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9000 KMS AROUND INDIA FOR MOTORCYCLYING UNITY.
16th DEC'17 - 5TH FEB'18

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Thread: The Ultimate #powerTrip360: 20000 kms on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 and Ducati 1299 Panigale

  1. #11
    Super Moderator sunilg's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Ultimate #powerTrip360: 20000 kms on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 and Ducati 1299 Panigale

    Day 13 & 14: Tennant Creek to Alice Springs to Uluru

    The day 13 of our ride, Tennant Creek to Alice Springs, was one of the most happening days as far our photography goes. The entire route, around 510 km long, was full of some of the most iconic places in the Northern Territory, including Devil’s Marbles & Wycliffe Well. We were riding on the Stuart Highway and there were a large number of termite mounds all along the highway. Some of these mounds were even dressed up by locals/tourists and look like scarecrows (p.s.: some of these even look like actual human being sitting on the side of the side of the road)!


    summers in NT can be extremely warm and can dehydrate you very quickly. So keep drinking lots of water to avoid heat exhaustion!

    G'day (ter)mite


    The first major attraction point along our route was Devil’s Marbles Conservation Reserve, which is also known as Karlu Karlu in local language. It got its English name ‘Devil’s Marbles’ due to the large round shaped rock formations that are found there. This area is of great cultural and religious significance to the aboriginals. When you see those rocks, you start wondering whether this is nature’s work or really Devil’s marbles or whether some aliens did it. Talking about aliens, there was this town of Wycliffe Well along the way, which is called Australia’s alien capital by some because of the number of alien & UFO sightings reported in this area. The entire Wycliffe Well Roadhouse dons the alien theme, including the paintings on its walls and the two alien statues that sit outside the roadhouse. There were also many alien theme souvenirs on sale there.


    entering Devil's Marbles



    Around 240 kilometres further south, there was Aileron Roadhouse which houses two giant statues of the ‘Anmatjere Man’ & ‘The Big Woman & Child’. Then there was the Tropic of Capricorn marker just before entering Alice Springs. Then, we also met a guy named Justin who was riding on a bicycle from Melbourne to Darwin – the kind of stuff that needs superhuman efforts. He kind of made our ride look small.







    Tropic of Capricorn







    long way to go!


    And on day 14, we finally reached the Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock, which is a World Heritage site and perhaps the most well-known icon of Australia. We spent one full day here to explore Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, which will require a separate blog post.
    (Been There Done That) x 3.25

  2. #12
    Super Moderator sunilg's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Ultimate #powerTrip360: 20000 kms on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 and Ducati 1299 Panigale

    Day 15 & 16: Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park and back to Alice Springs

    The day 15 of the #powerTrip360 definitely was one of the most memorable ones as we reached Uluru, which is the most iconic landmark of Australia. Uluru is a huge sandstone formation rising up in the middle of nowhere in a relatively flat land in Northern Territory. It is also known as ‘Ayers Rock’ and is sacred to the aboriginal people living there for thousands of years.


    It is around 348 meters high and has a total circumference of 9.4 kms. It is also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site.










    Then there is another majestic sandstone formation roughly 45 kms from Uluru, which is known as Kata Tjuta or Olgas. Both Uluru and Kata Tjuta form what is known as Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park.

    not the kind of roads you'd like to ride at 50 kmph

    The Ninja H2 with Kata Tjuta in the background!

    notice how the Kata Tjuta seems to change its colors as the sun rays fall on it from different angles

    Kata Tjuta, which translates to 'many heads' in aborigines, also known as the Olgas are beautiful sedimentary rock formations jutting out of a perfectly flat landscape.

    Hundreds of thousands of tourists from all over the world visit here every year to watch these magnificent features changing colors through the day as sunrays from different angles fall over them, especially during the sunrise and sunset. Uluru is also considered to be the center of Australia, though the physical center of Australia lies somewhere around Alice Springs which is roughly 450 kms from Uluru.


    Our two HP India #Spectre laptops with i7 Intel and 16 GB RAM are responsible for the daily updates and lots more on the #powerTrip360! The main reason why we chose it because it is ultra light on our backs as we go on two hyperbikes around Australia without compromising on performance,





    There are quite a few staying options here, starting from budget lodge to luxury 5-star hotels and also campgrounds that you can go for. Also you can plan a bunch of activities including an aerial tour of the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. Also, you can rent a motorcycle here to visit the national park. But nothing would beat the fun of riding 20,000 kms on some of the world’s fastest machines to visit here and unfurl the tricolor


    We also met a fellow motorcyclist, Jay. Jay is originally from India and now has been working and staying in Uluru for the last 8 years. He became our guide and host here and rode with us on a Royal Enfield Bullet 500.



