McLoed Gunj: Road Bike Paradise to the Dalai Lama

Difficulty: 110 to 139

Ascent: 1167 over 16 to 22 kms.

Hello Sunshine! There is a cycling peak suitable for road bikes and this is the one. There are multiple ways of cycling to McLoed Gunj. The easiest is via Forsythe Gunj (110), while the hardest  (139) is direct from Dharamshala to McLoed Gunj.

McLoedGunj

Cycling Elevation Profile to McLoed Gunj

The Elevation Profile is shown below.

Elevation Profile of Cycling Route to McLoed Gunj from Gaggal

Elevation Profile of Cycling Route to McLoed Gunj from Gaggal

 

The gradient is not consistent and this is probably what makes this cycling route a challenge.

 

Road Quality

The road quality is very decent, actually it is good example of quality road engineering. The tarmac is beautifully laid and your bike will glide all the way to McLoed Gunj, assuming you are pedaling!

For this Himalayan cycling challenge, there are no bike restrictions. However, Cyclocross or Hybrid is recommended.

The following video shows you the state of the roads in January 2014.

The McLoed Gunj Cycling Challenge

There are multiple ways to take this cycling challenge. Your starting point options are:

  • Gaggal – Kangra Airport: This is a pleasant route. This route offers multiple ways of getting to McLoed Gunj. The stretch is under 20 kms, as shown in the elevation map above.
  • Kangra – The City: This route has substantial traffic. This route is over 26 kms. and I strongly advise you to avoid it.
  • Palampur – The Tea Town: This route is probably the easiest, but longest climb. It starts from about 1200 meters and you rise to 2000 meters over about 45 kms.

Currently, the Tushita Meditation Centre is the highest cycling point in McLoed Gunj. Strictly speaking, the Tushita Meditation Centre falls under Dharamkot, which is a village just above McLoed Gunj. However, there are some trails that are under construction, which might offer more cycling opportunities at a greater height.

Restaurants and Street Food in McLoed Gunj

After the climb to McLoed Gunj, you’ll need to recharge. Fortunately, McLoed Gunj has many, many great places to eat. Watch the following video for more on what and where to eat!

Tips

  • Do not attempt this trip during the Indian summer because it tends to attract significant local tourists. The Indian winter, October to February, is a better time for this trip.
  • There are many self-guided treks that you can take from McLoed Gunj.

More Information on McLoed Gunj

If you still need more information (Cycling, Trekking, etc.) or have this unbelievable urge to give feedback, feel free complete the feedback form. Don’t be surprised if we react to your request/feedback.

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