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Old 3rd December 2020, 16:43   #61
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Default Re: Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan

You really tested the patience of many bhpians in disclosing bike# 3 in your garage and the wait has paid off with this bonkers-of-a-review!

Lovely attention to detail and appreciate the efforts of the fellow bhpians who have helped you with this review. It was like reading an encyclopedia for the Himalayan which probably RE should use in their coffee table books.

As always, looking forward to your ownership experience.

Cheers
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Old 4th December 2020, 06:11   #62
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Default Re: Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan

Hello karthikk,
What a post this one is, a well deserved 5 star rating post I can say. I don’t know how many days you took to create a post like this one but it literally took 4 days for me to reach at this juncture (starting with your review, reading all the points line by line along with comments/feedback of fellow bhpians and your replies).

In one word, I say ‘PATIENCE’. Your review is like a story narration, a screenplay in which I visualised myself into it assuming I’m the one dealing with a bike. Red is my favourite color too and the bike looks a real stunner in red. This may be a strong reason for me to open your post but from there, it is you who made me to read everything.

I have no traces of recollecting memories reading your posts earlier but now I will do it for sure, starting with the Interceptor.

Even I’m a tall boy like you (6’2”) and felt happy that there is a bike where I can fit in comfortably as a rider. The comfort of pillion rider is a additional smile on my face, as me and my wife always had a Tom and Jerry fights on our Vespa journey.

Coming to the accessories part, panniers really attracted me a lot considering their part in the journey. I mostly commute in the city but these panniers I felt will be a boon for all kinds of needs for city rides too (including milk and eggs ) but I have my doubts about the practicality in daily use of the panniers. Will be glad to know if any alternative accessories available as these are also considered illegal even though they are sourced from RE directly.

I pause myself here and look forward for updates from you about your experiences.

Happy mile munching!!

Almost forgot to mention, a big thanks to the fellow bhpians who helped you in every aspect of your bike including the great picture coverage. Thank you.

Last edited by Aditya : 4th December 2020 at 22:53. Reason: Extra smiley deleted
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Old 4th December 2020, 18:53   #63
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Default Re: Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan

Quote:
Originally Posted by shyamg28 View Post
Loaded question I tell you

In terms of issues so far:
1. Clutch cable broken at around 18k kms. So I always carry a spare since then.
2. Minor engine oil leakage. As @VijayAnand mentioned, a quick gasket replacement and done.
3. The moisture seepage in the console is common with me too but I wait for the sun to get rid of it, doesn't bother me.
4. The speedo console vibrates severely at 100kph. I just added some tape across the circumference for now.
5. Rear tyre wore off at around 17k kms I think. Replaced with MRF Metor-M, stock size.
6. Replaced front tyre at 23k kms. Same as above.
7. Broke my clutch lever when someone rear-ended me. Replaced that with Pulsar lever. Works for now, but I plan to install the RE handguards next when I take it RE service center.
8. Funnily enough, the day I bought the bike, I had a puncture. After that, nada (touching wood as I type this).
9. Mud splatter at the rear. Wife absolutely hates it. I see you noticed too. If you come up with a solution, be sure to update here, so that I can copy the solution from you.
10. Engine heating initially was new to me, coming from liquid cooled Pulsar AS200. Had me looking at the console for temperature every 2 minutes in city. Now I don't care one bit.
Thank you for such detailed insights, they are really helpful to envision ownership over a long term

Quote:
You're absolutely right, some deflection is better than no deflection. Anyhow, over time if you do need to upgrade, you could think about the Pro-Spec Easy Ride clip on, adjustable visor.
Thank you for this resource, I think it makes a good add-on when venturing out on the next big roadtrip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fan@Automotive View Post
As always, one more 5 starrer from you Karthik.

Very detailed and insightful. I appreciate your consistency, with each of your threads. The effort put in, in capturing the Photos and details is no less than any professional would.

