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Old 26th August 2013, 16:41   #1
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Default Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250

I started on a North-India tour on my bike Ninja 250cc on 3rd-july-2013 all alone. I purchased this bike just a few days ago and after servicing I was riding the bike for about 440 km before I started the journey.

When I gave this Kawasaki Ninja 2010 model bike for servicing , many there instantly recognized this bike with number 7788 because it was used as a test vehicle at Bajaj Probike Show Room ( now KTM show room). Bike tires were in good condition but brakes were not working. So, I told them to fix new brake shoes. After touring to nearby districts to familiarize myself , I had finally started off on my long journey. When I returned, I realized I completed 9000 km in 31 days.

Since this was long journey of 31 days covering many cities and off course most importantly Laddak , including going to Kardhung La , I would rather like to give a brief summary of journey and I would go in to details only wherever I think it would help a future biker like myself. Otherwise here I would not have written this.

A brief summary:

I chose to cover pilgrim centers and cities on the way rather than going straight to Delhi and then to Leh.

So, the route I selected was Hyderabad to Annavaram ( famous Satynaranayana swamy temple atop the hill ) (day 1) . Annavaram to Bhuvaneshawar via Srikakulam ( bypassing Vishakapatnam city ) (day 2).
Buvaneshwar to Puri ( Unfortunately for me , Lord Jagannath darshan was closed for chariot festival preparations) and then onwards to Konark ( day 3 ), that is I visited Sun Temple in the evening , spent late evening at Konark Beech and next morning I started off to Kolkata.

I reached Kolkata city by 7.00 pm but exited out of the city towards Dakshineshwar to have darshan of Goddess Kali. I stayed for the night at Dakshineshwar(day 4) , had darshan in the morning and also went to Belur mutt and then came back to Hotel by 10:30 am and packed my luggage in an hours time. By 11:30 morning I was on the road towards Varanasi on (day 5) .

That was a mistake and the destination was very far. I had to cross Jharkhand and Bihar. A near 700 km journey means night journey and my helmet visor is a coloured (tinted )one. I pushed back the visor but the air flow was pulling my neck backwards. By the time I was bypassing Gaya , it was night 11:00 and too much police force was inspecting the bridges. They did not give me any problem , they only stopped my bike but did not checked any thing nor did they ask for any bike papers to inspect. But the problem was not police but the road itself.

All through Bihar, the road was full of potholes, mud, slush and concrete pebbles. Except trucks I could not see a single bike or even a car in the night. There were big holes on the bridges. At two times in the pitch darkness my bike leaped in to the air because of big gaping hole on the bridges and landed again straight on two wheels saving my life.

The bike did not have any puncture. Finally when I reached Varanasi, I had to ask several turckers to find a bypass road to enter the city, otherwise anyone would miss and go straight to Allahabad. The road sign boards were gone. Bypass road or approach road to Varanasi itself is full of mud,slush ,muck and mire. The mud is up to the chain of my bike. After this effort, that too when I was exhausted , I found a little bit expensive hotel and checked in to the hotel(day 6).

This hotel receptionist informed me that at Gaya bombs were exploded and then I remembered the police force at those bridges and roads. I stayed next day also at Varanasi ( day 7) and had darsdhan of Kasi Vishwanatha ( Lord Shiva) and other ghats like Dashamedha Ghat and Satya Harischandra Ghat where a body was being burnt with not so enough wood.

Security was just too much to even carry a small camera in Varanasi , even much before approach to the temple which is in the thick of a residential area. The entrance to the temple is through extremely narrow lanes and the floor of these lanes is dirty. Temple itself , which can be called as Mecca of Hindus is a small one and the Shiva lingam is inside the earth , just below the floor level and yet there is a spiritual aura, which you can not fail to notice , in spite of police man’s presence and pushing and showing right inside the sanctum sanctorum of temple.

The state of river Ganga is most disgusting and deplorable. .The water was so dirty that I refused to dip my hands in the river. I wanted to hire a boat to go to middle of the river but all boats were ordered to be anchored on the shore after this Gaya bomb incident.

