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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

And then we reached Sariska

Every biker has a genetic disorder called Touring. It's an entirely different battle of life which determines how often the biker gets a chance to be one with the steed, but yes, Touring is a common genetic disorder prevenlent amongst bikers. I also belong to the same gene pool. I really find it very difficult to control the urge of long streaches calling, the feeling of wind blast on my face, sometimes just cruising, sometimes blasting away, seeing the needle lingering around the red line, that sweet exhaust note, boy it's all poetry being written on tarmac.

Sometime back four friends decided to one such trip to celebrate a re-union. Dhruv, Raj, Sid and I, each one very passionate about bike, and more over the religion of biking. It had been a long time since I had any long ride under my belt... well if you talk about long rides, I had none and therefore it was really high time that I elope on one!!

The day started waking up early. Freshen up quickly, grab a bit, dress up, get the very important things and documents thrown into the back pack. Now it was time to prep the bike.

Having gone through numerous travelogues and with all my knowledge about biking, I could think of the below mentioned checks before I started for the day -
  • Clean both the spark plugs and the adjust the spark end. This is very essential as it was eminent that we would traveling for long durations (read 60 - 90 mins) before making any stop and that also at average speeds of 85-90 kmph. In order to do so, it's very essential that the engine is firing properly and to do so it's of utmost importance that the spark plugs are clean.
  • Check the Air-Filter. If it's clogged then probably clean that too. In my case, the Air-Filter was fine, so I could skip that. But believe me, if you get the slightest hint of the Air-Filter being clogged, then cleaning it should be your top priority, else your long ride could very easily turn into a long vibey and rough ride.
  • Brakes. Well this one thing has the capability to turn your leisure activity into one big Paranormal Activity Reloaded. Check your if the front wheel is turning freely, without making any friction sound. If you get even a little bit of friction sound then, probably the Brake Caliper is touching the Disc and this needs to be fixed. Adjust it a bit so that the front brake has just a wee bit of play. Similarly adjust the rear brake to your comfort. It should neither be too strong nor too weak.
  • Next comes the tire pressure. In my bike's case, the tires are a bit worn out, so I preferred to keep the pressure low by a couple of Psi in order to make a better grip at high speeds.
  • Make sure that you have all the basic tool kit with you so that you can do that basic repairing by yourself if something crops up. Also, if you have tubeless tires on, then try and keep the puncture fix kit with yourself too, it saves a lot of time and money in such long runs.
  • The next big thing is fuel. Since I wanted to blast off at my will, I went for Extra Premium over the Normal fuel. I also had a pack of Octane Booster go into the full tank (actually I was planning for Speed 97, but it's not available in Gurgaon, so went for the Extra Premium + Octane Booster combo). Believe me, you would love the throttle response.
  • Another thing I did the previous day was change the Engine Oil. Actually it's not required if the engine oil is a couple of hundred of kilometers old before your ride, but in my case it was over 1000 km, so decided, to change it.
  • As a garnish on the recipe, I wax polished the bike as much I could to reduce wind drag at high speeds.
Well that was pretty much it for the bike. One thing to keep in mind when you are going on long rides, specially the ones which involve cross state touring, you should always keep all the required documents handy -
  • Your Licence
  • Bike's Registration Certificate
  • Bike's Insurance
  • Bike's Pollution Certificate
  • Also an Identification Proof of yourself.
Don't give a damn to your office for any leave et al, because that's never gonna come by easily. Just convince the wife (well if you are already married) and the mom, and well your ass is now pretty much ready for the blast off!!
So, all the bike prep took me around 30 mins and I called my buddies to check their status, and my much amusement (well I couldn't find a better word) they were still sleeping. So, out went a couple of swearing and adjective and I gave them a dead line of 30 mins.
In the mean while I decided to grab another banana and winked wifey bye for the day and I made my way ahead. On reaching Signature Tower, I turned towards Jaipur highway and stopped at the first Gas Station to fill the baby up (Extra Premium + Octane Booster). Messaged my buddies of my position and well I had to wait for around 10-15 mins more, before I saw three dudes zooming towards me through the flyover. A quick re-grouping, briefing, seeing each other and then we were off!!

The Bikes -

1) Yamaha RX-135 (that's one hell of a 135 which can kick butt of even a 220)
2) Hero Honda CBZ Classic (in splendid condition)
3) Bajaj Pulsar 150 Classic (well that was a bit off but still held itself well)
4) Bajaj Pulsar 200 (what more can I say ;) )

Then we were off!! We were off to a ride madness. We waited patiently, very patiently to cross the Manesar McD and after that we decided to give the babies a real twist of the throttle. Before I could notice, I was already past 95 kmph on my speedo. We were very happily interchanging our places... one time Dhruv zooms off, the next time Raj.
After riding for around 90 minutes, we made our first stop just before turning for Bardod, we reached a restaurant and did we enjoyed the Paranthas and the Egg Sandwich or what!! After those blast offs, we were all hungry sharks on the prowl and finally when we got those delicacies on our plates, it was feeling like heaven. The ambiance was also pretty good and seeing that we were on a tour, the staff also served us well and where very friendly with us.

