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walking in Nepal

Activity Level Guidelines

We have given all our trips an Activity Level, which acts as a guide to the challenges you can expect to face. The information below explains what each Activity Level means, so you can find the right holiday for you. 

Our Family, Walking & Trekking, Cycling and Winter adventures have category-specific guidelines, which are listed below our standard Activity Levels. 

Activity Levels

All of our itineraries have been graded to help you find the comfort level that best suits you:

Activity Level: LeisurelyLevel 1: Leisurely
Designed for people who are in good health, enjoy the outdoors and want a trip packed with interest. 

Activity Rating - ModerateLevel 3: Moderate
Requires an adventurous spirit and some fitness, as the trip may involve more activities, longer journeys and some early starts.  

Activity Rating - ChallengingLevel 5: Challenging
Fitness is imperative at this level, as the environment may be more remote and challenging.  

Split grades
Where a trip falls between two grades, we use an intermediate or ‘split’ grade, for example, Level 2 (Leisurely/Moderate). 

Family Activity Levels

For our Family trips, Activity Levels are aimed at children. If your child falls outside the recommended age range for your chosen trip, they may find the adventure a little tougher or easier than the Activity Level indicates. 

Factors we consider when grading our Family trips include: 

Activity Level: LeisurelyLevel 1: Leisurely
Ideal for children who are happy to engage in a few hours of activity and some travelling. Most journeys won’t exceed two hours, though that doesn’t include airport transfers, which may be longer.  


Activity Rating - ModerateLevel 3: Moderate

More challenging for several reasons. There may be more physical activity or children might be expected to engage for longer. If there’s more travel and less downtime, the trip will fall into this category, as will multi-centre trips and those in more extreme climates. 


Activity Rating - ChallengingLevel 5: Challenging

Much more taxing, but more of an adventure. In addition to a faster-paced itinerary, there’ll be less downtime and likely a more demanding climate. Children and teenagers on Challenging trips should be willing to take part in several hours of activity a day. If your youngsters are happy outdoors, excited by a challenge and don’t mind roughing it on occasion, then this grade is for them. 

Walking & Trekking Activity Levels

Factors we consider when grading Walking & Trekking trips include:  

Activity Level: LeisurelyLevel 1: Leisurely
Experience is not necessary; anyone fit and healthy enough to complete a weekend walk will thrive. Walks are often optional. Trails are seldom flat, so expect a reasonable number of ascents and descents. You normally walk for two to five hours per day; daily ascents will likely be around 985ft to 1,640ft (300m to 500m), perhaps with the odd day around 1,970ft (600m). 


Activity Rating - ModerateLevel 3: Moderate

Expect easy, medium-length walks or harder, shorter walks. Some experience is useful, but not essential. Good health and reasonable fitness are important. There will be walks at higher altitudes and some longer, harder days. Generally, though, the underfoot conditions will be fair. A walking day is normally five to seven hours; daily ascents will likely be around 1,640ft to 2,625ft (500m to 800m), perhaps with the odd day around 2,955ft to 3,280ft (900m to 1,000m). 


Activity Rating - ChallengingLevel 5: Challenging

Fitness is vital with extended walking in mountainous terrain. You might also experience high altitude,  challenging climates and remote locations. Trekking experience is desirable, but not vital if you are confident in your physical condition. Walking days are usually between six and eight hours, although they may be longer for passes or peaks. Daily ascents can be around 2,955ft to 3,280ft (900m to 1,000m), perhaps with the odd day around 3,610ft to 3,940ft (1,100m to 1,200m). 


Activity Rating - ToughLevel 7: Tough

Trekking experience is essential and preferably at altitude. You need complete confidence in your ability to trek for many days over difficult terrain. You may encounter extreme altitude and weather conditions and may need to use ice axes and crampons. Stamina is essential as walking days last six to nine hours (sometimes more on occasions). Daily ascents will likely be around 2,955ft to 3,280ft (900m to 1,000m), perhaps with the odd day around 3,610ft to 3,940ft (1,100m to 1,200m). 


Split and optional grades

Where a trip falls between two grades, we use an intermediate or ‘split’ grade, for example, Level 2 (Leisurely/Moderate). Occasionally there are optional ascents available; in this case, the grade will be highlighted. 

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Cycling Activity Levels

It is impossible to be precise when predicating the conditions of a cycling adventure, which can change from one departure to the next. Therefore, our Activity Levels give you an indication of how difficult a trip is expected to be, and an easy way to compare one cycling trip with another.  

Factors we consider when grading our Cycling trips include: 

Vehicle support
On most of our cycling trips, a support vehicle accompanies the riders. This carries tools and spares, refreshments, your luggage and, on occasion, yourself. If there is a high level of vehicle support, you can confidently book knowing there is back-up should you get tired. Equally, this means that friends or couples of different fitness levels can enjoy the same trip. 

Activity Level: LeisurelyLevel 1: Leisurely
If you can ride a bike and enjoy gentle exercise, these trips are an ideal introduction to a cycling adventure. No routes are entirely flat, so expect some short climbs and descents. Maximum daily height gain is approximately 985ft (300m). The average daily distance is 12mi to 25mi (40km to 70km); on rare occasions, you may cycle up to 32mi (50km). Longer days are often optional.