I went to BHU campus but petrol in my Ninja bike was about to be finished ,so hastily retreated back in search of petrol in an unknown city which is obviously very backward, with narrow streets. People are very indifferent and arrogant and off course you will face pestering, thievish Brahmins near the temple.

On day 8th , morning I started towards Agra. I gave my cloths for washing at the hotel the day before and they were washed very well. In the morning by about 6:30 am I left Varanasi , through its vegetable market area as suggested by hotel receptionist and exited the city.

On that day by 4pm I reached Agra and chose Tajmahal bypass road instead of Agra city centre. By the standards of Hyderabad , where I live , Agra is a very dirty one. I went towards West Gate of Tajmahal area and there were so many hotels. For Rs,.1200 I got one so called AC room.

On day 9th morning I went to see Taj Mahal. I was not very impressed for whatever the reason and there were so many pestering photographers and so called stupid guides that you would get fed up with them, they are mostly rough, foul mouthed idiots. I was holding a small sony handicam ( very small foldable one) and these pestering idiots begin to say this camera is not allowed , that is not allowed and so on. What is not allowed are those video camera with a stand and shooting types.

By afternoon I completed sightseeing of Akbar’s fort or Red Fort and and then I prepared for my next destination. It was about 12.00 noon and I started towards Delhi. I had my lunch on the way on Yamuna expressway at a sideby hotel near a tollgate.

Choosing Yamuna expressway to go to Delhi would have its own consequences. First you would not get any petrol bunks on the way and you would immediately remember mad Tuglaq’s administration from history books. Mad Tuglaq is very much alive offcourse.

I did not take care of this point , and to cap it all my bike did not have any petrol indicator except a low fuel indicator which means , once the lamp comes on it I could hardly ride further for about 50km. I went into a tensed situation. Luckly for me , a little before exit road , one biker suggested that there would be an exit road nearby and I must exit for petrol , and there would be no other alternative, no other options and made it clear to me that there would be no petrol bunks. And you would not get any exit roads anymore , exept to go to Mathura. So, within a few kilometers, at the very first chance , I exited out of Yamuna expressway, went in to a town, it seemed to me outskirts of Agra itself ,got petrol full tank and then entered expressway again with a sense of great relief. A camera would be watching your vehicle ,so you cannot go above 100 kmph speed.

Thus I entered Delhi, first time in my life, and scoured around for a medium type of hotel. I found one in Sarai jullena area and took rest for the day. Next morning I went in search of a Bajaj service centre just to change oil in my Ninja bike. One after another refused and suggested me to go to KTM show room at Connaught place. Finally I reached here by 12.00 noon but here they suggested KTM service center at Kirthi Nagar. Since I did not know the way , show room people sent a salesman along with me to locate Kirthinagar. And to my surprise and shock even this fellow who was a native of Delhi, did not know as to how to reach Kirthinagar. Through too many traffic jams, we finally reached Kirthinagar and service engineer there , received me with respect. He immediately ordered water washing and oil change. I wanted servicing but that means , I could collect the vehicle only next day. They did not have Motul synthetic oil in stock and hence they put Bajaj 20W50 standard oil.

Like that one day was passed. That was 10th day . On that same day , in the morning before all this trouble , I had a visit at Swami Narayan temple, which was claimed to be the world’s biggest temple. I do not know by what standards , but the security was too much tight and it was intrusive as well.. I did not feel any spiritual power or an aura. I did not feel that the temple’s construction for this great saint Swami Narayan ( who spent his life in Gujarat ) was massive. Even Puri Jagannath temple would give a feeling of its massiveness, and breathtaking imagination of that great architect , whomever he or she was, who designed this Jagannath temple, hundreds of years ago. And the same feeling you would get when you see Konark Sun Temple. That type of feeling at least I did not get when I entered Swami Narayan’s temple in Delhi. But this is very much personal and I am not telling anyone that they would also feel the same way.

10 days had been over since I started from home and it was quite surprising to me because , I did not feel like that.

On day 11th , early in the morning , I took directions from hotel owner and left towards Asram road and then ISBT road then straight to Karnal road and from then on I followed a taxi , who told me to follow him to get on to Chandigarh road. I reached Chandigarh by noon. I bypassed most of the city and exited it towards Manali.

This is another memorable journey of life.

