After the excesses of the new-year partying, you’d expect that on a cold and windy Sunday morning people might want to stay tucked in a little bit longer. Perhaps spend a lazy Sunday morning at home. The last thing you’d expect is a large turn out for a ‘critical mass’ cycling event, on a biting early January morning.
‘Critical Mass’ is a cycling event organised in many cities across the world to draw attention to the fact that cycling is a good way to travel and that cyclist have an equal right to the road.
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Since Delhi climate bicycle ride was going to be only 11 kilometers and on the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) corridor, I thought it might be fun for my 10 year old child to participate in, and also get a taste of an environmental movement.
When we reached the venue the first thing that crossed my mind was, where are the people? I knew we were just a little bit behind schedule, but the place looked totally deserted.
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We finally raised the PedalYatri flag on the Indorie Qila (Indorie Fort). Of course it was a notional one on wikimapia, but it felt special because two of our previous attempts of finding and reaching it had failed.
A very eventful ride with more than it’s fair share of punctures, dynamite blasts, tumbles, scraped knees, nicked & bruised shins, un-rideable terrain with boulders fields & deep undergrowth, and traffic jams too.
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Watch this video. And if you are still not convinced about the virtues of wearing a helmet then surely you must have a very thick skull! Interesting product idea too, for those who worry about their hairstyle.
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First published in Times of India on October 29, 2010. Nice to be featured in the ‘Just4Her’ section of ‘What’s Hot’ ;-).
If you can afford to ride a motorcycle or a car, then why ride a cycle. Its a question that often gets thrown at me, though not always explicitly. More often than not, when I ride, locals mistake me to be a foreigner. Despite the colour of my skin, kids will shout out ‘angrez’ and adults will try to start a conversation in English.
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After I came back from my recent self-supported Manali to Leh cycling trip many people wanted to know what I carried on the trip. So here is a list based on what we carried. There were two of us, and we figured that some of the items could easily be shared, so we did not carry two of every thing (I think there are some exceptions to this, but I guess that advice could be another post).
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Ride report form September 2010 Ride dates: September 4th to 14th, 2010
Two riders: Sanjay Jaiman and Ajay Jaiman
After years of thinking about it and weeks of planning we finally did it. Close to 600 kms of cycling from Manali to Leh (because Tanglang La was closed and we had to take a detour at Debring and go via Tso Kar and Mahe bridge).
We rode with all our gear including clothes, sleeping bags, tent, stove, utensils, food, water, cycle spares on our cycles – an estimated weight of about 25 kgs (not counting the weight of the bikes, pannier racks, and bags.
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I like the idea of self-supported cycle travel. It gives you a feeling of freedom, almost liberation from the constraints of ‘tourism’. Or at least that is what I thought. To put it to test, the first order of business was to acquire pannier bags (the bags that hang on the sides of the cycle). And then a pannier rack, on which the bags are attached. Once I had mounted the bags and done a couple of short local test rides, I felt I was ready for a real test ride in the mountains.
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Day one is always hard. But staying the night at Raju bharti’s guest house in Gushani more than made up for it. Lovely family to stay with and an absolutely gorgeous place too.
On day two rode through rain and climbed 1,234m over 17 kms, (that’s pretty darn steep, eh!) see elevation profile. The downhill after the pass was endless – the break shoes were totally worn out, and our wrists were hurting by the time we reached down.
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