It's always good to have options in one's garage, if at all, one intends to have them and has the patience to take care of them. I am not a one machine, fit for all person.

Good to read people being happy with newer and better RE products. However, I am done with RE, owning a 2007 Machismo 350 and 2010 Standard 350. They are keepers and will be kept.

Having ridden KTM's, Duke 200 and 390 fairly, was a little inclined towards the Adventure 390. First impressions after test drives from aspirants is slowly and surely influencing me to look for options.

Having had enough of 300ish CC rides and lack of impressive options in the half liter bike segment, next one will be a mile munching big bike. Might go the Ninja way. With your permission, will PM you for inputs once I decide.

I have no words to describe your craze (if I may say so) for a wardrobe with bike specific riding gears. Could you please let us know the cost of your gear, this time around as you have done previously? It would be of help.

Happy and Safe riding.
Thank you for your kind words, really happy to know you liked the review. I hear you on the limitations of the smaller displacement segments and wanting to look beyond that. Do feel free to PM me if I can be of any help with regard to information on my (big bike) experience.

Quote:
Originally Posted by srinath34 View Post
You really tested the patience of many bhpians in disclosing bike# 3 in your garage and the wait has paid off with this bonkers-of-a-review!

Lovely attention to detail and appreciate the efforts of the fellow bhpians who have helped you with this review. It was like reading an encyclopedia for the Himalayan which probably RE should use in their coffee table books.

As always, looking forward to your ownership experience.

Cheers
Thank you so much for your kind words Srinath34, I really did take time for this, but it was mostly because I wanted to clock some considerable miles on it over varied types of usage before putting my opinions down on paper (or browser nowadays), lol! deepfreak15 did a fab job with the pictures as you said, no doubt!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ManneAtWheelz View Post
Hello karthikk,
What a post this one is, a well deserved 5 star rating post I can say. I donít know how many days you took to create a post like this one but it literally took 4 days for me to reach at this juncture (starting with your review, reading all the points line by line along with comments/feedback of fellow bhpians and your replies).

In one word, I say ĎPATIENCEí. Your review is like a story narration, a screenplay in which I visualised myself into it assuming Iím the one dealing with a bike. Red is my favourite color too and the bike looks a real stunner in red. This may be a strong reason for me to open your post but from there, it is you who made me to read everything.

I have no traces of recollecting memories reading your posts earlier but now I will do it for sure, starting with the Interceptor.
Thanks a lot ManneAtWheelz, I kept noting down observations over the past 5 months whenever I used to infer something, and finally compiled everything around the time the review was taking shape. Thank you for having the patience to read through the entire thread and its replies too! I am elated to know you liked the flow and content.

Quote:
Even Iím a tall boy like you (6í2Ē) and felt happy that there is a bike where I can fit in comfortably as a rider. The comfort of pillion rider is a additional smile on my face, as me and my wife always had a Tom and Jerry fights on our Vespa journey.
True, this bike is good for tall riders + pillions, might match your needs nicely!

Quote:
Coming to the accessories part, panniers really attracted me a lot considering their part in the journey. I mostly commute in the city but these panniers I felt will be a boon for all kinds of needs for city rides too (including milk and eggs ) but I have my doubts about the practicality in daily use of the panniers. Will be glad to know if any alternative accessories available as these are also considered illegal even though they are sourced from RE directly.
Haha, I think they would be overkill for milk and eggs In the city, if there is very closely spaced traffic, these can get cumbersome to manage and keep track of. Occasionally when touring and entering/exiting city it is fine. But on daily commute or errand mode, the panniers will be overkill and potentially a hazard as well. I don't recommend using these for city errands. Nothing illegal about them as such, but they fall in the same ambit as other modifications / accessories (technically any modification is illegal) to vehicles. I'd stick to OE where possible simply because they have already tested the weight bearing aspects, etc and also offer warranty on these fitments.