Until approach of Manali hills the road was good. But once you enter these cluster of hills , the road was terrible. The chance of skidding and also the chance being overrun by an oncoming truck is very high. Roads have very tight corners, tar was washed away and only pebbles,exposed concrete, big pits , water pools on the road etc., is a common feature of this way.
Added to this , there was heavy downpour of rain. I stopped on the road to go to wayside Daba , and as I approached to the sideway for parking , my bike slipped and fell. This broke clutch lever , luckily only by just one inch. Nowhere on the way I could get any spare. First time, I regretted my decision of choosing Ninja 250 over my Pulsar 220.

All through these hills, one would get almost everything. There are hardware shops and automobile spare parts shops. Spares were available for Apache and Pulsar but not a clutch lever for Ninja. At Bhuntar , which is a small hilly town on the way to Manali , after important town called Mandi , there was a Bajaj showroom . The owner of this shop, came out to see me and examined the bike. He explained to me that there was actually a small pin , which he said would control a sensor and this pin is pressed or depressed by clutch lever because the design of clutch lever itself was like that. So, he had shown the difference between a Pulsar 200 NS or 220 clutch lever and the Ninja and refused to change the lever for my bike . He told me that my bike might not start after change of this lever. Still the length after this lever after break was enough for my three fingers to hold on and to press it , and that was a consolation for me. I had to go with it.

I could not reach Manali on that day. It was about 300km after Chandigarh. You will have to ride the bike all through hills on terrible roads. Additionally you may face landslides and until it is cleared by bulldozers etc., you may have to wait. So, be prepared for it.

I took a room at roadside motel for the night and slept there. Even here room tariff is 1500/= . I bargained for Rs.1000. and he gave it. When I removed my long boots, a mug of water came out of each of them. I was drenched in the rain completely.

On day 12th I woke up by 5am. and immediately I started my journey to Manali. Luggage packing and tying it to bike always took me one hour.
In Manali I stayed at a good hotel for some 900 per day ( again a bargain from hotel’s printed rates of 1550/= per day ) .
On day 13th also I stayed back in Manali. The only place I could visit in Manali which had some interest was Hadimba devi temple which is made of wood. Devadar trees which goes up to 70 feet is another site to see at the temple compound.

My bike is another site of attraction wherever I stopped all through this journey. Every where , including Delhi, young boys gather around it the moment I park it, and ask all types of questions. Kawasaki Ninja got a very good publicity without intention particularly because people were generally surprised , young and old alike when I told them that I had been traveling all the way from Hyderabad. I am aged 55 and that was one reason for their surprise. Bikers at Kardung La at 18,380 feet above sea level were much more surprised, some of them were even shocked to know that I was ride all along from Hyderabad. It was because almost every one , I met and talked to had transported the bikes to Mandi or Manali by GATTI or some other transport company and from there , they had been riding to Laddhak.

My bike’s AP10 number alerted one telugu worker among BRO. One of them at Rohatang Pass encouraged me. He introduced himself to me by which time , negative thoughts were taking over me at Rohatang. In Tibetan language Rohatang means, “pile of dead bodies”. This “la” or pass which means “a way” among Himalayas is a horrible one and also a dangerous one. Now the military removed all tents or Dabas of Laddhakis from the clearings at the top. So you would not even get water. You must carry petrol and water while crossing Rohatang..

Rohatang road means “no” roads. It was all deep muck and mire. Even the bike chain went in to mud. After Rohatang , that means for about one and half kilometers of extremely horrible roads or non-existent road, you would have comparatively easier one but note the point “comparatively” and expect deep pits with water jumping on to the pits, from heights , and your bike has to go through this pit. Use some speed , some skill, your stamina and bikes power , all would count. Eat a good break fast before you start to Rohatang from Maanali. Just before military police check post where they would note your bike and your details, there is a small hotel and you must eat well here because you would not get anything to eat in Rohatang , now in the changed situation.

I had some other problem and peculiarly as it may seem, such problems occur only to me.