Activity Rating - ModerateLevel 3: Moderate

You need to be in good health and reasonably fit. Moderate trips are ideal for occasional/weekend cyclists or fitter riders looking for a more relaxed adventure. Off-road trips do not require experience. Expect average daily distances between 25mi and 43mi (40km and 70km); on rare occasions, you may cycle up to 62mi (100km). 

Activity Rating - ChallengingLevel 5: Challenging
Fitness is vital. Challenging trips require confidence in your ability and physical condition. They are equivalent to an extended period of cycling at home. Mountain biking experience is essential for Challenging off-road trips, as they will involve some technical riding. Expect average daily distances between 31mi and 56mi (50km and 90km); on rare occasions, you may cycle up to 75mi (120km). 


Activity Rating - ToughLevel 7: Tough

Experience of the trip’s cycling style is essential, with long days on the saddle and tougher terrain both on- and off-road. You need complete confidence in your fitness and technical ability to cope with difficult or steep terrains, rough surfaces and longer distances. Tough trips are ideal if you’re looking to test yourself. Expect average daily distances between 50mi and 62mi (80km and 100km); on rare occasions, you may cycle up to 100mi (160km). 


Split grades

Where a trip falls between two grades, we use an intermediate or ‘split’ grade, for example, Level 2 (Leisurely/Moderate).

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Winter Activity Levels

Find snowshoeing Activity Levels and cross-country ski grades below. All other Winter trips, such as mixed-activity, Northern Lights or cultural trips, are set according to the general Activity Levels at the top of the page. 

Our grading system works the same in the summer as the winter, as we take the terrain into account when calculating the grades. So, if you have enjoyed a Level 3 (Moderate) summer trip, choose a Level 3 (Moderate) winter trip. 

Snowshoeing

Activity Level: LeisurelyLevel 1: Leisurely
Easy activities requiring a little physical effort for a short length of time. Experience is not necessary; anyone who is fit and healthy enough to complete a weekend walk will be comfortable. 


Activity Rating - ModerateLevel 3: Moderate

Relatively full days, with four to five hours of snowshoeing, although there may be occasional longer, harder days. Experience is not necessary, but you should be confident in your fitness level. 

Activity Rating - ChallengingLevel 5: Challenging
Generally, four to six hours a day, with longer ascents and a faster pace to complete circular routes. There may be more challenging sections throughout the trip and more basic accommodation. Experience of mountain snowshoeing and a good fitness level are required. 

 

Cross-Country Skiing Grades

Exodus offers cross-country skiing holidays to suit a wide range of technical and physical abilities. However, as we provide tuition on these trips (and technique is paramount when cross-country skiing), we use Grades rather than Activity Levels. The aim is still to create groups of similar abilities and fitness. 

To help you find the right adventure for you, we’ve included an equivalent Activity Level for each Grade. But if you’d like to know more, or have any questions, feel free to call and speak to an expert.  

Grade 1 Beginners
Equivalent Activity Level: 1 (Leisurely)
For complete beginners. We start with the basics, including how to stop using the snowplough technique and how to turn. You will be on skis for at least five to six hours a day, with a focus on tuition, getting comfortable on skis and building towards longer tours through the winter landscape. In some centres, there may also be some easy off-track skiing. This involves heading off the pre-cut tracks, typically across frozen lakes or snow-covered pastures. 

Grade 2 Improvers
Equivalent Activity Level: 2 (Leisurely/Moderate)
Ideal if you’ve enjoyed at least one Grade 1 trip and grasped the basics. Tuition is offered to refresh and improve technique and typically involve skiing a little further than in Grade 1 weeks, and over more varied terrain (ie more ups and downs), which requires slightly higher fitness levels. In some cases, these are acceptable for newcomers to cross-country skiing. Beginners on these weeks should be very fit and proficient in sports that develop balance (ice skating, roller skating or roller skiing) and will need to pick up the basic technique quickly. Please contact us if you wish to book a Grade 2 holiday but have not skied before. 

Grade 3 Intermediates
Equivalent Activity Level: 3 (Moderate)
Ideal if you’re looking to push on, tackle slightly steeper terrain and cover more ground each day. Typical groups will have a few weeks’ skiing behind them, be comfortable with the basics and happy on longer day tours. There will still be tuition on these trips. 

Grade 4 Advanced
Equivalent Activity Level: 4 (Moderate/Challenging)
Choose this grade if you can tackle ‘ups and downs’ competently, can manage a controlled snowplough descent and want to ski at a lively pace. You should also be able to get up swiftly and easily by yourself after a fall. The mix of track and off-track skiing varies. Be prepared for long, steep ascents and descents, and for off-track skiing over variable snow. You need good fitness, stamina, and sound, controlled technique. Climbing skins will be needed on some days. 

Grade 5 Challenging
Equivalent Activity Level: 5 (Challenging)
For experienced, proficient skiers looking for long, steep ascents and descents, including off-track skiing over variable snow. Good fitness, stamina, and sound, controlled technique is required. 

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