Tibet Road Cycling Ultra Challenge Trip 2017

For non China visitors check out the high res video on Vimeo here.

 

For 2017 we are offering 2 Tibet trips ;

1. Serk Tibet Ultra Challenge Adventure (May 26th – June 7th)
2. Serk Tibet Challenge Adventure (July 21st – August 2nd)

The Ultra Challenge Adventure is squarely aimed at those riders interested in pushing the limits in terms of both distance and climbing in Tibet.

The Challenge Adventure is more focussed on enjoying the culture and landscape at a moderate pace. It’s still super challenging and you’ll be riding on some of the highest roads in the World reaching heights above 5000m elevation so its no walk in the park.

Tibet Ultra Challenge Adventure – Conquer the rooftop of the world.


Level of difficulty :
 4.5/5

Tourism / Cycling Balance : 30/70


Rider Level :
 Elite and Intermediate level riders. Beginner level riders will find the Challenge Adventure more suitable.

 

A once in a lifetime experience – a chance to surround yourself in the ancient cultures of Tibet and ride through its stunning landscapes on your road bike.

Tibet is one of the world’s greatest travel experiences. Due the historical lack of access for foreigners and it’s stunning Himalayan views, high plateau, monasteries and extraordinary people the region has evoked images of a lost Shangri La.

This part of the world is still politically sensitive and hence travel for foreigners is restrictive (for example you cannot organise your own cycling trip in Tibet – you need a guide and an agent). Despite this Serk have taken the time to carefully craft an experience which will regularly stop you in your tracks and leave you feeling privileged to have explored this unique region before it completely falls into the clutches of modernisation.

We combine challenging and spectacular cycling with a selection of the most rewarding cultural and natural sites. We know the best hotels and have hand picked the greatest places to sample local food. And best of all we provide you with a window to explore ‘real’ Tibet from the seat of your own bicycle and this is where the true rewards lie.

Expect to be blown away with views of Mount Everest and a little overwhelmed when a bunch of Tibetan children run from their villages to high five you on the side of the road. Push yourself to ride up some of the highest sealed roads in the world and grin from ear to ear as fly down the other side of 5000m passes. To help you grasp the depth of Tibetan ancient culture we’ll take you to some of the most spiritual locations revered by Tibetans and juxtapose this with visits to the places which are popular with young urban Tibetans beating a path to a new modern culture.

All together you’ll travel for 13 days, ride up to 880km, climb 6450m,  visit 10 interesting towns and see 3 of the 4 regions of Tibet.

Join us on this amazing trip. We guarantee you wont regret it.

Not sure ? Check out the smiling faces from our previous trips here or the video above from 2014.

 

1

Details

 

  • Up to 880km
  •  7 high passes above 4500m
  • 13 day trip – 9 days of riding

This ride is very challenging and only open to riders with the necessary fitness & experience. If unsure contact us or join the Tibet Challenge Adventure.

Dates

2017 May 26 – June 7th
Reserve your spot now. Each year the trip sells out very quickly.

 

7

Itinerary

Day One Chengdu

  • Arrive Chengdu Sichuan late afternoon
  • Check into Hotel airport (5 star tonight)


Day Two
 Milin Linzhi

  • Up early for flight to Linzhi
  • Drive to Hotel 10km
  • Unpack Bikes
  • Optional 77km ride to Linzhi city for lunch


Day Three
 Milin – Langxian

  • We leave Milin early morning and ride along the spectacular Yarlong River all the way to Langxian
  • The Yarlong river is the upper reaches of the Brahmaptura River (the fifth strongest in the world in terms of flow rate and supplies 30% of India’s total water resources). Along todays route the river rages beside the road. There is hardly a vehicle or villager in sight so its just you, the road and the river.
  • 176km 1900m climbing


Day Four
 Langxian – Gyaca – Shannan

  • 76km 1118m climbing
  • One final day along the mighty Yarlong river.
  • The road follows alongside the river and snakes through a series of traditional villages all the way to Gyaca
  • Lunch at Gyaca
  • Bus transfer from Gyaca to Shannan (this road is under construction so expect a long bus ride of up to 7 hours)

 

Day Five Shannan – Lhasa

  • Rest day and transit to Lhasa
  • Lunch at a traditional Tibetan family restaurant
  • Afternoon visit to Potala Palace  (UNESCO World Heritage Site and residence of the Dali Lama till 1959)
  • Tonight we stay in a 5 star Hotel in central Lhasa

Group photo !