I had missed a station called Tandi on the way( on day 15th). How I failed to notice it ? , Tandi petrol bunk? God knows. I failed to notice this bunk may be because I thought that Tandi was much ahead. After Tandi petrol bunk ( actually it was barren land except for those two bunk machines to fill petrol , so you may miss this petrol bunk) which would come about 100 km after Rohatang ( may be I am a little bit wrong about distance) , you will not get any petrol for another 370 km. The total distance from Manali to Leh is about 480km. And you have to reach Karu village ( there is also a military base camp here ) to get petrol where there would be no guarantee that you would get it ) .

One good suggestion of hotel receptionist which I followed was to carry two cans of petrol, from Manali itself after filling up the bike tank to full capacity.Even that I did not do properly. I filled the cans by 3 and half liters each instead of 5 liters each just because bunk attendant filled only as much !!

That put me in some tension all way. But the bike started much better mileage than on the plains even though , most of the riding you would have to do in first and second gear and hardly you could ever switch to third gear. My bike has 33 horse power and yet it was struggling because of low oxygen and low atmospheric pressure.

By the time I reached Sarchu area ( a very plain and a very wide area ) it was dark , it was about 8:30 or 9.00 pm. I followed some other biker who was visiting this place for the second time. At one group of tent I talked to the owner and took tent , a small one for rent , at 650 rupees per day and also had dinner which they prepared in the tin shed at the head of tents. After two rotis and dal and I left all the luggage on the bike itself , crept in the tent and slept there. In the tents they also provided blankets.

In the morning at Sarch plains( on day 16th) I could get some type of breakfast , actually a butter toast which was not done well but I crammed in to my mouth and started along with other bikers who I have acquainted on the way.

I had to put my two cans of petrol in to the bike on the way and by evening I reached Karu village. Only a few bikers like one group of Israelis and two or three others could reach there. Off course the road was horrible, it hardly existed here and there but heights also tired them, exhausted them. So some people stopped at small town like villages like Upshi and some at much before Keylong. Those young men of 25 years age to 27 year old groups of bikers could not make it to Leh even on the second day.

I reached Leh by 7.00 or 8:00 pm (on 16th day ) and on the way at Karu village, I filled petrol full tank and as usual again I went in search of a budget hotel in Leh and finally I could find a “guest house” which charged some 650 Rs. Per day. Even in LEH there is only one petrol bunk and this bunk will not open until 6:30 in the morning.

Leh city wakes up very late. At 6 am or even 7 am I could not see any STD booth or internet centre. My prepaid airtel mobile did not work. You should get new SIM in Leh which would take two days or you must have had a post paid connection to your mobile. I was cut off from my family by phone connection ever since I crossed Rohatang and I was in touch with them through STD in Leh only two days after..

I stayed 6 days in Leh. From here I went to Pongong Lake and came back on the same day back to Leh ! Pongong lake which is admirably the most beautiful lake in the world , which changed colours even as I was watching it, it is about 180 km away.

It is possible to go Pongong lake and come back to Leh , provided you start very early in the morning like 5:30 am from Leh. But the petrol bunk in Leh was not open. You should carry at least a 5 liter can of extra petrol also along with full tank in your bike. I took risk and went to Karu village to get petrol in the morning. Leh petrol bunk opens only at 6:30 am.

Another day, I started towards Nubra Valley, in the same manner. But this time, in the evening itself, I filled the cans with petrol and tied them to bike. Though Kardhung La is just about 50 km distanced only from Leh city , to reach Nubra valley, you would have to travel nearly 230 kilometers. On the way in Nubra Valley, you would reach a village called Deskit where there are plenty of hotels to stay. Deskit has a Buddhist Monastery atop a hill and you can ride up the hill. So, this means you would climb up 18,380 altitude Kardhung La while going to Nubra valley and all the same you have to repeat this feet while coming back to Leh.

However , you would better stay at a village called Hunder ( in Nubra Valley ) which is some 7 (seven) km further from Deskit village which is towards Pak border. At this village , even 4 km before reaching it, it would be amazing to see a desert !!! among Himalayas. This desert even has thorny bushes ! and even camels !!!! . I was astride one of these camels next day for Rs.185 for 15 minutes.
I could get good food and accommodation at a hotel called “Snow leopard” in Hunder and I personally feel , it had better stay at Hunder than at Deskit since the sight seeing desert is at Hunder..