    Jay with the RE



    We also visited the Uluru Camel Tours Center the next morning before leaving for Alice Spring to shoot some pictures with the camels and it turned out that most of the camels present in Australia currently are the descendants of the Indian camels that were brought here in late 1800s by the explorers who wanted to explore the vast arid inlands of Australia and needed something that could go on for days without eating or drinking anything. And obviously they couldn’t find anything better than the Indian camels.















    It was time to return to retrace our steps back to Alice Springs from where we will be attempting our longest day ever on this roadtrip when we ride to Darwin, covering approximately 1600 kms on these mean machines.



    The longest day awaits!
    (Been There Done That) x 3.25

  3. #13
    Super Moderator sunilg's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Ultimate #powerTrip360: 20000 kms on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 and Ducati 1299 Panigale

    Day 18 & 19: Darwin

    Our entry into the city of Darwin was as dramatic as it could’ve been as we rode some 1650 kms from Alice Springs to here. It was the longest day of the trip as we made it to Darwin in less than a day’s ride. And we’ll be staying here two nights.


    Darwin is the capital and also the largest city of Northern Territory. The city sits on one of the northernmost points of Australia. One of the most interesting facts about Darwin is that it had to be almost completely rebuilt 4 times after cyclones destroyed it in 1897, 1937, and 1974, and also one time in World War II after the Japanese air raids.






    We had planned to skip Darwin in the original route plan; however, had to include it again as we had to get the bikes serviced here. And glad we did it because by the time we reached Darwin, the Ninja H2’s rear tyre had asmost worn out and the metal wires had become visible, which could be attributed to the 250+ horses at the rear wheel which would give it brutal acceleration at any given RPM in any gear. So we got a new set of Pirelli tyres on both the bikes.

    Panigale shining after a quick service and tyre change

    The bikes were promptly serviced in no time and in fact just in time to pay a quick visit to the local race track, the Hidden Valley MotoSport Complex, which was less than a kilometre away from where we were staying. The complex comprises of a race track with the longest main straight in Australia, a 1 km long drag strip, motocross circuit, and a go kart circuit. It also hosts an annual round of the V8 Supercars Championship and also a round of Australian SBK Championship. The manager of the track, Laurie, was kind enough to show us the track and also let us do a few quick laps on the track as well, which we gleefully did under a blistering hot sun. Though we were extra cautious on the track as we didn’t want to take unnecessary risks just halfway into the #powerTrip360. So it was more of a symbolic ride than an all out race to glory.

    with Laurie, the race track manager









    The later half of the day was spent meeting a couple of local bikers and that led to some funny and awkward situations. First, Sunny was in touch with a local biker who happens to belong to India originally and goes by the name of Rads. He runs his own YouTube vlogging channel by the name of ‘myrandomlife247’. I was going to do some photography in the city when me & Rads bumped into each other at a traffic signal and a hurried conversation later, Rads told me that he’d guide me into the city and asked me to follow him. I didn’t hear him properly and thought that he was going to meet Sunny. So I took a different route to city and when I reached the Charles Darwin National Park, I found Rads already waiting for me, which was a bit embarrassing. Also, we ended up spending a little extra time in the National Park, trying to capture the city skyline and by the time we reached at the park entry/exit gate, it was already past 7.30 p.m. and the rangers had closed the park, locking us inside. It was not really an ideal situation to be locked inside a national park with no food or water and among millions of biting bugs. But we were laughing our asses out for the first few minutes before we found out a helpline number to call and inform the park authorities. It took around 30 minutes of wait and 2 calls on the same number, including one with warning that if they don’t get us out of the park in the next 10 minutes, we’d call a friend with a cutter to cut upon the gate and get us out. The trick worked and me and Rads were soon out from there and spent the next couple of hours riding and shooting in the city and talking about bikes and life in general in Darwin. Would’ve loved to explore the city more but had to come back early as we had to prepare and pack the bikes for the next day as well as we’d riding some 830 kms from Darwin to Kununurra and Lake Argyle.



