TIME : 9.45 PM
DATE : 23-10-2012
LOCATION : Behind my home
Me and my next door buddy (Abhi) taking a small stroll around the house after dinner , upset over the plan to go to madikeri for 2 days getting cancelled .
Me - "Dude, its really bugging staying home for the holidays. I was expecting that we could have gone to this trip , it would have been great fun."
Abhi - "True dude, even i am getting bored, whats the use of having cars but not going anywhere.. "
Me-"I don't know what to do but i just want to go out tomorrow, my mind is made up..."
Abhi-"Where do you wanna go??"
Me-"Anywhere dude, just anywhere. I just want to drive like crazy, never been on a long journey with me driving."
Abhi-"What say, we'll go somewhere in bike??"
And, thus it began, in 5 minutes we had discussed and decided to go to Shivanasamudra , Talakadu and surrounding spots in my bike . Since we were only 2 guys (planned for 3 at first, but one could not turn up due to last minute change in schedule), we chose to take my bike.
About me, I drove around only in city limits from the time i bought my bike in August 2008, She was four years old on this august and had clocked 19K odd kms on the odo. But i had never thought of going on a long drive since mine is a humble 125-cc city cruiser. I used to get jealous seeing all the Enfields, Roadkings making journeys over 350-400 kms long on a single day. So i decided, why not take her out for long ride so that i will know the boundaries about my HH Glamour.
Hence, it was decided between us that we will leave on Wednesday morning (24th) at 7.00 AM sharp. I returned home from the walk, browsed a little and slept.
TIME : 6.45 AM
DATE : 24-10-2012
The phone starts ringing and I answer it without opening my eyes..
"Dude, you still sleeping???? Get your lazy butt off the bed , we leave in 15 min.."
It was Abhi, waking me after i didnt respond to his message.. I leaped out of the bed the moment i saw the time (Forgot to set the alarm last night !!), rushed and took a bath and was ready at 7.05 AM, after listening to the usual "Ushaaroo "(careful in kannada) and "Sanje Male barak munche bandu maneg serko" (be home before you get stuck in the evening rains) from my Mom, we took 2 water bottles in our bags and left.. Yes, just we both with windcheaters and 2 water bottles were all we were carrying..
So, the next stop was the Shell Bunk near Lalbagh, topped up for 400 rupees and took off, got the air pressure checked in KR road and left to Kanakapura via Banashankari..
It was a calm morning with no city rush since it was a holiday, and the speedo gradually started rising once we left the city limits, after driving for about an hour and a half at a steady speed between 60-80 KMPH, the bike stopped vibrating and was getting smoother slowly, (maybe she wasn't used to this speed in the city) .We reached Harohalli and decided it was time to fill our stomachs . We stopped on a roadside stall selling hot idlis and had a nice breakfast. Believe me, the taste you get when eating this kind of breakfast can't be expressed in any words..The chutney taste lingers in your tongue till afternoon. I'd like to see anyone telling this after eating in a 5 star hotel..
Paid for the breakfast and started to drive again, by 9.40 we had crossed Kanakapura and heading towards Malavalli, decided to stop for a few minutes to stretch our legs..
Back to the road, drove on and on enjoying amazing scenery all the way and every now and then a HH SPLENDOR would zip past us
carrying 3 persons, I was amazed and happy that this old workhorse of Hero Honda was doing its job pretty well.. Being the economical commuter. Me and Abhi joked about how one would feel when he is driving a powerful R15 enjoying the scenery and suddenly a SPLENDOR pops out of nowhere and zooms past him...
Finally reached Shivanasamudra around 11.20, Here are some pics..
And my trip meter reading after starting from '000' at Shell, Lalbagh road.
I had driven all the way till here from morning, so after a few minutes of enjoying the falls and taking a few pictures, I let Abhi drive..
Some road restoration work on the last KM to Shivanasamudra..
And the entry point..
Next, on our list was Talakadu, so drove through a number of villages after taking a diversion from the main road and finally reached our destination,
Trip meter reading after reaching talakadu.
Here are a few pics..
By the time we reached talakadu, it was afternoon so the main temple was closed, we managed to go to the other two and were a bit tired after treading in the sand , had a little snack to eat and spent some time roaming around, due to the holiday the crowd was expected..
It was 2.00 PM and we decided to leave Talakadu, again Abhi was driving and i was enjoying the scenic views around..
Here, is where the actual problem with doing long drives on bikes designed for city use started, we had clocked close to 190 KMS on the drive and sitting for such a long time, our "seats" started to hurt.
Made a pit stop on the main road where there was a shop selling fresh vegetables, had a friendly chat with the fellow, he was telling us his experiences with his new Hero Splendor.. "Super mileage saar.. Nandu idu moorne gaadi, ella hero honda ne iradu maneli, sakkath engine saar..." (Super Mileage sir, I have 3 bikes with me all hero honda. Nice engine too sir) . Was happy that Hero despite its split from Honda, was still considered and trusted among most people.
Abhi, trying to have a nap..
After a short break, again hit the road, it was 108 KM to Bangalore.So we began, driving all the way at 60-70 KMPH, finally reached Kanakapura and headed towards Bangalore after taking a couple of short breaks. Half way to Bangalore, noticed the diversion heading to NICE road which would lead us to Hosur road, a tad closer to our home, so turned right, paid a toll of 20 rupees and soon we were zipping along the beautiful lanes of the NICE stretch.
Covered 20 KM in less than 20 minutes, and back to the Hosur road traffic.. A few minutes and we were home.
The final reading of the distance covered..
All in all, this was a very nice trip. And, it answered my long time doubt, "How far can a city bike go on a single day ?". Now, although i have answered that question with 300 KM drive, I am pretty sure that she will be able to clock in a few more miles.
About the comfort of riding, frankly I felt the bike outperformed my expectations and although there was a little vibration at speeds above 80, considering the "cc" and "weight" she did her best and bought us safely home. And till this very second neither Me (remember, I drove this far for the very first time)nor Abhi have any body pains and didn't need any rest once we came home. So I hope that pretty much answers your fears about driving a bike . Trust your heart ,your bike and simply go for it. Cheers...
Special thanks to Automotive India, for encouraging me to take this up after reading other travelogues. Hope this has been informative. Below is a chart of the expenses we incurred during this trip.
Fuel - 400 rupees (calculated as 50 KMPL although the FE average came to about 58 KMPL)
Breakfast for two - 60 rupees
Entry fees at shivanasamudra and talakadu - 20 rupees totally
Lunch at talakadu - 45 per person
NICE road toll - 20 rupees
Happiness - Unmatched