Thursday, July 17, 2014

Helmet Stories Ride to Pangi Valley 2014


When you ride a motorcycle, and you crave adventure, you are always looking for that special road trip that challenges you and your bike to the core - a ride that resonates within you long after the ignition has been switched off and your battle-scarred bike finally silent. The champion of all adventure road trips is the Helmet Stories ride through the Pangi Valley in Himachal Pradesh. This gem of a little-travelled route — first pioneered by Helmet Stories in 2012 — is bookended by Rohtang Pass on one side and the almost mythical Sach Pass on the other as we ride along the ever narrowing valley of the Chandra Bhaga river through some of the most naturally beautiful locales in India. The roads are unpaved and narrow, hewed out of living rock, sometimes so high that the river looks like a shimmering silver ribbon below. The ride includes forays into abutting valleys and meadows, a route of seemingly endless twists, turns and elevation changes turning each day into a most excellent adventure on two wheels. 




There are no fast food chains or 5-star hotels on this route and it is so much so better for that. We camp below a thick canopy of stars, sometimes next to the river, or high up in the mountains with a scented mattress of pine needles below our sleeping bags. Before dark, the bonfire is lit, the grill fired up, the bar is open and it's time to exchange irreverent banter about the day well spent. The toughest day is the ride from the idyllic meadow of Sural Bhatori that crests Sach Pass, a road that crosses over the Chandra Bhaga and ascends through forests of bhojpatra, pine and deodhar before the terrifying switchbacks that take you to the summit. Beyond lies civilisation and the idyllic hamlet of McLeodGanj an easy two days ride away.






Only riders with a lust for extreme mountain roads, thin air and great food need apply!

Only 12 seats available.

Itinerary
Day 01 (14th September 2014): Manali - Urgos
Day 02 (15th  September 2014): Urgos  - Tindi
Day 03 (16th September 2014): Tindi - Sural
Day 04 (17th September 2014): Sural - Satrundi
Day 05 (18th September 2014): Satrundi - Khajjiar
Day 06 (19th September 2014): Khajjiar - Dharamshala
Day 07 (20th September 2014): Dharamshala - Chandigarh






What's included
1. All accommodation on twin sharing basis.(Manali, Tandi, Dharamshala and Chandigarh) 
2. Tents(one per person), Sleeping Bags, Mattress etc
3. All meals
4. Cook and Kitchen staff and Kitchen Tent 
5. Expert Mechanic
6. Experienced Tour Leaders
7. Support Vehicle and backup crew
8. Bike 
9. Petrol 

10. All the coffee you can drink







What's not
1. Any airfare and shipping of bike to Manali
2. Travel/Medical insurance
3. Mechanic will be carrying spares and parts(for people who bring their own bikes). 
4. Tips
5. Booze

Cost
Rs 80000 per person 

To book a spot or for more info write to info@helmetstories.com or check out our Facebook events page

Follow this link for images and posts from the previous years Helmet Stories ride to Pangi Valley http://helmetstories.blogspot.in/search/label/Pangi%20Valley



Thursday, July 3, 2014

And this Odyssey comes to an end

After a long days ride we roll into Leh where I say goodbye to the crew of the 11th Himalayan Odyssey and make my way back to Mumbai to start planning my own crazy rides into the mountains.

The view from Tanglangla

The ride from the More Plains to Tanglangla is always an interesting one as far back as I can remember the road has been under construction but it seems soon it will be a strip of Tarmac.
The Bullet 500 has been a brilliant bike to ride into the mountains.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Evenings at Sarchu

While the rest of the Himalayan Odessy hung around the camp in Sarchu catching their breath watching the sun go down Rahul, Ketan and I went out and had a little fun.

Suraj Tal

This is what I love about the mountains every time you visit everything is the same but so different. The first time I rode passed Suraj Tal it was cold, pissing down and we rode most of the way in a thick cloud I remember we could hardly see the lake below us. This time was very different.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Give space to oncoming traffic

Give space to oncoming traffic specially in a long water crossing. 


Tuphchilling

Because the Royal Enfield crew had to take a call and change the route of the ride via Manali (the road passed Kunzumla was closed) we got to spend an extra day at Tuphchilling just bumming around.

Road works

This is what 70 bikes look like when they come to a halt due to roadworks. Lots of road widening all the way to leh this year.

Water Crossing Fun

Even though the road gets better every year there are always a few water crossing to add to the fun.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Objects in the mirror are closer than they seem

We left Manali early to beat the traffic up to Rohtang but nothing could prepare us for the madness and the lines of cars snaking up from Marhi. The moment we crossed over the pass we were the only ones on the road finally.