For luggage, you can look at saddlebags / softbags as an alternative. They are more flexible but come with other caveats - not weatherproof, cannot be locked and weight needs to be perfectly balanced on both sides
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Old 3rd January 2021, 04:48   #64
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Default Re: Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan

Karthik I am absolutely loving each of your motorbike threads. Actually opened up two / three of them last few days just to skim over. Love the entire setup and format.

I agree that the Interceptor canít do what the Himalayan can. But I feel that the Himalayan actually renders the Interceptor redundant. It can be the city all purpose bike and the rough touring bike and if you want something big and powerful to ride, there is always the Ninja 1000. I canít think of any use of the Interceptor which cant be done just as well on one of the other two. Thoughts?
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Old 4th January 2021, 09:10   #65
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Originally Posted by Axe77 View Post
Karthik I am absolutely loving each of your motorbike threads. Actually opened up two / three of them last few days just to skim over. Love the entire setup and format.
Thank you for your kind words Axe77, glad you liked reading through them

Quote:
I agree that the Interceptor can’t do what the Himalayan can. But I feel that the Himalayan actually renders the Interceptor redundant. It can be the city all purpose bike and the rough touring bike and if you want something big and powerful to ride, there is always the Ninja 1000. I can’t think of any use of the Interceptor which cant be done just as well on one of the other two. Thoughts?
Oh no, not quite my experience with the two. For city usage, one tends to praise just the upright ergonomics of the Himalayan but there is more to the convenience angle than just the sitting posture and ground clearance when it comes to traffic / urban use.

For one, the Interceptor has zero heat issues and is way more refined than the single cylinder mill. This is itself quite a significant factor when doing 3-4 hour traffic ridden commutes on a daily basis.

Two, the Interceptor is a shorter and more compact motorcycle and is easier to ride and manoeuvre through tight traffic gaps. It is also easier to park and crawl despite being marginally heavier. The Himalayan is bulkier, more top heavy and front visibility is poor at low speeds (think of crawling in choc-a-bloc traffic) due to the large visor and you can see hardly see what is 3-4 feet ahead of the front wheel (you can't see anything so close).

Three, a heavier clutch and weaker brakes on the Himalayan mean your left hand will suffer more fatigue, and the weaker brakes mean you have to be more alert towards reacting to morons on the road.

Four, the Interceptor is way more enjoyable on open stretches (fast roads in the city) due to twice the power and torque and better brakes. And whenever I need a wind-in-the-face (fast) riding experience of a naked bike on the highways, the Interceptor serves to scratch that itch in addition to ticking all the practicality boxes on weekdays.

I had bought the Interceptor primarily because it shined on the basic usability parameters and when I used to do 3-4 hours of traffic ridden commutes everyday, but of course no one anticipated the covid situation leading to permanent work-from-home for so long For now, the Interceptor's usage was forced to be reduced, but once the situation improves and offices open up, I'd definitely get back to riding to work even on a voluntary basis and the Interceptor's original purpose will be met.

All in all, I would say the Himalayan has a narrower scope of usage (fuss-free tour anywhere) versus the Interceptor which is 10X more versatile and enjoyable in 80% of the situations and only lacks in that 15-20% (pillion support and tolerance to bad roads).

Last edited by KarthikK : 4th January 2021 at 09:18.
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Old 20th July 2021, 15:27   #66
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Default Re: Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan

Hi Karthik,

Excellent review - thanks for keying it down. Hope you are doing well. Just checking in on your Himalayan - how has it been performing? Any recent tours/rides? Long time, no updates!

Having commenced my hunt for a good budget tourer couple months back, it did not take me long to realize that nothing compares to the Himalayan in the sub-5 lac range when it comes to VFM proposition. Took a longish test ride and was hooked immediately. It offers a lot for its price, IMHO. Booked one in Granite Black last month and awaiting delivery (sometime in Sep/Oct).

Request you to please keep this thread updated.

