Riders are crazy and more so for us who venture out all alone, I can’t agree more…
This was my first ride for the season, rather second long distance one in my lifetime and this I chose to do all alone for satisfying the greed to have it all for myself.
Rides, monsoon ones especially are tricky. Not just roads but also the crazy visibility dip that we encounter..
While I would carefully write the entire experience in another blog, I want to share some of the tips (mentored and self learnt) in this one:
1) Counter steering: Came in really handy, especially Kushalnagara to Madikeri ghat.. Not only helps keep up pace but also gives hell lot of confidence in ghats.. Bunch of videos available on YouTube.. Check it out
2) Boot covers by Royal Enfield: Rain being a companion for almost 100+ kms, without this gear I would’ve really suffered.. Costs just 750 Rs and really a must have for monsoon rides
3) Rain pants- Don’t pick up anything else apart from Decathlon… Costs just 600 Rs and would last really long.. Easy to wear and remove and dry up before your hands do, literally
4) Quick dry towel- Really helps deal with wet towel messing up other clothes.. This towel available at Decathlon dries up super quick (really quick) and doesn’t cost much. A must have for our kit.. Mine dried up in 20 mins max, that too in Coorg weather
5) Never miss an opportunity to refill fuel- My cousin (an experienced rider) always does this, with a 14ltr tank I learnt it the hard way in the last trip.. This time didn’t take a chance and had such a hassle free/worry free ride back
6) Never compromise or forget carrying a safety gear.. It gives you a helluva confidence to test the bike’s maximum
7) Rip when you can, you never know how long you’ll get to romance good roads… For all you know the next km might be a bad one.. Calculated high speed always pays up.. You wanna save some time for the other good things on the trip 😉
8) Passers by talk to you, wish you, come closer when you stop for a break.. Not necessarily that they wanna mug you.. In fact both the long rides I encountered this in plenty!! Yes, all of these guys were genuinely curious and didn’t have any other motive.. In fact two men (local villagers) came to offer help assuming my bike was down, only to realize that I had no issues.. All they did was to wish me good luck!!
9) Tank bag and nothing on your back!! If you ever wanna gift yourself, it’s this 3k tank bag by Viaterra, it’s a blessing trust me.. And no backpacks please, you wanna leave your back alone for all the ride stress!!!
My hard earned learning:
1) Take optimum breaks, not many not few.. I took a stopover only when my butt really cried.. With this I managed the entire journey with just 2 breaks (a good 10 mins sufficed) each way.. Hunsur and Maddur.. Trust me your body is better than what you expect, and I was easily back to normal in an hour upon return post covering the entire distance
2) Not the destination but the journey is what matters.. I rode at a speed that I was confident my bike would handle.. Of course I lost couple of hours but each km was memorable, literally!
3) There is always an idiot on the road- We are the best on roads, if we don’t believe that who else will!? But having two near misses in this trip, trust me there is always an idiot on the road.. Watch out but chill.. As we riders aalways say, if such things don’t occur then where is the fun and what will you remember 😀
4) Never trim your nails just before your ride.. Yes finger nails, you read it right.. Clean fanatics that we are, I did that mistake in my last ride and thanks to the gloves and stress, I had a tough time.. This time it was not a problem at all, cos I simply didn’t care 🙂
5) Always hit a new place for a meal or coffee/tea.. Same place is boring, explore new places.. At most, food/beverage will be bad.. Take away is not to stop there next time, but unless you take a chance how would you know what you missed.. Say goodbye to Mc Donalds, Kamats, Adigas… We go there all the time 🙂
6) Carry a bottle of water, no matter what.. General assumption is its available in plenty all the way, trust me this will make you take unwanted stopovers.. I carried and it really helped
7) No music, just like that.. This is of course a personal preference! Though I did carry both my iPod and phone, I chose to hear only to my lady screaming and was super thrilled with all the thump roaring away to glory.. Quite motivating and kept me on for a long long long time.. Probably I like it that way, hey I am referring to my bullet.. LOL…!! And yes, I was singing Kishore da songs, with her pretty much the entire journey 😀
8) General check-up before you start, especially don’t forget to inflate your tires to optimal level..! Needless to mention, these are the two wheels that will move your soul, sticking to the road or otherwise
9) Try doing a ride alone (#introvert alert)- I strongly recommend a solo bike trip.. Trust me you will know what it’s like to be all on your own, enjoyment or otherwise 😛
Ride: Bangalore- Madikeri- Bangalore (18th-19th June)
Bike: Royal Enfield Bullet (Electra 2003)