Thursday, April 28, 2011

Smoking Rocks-HOGENAKKAL


Route taken: Bangalore-Kanakpura-Kodihalli-Aanchetty-Hogenakkal-Pennagaram-Anchetty-Denkanikottai-Hosur-Bangalore

This is what read on the Bangalorebikers website, immediately confirmed and registered. 

The ride was on 9th April,2011. Initially 14 riders had confirmed for the ride, but when I reached the spot on the ride day at 6, Only 4 were there and Snehashish told that Sourav was on his way and two more would join us from Kanakpura road. Thejesh had come down from office just hours before to send us off from Madivala. 








Bidding him Good bye we left for Kanakpura road to join Aditya and Jithin who were waiting in front of Khodays factory. Wasting no time we rode till Kanakpura and stopped for breakfast. With tummies full we rode via Kodihalli and Anchetty.

By the water's edge

 Somewhere mid way we stopped at a pond like water body for some nice photos. We didn’t even realize that were on the Border of Karnataka, with one on the Karnataka side and the other on Tamilnadu side. After some nice photos we left t his place with our tyres with sand and water after some water splashes. Since it was election time we were stopped for routine check at Anchetty police out post. The P220 with IRC tyres are not a good combination for hilly rides and I had started to experience big time by now. By now we were almost near Hogenakkal, riding through nice forest roads. 


We stopped at a place which was perfect for some weekend fun. Sourav found a very good spot for the parking, and then the others followed with their creative parking lot. The sun had started to hit hard at us, the water seem just perfect. Later left for the Falls, only to realize that we had to pay entry fees three different times. Unavailability of some decent place to dump the luggage , we booked a room for a mere 200 bucks ,dumped the luggage and left for the coracle ride.

 Since it had rained in this region few days back, the water level had risen by a considerable extent. The place where we had food the last time was completely submerged leaving only the top most part to peep out of water. After a two hour long in the coracle, finally emerged out of water. Having a late lunch means lesser the possibility of finding food but we were lucky to find the Tamil Nadu tourism development Hotel was open. After talking rest we left Hogenakkal to Bangalore via Pennagaram. After pennagaram, if you take the left turn it leads to a forest route mainly used by tractors and other 4WD. Snehashish insisted that we take this route, with a smile everybody obliged. The roads on this route are very narrow, at some places it’s so narrow that even two bikes can’t pass through at a decent speed .

Off-Roading inside the forest

We hardly saw one or two vehicles coming from the opposite side. 20 kms into the forest and what do we see – A bridge that has broken into pieces and we were stranded without knowing which way to go. The nearest civilization was no way near. Then comes a savior in his splendor promising to lead till the Anchetty check post. Before joining him we were taking few snaps and he was irritated by the delay and said if we don’t make it out of the forest before dark, the risk of animal attack was high. Not wanting to risk any further we followed him for the next 30kms before reaching Anchetty. Bidding him goodbye we left for Bangalore via hosur. Just after reaching Hosur bid goodbye to Adi and Githin, reaching home by around 10. 

Without any regrets this was one of the finest out and out total enjoyment rides in the recent past.

Sunday, April 10, 2011


Text coming soon.......... enjoy the pics

The "X" gang

Pic courtesy: Avin Richards

Pic courtesy: Avin Richards

Tuesday, April 5, 2011



XBHP-India's premier motorcycling community organizes what's called a Tri-State GTG(get-to-gathers) once in a year in South India, where motorcycling enthusiasts from Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala meet up at a common venue. This gives an opportunity to share anything and everything related to motorcycling, from minor DIY(do it Yourself) jobs to superbike imports to touring.

After months of planning and discussion the ride dates for the Tri-state G2G(get together) was zeroed in on 11th,12th and 13th March, based on the polls on the XBHP thread. The other contested dates were 19th Feb, 26th Feb and 5th March. Finally after a month, March 11th emerged as the winner. I was very keen on riding to the Tri—State G2G as I had missed out the previous year to Yercaud. Once the dates were finalized then came the discussion on the location. Since the Kerala guys had rode a long distance the last year, this year it was decided that we(KAR & TN) guys would be riding longer than them. So the more obvious location was “MUNNAR”. Once the location was finalized, we had riders from other states as well willing to participate in the ride. So we decided to call it “INTER STATE RIDE 2011’ rather than TRI STATE. All thanks to Praful for coming out with this idea. Now one more issue that had to be noticed was ,since the distance in much more than 550 kms from either of the places(Bangalore and Chennai),it would have been very uncomfortable to do it in just a 2day weekend, so the ride was extended to three days. Even though the travelling had bit almost everyone in the KARNATAKA,TAMIL NADU and KERALA XBHP fraternity, large number of people had to drop off due to personnel and professional commitments.
                  So, now dates fixed and location being fixed, the next task was to book a decent accommodation for about 80 bikers with some decent parking. This task was taken up by Swaroop and team from Kochi. The Kerala guys had organized a G2G for various XBHP members in Kerala about a month ago. T-shirts for the ride was responsibility of Karthick from Tiruppur. So each of the teams had local meeting to decide how would they go about riding in groups, extending as large as 25 of them. Even though 25 bikes seem to be smaller number, the co ordination required is a herculean task. It is not that on bikes of a certain segment are riding and all of them would be riding at different speeds. So the larger groups were sub divided into smaller sub groups, based on the riding preferences of the individuals. The bikes varied from the legendary RX100 to the mean Ninjas to the classy Royal Enfield. 

