Organised under the ‘Visit Nepal 2020’ initiative, Kali X is a venture into mountain biking at the Mustang region of Nepal. The inauguration of this event was done on December 13, Friday
Mustang is a place rich in cultures. With many communities and different traditions, this place is famous for its hospitality. Also home to amazing trails and scenic beauty, Mustang is a viable destination for mountain biking.
Keeping these in mind, Kali X, a mountain bike festival is in the works to be hosted from December 1 till December 6 in 2020. It is an ongoing initiative to bring more tourists into Nepal. The highlight of the event is to showcase the deepest gorge of the world, Kali Gandaki Gorge among adventure enthusiasts. The other aspect that is also going to be brought forward by this event is the vibrant culture found there- beside the trails- with places such as Tukche and Kagbeni serving as cultural stops among many others.
To analyse the feasibility of the event, a pre-recce was done around June 2019. International trail expert, Christian Mitlauch accompanied by several local experts also went for a trail assessment around August to make sure it met international standards.
The event is divided into two distinct categories; International races and recreational rides. The international races include the Multi-stage Enduro, a downhill race, Cross Country and the King of the Mountain, an uphill race. Meanwhile, the recreational rides comprise of Culture on Wheels, Mass rides and Cyfora. With these, the event appeals to all levels of mountain bikers, from recreational riders to professional racers.
“If you look at mountain biking in Nepal, it has such a huge potentiality. It is not just Mustang. Right now, we’ve got an event and we’ve got a target so we are currently focusing on Mustang. But later on, it will not only be Mustang trails, the event will also encompass other trails such as Dolpo.”, said Raj Gyawali, the program leader of Kali X.
“Overall, our target audience is the rising surge of mountain bikers all across the world. To bring more visibility to the event, we are planning to invite international stars so that the event will get more media coverage, but apart from that it is the growing market of mountain bikers who are going to make this event a success.”
“As more and more people are becoming environment-conscious, the use of mountain bikes are becoming more popular. We are taking that to our advantage. Another thing keeping us ahead from other countries is the natural trails found in Nepal. Unlike artificial trails, these give a different feeling when rode upon because nothing can beat originality. The time-frame in which the event is being held is also an additional gain for us because unlike many mountain biking countries, Nepal does not suffer from harsh winters. So, people can look forward to mountain biking in Nepal during the winter too.”, added Gyawali.