I filled the petrol from the cans I carried and after a good break fast and coffee , I started back to Leh which I could reach by 4:00 pm in the evening again after crossing Kardhung La..

Another day went for Leh palace, which was built of mud, small pebble like stones and wooden beams . It is good nine floor high on one side and 5 floors ( or levels ) on another side. Architect’s design is as much complicated with long halls , open to sky court yards in each “level” ( floor). It was described as a miniature copy of a palace in Tibet.

Yet another day was spent to see a Buddist monastery atop a hill on the western side of Leh. It was very tiresome to climb this hill. I counted the steps they were only 540 but they are very steep.

In LEH most of the hotels, restaurants serve only vegetable food since 98% population is Buddhist. One tasty food item is Momos and another is Vegetable noodles. For break fast I could eat only butter toast. Since I am a diabetic , it was very important for me to eat breakfast before I could start anywhere. People enquired about two things everywhere. What was my age ? since they could not guess it. And another was “what is this bike”? How much it would cost ? what is average mileage ? How in the world you could come all way from Hyderabad to Leh !! .Even many foreigners were surprised. At Tanglang La , a French lady hugged me and had taken a photograph. At Karu a brazil woman athlete remarked that I might be a loner in life to which I responded by telling about my daughters , my wife and my life at Hyderabad. At Kardhung La , telugu engineers who were constructing a modern dormitory for DRDO came to talk to me after noticing my bike’s number plates “AP10” which shocked them. Once I climbed down to Leh they , took me to their camp house and offered food , tea etc., and celebrated the event of my journey.

RETURN JOURNEY.

Everybody told me that Leh to Srinagar road was excellent. But these people were not bikers. So I did not believe it 100 per cent. They were actually correct to some extent. The road was good until it would be 50km from Zozilla Pass. The road was much more horrible on the Zoziall Pass itself with landslides. It is at an altitude of 11200 feet. There are two roads , one road going at lower levels on the hills and another above at higher level or altitude. One biker with a pillion fully covered with ash coloured dust was coming from Zozilla and he stopped me to tell that I must choose the lower road since the upper road is jammed.

When I actually reached the spot , I went for the down ward road but a soldier there told me that stones were falling from above and I must take care. I chose road which goes through high altitude. There was land slide, a long traffic jam, and to cut short the story, after great difficulty , full covered with dust , head to foot , I had crossed Zozilla Pass , the scene of terrific war between India and Pakistan in 60’s. After this another trouble spot or , where you have to be careful was Jawahar tunnel, which was flowing with water and was slippery and dark, since the tunnel itself was 3 km in length you would likely think that it would not end. In this tunnel applying sudden brakes, or suddenly slowing down would be dangerous here, your bike will skid .


. On the return journey , I stayed only one day at Srinagar since the curfew was lifted only the previous day. I could see only Dal Lake in the late evening . The very next morning I started to Jammu. I reached Jammu by evening. In Jammu in the morning , after Raghunath temple darshan, I went to Bajaj service centre and asked them to change oil in my bike. It was nearly 3000 km now since I had changed the oil in KTM service in Delhi. They obliged, received me very well, did a thorough water washing for the bike and changed the oil , all within an hours time. I came back to hotel , packed and started towards Katra , a base camp small town for Vaishnodevi temple. One has to climb the hill, to have a darshan in a cave ( there is no temple or idol ). It took me six hours to climb 8,300 feet altitude. At 2:00 am (next day) I came back to hotel. I had slept until 7:00 am and immediately packed , started my bike to go to Amrithsar.

I reached Amrithsar by evening and I took rest in a hotel . Next morning after darshan at Golden temple ( Har Mandir Sahib ) , I went to see parade at Wagh border ( Indo- Pakistan border at Attari )
There was too much rush and too little space to sit and it was very difficult for me to see the closing ceremony (opening and closing of gates at the border). Lahore is only 25 km from that point.

Next morning I left Amrithsar , entered the city of Delhi by late evening , could get to Agra road and by passing Agra , I went towards Mathura and could reach Mathura city only by 1 am in the morning. By about 2 am I could check in to a hotel room and slept until 7 am.