  Having missed out on the previous INTERSTATE  GTG at Yercaud, i was determined to attend this one come what may. Being a frequent flyer to Coimbatore, I left Bangalore on the 8th of March. Reached Mysore for the night and called it a day at JP's room. Left Mysore by the first light for Coimbatore via Ooty,one of the finest stretches of tarmac i have ever rode. Since it was a weekday i was blessed with empty roads till ooty. This time  I decided to take the usually traveled Gudalur route. There is something in riding alone. You feel so happy when the kids going to school early in the morning wave at you to say good bye or a shopkeepers wishes you good luck for riding alone. Reached Ooty by 11, roamed around a bit here and there and left for Coimbatore to reach before lunch. Rang the door bell of Matangi's house around 2.30, all thanks to the never ending road up-gradation work on Coimbatore-Mettupalayam road. Had lunch and spent the day with the Kids. The next day left for meeting one of the clients and finished the work as soon as possible and started packing for the next day's ride. Called up Deepak,Mahesh and Karthik from the XBHP Coimbatore asking if we could meet up in the evening. Since Mahesh and Karthik were busy, Deepak and myself met for a coffee and started to plan the ride plan. Then comes a call from Mahesh saying that he had to opt out of the ride due to work commitments. So we plan to leave by around 7 in the morning and reach Munnar by noon.      

          Met Deepak at 7am and wasting no time we left for Munnar via Pollachi and Udmalpet. Since I had traveled on this route about a month ago, we did not have to waste time asking people for directions or check the GPS if we were right. Once we entered Chinnar wild life sanctuary, it was a sure bliss to ride. Even though Chinnar didn't have the best of green cover, it was still very inviting to ride. Stopped at a lot of places for photo shoots.  Reached Munnar around 1.Searched for the hotel and to our surprise some had already checked in, because we were the first group to be reaching Munnar. Later we get to know that Dinesh, who was doing a solo South India ride had already reached Munnar,sometime back. Not wasting time we refresh our self and head to satisfy our growling stomach. Started discussing Dinesh's solo ride till then and after some time he rode out to join the Chennai guys who climbing up-hill. Deepak and myself left for Pothamedu view point and Attukad falls.
                            The number of people attending this mega event was not confirmed till the last day of the ride. Finally 59 riders reached Munnar by 7.I was a sea of bikers outside SN Sujatha Inn, Munnar. Bikers in such large group attract many eye balls. It was a wonderful event, got to know many people whom we had met only in the virtual world, so was able to fix faces to many names only heard. The young and the old(rather experienced) riders were all there because of the love and passion they have for motorcycling.

The next day, around 6 I heard a few bikes warming up ,when I peeped out of my bedroom window I saw Praful, Sriram, Tarun and few others ready to leave somewhere. Then when I asked Praful, where were they up to the instant reply was TOP STATION. Got took bath, in probably the fast time of my life and was ready to hit the twisties enroute Top Station. These roads are a biker’s paradise, it feels like you are riding in the Malaysian grand Prix. Since it was a early morning, so almost no oncoming traffic. After some photo shoots, we left for the hotel while others stayed back for a trek. Once I reach the hotel , I see all the Bangalore guys geared up and ready to leave somewhere. To my surprise they were also leaving for Top Station. I told them to wait for me to have breakfast and then I would join them. Once the twisties started the guys went berserk see the road quality and the scenery up ahead, after some photo shoots we returned back to the town for lunch. In the evening all the riders left for Kundala Dam for photos and some off roading. All of us stood by the campfire later in the evening for the last meet up, before we leave for our respective cities the next morning.

The lady who was travelling from past 7 months,from Austria to Munnar

I was just hoping some of us come up with idea of riding via Ooty than the boring NH7. Fortunately, Anirban and Meghan agreed to accompany me and the Sreejith told that he would accompany us till Coimbatore. 

Bid goodbye to the fellow riders and left Munnar by around 6.30. After a relaxed ride, we reached Coimbatore by 11. Sreejith left us and rode towards Satty. After the usual chaos on the Coimbatore-Metupalayam stretch we were able to reach the foot hills by 12.30. By then traffic had started to pile up the ghats, so drastically slowed down the speeds. We got a message from Praful that the group who wished to ride towards Salem were way behind schedule. Had lunch in Coonoor and left Ooty by 4. We were stopped by the Tamil Nadu Police near Masinagudi for a routine check during the election time. Not far from there a lot of cars had stopped allowing a herd of elephants to pass by. The pachyderms are not the ones to messed with, especially when there is a calf or a lone tusker. The herd crossed the road by without without causing any problems to the tourists. Meters ahead there was a tusker, so told Meghan to switch off his among engine, which was the loudest among the lot. We did not want the tusker to go berserk. Just when Meghan crossed the tusker slowly, he started his Joel’ed R15. The sound from the exhaust irritated the elephant it turned against me and Anirban. Anirban passed without realizing the animal was about to get us and I missed it by mere meters. Later we took a break just outside the park and decided to be out of Mysore before it was completely dark.

Reached the outskirts of Mysore on the Bangalore-Mysore highway by around 7.15. By then the usual Sunday evening traffic had started to pile up, so we decided that we ride individually because it is difficult to co ordinate in so much traffic. After a fun filled ride, reached home by around 10 only to know that Praful and team had also just reached Bangalore, which was around 4 hours behind schedule. With a lot memories to be treasured went to bed.

Pics Courtesy: Praful Tripathy,Sreejith,Tarun, Ram kumar,Deepak,Praveen Selvan,Nagoo,Lijo,Sayan,Dinesh,Dheeraj (Sorry If have missed out any names)