Cheers...
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Old 21st July 2021, 15:04   #67
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Originally Posted by cool_dube View Post
Hi Karthik,

Excellent review - thanks for keying it down. Hope you are doing well. Just checking in on your Himalayan - how has it been performing? Any recent tours/rides? Long time, no updates!
I'm doing well, thank you
Just that there have been personal issues, not related to covid (my ~14 year old dog was terminally ill and later we lost her in April due to old age). After that there were continuous lockdowns here in Karnataka during the second wave, so I hadn't been doing any trips from almost February to July! Thankfully, riding season is back, travel is opened up, and we will be back on the roads from next week.

The bike has been performing well, I have not faced any new issues in the past few months. I have only been able to use the bike for urban errands and very short breakfast rides due to the lockdowns. The routine annual service is due in August.

On the updates front, I have purchased a few more luggage and touring accessories (mostly minor stuff) and we are preparing for a long monsoon ride in August on the Himalayan. I'll add a post on this thread once the service is completed and the pre-ride preparations are done.

Anyway, the trip might be long enough to warrant its own separate travelogue thread itself.

Quote:
Having commenced my hunt for a good budget tourer couple months back, it did not take me long to realize that nothing compares to the Himalayan in the sub-5 lac range when it comes to VFM proposition. Took a longish test ride and was hooked immediately. It offers a lot for its price, IMHO. Booked one in Granite Black last month and awaiting delivery (sometime in Sep/Oct).
Great news to hear it ticked a lot of your boxes and ended up being your choice. Wishing you many happy miles in advance Wow, the lockdowns must have increased the waiting period quite a bit, June to October is a long wait. I have checked out the 2021 Himalayan and there are quite a few nifty additions. Looking forward to your updates once you bring it home.

Quote:
Request you to please keep this thread updated.
With normalcy returning and travel unlocked, I will definitely have things to post from now onwards, lol!

Last edited by KarthikK : 21st July 2021 at 15:29.
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Old 21st July 2021, 15:54   #68
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Default Re: Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan

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Originally Posted by KarthikK View Post
my ~14 year old dog was terminally ill and later we lost her in April due to old age
Very sorry to hear that! Being a pet parent myself, I can relate to your loss. Hope you get a new four-legged family member soon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KarthikK View Post
The bike has been performing well, I have not faced any new issues in the past few months
Great to hear that! I have been watching countless reviews of the Himalayan on YouTube and was surprised to note that it is very popular in the US and the UK, again mostly for the VFM proposition it offers. The only prominent issue that I could gather so far from these reviews, was one pertaining to frequent cone-set replacement. Do watch out for that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KarthikK View Post
we are preparing for a long monsoon ride in August on the Himalayan. I'll add a post on this thread once the service is completed and the pre-ride preparations are done.
Awesome! Looking forward to that

Quote:
Originally Posted by KarthikK View Post
Great news to hear it ticked a lot of your boxes and ended up being your choice.
It actually started as an elimination process Given my budget of ~4 lac, I did not have many options in the adventure tourer segment to consider. With KTMs ruled out (mostly for reasons you cited in this review) and G 310 GS being a tad too "rev happy" for my liking (typical characteristic of a short stroke engine - peak power made at 9,250 rpm and peak torque at 7,250 rpm), the only option I was left with was the Himalayan. Initially I was not very enthused about it but as I got to know more about it via reviews and from friends, it got me excited. A good long test-ride cemented my decision. While it might have it's quirks, it offers a lot of motorcycle for the kind of money being charged. Most importantly, it suites my riding quotient of relaxed touring to the T.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KarthikK View Post
Wishing you many happy miles in advance Wow, the lockdowns must have increased the waiting period quite a bit, June to October is a long wait.
Thanks! Yes, I was surprised as well. However, the SA has assured me that it is likely to be delivered in September, well before the committed date of October 10. Let's see.

Cheerio...