After Mathura Sri Krishna Janma Sthan temple darshan and a visit to , Vrindavan ( a small town with extremely narrow roads or bylanes) , I left Mathura the very next morning towards Udaipur.

I reached Udaipur by evening 6:00 pm. I stayed at a good hotel and the next morning , I hired an auto ( first time in my journey) and toured all over important places in Udaipur. The one I liked was Udaipur Palace and Udaipur cultural dance in the Govt. sponsored cultural fest auditorium.

Thus one day after Udaipur, I took directions and suggestions from hotel owner and started towards Ujjaini. I could reach Ujjaini by evening only but took rest and in the next morning I went for darshan of Mahakaleshwar.( Lord Shiva) in Ujjaini. There was heavy rush, security check etc., and it took and one and half hours to have darshan of Shiv ling.

From Ujjaini , I chose Nagapur route , to come back home, Hyderbad. The route was horrible after Itarsi. The route I selected was mostly depended on local people. They warned me against going through Burhanpur, Nizamabad route.to Hyderabad.. So instead of taking road to Burhanpur at the junction ( at DEWAS) I went towards Asta. So the route was Asta, Kannod( at Asta petrol bunk they guided me to go through the town Asta towards Kannod) . from Kannod to Khategaon, Rehti, and by passing Hoshangabad , I reached Itarsi.

When I observed the chain of the bike it was completely dry. I showed to a mechanic on the road side and he also told me that it was completely dry. I went to Bajaj service centre on the way, right on the highway, and showed it to them. They received me very well and immediately did a water wash for the bike and also lubricated the chain with oil spray.

From there my troubles started. First the mechanic reduced the rpm ( or beating of the machine) and it started stopping whenever I reduced the speed. I did not know where to adjust it in the Ninja even though it should be an extremely simple one.

And immediately after Itarsi ( towards a town called Betul ) there was a long chain of trucks stranded on the road for a few kilometers !! First I did not understand but later I understood that a small bridge whose height is very low to the ground level was partly washed away by rain !

Because of selfish parking the traffic jammed on the road so much that I had to ride offroad through mud and dirt , and with great difficulty , I reached the fallen bridge . It is partly washed away but half of it is still intact.. On that half-bridge (length-wise ) a lorry was coming in the opposite direction. I was going just exactly like anoter hero Honda biker. But unfortunately because of the weight of my bike one lump of tar on the bridge sudden collapsed. My bike slipped and fell giving me no time to recover from it. Other truck people , lifted me up and restarted my bike. Fortunately I did not fall on the river side.Since I was wearing knee pads, gloves, jacket etc. I was not injured.

On the other side of the bridge also there was a terrific jam and that slowed me down , it was also now extremely dark. After a few kilometer it was a clear road , I had my dinner at a Dhaba where only truckers were eating and Sikh owner told me to stay at Betul and should not venture any further to Nagapur, but he also told me that it was a four lane good road.. My idea was to reach Nagapur and stay for the night.

Even to reach Betul , a small town on the road side, the road was like a hell with big pits. At Betul I could not locate a single hotel on the road side and there was a serious power cut. The whole area was in pitch darkness.
So, I made a mistake of proceeding forward. A four lane road indeed started in this hopeless state of Madhya Pradesh. Poverty is stark naked here, roads are horrible.. This so called four lane road which connects to Nagapur city is a miserable one. It would suddenly end up within just 3 or 4 km and you have to take a “diversion” . This diversion road at times goes through entire villages, on the precipice edges of huge agriculture wells, deep pits, thorny bushes and so on. And the four lanes would come again after you climb mud road and through the slush ,slippery road with concrete pebbles.

At one place there was no proper sign board to inform that the road was closed. It was indeed open. So I went through this so called four lane road . Ahead the road was washed away just three days ago. I could not see it and along with my bike I fell in to that culvert which was actually an approach road to a road bridge..

In that night at 12:30 I left the bike and all the luggage , I climbed up that culvert, ( I had no injuries ) walked along the road , to find a tin shed and woke up the workers there. They helped me bring up the bike, scolded the watchman with torchlight who should have informed me that the road was washed away but actually slept . The workers (beharis ) had given me a tin shed( they actually vacated at the moment ) for me to sleep.

