Ride to the Nandi Hills

| Labels: | Posted On 4/19/08 at 9:45 PM

“Adi… you lazy bum, move your worthless ass off the bed and take me out somewhere” my wife, Mrs. RX Joshi, yelled. “It been over 2 months we are in Bangalore and we haven’t gone out even once. You were not like this Adi. You have changed.”
That’s Sunday morning for me. All women, whatever make, are the same underneath. But she had a point. I was being too lazy about hauling myself out of the bed and hit the road. So I decided to go for it this Sunday morning. I was already on the lookout for biking destinations around Bangalore. Nandi Hills sounded like a good option. While traveling alone for the first time in an unknown region, I didn’t want to take a complicated route. Nandi Hills is a 180 kms round trip, mostly on the NH7.
I decided to start early in the morning and as usual, woke up at 9 (that’s midnight) and left home at 10. After wasting almost an hour in eating and tanking up the bike, feeding her with oil, etc., I started my journey at around 11. I was still yawing under my helmet. (Who wakes up at 9 o’clock on Sunday?)
From Bangalore city, I approached the Outer Ring Rod near KR Puram. It was a good 6 lane road (3+3) bordered by trees. I immediately felt better and was all charged up. As I started putting kilometres on the speedo, life was once again sounding right. Mrs wife was also happy and in her own character. I don’t like to ram my bike while touring. An easy 60-70 k/hr is good for bike as well as me.
NH7 is mostly barren. No trees, no shades, nothing. Just a flat, white concrete road. After about an hour I stopped at a small dhaba. Went for a cutting chai and a smoke, and got ready to roll again.
After getting off the NH7, I stopped to check if I was going in the right direction. An old man advised me to take a road going through a small village to save about 6 kms. It was a good looking tiny village with small houses and loads greenery around. A stark contrast to where I was 5 minutes back.
The road was narrow and completely shadowed by the trees coupled with lush wine yards on the both sides of the road. Too good. After exact 3 kms I was on the highway again.
At the base of the Nandi Hills, there’s a statue of Nandi with a sign underneath that reads Nandi Hills 8 kms. And my friends, those were the best 8 kms of the entire journey. An unimaginable 8 kms long ghat section of well-laid tarmac and loads of hairpin bends. The bike revved happily. It was so good, I went for it twice.
There’s a small (or big) park on top. I went in for a walk. The place was overcrowded with monkeys and their evolved brotherhood. Within 5 minutes, I was strapping my helmet again. Gardens are for kids. The God has given us highways.
After enjoying the ghat for the second time, I took a break. Enjoyed a not so cold cold-rink and a smoke and decided to complete the return journey non-stop.
While heading back I missed a crucial turn because of a bus parked right on the intersection. And before I could realise I was 5 kms away. I spotted a bunch of people resting under a tree. When I checked with them, they asked me to go further down the road. As they were not very accurate, I had to turn back again and cover 9 kms before I reached the highway. In the entire journey, this was the only time when I literally ripped my bike.
The ride back home was trouble free apart from a few wrong turns taken while entering Bangalore. That resulted in 25 more kms. But I didn’t complain. I was happy and so was my bike.
After returning home at 4:30, I rested the bike on side stand, switched off the ignition and took off my helmet. Just then, the bike yelled again “What the hell, just 250 kms? What’s wrong with you, you lazy bum???”

(more pics at http://www.flickr.com/photos/45336990@N00/)


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