Last edited by cool_dube : 21st July 2021 at 16:01.
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Old 30th August 2021, 19:58   #69
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1 year, 5000 km update (Second service completed)

This is a rather long but overdue update on the Himalayan. This thread has been silent largely because I haven't had many updates to share as such in the past 7 months or so. Needless to say, there was also a large gap of 3-4 months where we weren't able to travel anywhere due to the second wave and related lockdowns.

Anyway, here goes my set of updates. One set of my updates are about the pending annual service, and a second set of updates are related to some minor luggage systems and accessories that I got for the Himalayan to enhance our touring in some way. Last but not the least, we finally started travelling again and what better time to start off riding than in peak monsoon! My better half and myself along with BHPians shaikhmimran and ebmrajesh went on an 8-day ~2000km ride across the length and breadth of Karnataka, to experience the magical monsoon sights and sounds of August. While I will be creating a separate travelogue thread for the ride itself, I'll just end this update with some views and observations on the bike during the ride.

Roadtripping in peak monsoon
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7386.jpg


Firstly, the annual service was due in August, and since there was an upcoming ride of ~2000km, I preponed and got the service done in July. There were no issues as such, and it was just an oil and oil filter change. I went first thing in the morning, and they were very quick to take in the bike and deliver it in under 2 hours. The bill came to INR 906/- this time. Quite a relief after looking at the Japanese garage mate's service bill last month!

Getting delivery of the vehicle early at the brand store service centre, BTM layout.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_6606.jpg


Here is the invoice of the second service
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_6617.jpg


This is how the maintenance timeline looks after 14 months of ownership
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-service_timeline.jpg


Over to the second part - some adjustments and accessories added to the kitty. The Zana GPS mount that I had installed earlier for using the phone and USB charging slot, meant that the windshield had to be fitted further from its natural position, and this was causing two issues over time:
  • The windshield itself had started rattling at particular RPMs which was very annoying on the highway. It used to rattle precisely around the 4000-5000 rpm mark which is usually my cruising RPM in 5th gear.
  • The extended windshield position was causing the handle hand guards to interfere with it at full lock position of the handlebar.
I really despise how Zana has probably not tested this accessory well and released it in the market with such absurd side effects. While I used to like the convenience of the old position of the navigation screen, I'll rather make do with something less convenient as long as it doesn't introduce any stupid rattles or locking issues.

My previous setup - Zana GPS mount for the phone and charging slot
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9799.jpg


Due to these two reasons, I decided to dispose the Zana GPS mount and revert to using the RAM mount on the handlebar clamp, similar to my Interceptor setup. Needless to say, even the USB charger is moved to the handlebar so that I can use a short powerbank charger cable to charge the navigation phone. With this, I moved the windshield back to the original position now and the rattles are also gone for good.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7094.jpg


In case you're wondering if that phone position obstructs my view of the instrument console, no it doesn't. From my riding position it looks like this.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7096.jpg


In other news, while we were prepping up the bike for the long ride, I needed to use the rear carrier rack, not for a top box but for mounting a duffel bag for additional luggage. The Himalayan's rear carrier rack had complaints of being not so strong when loaded with luggage, what with reports of bends and cracks. I did have a word with team-bhp's resident Himalayan guru shyamg28, who also had replaced his rear rack with something more sturdy to take a top box's weight and he gave me some useful information. Many popular options were out of stock and I was running out of time, so I went for a replacement tail rack from an accessory vendor called custom_autocraft. This tail rack is built well and has a mounting plate to mount and secure luggage with bungee cords and straps.

Dismantling the OE rear carrier plate at Gear Gear, Wilson garden. There was an interwoven network of the pannier rails blocking access to the mounting slots and I was too lazy to attempt a DIY, gladly they did a quick and fine job.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_6686.jpg


The new replacement tail rack which comes with a mounting plate
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_6690.jpg


Since we were doing a two-up trip for 8 days, the luggage was quite a lot even after all the optimizations and weight reductions, two people's luggage + camera gear, etc. So I added 3 items to our luggage menu, which will also be useful even for our future long roadtrips.