Next morning I went back on my bike to the site of missing board and took a diversion to the right.. This took me to a small town called Pandhurna.

At Pandhurna I had my coffee and a road sign I read was that of Nagapur at 86 km. I decided not to stop and go straight to Hyderabad after crossing Nagapur. That was what I did , and reached Hyderabad Bowenpally by 7:00 pm and reached my home at night 8:00pm .
The road NH-7 even after Nagapur city was horrible. By the time, I reached a town called Phandarka wada , the roads were non-existent. There were big pools,pits on the road. After reaching A.P. border at Adilabad district area, I had great relief. The road NH-7 was excellent. I could touch speeds of 150kmph on my Ninja at times until Hyderabad.

So this is a “brief” story my journey in North-India all alone on my Kawasaki Ninja 250cc bike from 3rd-july to 3rd-august-2013. I think it is not boring and tiresome for the readers.
Attached Thumbnails
Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-vijaya1.jpg  

Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-visha1.jpg  

Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-konark1.jpg  

Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-agraroad1.jpg  

Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-waytoleh1.jpg  

Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-changala1.jpg  

Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-barlachala1.jpg  

Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-fatula1.jpg  

Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-kardungla1.jpg  

Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-manaliroad1.jpg  


Last edited by venuraja : 27th August 2013 at 13:02. Reason: uploading pics again
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Old 27th August 2013, 13:28   #2
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Here are few more pictures.
Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-kardungla1.jpg

Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-waytoleh2.jpg

Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-zozila1.jpg


One more picture just to show the carvings on suntemple wheel.
Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250-konarktemp1.jpg

Last edited by Eddy : 27th August 2013 at 13:45.
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Old 27th August 2013, 13:46   #3
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Thread moved from the Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 27th August 2013, 13:48   #4
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Default re: Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250

Wow. You just bought a bike and took off on such a long ride.

Congrats on a successful trip.
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Old 27th August 2013, 14:21   #5
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Default re: Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250

Yes, that is correct.
But my suggestion is to carry spares like clutch lever,brake lever,clutch wire and some tools like screw driver kit etc., before anyone starts on a Ninja 250.

You won't get spares anywhere remember that. Even chain lubrication could not be done by road side mechanics because they said I needed a spray type for this bike( in Itarsi ).So,I took it to Bajaj service centre in Itarsi just for lubricating chain !!. However since I went there I had also told them to do a water washing.
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Old 27th August 2013, 14:34   #6
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Default re: Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250

Congratulations sir for successfully completing the trip. 9k kms in 1 month is awesome.

But I have 2 observations here:
1. Your bike struggled in high altitude?
2. The mech actually altered your AFR? (you mentioned the bike stalling without throttle in Madhya Pradesh)

AFAIK, Ninja 250 sold in India has an FI system. Yours is a 2010 model right? By any chance, do you have a carb model?
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Old 27th August 2013, 14:47   #7
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Default re: Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250

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Originally Posted by Divya Sharan View Post
Congratulations sir for successfully completing the trip. 9k kms in 1 month is awesome.

But I have 2 observations here:
1. Your bike struggled in high altitude?
2. The mech actually altered your AFR? (you mentioned the bike stalling without throttle in Madhya Pradesh)

AFAIK, Ninja 250 sold in India has an FI system. Yours is a 2010 model right? By any chance, do you have a carb model?
YES, the bike struggled very hard even in first gear while climbing up towards Kardhung la only. At full throttle ,complete twist of accelarator , it struggled in first gear.
But among the bikers I met on the way, one young man's Yamaha fazer failed completely , so it had to transported. According to him he climbed down Kardhung-la , towards to Leh , without an engine !!. When I talked to him he was a pillion on fellow rider from Bangalore. Likewise on Apache 160 or 180 alternator failed. One Bullet 500 cc sproket's 16th were broken.

My bike has no carb, it has an FI system. In Itarsi I told the machanic that it was vibrating a lot in first gear and then he reduced the RPM or whatever he did , the moment I came out on road , it started getting switched off , whenever I went to lower RPM.
I did not go back , because I was getting late and that was a mistake.
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Old 27th August 2013, 14:48   #8
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Default re: Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250

Very well written! I thoroughly enjoyed reading it as it was not too long and everything was to the point. Hats off to you for attempting such a grand tour.

