too crowded and at least as fast as a taxi.
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