One was a magnetic tankbag from Rynox called Magnapod. It can also double up as a tailbag with straps, but I will primarily be using it as a tankbag for long haul trips. On this particular long trip last week, I had put a lot of ready-access stuff and some electronics and accessories in it and it is a good product, quite spacious. I procured it from Amazon for around 3000 INR.

https://www.amazon.in/Rynox-Magnapod.../dp/B07P4333J5


The second one is a pair of small pouch-like, water-resistant bags which mount on the Himalayan's Jerrycan bracket slots, they are from Viaterra and are called TrailPack. These cannot (and should not) carry any heavy or vulnerable stuff. They cost 2400 INR and I got it from Orion riding store, Koramangala.

This is how they look. Similar mirror image version is on the other side
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_6981.jpg


We use these to just keep light water bottles, light tool kit stuff and mainly our rain coat jackets and rain gloves, one side for my gear and one side for her gear. It was incredibly convenient to just reach out to these pouches and grab our raincoats and rain gloves every time a downpour began, which was basically a hundred times during the ride (considering it was peak monsoon in the western ghats with intermittent heavy rain bursts)

This is how the trailpack bags look from the rider's point of view.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_6983.jpg


Last but not the least, I got a Rynox stormproof trailbag which is a waterproof duffelbag to be strapped onto the tail rack with the help of bungee cords. It comes in two sizes, I opted for the small one because my purpose was just to carry two pairs of sealed footwear covers and a couple of warm clothes. The warm clothes inside also act as soft cushioning if used as a backrest by the pillion when seated. Do note, there are two sizes of Rynox stormproof trailbag, there is a larger one for ~3500 INR. I got the smaller one. This product was also procured on Amazon for around 1200 INR.

With the trailbag mounted and the panniers in place, this is how the rear profile looks
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_6987.jpg


The full setup for long 2-up roadtrips. The trailbag also helps to act as a backrest for the pillion seat
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_6989.jpg


Over to the third and final part of my update in this post. As mentioned earlier, a couple of BHPians and my better half and myself went on a monsoon ride across Karnataka for 8 days, trying to span different geographies within Karntaka and experiencing the rains in all their entirety. We didn't want to cross state borders because of the volatility in inter-state restrictions all the time, owing to Covid-19 policy makers and their decisions. It was roughly 250-300 km of riding every day for 8 days, moving to a different geography every day. Initially this ride was supposed to be in July since that is the harshest period of the monsoon here in Karnataka, but due to the lockdowns and gradual opening up of tourism, we had to exercise caution and push it to August when things were a bit more predictable.

I will create a separate travelogue thread on the entire ride sometime later in September, but here are a few snaps from the lovely ride for now.

The gang - My better half + yours truly on the Himalayan, ebmrajesh who on his interceptor 650, and shaikhmimran who had rented an Xpulse 200 for this ride
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7498.jpg


Riding through cloudy and wet Malnad
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7107.jpg

Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7076.jpg


The Himalayan duo
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-8b45e917d963456d8833bf4848e51248.jpg


Stopping to admire some breathtaking vistas
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-22ec23a6b39c4cf88435ff47d124353e.jpg


In full rain gear to enjoy the grey clouds, lush green and persistent monsoon downpours
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7228.jpg

Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_6701.jpg


Riding back to Bangalore via Hubli - Hampi - Bangalore expressway, arguably the most boring and dirtiest part of the 8 day ride.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7561.jpg


Some of our routes involved trails like these, primarily the last few kilometres of reaching our destinations. Offroading was a given in these western ghat regions. Challenging with the slippery mountain soil yet enjoyable in a different way
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7419.jpg


Heavily overcast beaches in coastal Karnataka
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7413.jpg


Aside from the trip itself, the bike is really enjoyable while it is in its comfort zone. I have mentioned this on numerous occasions and I do so again - Personally I am not a candidate for deriving pleasure out of an adventure bike, it is not a genre which interests me to upgrade within the segment. Personally I'd much rather stick to the sportbike for sheer smiles. However, the Himalayan lets us go farther and deeper into hardcore travel territories and lets us enjoy nature and the locations so much more. It becomes an indispensable tool if we seek to do truly satisfying trips (from the travel aspect, not from the vehicle aspect). In many ways, it is like a two-wheeled version of our Thar.