Just a question, are highways safe with regards to robbery? What feedback did you get with regards to this from the truckers you interacted with?
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Old 27th August 2013, 14:53   #9
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Default re: Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250

Quote:
Originally Posted by venuraja View Post
YES, the bike struggled very hard even in first gear while climbing up towards Kardhung la only. At full throttle ,complete twist of accelarator , it struggled in first gear.


My bike has no carb, it has an FI system. In Itarsi I told the machanic that it was vibrating a lot in first gear and then he reduced the RPM or whatever he did , the moment I came out on road , it started getting switched off , whenever I went to lower RPM.
I did not go back , because I was getting late and that was a mistake.
Its good that you didn't go back to that nut of a mechanic. But, I'm not able to understand how can one fiddle with the AFR on an FI bike.
Struggling while climbing uphills on a Ninja can be attributed to "not much torque in the lower rev band". Have you changed the air filter? Maybe, that is/was clogged!
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Old 27th August 2013, 15:18   #10
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Default Re: Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250

Divya Sharan

New air filter, new oil filter were fixed before I started the journey.
what is the full form of AFR?
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Old 27th August 2013, 15:21   #11
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Default Re: Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250

AFR is Air Fuel Ratio. Also, it is recommended that one changes the Air Filter every 8-10k kms. Leh/Laddakh is ultra dusty. Hence, you could feel the strain after having done close to 9k kms in Itarsi.

Last edited by Divya Sharan : 27th August 2013 at 15:22.
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Old 27th August 2013, 15:25   #12
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Default Re: Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250

Quote:
Originally Posted by venuraja View Post
YES, the bike struggled very hard even in first gear while climbing up towards Kardhung la only. At full throttle ,complete twist of accelarator , it struggled in first gear.
You should be in lower gear and open the throttle just enough for air to get in .Opening the throttle wide open will lean it completely and bike dies .

With FI bike it should have corrected itself , you just had to play with gears and throttle .With carb bikes you can lean every 4-5K feet climb and it should pull you through .Don't forget to rich it when you hit back plains .

Last edited by black12rr : 27th August 2013 at 15:27.
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Old 27th August 2013, 15:26   #13
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Hat's off to you Sir, and it's unfortunate that you were misguided in MP and took wrong route. From Ujjain Indore - dhule- Hyderabad would have been much much better though around 200 Kms extra, other option would have been Ujjain Bhopal Chindwara Nagpur, again 100 Kms extra. MP Roads are not as bad as you think, only you need to know proper detours
;-)
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Old 27th August 2013, 15:28   #14
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Default Re: Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250

Quote:
Originally Posted by amrisharm View Post
Very well written! I thoroughly enjoyed reading it as it was not too long and everything was to the point. Hats off to you for attempting such a grand tour.

Just a question, are highways safe with regards to robbery? What feedback did you get with regards to this from the truckers you interacted with?
First it became clear to me that truckers are better drivers than many car drivers. And truck drivers are victims rather than villains according to recent surveys. I always trusted them, and talked to them here and there at Dhabas.

All through my journey through AP,Odisa,Bengal,Jarkhand,Bihar,UP,Haryana,J&K,Punj ab,Rajasthan,MP,Maharastra and back to AP , in that order, nowhere I had any problem of thieves on NH ways. And Police never checked my vehicle even through "naka bandhi" at Bihar , or city like Delhi !! Even though I roamed around all through Delhi to find KTM service centre.

So, if you may travel through ineriors of some districts and that too in the night , you may face problem , but that I do not know for sure.
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Old 27th August 2013, 15:31   #15
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Default Re: Hyderabad to Leh on my Ninja 250

Inspiring, Inspiring, Simply Inspiring! I read the whole thing. Sir, you mentioned that you are 55, that's enough for the current generation to get inspired and get out of the comfort of their homes, leaving behind their console games for once, and play the "real" games of life, and live their life King Size.
That said, I can easily conclude that you're truly living your life King Size. And truly hats off to your family for supporting and encouraging you
Did u face any problems convincing your family?
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