    Also met Rob in Darwin! From the BikeMe forums





















    with Rads, check out his channel on YouTube 'myrandomlife247'
    itsmevini123 likes this.
    (Been There Done That) x 3.25

  4. #14
    Super Moderator sunilg's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Ultimate #powerTrip360: 20000 kms on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 and Ducati 1299 Panigale

    Day 20 & 21: Darwin to Kununurra & Lake Argyle

    The day 20 saw us riding some 850 kms from Darwin to Kununurra. We also entered the state of Western Australia from Northern Territory. We backtracked for around 300 kms from Darwin to Katherine before hitting the Victoria Highway from Katherine to Kununurra. The initial 100 kms on this highway were the most boring ride I’ve had in my life. And it was extremely hot and humid as well. But then it soon turned into one of the most memorable rides on this roadtrip so far with long sweeping curves inviting us to go full throttle. And then there were these familiar empty straight roads as well where you could ride at 100 kmph blindfolded.


    How cool is it find a couple of choppers parked in a resting area on the highway?

    too hot to handle - both the bike and the weather!




    fun time on the road!







    It was also a time travel sort of ride for us as we gained around 2 hours crossing from one time zone to another as we entered Western Australia. It was fun to watch the GPS clock go back in time, but it was also confusing at the same time because our body clock was still stuck in the old time zone and it would take some time before we adjust to it.


    We also did sort of a fuel economy test on both the bikes and it turned out that the Ninja could go as far as 250 kms in one tankful, and the Panigale 1299 would add another 10-15 kms before asking for refill.












    The day was a long one and took some time to come to an end. However, our tired souls were given a warm welcome at our hotel ‘The Kununurra Country Club Resort.’ Warm welcome would be an understatement for the pampering we and our bikes were subjected to. The bikes were given an exclusive parking spot and were locked away for added safety. The rooms that we were given were super cosy and comfortable. The entire staff was friendly. And the icing on the cake was the ambience and the food. A highly recommended place of stay if you are visiting Kununurra.







    The first half of the day 21 was spent catching up with the pending blogging and photo processing. I then decided to pay a visit to the Lake Argyle, which is around 75 kms away from the town of Kununurra. As per Wikipedia, the Lake Argyle is Western Australia’s biggest and Australia’s second biggest man-made water reservoir by volume. It is also one of the most popular tourist destinations in this area. A boat cruise around sunset is highly recommended. The lake itself is very beautiful and is part of the Ord River Irrigation Scheme. It is fed primarily by the Ord River and also receives water from the Bow River and several other smaller creeks.






    While returning to Kununurra, I also witnessed forest fire from a very close distance. It was a scary sight to see trees burning in several square kilometres area. The otherwise black night sky had turned red and a thick layer of dark smoke was making this scene every scarier. The manager of our hotel told me that the fire had spread to around 60 kms area.


    on the way to Lake Argyle

    wildfire captured on the way!

    Sony action camera at work - filming a time lapse at the Lake Argyle

    near an area affected by the bush fire just outside the Kununurra



    The bush fires are an unfortunate part of life in Australia. Every year, particularly during the summers, these bush fires claim thousands of square kilometres across the country, which eventually results in loss of life and property! However, I am also told that the authorities do controlled burns in the jungle by themselves to prevent bigger bush fire during the summers and that some Australian plants require fire to reproduce as the heat generated from the fire forces them to release their seeds, which ultimately leads to a new cycle of life.
    (Been There Done That) x 3.25

  5. #15
    Super Moderator sunilg's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Ultimate #powerTrip360: 20000 kms on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 and Ducati 1299 Panigale

    Day 22 & 23: Kununurra to Broome & Around

    The day #22 of the #PowerTrip360 was the second longest one in terms of the number of kilometres covered in a day as we did around 1100 kms that day. A small typographical error in our distance chart led us to believe that we will be doing around 800 kms that day; however, we figured out the mistake the night before our departure and were able to make an early start rather than taking it easy.












    This was also the day when we came face to face one of the biggest challenges that we could face on this roadtrip; and that was the fear of running out of fuel. After the Halls Creek Petrol station, the next gas station was 293 kilometres. We were carrying 15 L spare fuel, which was enough to see us through to the next station. However, we rode very slowly in the 100-100 kmph range and figured out that we could do around 350 kms in one tankful and that spare fuel for the both bikes, which was impressive for these bikes. But riding slowly would mean a longer day on the road and we reached to a point where we figured out that the next petrol pump (Willare) would close at 8 p.m. and we were still 200 kms away from it, with just 2 hours in hand to reach it. So we called the petrol pump guys and requested them to stay open an extra 15 minutes; otherwise, we’d be stuck 200 kms short of our destination on the road. They agreed to keep it open for an extra 15 minutes; but we managed to reach there 5 minutes before their regular closing time. Then from there it was another 200 kms run to Broome to reach there before all the restaurants close.




