Thursday, June 17, 2010

Part 2: Ride to Terelu, South Coorg: Bulls Of Mysore 1A

Sitting here wasted and wounded
at this old piano
Trying hard to capture
the moment this morning I don't know
'Cause a bottle of vodka
is still lodged in my head
And some blond gave me nightmares
I think that she's still in my bed

No-No, that never happened just yet. We kick-start to black coffee and a good morning meeting with our hosts. Skanda seems to have a football and we guys got playing in the rain.

boys playing ball
My fall....

I had a severe fall on my neck.. Yep the neck and I was so goddamn lucky… i know I told it but I never had so many close misses in 2 weeks. Thanks Nahas Pareekutty for the shots…. Its really immortalized for me :p

Its time to head to Bangalore. The 2 of the 3 bikresses come with us. The rain has got to our bones


We enter Bangalore at dusk, and we finally regroup at NICE bypass. Zigzagging thru the Bangalore traffic I reach home. That’s what this ride is about – real fun, adventure, risk, making new friends, getting to know great people! Till the next ride – see ya!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Part 1: Ride to Terelu, South Coorg: Bulls Of Mysore 1A

The Switzerland of india  - Coorg has always fascinated  me big time. I missed the RTMC cloud valley ride and was really feeling spaced out. The last ride I did was to rappa in shettihalli of hassan  district and the ride before that was a camping ride to kudremukh.

The happenstance -, Bulls of Mysore were celebrating their first anniversary and we were invited. This had to be a great occasion to get know more people and share ride stories. 
The concept of this ride was black and white photography. I only dreamed in black and white, all I could see was ginger plants, tea leaf buds, deers grazing in the mist, foggy weather and smiling kodagu men and women in traditional dress.
Woke up at 4 irrupting my log Z's and my black and white dreams, packed up my rainproof tent for two and the sleeping mat, some shirts from my Himalayan-Duo ride that said “ADY” just so that, people know where to find me. Took with me my Canon 5d Mark II, a 24-70 mm f/2.8, a 100mm f/2.8 macro an a 70-300 f/4 lens. All mounted on my lowepro backpack. I knew the weather would be all about sweetness and fragrance in coorg and so I slipped in a bottle of vodka :/
My Dalmatian pet – win-e doggie knew his master was leaving him and was really unquiet. Making all kind of sounds which I bet no musical instrument can reproduce. So I hugged him tight, and left him to cared for by my parents. I reach this NICE road overpass on Mysore road and I am waiting for my riders to turn up. I am ride captain for this ride. Laxmi has dropped out and other two are riding from mysore with the BOM team. Vivid thoughts of my riding alone is cropping up and I see Rajeev Paripurnan taxi down to my side.
Misty Palms is the destination ( the route we are planning is Bangalore - srirangapatna - ilwala - hunsur - gonikoppa - ponnampet - shettigere - teralu - misty palms
1st regroup point: Indradhanush restaurant on the right for breakfast
2nd regroup point: rangannathittu on the right
3rd regroup point: left turn to gonikoppa 5 km after hunsur
4th regroup point: gonikoppa at the left towards ponnampet
5th regroup point: right of shettigere (there is an orange building out there) towards teralu
6th regroup point: after 5-6 km on the left (U turn)
I hogged lavishly into incoming plates of tatte iddlies, khara bath, iddlis and vadas at Indradhanush. But I must admit I was just hungry and the food was really not special.
Not much to do in 2nd regroup point

holy mama Coconut

……. but photograph. I found a strange temple and a bunch of strange women manning a huge SUV now that was fun.
As we entered hunsur, my Classic 500 EFI had a strange sound!  I pulled over by instinct jus to see the freaking air-filter box was open. I looked closer and I found the key shaft lock and the shaft. I was on my knees thanking god profusely. I would have been outraged if the open suction hole in the air filter box would have swallowed the tiny lock. I buy 2 rolls of duct tape to shut this airfilter up. A few KTMC riders turned up and were amused to see my 1.5 lack rupee bike, gagged up in gaffer tape
Mysore has some amazing tobacco plantations. Staying with win-e doggie for over 10 years, I am kinda good at my sense of smell. Lol what can I say its true. Rajeev can vouch that I could smell a tobacco field. A few minutes later Mr Badri turns up hotfooting his 500cc enfield. So now the team size is 3. We see a few of our hosts from the mysore bullet club thundering down, while I get acquainted to Mr Badrinath.

As we enter coorg, we are welcomed by winding roads riddled with potholes. Rain lashes, and my Classic 500 is responding to the rain.

One inward curve, I was so confident on the bike, but the bike skid a bit. There was a truck on the other side, so I had to choose between skidding and getting out of the road. I chose the latter and was sitting all calm for a few minutes thanking my stars. The past few weeks have been progressively bad to me, at first I fell out of my trek 6000 MTB – on my chin and hands. 4 stitches on my face and bruises in the thorax, arms, and the derriere ?. Then I was training and I twisted my ankle. I have never trusted in god so much!

Misty palms is located in a very remote location of terelu, coorg. This makes this ride all the more amorous! The weather was all bad by now. Bad for a photographer! But just apt and lovely for the inner me !

This weather - It was foggy, rain drizzling for miles, mist settling in. really cold. Visibility not beyond 30 feet, sounds of water all over, no soul around !
Here are some shots I took of the tea estate.



