When you think of Nepal, perhaps you see images of the enormous snowy Himalayan peaks, buffalos grazing in fields, small villages with verdant terraced fields. It exists and is beautiful. Behind the mountains however in central Nepal lies Mustang, once known as the Forbidden Kingdom, closed to visitors until 1992. Since then it is open, and no longer forbidden, and since 2008, when Nepal ceased to be a monarchy, it is also no longer a Kingdom. Neither of those facts detract from the amazing experience it gives for visitors.
Not least trail runners. Nepal is famous for its mix of mountains and culture. Mustang is that and more. It is a last bastion of pure Tibetan culture. The Mustang Trail Race visited eight monasteries, one being over 800 years old, and some being located in hand dug caves. With a landscape abound with canyons and cliffs sculpted by wind and water out of the bed of the ancient Tethys Sea, the eyes can never rest. Thousands of meditation caves dot the cliffs causing you to ponder the depth of belief of the devout who stayed in them. And of course, the trails, ancient trading routes between Tibet and India, are eminently runnable.
Below is the first of a number of slideshows we hope to present of races in Nepal. Welcome to Mustang!