North India Trip / Himalayas

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North India Trip / Himalayas

Post by gerran on Fri Dec 14 2012, 10:26

In September / October I completed a 3 week trip into the Indian Himalayas. I found a reference to Royal India Bikes (RIB) on the internet when I was researching information on motor bike tours into the Indian Himalayas. I made an enquiry into hiring Royal Enfield bikes for three people and doing the tour unassisted instead of with a tour group.

One of our small group had been to India before but none had done the route we planned which was fly to Delhi, train to Chandigarh, pick up bikes from RIB and ride to Manali, cross four high mountain passes on to route to Leh, visit Nubra Valley crossing the highest motorable road in the world and Pangong Lake, and return via Kargil, Srinagar and Amristar to Chandigarh.

From the initial proposal from RIB all communications were very professional with detailed notes and suggested itinerary and gave me confidence that we would be OK. When we picked up the bikes I was relieved that we got what we were promised - current model 500 classics with low kms., EFI, disc brake, left side gear change and solid racks which we loaded our gear on. We were also given spare parts, tubes, etc and hired a tent and sleeping bags in case we were stranded on the road (which we didn't use).

I am now going through the hundreds of digital images of the trip and wished we had taken a helmet camera to record some of the challenging and stunning scenery we encountered. However these memories will last a lifetime and it was a trip that anyone interested in motorbike touring should have on their bucket list. I have saved some photos on Flicker and have included a link at the bottom.

We had no major problems with the bikes apart from minor adjustments to chains and cables, etc. and a puncture which fortunately was outside our hotel. The hotel staff quickly sourced a tyre repair man nearby and the tube was patched and wheel replaced for 50 rupees ($1). All three bikes lost side stand springs after travelling over rough road sections (which were very frequent) and these were replaced with occy straps until new springs were located and installed for 50 rupees.

We also met other travellers who had hired older bikes from another company in Manali. Their bikes had 'died' and they had to truck them back to Manali and continue their trip by bus. All together we did the trip for about one third of the price advertised by well known tour operators for a similar trip and I think we got more out of it by dealing directly with the locals when sourcing food, accommodation, directions, etc. I have done a write up for AusTouring on their website if you want to read more about it. Look under section on "Dream roads......" and my write up is titled "One for the Bucket List"


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Join date : 2012-12-14

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