Beating the heat by going on a ride in hills has always been the most preferred idea for any biker. However, this time, the idea was a little different. Being present in Delhi, most of the time, we go out in the hills that are snow-capped, whereas this time the route was in a different direction, as we headed towards the hills capped with lush green woods and the drenching rain of south India. We rode to the land of coffee and lush green forests which is also known as Scotland of India “Coorg”.
While for a biker it is always a good reason to ride into such tranquillity, this time the reason was given to us from Indian Motorcycle by offering us to be a part of the 3rd IMRG ride to Coorg.
Ahmedabad-Mumbai: Super-hot with the mercury rising high, touching 48ºC
Mumbai-Shimoga: Mild temperature with cloudy weather
Shimoga-Coorg: Mild to heavy rain with considerable dip in temperature
6th June 2017 to 11th June 2017
We have re-created the same route on www.power1bikingroutes.com in case you want to do a similar ride. Click on the map below to find more information about it
For me the ride started from the 5th of June, as I left Delhi in a flight to Ahmedabad, as I was supposed to pick my bike (my companion) for the next 6 days. I landed in Ahmedabad in the afternoon of 5th June and it was scorching hot, but that couldn’t break my excitement. The first thing I did was to leave my luggage in the hotel and rush to the Indian Motorcycle’s showroom in Ahmedabad.
As I reached there, my steed was ready and waiting for me to ride along into the beautiful dense mountains of Coorg; with the smell of tea, coffee and Coorg spices. As I reached back to the hotel with my bike, I could not wait for the sun to rise next morning. Of course, it had to happen, for the obvious reasons that I was riding to this beautiful paradise on one of the best machines on the planet, Indian Chief Vintage.
I started early morning on 6th June to reach my first stopover in Mumbai. This day was little harsh for riding, as it was very hot and was getting hotter as the mercury rose. Nonetheless, I reached my destination crossing over 500kms.
Day 2 – Mumbai – Belgaum
Second day was to be relatively easy for the ride. I woke up to see lovely weather with clouds in the sky. I was concerned about crossing Mumbai if it rained and traffic would get worse. However, it seems that the rain god was with me, and he spared me from being stuck in the most famous or I should say infamous traffic jams of Mumbai in rains.
As I rode to my next destination, I knew I would not be alone for long, as one of the IMRG riders was waiting for me to join in Pune to ride along to Coorg. I met this gentleman on the Navale Bridge; Pune waiting with his Indian Scout and not to be missed customised Indian boots. From there we rode together to Belgaum.
Day 3 – Belgaum – Shimoga
Day 2 came to a beautiful end with a walk by the sides of a beautiful lake in Belgaum, and so did the start of Day 3. We woke up early and went out for a morning walk by the lakesides. With the beautiful start of the day with a walk by the lake and lovely breakfast, we cleaned up our bikes and started to roll towards Shimoga. We were eager to reach Shimoga, as we were to be joined by over 10 more IMRG riders there.
Passing through the scenic beauties enroute Shimoga, we reached our hotel and checked in. We were all tired as while the route was scenic, we had to travel slowly, as the roads become single lane post Harihar and road conditions were also a mix of good and bad. Despite all the riding and tiredness, we went out to explore the city of Shimoga. Must say the city might be small but pretty well planned. Markets are divided by the nature products available, and not to miss the Food Courts there, rather I must say food streets.
We were waiting for the others to join in as they were covering approx. 800 kms in a single day travelling from Mumbai to Shimoga. They started early in the morning around 4:00am from Mumbai and reached by 11:00pm in Shimoga. We all had Dinner together and crashed for the nights as we had to start the awaited ride to the most beautiful Coorg.
Day 4 – Shimoga – Coorg
What could be a better start of the day, when in the city where you have never been before, you wake up to meet fellow xBhpians to greet and welcome you to their city. 2 fellow xBhpians (Mahendra Shet and his friend) came to meet me in the morning.
As we started, we were warned that the weather will change as we cross Hassan. And the warnings came out to be true. As we were about to reach Hassan, the all lovely weather started to become all wet, as the rain god welcomed us with constant heavy shower. From here on the ride became more interesting as the rains were constant but on and off in patches. It was like, the rains are pouring in a certain pattern, and it is us who are going in and out of it.
Going in and out of rains and crossing all those kilometres, the ride turned more beautiful as we turned towards Somwarpet. Now from here till our hotel and beyond, we were accompanied by hills covered with lush green, dense forests. Finally, while we started well in time in the morning, we travelled approx. 350kms in over 10 hours and reached our hotels only in the dark. But yes! not to forget, as we entered the Coorg region, even the times when it is bright and sunny in other places, it was already starting to get dark.
Due to the overwhelming participation by the IMRG riders in the ride, hotel in which all the activities were planned was sold out and we had to pick up another hotel to stay which was equally beautiful but was around 7kms away from the actual venue. Since, the day was already set, I decided to head to the venue directly instead of checking into the hotel. On the way I realised, the actual venue was on pretty good altitude (considering that we were down south), and on the way we were welcomed by clouds on the roads.
Day 4 – IMRG Event in Coorg, Madikeri (Day 1 of the event)
As we reached the venue, we were joined by over 100 more IMRG riders from all over India. Day 1 of the event was planned to celebrate the brotherhood of biking, with a gala dinner and live performances by a professional band. We all had great fun interacting and networking with each other and then since I was feeling little tired, I left to call it a day around 12:00am. However the party continued for some more time.
Day 5 – IMRG Event in Coorg, Madikeri (Day 2 of the event)
While day 1 was fun, there was a lot of action waiting for all of us on Day 2 as well. We all gathered at Vivanta by Taj, which is the actual venue site for the breakfast. Post having our breakfast, we left for a ride in the beautiful valleys of Madikeri.
While the ride was full of fun, it also led to some good deeds as well. As we all went to a local girl’s school to meet the students and encourage the school authorities to continue doing the great deed they are doing by giving education to female children. Team Indian Motorcycles post meeting and addressing the students and teachers, also donated few computers to the school authorities and some goodies for the students.
From there we headed on to do yet another good deed as we went to a Buddhist monastery. There we were given a tour of the monastery and were also briefed about the significance and stories related to the idols and pictures on the walls.
Post our visit to the monastery, we all headed back to our hotels to get fresh and ready for the evening that has been planned. Unlike the last evening, this evening was filled with performance and games, however not by professionals but the IMRG riders. There were also the felicitations for the riders completing 10,000kms and above, for which I was honoured to be on stage to handover the awarded badges alongside with Mr Pankaj Dubey, CEO, Polaris India and Indian Motorcycles. After the evening and some really surprising performances by the IMRG riders and Team Indian motorcycle, came the tough part as we had to say good night to all as the ride was coming to an end.
Day 6 – Coorg – Bangalore
It was the time to ride back towards home. We started easily post breakfast as the distance to be covered was less of around only 270kms. We took the scenic and shorter route via Mysuru (Mysore). Contrary to Bangalore’s image of traffic, we got considerably less traffic on the day, may be because it was Sunday. I reached Indian Motorcycle showroom in Bangalore to drop and bid adieu to the lovely Indian Chief Vintage and rush to the airport to catch my flight back to Delhi.
Overall, the ride was a very well organised super fun ride and what a great way to beat the heat. Big kudos to Indian Motorcycle India team in organising this amazing event and taking this initiative of uniting the bikers from all over India inculcating the feeling of brotherhood. Wish to meet all the IMRG riders soon again.
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