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Old 5th November 2012, 14:23   #1
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Default Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

Yes, I couldn't resist the temptation.. AGAIN!!..

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Unlike other OTR's this one was completely unplanned for me. The main reasons being the location, Nelliyampathi more than ~250kms from home, and this was a two day event. So, it would be 4 days away from home/business which was not really feasible at this moment. Moreover, my Jeep was sent for painting and I didn't have a clear timeframe when it would return. So when Shibu contacted me, I couldn't give a clear answer.

However, Nelliyampathi was said to be a superb place which I haven't visited and this was Shibu's event. The way I know this person, he is just crazy about this stuff, and this would mean that the track/terrain would be definitely testing for both the man and the machine. It was also a while since me and Sreejesh did some crazy stuff together, and he was compelling me to do so.. So the end result was me looking for reasons to go.. AGAIN..

To do stuff like this:

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Old 5th November 2012, 14:25   #2
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

So, if someone asks me, what was Sahyadiri OTR, or rather how was it? The only answer is - SUPER FUN!!!!...... I'm sure, this will be the answer from any Jeep enthusiast who came to that event. However, I'll go forward and list out somethings which made up the entire event.

The things that made this event Superb!
  • Mind blogging support from Marshals. They were everything one could ask for.
  • Super track. There was everything one could wish for. Slush, rock, streams, inclines, articulation, momentum, this.. that.. anything.. and everything. If you were left wanting, just take a left or right, and there would be more!
  • Limited vehicles. The number of vehicles were limited, which was just perfect. More vehicles would've messed up the entire event.
  • Food on time!: Unlike other OTR's I've participated, this one had food on time, or atleast lunch was at 2:30 PM, which was just OK.
  • Super place and good stay. The place Nelliyampathi, is an ultimate scenic wonder! Its a must visit, if you ask me. The stay was also good.
The things that could have been better:
  • The most important thing that could have been better is the recovery equipment. There was little to no recovery equipment. However, the marshals and their manpower did the trick.
  • The time: On both days, the OTR started after 11:00AM. This could have been earlier, so that we could have more fun!
  • Mechanics: As far as I know Nelliyampathi has no Jeep workshops. The nearest Jeep workshop is 35kms away at Nenmara.
Sahyadiri Off Road Challenge (SOC 2012) was organized by Shibu (Jeep Captain), with the help of a team of capable, energetic, involved, passionate youngster marshals. They were really involved in the whole event. As I mentioned above, there was only one winch vehicle for recovery. However, these marshals, made sure that man power was available wherever vehicles got stuck. As for me, that made this event a true blue off-roading event. Getting out from the Jeep and getting mud plastered all over the body is something that connects you more towards this sport.

The track, which as set up in the 750+ acre plantation of GreenLand farmhouse was just awesome. There was every kind of terrain one could wish for. The owner was cooperative enough so that we do any kind of antics in there. The best part of the terrain was that, even though it was super fun, and 4wheeling was required almost everywhere, there was minimal vehicle damage unless one tried out some too much stuff. It was a true test for the man and the machine.

AFAIK, this event wasn't publicized much, and as a result, only limited number of vehicles came in, and for the resources available it was just perfect. If more vehicles came in, I'm sure all the fun would be gone. Also, I guess due to this, the food was adequate and was on time. Unlike other OTR's I've attended, the quality of food too was good. The stay, which was arranged in GreenLand farm house was good. The place was just superb!

The only major gripe in the event was that, recovery vehicles/methods were close to nil. We had to personally, get out and push the stuck vehicles, along with the marshals, which well... our team didn't bother much as we were used to this kind of stuff, but I guess if one came with family, it might have been a little bothersome. Also, the lack of mechanic was a bit concerning. As, Nelliyampathi didn't have a Jeep workshop, and the nearest one was 35 kms away in Nenmara. Towards the end of the 1st day, I hit a root and bent my front right leaf spring. If there was mechanic/Jeep workshop somewhere, even with minimal facilities, I could have corrected it, and taken part in the next day track! However, Shibu gave me his Gypsy to have some fun. More on it later!

Now, let me add some photos, and I'll try to narrate what was happening.
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Old 5th November 2012, 14:27   #3
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

The day prior to the event:

Nelliyampathi was about ~250kms away from Wayanad, moreover, the forest checkpost there would close at 6PM, so we decided to leave one day early. We were a team of 4 Jeep's. Two from Wayanad and two from Calicut. Both Jeeps from Wayanad left @10:00AM from Bathery.


MM540XD and CJ3B, Stopped for fueling in Erumaad.

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Time is close to 11:00AM, but dense fog makes it look like its 6 in the morning.

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Gradually, when the altitude starts dropping, the fog also reduced, but it starts raining!.

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By lunch time, we meet Sreejesh's Jeep MM550XD from Perinthalmanna.


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Lunch time.. yes, the other Jeep, CJ3B also joins in..

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And, then we move on towards Nelloyampathi.


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One more stop for topping up, ATM, water and ciggerets, as Nelliyampathi was said to have none of this!. My Jeep consumed ~800 bucks worth diesel for covering ~210 kms. Pretty good FE, considering that we were doing speeds above 80 in good roads.

