For the fifth consecutive year, my friends, John and Parry, and I met in a country abroad. This year's destination was Nepal. Our trip to Nepal would be our longest and most adventurous trip. During our three weeks in Nepal, we trekked for 8 days through the Langtang National Park and rafted and camped alongside the the Sun Kosi rivers. During our adventures, we played cards, tossed the frisbee, dranks some beers, played more cards and just reminisced about the good `ole days.
The Langtang National Park is situated about 150 km north of Kathmandu. Langtang offered a great trekking environment and the allure of less tourists. We trekked for 8 days through Langtang. Unfortunately, for most of our trek it was cloudy and rainy. We were greeted with rain, more rain, leeches, and hills that would go up 400m and down 400m. Although the trekking was tiring, each day we seemed to be getting stronger and stronger and felt less tired. Finally, after four days of hiking, we made it to Kyanjin Gumpa with an elevation of 3870m or about 12,700 ft. For a couple of hours the clouds cleared and we caught glimpses of the peaks surrounding Kyanjim. While we were in Kyanjin Gompa, we met a South African who was training to climb a 8000m peak in Tibet. We would later meet up with him in Kathmandu where we played cards and enjoyed some "quiet" beers until 3 am. During our trek, the mountains were hidden behind the clouds. Finally, on our final day of the trek, the sky was clear and we got amazing views of the mountains.
After trekking, we went on a rafting trip down the Sun Kosi river. Over the next eight days we traveled 270 km down the Sun Kosi and we went through the gnarliest rapids I have ever seen. The Sun Kosi starts off with rapids of class I and class II and slowly works up to class V rapids. The class V rapids had names like Jaws, the Meatgrinder, Dead Man Eddy, to name a few. On our second day rafting we hit our first set of rapids. As we worked our way through the rapids, we hit a wave and Parry was promptly ejected from our raft and so was our rafting guide. After the rapids, we asked our guide the class of rapids; we surmised that they were maybe class III or IV rapids. Our rafting guide, chuckled and replied that those rapids were maybe class I or II. Oh boy! And just as advertised, the class V rapids were crazy. The waves were between 10-15 ft high and they would toss the raft around. My friends sat in the front of the raft and they squealed like pigs when we were in the rapids. Pretty comical but the class v's were a pure adrenline rush. The rapids were definitely not for the weak at heart, but they were festive! At night we camped on the side of the river, made camp, ate dinner, tossed the frisbee and talked about the days rapids and the upcoming rapids. It was a great trip. It was a good start to my time in Nepal.