Day Six 
Lhasa – Nagartse

  • Rise early and drive to Qushu where we start cycling up the mighty Khampa-la high pass at 4780m. At the top you are greeted with dramatic views across the turquoise blue waters of Yamdrok-tso lake and flowing descent down the the shores of the lake.
  • The second half of the ride hugs the shore and takes you through some picturesque small villages.
  • The day’s riding ends in Nagartse where we have a delicious Nepali style lunch before resting at the Hotel.
  • 86km 1340m climbing

 

Day Seven Nagartse – Gyantse

  • Rise early and start climbing along the road to Gyantse. One high pass to conquer – The Kalurong Pass (4950m)
  • Today’s road travels close by to a Karola Glacier before dipping down into a majestic valley. One of the most scenic days of riding on the trip.
  • 100km 1000m climbing

 

Day Eight Gyantse – Shigatse

  • Rise early and visit the local Palchoi monastery and authentic old quarters. 90km along the mostly flat road to Shigatse. We will pass through rolling farmlands and villages. We will stop for some snacks as you will arrive to Shigatse for late lunch at about 2-3pm.  Rest & relax in your hotel or visit the peaceful Tashilungpo monastery, seat of the Panchen lama (optional).
  • We are riding at 4000m today – the air is thin which means fast speeds on the flat. Previous years the average has been close to 40 km/h for the day
  • 94km 64m climbing


Day Nine
 Shigatse – Tingri

  • We drive out of Shigatze to our lunch stop at Lhatse. From here we start riding. Today is one of the hardest days of riding. We will all ride up to the highest pass on the trip at 5181m. After a brief stop at the top to catch breath and grab some supplies its downhill all the way to Tingri. We ride beside a picturesque river most of the way to our destination – Tingri
  • 96km  1300m climbing


Day Ten
 Everest Base Camp

  • After passing through a strict Military Checkpoint outside of Tingri we will start riding the huge pass that takes us into Everest Base Camp. The road is new and affords magnificent views of Everest at the top. After another long descent and climb you’ll reach Everest Base Camp for lunch.
  • The whole day we ride above 4200m and twice climb up above 5000m. Only a total of 1640m of climbing but at this altitude it really takes a toll. Expect to be exhausted and exhilarated by the time you reach Everest Base Camp
  • You’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the magnificent views on the world’s highest mountain. After lunch we drive back down the road to Lhatse (180km)
  • 92km 1638m climbing

 

4


Day Eleven
 Lhatse – Shigatze

  • Up early for our last day of riding and one more Tibetan High Pass – 4500m
  • 154km / 950m climbing


Day Twelve
 Shigatze – Lhasa

  • We leave early and arrive in Lhasa just after lunch
  • Pack bikes
  • Celebration dinner – you deserve it !



Day Thirteen Lhasa – Beijing

  • Morning flight back to Beijing.

 

Cost

Cost vary based on numbers of riders and seasonal adjustments in Tibet. Please fill out the form below for a quote.

 

Cost includes :

  • 12 nights accommodation in the best hotels available in the areas we visit – these range from 3 star to 5 star. Twin Share (single supplement available on request).
  • 1 welcome dinner in Lhasa +  1 celebration dinner at the end of the trip
  • Airport transfers in Lhasa
  • Logistics-support vehicles (passenger + safety vehicle as necessary to guarantee a seat for everyone. )
  • Services of trip leader, guide, local support staff & bike mechanic
  • Tibet Travel Permit & other necessary permits (Everest region) for foreigners
  • Entrance fees to Potala Palace, Yamdrok Yumtso Lake, Tashilhunpo Monastery, Mount Everest Park fees.
  • Medical Supplies: oxygen bags/bottles; basic 1st-aid kit
  • Supplies of bottled drinking water
  • Cycling jersey per participant
  • High quality handbook (100 pages) available as an e-book
  • Coordination meetings & Pre-departure briefings via wechat group
  • GPS files for each day’s riding – available for both Garmin devices and Smartphones


Not included :

  • Airfare – budget 5000 – 6000 from Beijing if you book early
  • Meals not listed above and personal consumption
  • Personal consumption – dinner, lunch, snacks, alcohol etc apart from welcome dinner and final dinner
  • Tips for Tibetan guide and drivers (budget US$5 per day per rider)
  • Bike packing (we can do this for an extra fee if required)


What is expected of the rider :

  • Intermediate to advanced cycling skill – experience in climbing / descending and long distance riding (contact us if you are not sure).
  • Ability to undertake basic bike maintenance (change your own tubes, pack and unpack your own bike)
  • Follow all road rules
  • Follow instructions from ride leader at all times
  • Ride safely
  • To understand that there is a daily time schedule which riders must stick to. If you are too fast you may have to wait or if too slow/ mechanical or other issue you may need to get into our vehicles to catch up with rest of group
  • To have undertaken adequate training before the ride so as to not excessively slow down the whole group (if this is the case you may be asked to get into the van/bus at various times to stay on schedule)


Training :

Over the warmer months we will organise a series of longer training rides to prepare you for the experience. Stay tuned for details.

Questions :

Send us an email or contact us via weixin (ID – serkcycling)

Express your interest here. Once we’ve received the form we will send you prices and further information.