The Himalayan is for those trips when nature and travel takes precedence over riding pleasure. It is for those journeys where we want to just forget what bike we are on, forget the technicalities, forget being careful or conscious about how we use the bike, etc, and just focus on the simpler aspects of travel itself - the views, the clouds, the smell of the earth, the weather, the unending beauty and the sights and sounds that every new place offers as the odometer silently notches up every kilometre on that journey. The bike is meanwhile silently chugging along in the background, letting you enjoy all those things while it works effortlessly in the background, road or no road underneath.

Superb two-up go-anywhere tourer, re-emphasized
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_6774.jpg


Since this was our first, very-long roadtrip on the Himalayan, I was watching out for additional positives and negatives apart the ones mentioned on the first page of this thread. While there were no issues or niggles as such, I have to add these observations:
  • Stock seats compress easily after an hour or so of riding, both for rider and pillion. The RE OE Accessory Touring seats are much much better and firmer to last over a day of riding. I already had these with me but just mentioning.
  • The suspension is top notch and they have struck a fine balance between on road dynamics and a very cushioned ride quality and belting over bad patches. My wife is very happy with the comfort on bad roads. We did experience quite a lot of bad roads in this long ride in remote areas. So whatever I said applies to the pillion as well.
  • On steep speedbreakers in the hills, somehow 2nd gear still feels tall and warrants a downshift to 1st to avoid lugging.
  • The instrument console has a lot of useful information and the virtual fuel reserve (Trip F mode) helped to plan refueling stops between long gaps of fueling.
  • 3rd gear is perfectly tuned for riding in the hills, almost made it like an automatic, lol! It helps to tackle the curves and inclines without needing to downshift, carrying reasonable revs to pull through some 20-30ish back to 50-60ish kmph until the next curve.
  • The realistic fuel efficiency was around 30 kmpl in the ghat sections, but overall the bike averaged around 32.8 kmpl over ~1900 km across expressways, ghat sections and broken countryside roads. I guess the low end torque helps in reducing the consumption rate.
After the long monsoon ride, this was the state of the bike (refer pics below). I think most of the dirtying happened on the expressway journey between Hubli and Hampi, the rains in the hills were very clean, lol!

The number plate was barely legible . We had to actually scrub it before the return journey
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7537.jpg


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I was too lazy and incompetent to be able to wash this at home, so I headed to a new neighbourhood discovery called Carzspa detailing store in HSR layout, where they were kind enough to wash the extremely dirty bike and restore it to its former self

Blasting 8 days of muck and dirt away
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Restoring the bike to its original form
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7637.jpg

Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_7636.jpg


The full fledged travelogue will come shortly, that's all with the updates on the bike for now. Thanks for reading!

Last edited by KarthikK : 30th August 2021 at 20:02.
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Old 31st August 2021, 10:30   #70
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Default Re: Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan

Hi, Karthik thanks for updating the review and sharing in detail all the accessories that you have purchased including the reason for the purchase. Does the Himalayan have a lot of handlebar vibrations which could mess with the phone that you are using for GPS ? I can't imagine putting a phone on my AVL due to the vibrations.
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Old 31st August 2021, 12:06   #71
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Originally Posted by KarthikK View Post

However, the Himalayan lets us go farther and deeper into hardcore travel territories and lets us enjoy nature and the locations so much more. It becomes an indispensable tool if we seek to do truly satisfying trips (from the travel aspect, not from the vehicle aspect). In many ways, it is like a two-wheeled version of our Thar.

