2010-06-15 28 83
28kms to the south west of Pokhara, Nepal.
It was my birthday on the 21st of May - turning 27 - so I had invited all my friends from home to help me celebrate in Nepal's capital Kathmandu. After the festivities the five of us arranged to go on a long trek in the Annapurna Range, so by the time Rob and I had begun to look for geohashes at our destination of Pokhra we were pretty worn out by three weeks of trekking.
This meant that, when we found a geohash only 28 kms south west of Pokhra and close to a road (albeit apparently in a river, the Andhikhola), we quickly dismissed the idea of renting pushbikes and went straight for a motorbike. A couple of false starts - one hire place was dormant during the off-season and one bike was too shitty to ride - we were on our way... on a slightly less shitty bike, an old Yamaha Gladiator with many components such as speedo not in working condition.
The hour and a half ride counting down the kilometres was stunningly scenic even from my view at the back (Rob had an international motorbike license he was eager to wave in the faces of sceptical authorities). Rolling hills, small Nepalese towns, breathtaking river valleys and endless paddy fields - very Nepal. The winding road extended our journey to over double the distance.
A short 500m walk down to the Andhikhola River proved that indeed the geohash was actually located in the river - and close to the other side. Luckily for us (but not so for the Nepalese) the monsoon had yet to begin - it was late by three days - and so the river was wadable so long as we removed valuables from our pockets.
The hash was right in the water on the other side, just in front of a riverside primary school. No shame prevented us from looking like dorks in front of the kids and taking random photos of each other and our surroundings - which were all very good looking. We're pretty sure this was one of the most awesome geohash locations ever (prove me wrong!).
The hire time limit forced us to leg it back to Pokhara, but on the way we were obstructed by the simultaneous phenomena of monsoonal rains and a flat tyre. To rectify the latter I jumped on a local bus while Rob carefully rode the bike a km up the road to a house containing a family that could patch the tube up, while entertaining us with their family antics and embryonic English skills.
Tyre re-inflated Rob delicately rode us back to Pokhara where the bike hire guy tried to charge us for the overtime incurred from repairing his tube. We celebrated Nepal's first geohash with a Nepal Ice beer each under cover from the all-night thunderstorm, which had only got stronger since our return.
Estimated total ride: About 110 kms, but hard to tell Time of hash: 3pm Total time for geohash: about 4 hours.
|Felix Dance and Rob Hutton earned the Virgin Graticule Achievement|
| Felix Dance and Rob Hutton earned the Water geohash achievement