A note of suggestion here. What ever you are enjoying at your stop, if this is not final stop, then make the stop as brief as possible. Don't allow the body to relax and let the adrenaline go down, else you would be missing quite a lot of fun ahead and the fatigue might start to creep in.

So, keeping that in mind, we made some quick calls home, confirmed the route ahead with the hotel staff, above all payed the bill and moved off as quickly as possible. After this we didn't stop for at least another 90 minutes. I just don't have words to explain those scenery, twisties, that awesome tunnel we went through and the off roading through a village while crossing Alwar!! After about 90 minutes we took another small break to hydrate ourselves and then we were off for the final stretch. We reached Sariska after around 20 minutes ride and boy were we relieved to be there!! An awesome awesome feeling that we rode, we enjoyed and we would cherish for quite some time.

Enjoyed the lake view in the full glory of breeze and pleasant weather. Chatted probably about everything around. Everyone of us had something really very positive about their individuality.

Raj - Amazing positive attitude towards life!! He like never gives up on any situation.. simply amazing!!

Sid - A real cool and easy going guy. A real dude one cannot miss to have

Druv - The real stud amongst us... our very own Bindass (read Bad Ass) Bangru :)

Sajal - Well what can I say about me.... you guys know me :) (emmm... for those who still don't know me... try to figure that out yourself)

We had our lunch at "Sasu Maa Ki Dhani". Simply amazing food!! I never had such a bomb of a Daal Fry, Gatta curry and Matar Paneer in my life, with really hot Chaptis to add more flame to it.

We spent a good 2-3 hours there and now it was time for the home ward journey. We started from there around at 5:00 PM. Now in came the biggest surprise in the whole journey. It was Raj. He always kept saying that he loves biking but doesn't much of it. He was riding the CBZ Classic. On that he moved so so fast that we kept on pushing ourselves but could not catch up to him. More so, we could not see for a good stretch of around 70-80 Km before we finally saw him back at the NH-8 waiting for us from 10-15 minutes, and all this while we were riding at 80-85 kmph :)

One important and the most important tip here. Always ride with your full riding gear on such long trips. I was not having my riding gloves on (damn I lost one in the pair) and during the backward journey there were lot of big bugs on NH-8 and one of them crashed into my left hand index finger!! Only I know how excruciating the pain was and how I saved my self from not crashing out of that pain. So, always have full riding gear on in such rides.

One by one we deviate back to our individual paths, towards the comfort for our couch from the saddle, to the caress of the better half to the madness of bike and bid the day off with the utmost satisfaction in heart and a smile on the face.

Snaps Courtesy : Dhruv
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  1. Been to alwar once, after offing from NH its a horrible stretch of a vllage/basti for a good 30 minutes and then comes the real scenic treat. Beautiful hilly (not so hilly actually) stretch zooming right through farms on both sides..no wide roads but good enough ones to enjoy the drive all the way upto alwar.i returned that day around midnight..so i know how dark that stretch is in night..no bloody street lights..not a single one :) bit of luck there for you..the bug could have easily gone around the neck :P...anyways eventually you did what matters the most..enjoyed the ride!!

  2. Awesome travelogue! Will come back and read it more thoroughly later..


  3. @Gagan Dude
    Yeah Man that bug was big and nasty.. that damn thing almost made and impact crater on my finger!! Couldn't agree more with you on the stretch man.. we were even enjoying the off-roading... litterally jumping our bikes through the pot-holes.. or should I call ditches!! Pure nirvana!!

    Thanks a lot for posting your comments!! Even more that you liked it. :)

  4. Good stuff man...
    I guess you could have included that your buddies slept at 4 the previous night. I guess you got lucky that we showed up... ;) And don't forget the sound of the RX135 revving in the tunnel....

  5. @Sid Dude
    Bro.... who told you guys to sleep at 4 eh ;) ?? Rowdiness through the night and then waking up late!! :D (just kidding) But yeah... you guys showed up and that made the trip... a BIG thanks to you guys!!

    The RX135 revving through the tunnel did give the guys in the car a chill of hell ;)

  6. Band of Boys..!! Good to see you all have fun. Never grow up :-)

  7. I wish I could join, but I am not biker :D

  8. @Payeng Dude
    Rightly said main.... it's all about never growing up :)

    We would have loved to have you in anyways!! Trust me :)


Item Reviewed: And then we reached Sariska Description: Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Sajal
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