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Enjoying the scenic views and through the ghats!.

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Midway through the ghats, something unusual happens!!.. I start losing oil pressure! We stop immediately, and check out whats wrong. I was fearing the worst.. that my rear engine main bearing oil seal completely worn out. Now, this might mean that my OTR dreams gone through a shredder, and me being stranded in Nelliyampathi/Nenmara for atleast a couple of days more.. However, it was just an oil pipe failure. But, even that meant, I needed to be towed till Nelliyampathi/next 15 kms.

Fellow bhp'n and dear friend Sreejesh to the rescue and towing my Jeep!

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And then, midway, we meet "daivam" (I don't remember his real name), a taxi driver cum mechanic, who ties up my oil pipe with condom and insulation. Now, doesn't that need to go the the take-me-home-tips thread, eh?

Tying up my oil pipe. Look at all the oil spilled out. Thank god, I had 3 liters of oil spare in my Jeep!


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And, then, we finally reach GreenLand Farmhouse safely!

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But then, when we reach there.. we see that the main gun Shibu is missing. Some of the marshals there say that he is stuck in the trail, trying to rescue Ranjith's Scorpio out.

So, out we go again... to the Rescue!

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Back to the resort, some chit chat, have food, and have some fun!


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And, we call it a day... With minds filled with excitement about tomorrow's event.

Last edited by dhanushs : 5th November 2012 at 14:36.
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Old 5th November 2012, 15:46   #4
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

Day - 1:

The first day of the event started rather late.. but, little did we know it would be this much fun!!..


Now, for a Jeep you should always do a thorough check up. This is exactly what he is doing.

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Vehicles start to arrive and line up..

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Breakfast time.

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Atta Marunnu (Leech Medicine) in the making. It is really thoughtful of the marshals to take that extra step to make sure that the participants are comfortable.


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Changing to MT tyres!
You definitely need them!


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Marshals Setting up boards and stuff..

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The Registration desk & Registrations.


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Stickering up the rides!!..

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I'm reducing the air religiously!

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Shibu, giving a briefing..

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Some video graphing and intro from Asianet TV guys

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Our Team:


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Marshals:

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And, off we go!

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Now, time for some action pics of the day..

Last edited by dhanushs : 5th November 2012 at 16:10.
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Old 5th November 2012, 16:54   #5
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

Now, its time for some action pics of the day..


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Old 7th November 2012, 10:30   #6
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

Some more action pics of the day towards the noon!...


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Now, this is what I loved in Sahyadiri OTR... Every one was involved in recovery. Not just the driver.. This gave a sense of togetherness!


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Some pictures credit goes to Pradeep Eapen

Last edited by dhanushs : 7th November 2012 at 10:35.
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Old 7th November 2012, 16:18   #7
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

Where are the rest of the photos ? And the videos?
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Old 7th November 2012, 19:02   #8
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

Quote:
Originally Posted by prmd_cochin View Post
Where are the rest of the photos ? And the videos?
Give me some time.. will you??.. They are being processed.

P.S:- I wonder where Jeep Captain and Sreejesh MP are with their set of pics.
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Old 7th November 2012, 23:41   #9
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

@ dhanuahs , thank you for sharing the snaps and wonderful write up.

That was not a well advertised event, I think that's the reason only the real people willing to work hard as a team turned turned up.

Kudos to Shibu!

The marshals did a real great job in recovery. Great team work Jeepers.

Missing my Jeep now:-(
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Old 8th November 2012, 11:49   #10
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

Wow....those are great pics. Watching these pics have really made me more interested in off roading. I notice that there are 95% jeeps participating in the challenge.Cheers!
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Old 8th November 2012, 14:19   #11
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

Some more pics of action just before the noon time...


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Old 8th November 2012, 14:39   #12
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

Some more pics:


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And then, we have an interview with the Asianet guys..


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And then, food arrives.. Nice Biriyani.. Though I would've preferred something more light, as Biriyani makes you tired and thirsty...

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Old 8th November 2012, 21:44   #13
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

Once again Wonderful writ up dhanush .

Few pics from my side..


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9.00x16 Never use this on a Jeep. 75% of the torque is used to rotate the tyre
so it struggled everywhere.

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This jeep with MDI Engine (I think) & NDMS (7.50 xR16 resoled) performed the best. I think 31" is the best for jeep.
Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!-dsc_0142.jpg

Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!-dsc_0131.jpg

Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!-dsc_0132.jpg
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Old 8th November 2012, 22:13   #14
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sreejeshmp View Post
Once again Wonderful writ up dhanush .
Thanks Sreejesh.

Where did you get this new pics from? I thought I used up all your pics?

Quote:
9.00x16 Never use this on a Jeep. 75% of the torque is used to rotate the tyre
so it struggled everywhere.
True.. 20+% increase in wheel dia. And IIRC, it was running on 3.7xx diff ratio?

Last edited by dhanushs : 8th November 2012 at 22:14.
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Old 11th November 2012, 12:07   #15
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Default Re: Sahyadiri Off-Road Challenge (SOC 2012) : A Report!

awesome trail. that Orange Invader looks fantastic. tasteful mods.
Are there more pix of that vehicle anywhere else on this forum?
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