top of page

Blog 74 Eagles Nest to Yac McDonalds

3rd December (Eagles Nest to Kagbeni)

I rode out of Pokhara and expected to climb but descended just as much as climb, although the river was flowing to me and downhill so overall I’m ascending. The plan is to ride for two days deeply into the Himalayas almost to the Chinese autonomous Tibetan border, film, take a few photos and then descend to Pokhara in a day, 342 kms return trip. It didn’t happen like that.

I’ve just passed the small town of Baglung and holed up in the Yak Hotel. I’m already behind on a schedule I’d like to rip up but I can’t. What I hadn’t researched is the next 80 kms to Lower Mustang is the Baglung-Jharkot Road marked as the F042 and one of the most dangerous roads in the world. It isn’t.

Pushing my Bike Up a Rocky Hill

I couldn't do this one even with my electricity. Too rocky, no grip in the dust. First thought was I might come off and fracture a wrist or collar bone. The motorbikers that pass me ride up with ease, how annoying is that?

The most challenging part of the route runs along the Kali Gandaki River Gorge or the And Galchi which could be the deepest canyon in the world, it is said, but I doubt it.

Meanwhile I walked up the hillside from Hotel Yak, following the prayer sounds from a nearby Hindu temple. There several old women and men were performing their prayer ritual with the priest. Hands were used, incense thrown, women prostrate on the floor, howling like animals or spirits or just howling old women but all of it looked like an interplanetary exercise communicating with alien life. A concrete cow is illuminated in a tiled containment. The tokenism and symbolism is bewildering to an onlooker until someone gives me an orange.

Back at the hotel I am given a bindi, a similar marking is also worn by babies and children in China and, as in the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia, represents the opening of the third eye chakra. Bindu is the point or dot around which the mandala is created, representing the universe.

As dawn broke and the morning light carried by a strong chilly wind which blew over the mountain tops like you might strike a match. The flags stood straight out and there was a moan around the rafters signalling soon some snow. Suresh said winter was near, that this was the last of the good weather. I was lucky in a way this journey had progressed, dry in Europe, less than scorching in Arabia and dry and pleasantly warm in northern Asia.

Last night I made it to Suresh’s place, the Eagles Nest Guest House which was similar to all the one star guest houses; long tables for group eating seated on benches. In his youth he slept in the same long room as the tourists, as he said, 40 years ago Nepal village life was almost medieval and he was unhappy with how Nepal had changed.

A Bit of Information

The Nepali Civil War was a protracted armed conflict that took place in the former Kingdom of Nepal from 1996 to 2006. It saw countrywide fighting between the Government of Nepal and the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), with the latter making significant use of guerrilla warfare.[10] The conflict began on 13 February 1996, when the CPN (Maoist) initiated an insurgency with the stated purpose of overthrowing the Nepali monarchy and establishing a people's republic; it ended with the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Accord on 21 November 2006

The next day I set off for the Red House in Kagberi. Jimi Hendrix is supposed to haver stayed and also over at the Bob Marley Guest House in nearby Muktinath.

I tried the Red House in Kagbeni but didn't see this.

It's a mystery. No one seems to know for sure if he was up here

The route up to Kagbeni is a stream bed beset with landslides and flooding. The narrow rough track is cut out of the cliff side with a precipitous edge down to the river below. There are sections when passing trucks can barely pass. Bicycle ok. Stone, gravel, rocks - mile after mile - occasional tarmac - but it’s tough going. It takes me two days to get to Kagbeni. This is my kind of travelling and I never want to stop beyond when I am wrinkled and old. I reach the Red House. It’s fully booked but down the way tucked into a narrow alley the Yak Donald Hotel invites me in. Good joke.

Bit of Information

Kagbeni is a village in the Baragubg Muktikshetra rural municipality of Mustang District (Upper Mustang) of the Himalayas, in Nepal, located in the valley of the Kali Gandaki River. At the time of the 2011 Nepal census, it had a population of 555 people.[1] The village lies on the trail from Jomsom to the royal capital Lo Manthang, near the junction with the trail to Muktinath. Kagbeni is also regarded as one of the oldest villages in the Himalayas. The Yac Donald Guest House was beautiful and when I entered I heard the sound of chanting.

Earler down the track at Khanti Bazaar I met three cyclists from Tennessee who had flown their bikes into Kathmandu. They’d ridden over the nearby Thorong La Pass and I was tempted but there would be no charging points for the bike so defeating the reason for being here. I'll return and do it. Round the corner was the colourful Mustang Eco lodge where I stopped for tea. Wind picking up. Time to complete the day and before the sun set I made it to where I am now, sitting in front of a small wood fire. I have listened to Tibetan monks singing their prayer. I have eaten well. write. I edit my film. And then pull the heavy bedding over me in my cold room and sleep, droughts of dreams of the day. It is a moment but it has now passed.

Map of the Day

101 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


Rated 0 out of 5 stars.
No ratings yet

Add a rating
bottom of page