Mountain biking Tibet in the days of 'Red China'

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Slideshow > Tim Goering and Dave Colbert will discuss their trip in 1986

At the April meeting of the Los Alamos Mountaineers, Tim Goering and Dave Colbert will give a slideshow about a mountain biking trip to China and Tibet in 1986, while they were students at the University of Arizona.
They decided to take a semester off from school to bike across China and Tibet to Nepal, riding across Inner Mongolia, northern and central China, and from Lanzhou across Qinghai province and Tibet.
Tim and Dave spent some time in Lhasa, stocking supplies and recovering from a nasty bout of giardia picked up earlier on the trip, and finished their trip riding from Shigatze over a 19,000 ft pass across the Himalayas down to Kathmandu.
They rode about 3000 kilometers in all, crossing China at a time when it was just starting to open up to foreigners.
The trip was not approved or sanctioned by the Chinese government (although they tried honestly to get official permission), and the United States Embassy strongly discouraged the trip, once they got word of our plans.
But regardless, being young and foolish, they were determined, and early one morning they disappeared on a train headed north for (Inner) Mongolia to start the trip.
Most of the places they rode in China, and all of Tibet except Lhasa and Shigatze, were completely closed off to foreigners, which made the trip even more interesting.
It was an amazing time to visit both China and Tibet.  
Tim writes: “much has changed in China and Tibet since our first visit back in 1986, and we were fortunate to have visited so many years ago, when it was just beginning to open up to the rest of the world.”
Dave is currently self-employed as a landlord and handyman in Albuquerque, and Tim works at Los Alamos National Laboratory as a hydrologist.
They both love the outdoors, and still get out for water rafting and canoe trips, cross-country skiing, and occasional mountain bike adventures together.  
The public is welcome to the meeting on April 17, in the Great Room of Fuller Lodge.
The meeting starts at 7:30 (trip and event announcements, etc.), followed immediately by the program.