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Thread: The Perfect Storm - My first 500kms round trip : Maithon / Garpanchkot

  1. #1
    Rusted ALI.R's Avatar
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    Default The Perfect Storm - My first 500kms round trip : Maithon / Garpanchkot

    Being relatively new to the world of touring, I was yet to test the capabilities of my backside to stay planted on a motorcycle seat for a long(ish) run. The only previous 150kms + run from my city Calcutta being the ride to Shantiniketan which was a winter ride totalling 350 odd kms, which although brilliant did take a serious toll on me due to the heavy backpack / clothing and complete lack of riding gear. So I waited and waited for four extremely long months before I was prepared mentally as well as gear wise to embark on my next road trip. And then it happened...............

    The Maithon / Garpanchkot tour came out of a random ride discussion I was having with my biker buddy / ace photographer - Debarshi. After much debate on whether we should do this trip duing the extremely harsh summer we are experiencing this year, we decided to go ahead irrespective if whether it still burning or not on the last weekend on May. And so the planning commenced and our machines were prepped up for the run, with Debarshi on his CBR 250R and I on my FZ16. I also ordered the Viaterra Claw Mini saddle bag just before the trip to ensure I did not have another backpack nightmare and it proved to be absolutely vital to my ride condition considering the torrid heat wave and humidity which was running amok. Debarshi also picked up a pair of new gloves and knee protectors and we were all set for trip.

    To try and minimise our exposure to the sad summer conditions, we left our respective places as soon as the first rays of light fell on our bikes . Our route: The NH2 (Delhi Road) is a tourers' dream come true. Miles after miles of perfect tarmac interrupted only by the arrival of towns we had to cross: Durgapur and Asansol and that particular nightmarish checkpost (Chirkunda) just before you take a right turn for Maithon. We needed a few watering breaks apart from the breakfast halt in Durgapur to ensure we did not pass out or something from dehydration and finally arrived at Maithon around 10 am.

    This place, famous for the colossal Dam and massive resultant lake, seems to have a weather system of its own. We were greeted by a pleasant windy (and sunny!) climate which soon transformed into the most insane dark cloud formation and lightning storm with gale force winds. And yes, it rained too!! . I cannot possible describe in words how it all looked to here are some photos!

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    Yours truly, as shot by Debarshi...............



    Debarshi also shot a video on his Garmin Virb action camera...

    To be continued..............................
    Last edited by ALI.R; 06-03-2015 at 10:08 AM.

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    Moderator Divya Sharan's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Perfect Storm - My first 500kms round trip : Maithon / Garpanchkot

    Approved!

    Awesome set of pictures there!

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    Default Re: The Perfect Storm - My first 500kms round trip : Maithon / Garpanchkot

    Woah! Those clouds! Nice pics mate!
    ALI.R likes this.
    Tour De Thekkady

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    Default Re: The Perfect Storm - My first 500kms round trip : Maithon / Garpanchkot

    Quote Originally Posted by Divya Sharan View Post
    Approved!

    Awesome set of pictures there!
    Thank you sir! My first blog and I must admit to be rather terrible at putting them down in words... Still I shall try

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    Rusted krishna77's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Perfect Storm - My first 500kms round trip : Maithon / Garpanchkot

    Brilliant stuff. Waiting for more.

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    Default Re: The Perfect Storm - My first 500kms round trip : Maithon / Garpanchkot

    Nice video, especially the overcast parts. Good going!
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    Rusted ALI.R's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Perfect Storm - My first 500kms round trip : Maithon / Garpanchkot

    Thank you gentlemen! Been caught up with the work so could not complete this thread earlier and shall try to do now.

    So where were we?? Ah.. The storm!! It did disappear as mysteriously as it appeared, leaving a red glowing clear sky which seamlessly transcended into semi darkness - with the sun setting down beyond the vast green lake. We settled down in the local 'chaat street' by the Dam, helping ourselved to a plate each of sumptous raj-kachori whilst recollecting the events of the day. Giving us company was the pitter patter of the light drizzle which started soon and the chirpy chaat-wala who went on and on about the wonderful weather of his town and how the storm had driven away several of his potential customers. The entire setting was beautiful. Simple things from simple folks simply making you realise how convoluted and far from peaceful our lives were. This was our get away. Two wheel moving us, across distances and emotionally. Aren't all us riders a romantic lot?

    Soon it was dark and we realised we had cash to pick up. The only ATM around was about 5 kms away and operated by SBI - God bless them! We wiped our bikes, geared up and headed to the ATM which surprisingly had 3 kiosks so the withdrawl was quick and we now had enough cash to pay for our hotel bill! A simple dinner of rice and chicken curry sourced from the local shack owner was followed by a plan out for the next day and a quick review of our photos and videos. We then padlocked our bikes and crashed for the day.

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    Next morning we were up 4.30 sharp as we had to cover Gar Panchkot and make it back home by 11. So we packed, loaded our bikes and left despite being a little doozy. We faced some problems locating Gar Panchkot and to make matters worse our phone GPS kept leading us through off road routes and dead ends. However we kept going and with some local assistance finally made it past the village railway station, confirming that we were finally on track. All that irritation and blankless soon disappeared as we were greeted by a series of tree-canopied twisties which shook us out of our doozy states!! Off we went.. leaning in and out of corner after corner aided by beautiful tarmac and almosty no traffic. Our bikes seemed to be loving this run and stayed true and planted all along. The FZ and the CBR are totally brilliant on twistees and boy did we have a blast on the bends!! Now who doesn't love curves!!! . We halted near the outer edges of Gar Panchkot to take in the view of the fields, the cloud topped hill, a dhobi ghaat and the idyllic srroundings we found ourselves in the middle of.

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    Another bit of off-roading and a quick tea stop followed and we finally headed out back to the NH2 already missing the sights and the sheer joy this short trip had provided. A proud feeling to having completed my first 500km round trip and my backside finally long distance certified! . Hopefully a lot more miles will be munched and many more places will be seen / discovered. Already in planning mode for a ride to Benaras as soon as the weather improves.

    You inputs and comments will be highly appreciated. Thank you.

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    Rookie Sabyasachi Dey's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Perfect Storm - My first 500kms round trip : Maithon / Garpanchkot

    Great pics & great travelogue. Congrats on your debut long ride !!!
    Could you share some info as to where can I get riding gears in Kolkata.

    Sent from my XT1022

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    Rusted ALI.R's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Perfect Storm - My first 500kms round trip : Maithon / Garpanchkot

    Quote Originally Posted by Sabyasachi Dey View Post
    Great pics & great travelogue. Congrats on your debut long ride !!!
    Could you share some info as to where can I get riding gears in Kolkata.

    Sent from my XT1022

    Hey there! Well I sourced most of my gear online. The DSG Evo riding jacket from Amazon, gloves from Ebay (which are a bit flimsy and will shortly be upgraded to a Zeus pair), the saddle bag is a Viaterra Claw Mini from the Viaterra website itself. I use a Studds Shifter helmet which I got from Motorcycle Supply Corp in Wellington for INR 2400. I also found a very handy pair of high ankle motorsport boots from Fila (Isonzo) for INR 2k on Snapdeal.

    Actually, you can check this store I recently discovered called Gear Up in Bhawanipore (jaggu bazar). They I think store all sorts of riding gear and can also procure if not in stock.

    Happy to help if you need anything! ATGATT!! 😊
    Divya Sharan likes this.

  10. #10
    Rookie Sabyasachi Dey's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Perfect Storm - My first 500kms round trip : Maithon / Garpanchkot

    Thanks pal !

    Sent from my XT1022

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