At the deviation to misty palms, I see Rajeev and badari smoking cigarettes’ waiting for me. And we get into Misty Palms. PC (I think he is the founder of the mysore bullet club) is right there to say hello to us. We meet up with some riders there – Wilson, body500 (bharath), suprith, anand et all. Oh wow – we have 3 bikresses here too! The weather is awesome, the company is great and that vodka bottle pops out! – the good times begin
Skanda – the owner of Misty Palms gets me specially requested vegetarian starter – avvyal. This dish is prepared by cooking all the vegetables in coconut oil and grated coconuts. – Awesome.
These are the last images I shot during this ride

Mr Sanna

Wilson solving a complex sudoku

I slept for 4-5 hours and woke up to notice that the party has already started. The mysore guys had organizes a cake and there was a bonfire. The rain was intense, the heat was intense and it really felt awesome being with this entire crowd. There were some photographers out there and we even had a small talk on photography techniques.
The rains subside; foods’ done and it’s time for more sleep for me.
There’s a day 2 episode in the next post

Saturday, February 06, 2010

TRIP LOG: Nandi Hills - My debut bike ride

This is a different bike - a green one!

The usual suspects - Cup, Shobit Bhatnagar, Jishnu, and rotten (Rattan gangadhar) and me planned a ride to nandi hills last week. Shoved the bike into my car, and drove down to cafe coffee day after yelahanka.

Rotten has this funny bike called rockrider with some funny shoes that latch to the pedal, every time he tries to get off the bike, he falls down sideways.

Cup was concerned if this is the way he always gets off the bike.

Nandi hill top is 40 km from CCD. The first 30 km is flat and then the climb starts. The last 3 km is really tough for a debut rider like me.

Cycles arent allowed into Nandi Hills but 4 wheelers are. It was so funny to see us sitting outside the gates while polluting gas guzzling SUVs are in.

The ride down was FAST !! My trek bike touched 60 kph and i went berserk - psycho! - What if the brake cables snapped? Is its Goodbye Lensman ? RIP

Rotten has had 4 falls and is at the base camp. And we catch up with the poor soul. Au Voir, have some whisky for the pain.

At NH7 we are stopped by cops - We like to call them Sarkari Kutte (Government Dogs). These SK's harass the people. Oh well lookie lookie some president is here and we the people - the poor bikers are left on the road with the hot sun and the damn pollution for company. Do our presidents enjoy the same in other countries or are we just "gulaams" after 63 years of independence ?

Oh Mr president and delegation hope you spend some time at the south end circle traffic.

We ignored the cops and moved on.. WTF ? Are u gonna charge an unregistered vehicle ? Or me ?

The ride ends at CCD and i drive back home. Slept like a child!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

RMX - Day 11

Route: Kolhapur - Bangalore

I promised my mom to be home for lunch so i leave from Kolhapur to bangalore (620 km) at 5. The sky is awesome, like the heavens are open

The Light - _MG_8688

Heres the picture of what i saw :) - I was photographing all the way - and reached home at about 5. So thats the end of a 11 day ride!

Rider Mania 2011 is now claimed by Eastern Bulls !

Next stop - Calcutta

Monday, January 25, 2010

RMX - Day 10

Route: Vikramgargh - Kolhapur

Woke up at 5 and got riding from Vikramgargh with Rajesh.

Regroup with amit, praisy, bumboo, prateek, haren on the route and some where in the middle of the ride, prateek, haren and i decide to go to bangalore while bumboo, praisy, rajesh planned to go to goa.
I Knew that goa ride is gonna be tough in the dark, so we ended up at HOTEL SONY in kolhapur. Awesome place!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

RMX - Day 9

Post breakfast, we had a dirt track race. Amit and me represented RTMC. Mine was the 1st Classic 500 to race in the dirt track. But before that was a recce ride (BTW no points for this ride), Many of the riders did better in this recce than the actual dirt track.

The path wasnt any good at all. sad that atleast 3 bikers fell down at the curves. The trophy went to i guess baljit singh from roadshakers pune

Every rider mania i photograph some one!. Last year it was DJ Black Jack from 23-ONE. His last year pic is on

WildChild AKA Dipesh Shah of 60kph was this years calendar boy

Dipesh Shah (_MG_8616)

DJ Black Jackk of 23-ONE played some awesome rock - loved it and then Sheetal, Anup Taxx and Anukran Singh, Ashish prabhu got on to form a band called "Joint Venture" hehe you know "Joint Venture" the band that ROCKS and ROLLS

A Face In the crowd _MG_8650


Saturday, January 23, 2010

RMX - Day 8

Rider Mania opens after breakfast

The raffle bike is a "Mountain Dew" branded green bike that sounds like a - bullet.

Anukaran Singh, makes a grand entry with the wander lust motorcycle club. Revs so much that his engine catches fire. LoL - Feeling the heat @anu ??

There was the disassembly wars, basically one strips a bike bare, and when its done, a rider rushes to get the key of the bike. and the reassembly starts. The first to start the bike and ride it after the reassembly is complete is the winner. RTMC got third place - but that was no reason for not cheering

Slept like a child on the lawn and woke up to a rock show by a hindi band (no clue who). Riddhi from Mumbai weekend shoots was here,DJ Blackjack (The poster boy of 2009 RM) was there too! So many old pals

Sleep Late!