    If you are traveling in Australia, you must keep in mind that everything closes here pretty early. Most of the shops and malls would close by 5:30 p.m. except on Thursday. Most of the restaurants close by 8 p.m. So if you are planning to buy dinner or anything else for yourself; you need to make sure that you do it before the shops close.
    The next day, day #23 of the roadtrip was spent exploring the city of Broome, which is a beautiful coastal city and that attracts a lot of tourists from all over the world. One thing that I noticed especially was the number of people of Asian origin. Relative proximity to Asia is the cause probably.

    I visited the Cable Beach, which is a major tourist hub here with white sand and was named after an undersea telegraph cable was laid between Java, Indonesia and Broome in 1889. This cable surfaced at this beach and gave the beach its name.

























    Some visuals from the Cable beach
    Then I went to the Gantheaume Point, which was right next to the Cable beach. The place Gantheaume Point itself is a white sandy beach with a red rock cliff face that overlooks the Indian Ocean. And there I saw one of the most beautiful sunset in my life. Would fail to describe what I witnessed so I’ll let the pictures do the talking.



    another self portrait




    the selfie - don't ask me how i reached the top of that rock after putting the camera on timer for 10 seconds







    (Been There Done That) x 3.25

  6. #16
    Super Moderator sunilg's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Ultimate #powerTrip360: 20000 kms on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 and Ducati 1299 Panigale

    Day 24 & 25 - Broome to Port Hedland & Karijini National Park

    The day 24 as per our plan was supposed to be Broome to Karijini National Park in Western Australia – around 950 kms. But sometimes things don’t go as planned. Just when we were checking out from the hotel, I received a call from home, telling me that one of aunts was no more. It was a huge personal loss for me as she had loved me probably more than my own mother. And I didn’t even have time to mourn her death. But as they say the show must go on, I saved the mourning for some other day and continued to ride. But no matter how I hard I tried, I was not in best of mental state to ride 950 kms and the start was delayed as well because of these phone calls. So a decision was made to not to ride all the way to Karijini and call it a day at Port Hedland, which was good 325 kms shy of our original plan.


    Port Hedland is a major port town and second largest town in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. Huge industrial set up start to appear as soon as you start approaching the town but the most prominent features on the horizon are the huge mounds of unprocessed salt, some of them several stories high. We had our first and the only photo break there before we headed to our hotel and called it a day.













    at a memorial for soldiers in Port Hedland



    The next day, day #25, we had an early start as we headed to Auski (Munjina) Tourist Village on the edge of the Karijini National Park. We would be staying in this roadhouse for the night as there are no staying options in Karijini other than camping. So after refuelling at Karijini and taking the essential supplies, I headed alone to Karijini National Park while Sunny stayed back to work on other things. Karijini Visitor Center is good 70 kms away from Auski from where you buy the entry ticket for the park.

    on the way to Karijini National Park

    Karijini National Park is Australia’s second largest national park and is famous for its many water gorges, waterfalls, and water holes. These features are scattered throughout the park and most of them can be approached by only a 4x4 vehicle or on foot. Thankfully the road going towards the Dales Gorge was a sealed one and the Panigale could go there. It is around 12 kms from the visitor center but the bike could go all the way to lookouts on the edge of the gorge. To go to the pool though, you’d have to do a bit of hiking and I definitely was not interested in doing that wearing my full riding suit and riding boots. So, I had to contend with whatever views and pictures I could get from the top, which were great nonetheless.










    The time I had in my hands to visit Karijini was too little to explore it. Ideally, one should come here with at least 2-3 days in hands and prepared to camp within the park itself if you really want to see what the park must offer. The sun had set and I had to head back to the Auski Roadhouse. I had done close to 100 kms by now and a miscalculation led me to believe that I probably wouldn’t be able to reach Auski with the fuel I was left with. A newfound friend in Karijini, Anna, helped me with a couple of liters of fuel and a cup of tea at her campsite before I headed back.
    (Been There Done That) x 3.25

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