Karnali River Holy water born from the sacred Mt. Kailash, Wild water of the west. The Karnali is Nepal’s longest and largest river. It is situated in the most remote area of Nepal. Often called the ‘Wild West‘. Few Foreigners ever venture here and it has seen little development. This is more than just a rafting trip. It is an expedition. It takes careful logistical planing to tackle it safely and something is always bound to come up to remind you of how alone you are. The river is rated Grade 4 to 5 and huge volume restricted by canon walls. The water bullets down these canyons in a series of wild rapids. It is so intense that it can only be tackled at low and medium water. If you want to run it at high water you are on your own.
If you dare, the rewards are big! The banks of the river are lined with coniferous forest and, along the lower reaches, pristine, Rudyard Kipling Style jungles that have all but disappeared from most regions in the Himalayas. River runners have reported sightings of leopard, bears, jackals, mongoose, pythons, crocodiles and even Tiger prints around the camp. More elusive than the Tiger, are the mysterious Route people, a seldom seen nomadic trip of whom little is known about and less has been written. Some of the top Kayakers in the business were quoted as saying… it our anonymous view that this is one of the finest rafting river in the world.
For the eight days and 180 kilometers we won't see a single sign of the modern world. It's one of the last places in Nepal that you can see old growth forest and have a real chance of seeing Nepal's wildlife. Expeditions have seen Langur and Rhesus Monkeys, leopards, bear, martins, deer, crocodiles and garials, even tigers. The river also supports some of the finest fish habitat in Nepal, with giant catfish and Golden Masheer prowling the depths. Whitewater ranges from easy going class three, to bone crushing class five, depending on the time of year. Regardless of the month, the Karnali always offers good, powerful rapids with miles of beautiful scenery, pristine beaches and deep river gorges. The Karnali, Nepal’s mightiest river, is arguably the finest multi day river trip in Nepal, and a classic Himalayan expedition. The Karnali's headwaters come off of Mount Kailas in Tibet, the center of the universe for both Buddhist and Hindu religions, then slice through the Himalayas in a series of magnificent isolated gorges and forest. This is Nepal's largest and longest river, flowing uninhibited through the least populated region of the country.
Safari Option: The Karnali river conveniently flows into Royal Bardia National Wildlife Preserve, indisputably the finest wildlife preserve in Nepal. Bardia today is what Chitwan was twenty years ago. Stays at the luxurious Tiger Tops lodge and tented camp can be arranged ahead of time. While at Royal Bardia we will enjoy a variety of activities ranging from elephant safaris, canoeing amongst marsh mugger crocodiles, jungle walks and bird watching.