[i]The Himalayan is for those trips when nature and travel takes precedence over riding pleasure. It is for those journeys where we want to just forget what bike we are on, forget the technicalities, forget being careful or conscious about how we use the bike, etc, and just focus on the simpler aspects of travel itself - the views, the clouds, the smell of the earth, the weather, the unending beauty and the sights and sounds that every new place offers as the odometer silently notches up every kilometre on that journey. The bike is meanwhile silently chugging along in the background, letting you enjoy all those things while it works effortlessly in the background, road or no road underneath.
This Sir, right here, reinstates my belief to get the Himalayan as my next motorcycle and nothing else. I am okay with the sane cruising speeds of 90-100 KMPH which is the exact sweet spot for Indian riding conditions anyway. I am okay with the weight, with a couple of things which might be against the Himalayan, but it offers so much more than the others.

Going through your thread + reading up on the chassis fiasco on the BS4 versions on the other thread, I think I will stick to BS6 in the second-hand market.

Looking forward to your travelogue Sir!
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Old 31st August 2021, 13:19   #72
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Default Re: Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan

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Originally Posted by A350 View Post
Hi, Karthik thanks for updating the review and sharing in detail all the accessories that you have purchased including the reason for the purchase. Does the Himalayan have a lot of handlebar vibrations which could mess with the phone that you are using for GPS ? I can't imagine putting a phone on my AVL due to the vibrations.
Long term usage of phones on bike mounts, will lead to issues with the internal sensors and camera etc. Its best to have a cheap / old phone for secondary duties on rides, if you plan for some serious touring. The occasional use should be fine.
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Old 31st August 2021, 16:51   #73
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Default Re: Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan

Quote:
Originally Posted by A350 View Post
Hi, Karthik thanks for updating the review and sharing in detail all the accessories that you have purchased including the reason for the purchase. Does the Himalayan have a lot of handlebar vibrations which could mess with the phone that you are using for GPS ? I can't imagine putting a phone on my AVL due to the vibrations.
As Neil.jericho mentioned, handlebar vibrations might tend to have an impact on the phone internals over a long period of time and it is always better to use a cheaper, rugged phone mounted there for navigation. This is also why I donít use my personal phone on the ram mount unless it is some very short city journey.

I use a separate android phone Moto X4 with BSNL and Jio SIM cards for navigation. It is also IP68 rated and is immune to dust and rain ingress even in heavy downpours. In addition I have a thick silicone case for it which helps to smother out some harsh vibrations. I have been using this phone for 2.5 years now (even for trips on my Ninja and inside the cars as well) and it has held up well so far, no issues with anything.

While using navigation for long distances, be sure to download the offline maps before your trip, that way I have observed the data usage is largely limited to the traffic data and the phone tends to never heat up.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ManasN95 View Post
This Sir, right here, reinstates my belief to get the Himalayan as my next motorcycle and nothing else. I am okay with the sane cruising speeds of 90-100 KMPH which is the exact sweet spot for Indian riding conditions anyway. I am okay with the weight, with a couple of things which might be against the Himalayan, but it offers so much more than the others.

Going through your thread + reading up on the chassis fiasco on the BS4 versions on the other thread, I think I will stick to BS6 in the second-hand market.

Looking forward to your travelogue Sir!
Yes it is indeed a great all round tourer, it is disheartening to read about the BS3 bike chassis failures and now on the recent fiasco of the BS4 2018 bike. They had done some strengthening of the chassis later in the next updates, and so far BS6 bikes seem to have had no instances of this wretched issue fortunately.
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Old 26th November 2021, 20:34   #74
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4-day Ride to the Nilgiris (Bangalore - Ooty - Coonoor - Kotagiri - Bangalore)

In late October, my better half and I decided to ride down to the Nilgiris, perhaps my favourite destination down south, done and dusted a thousand times earlier, but this time we decided to take the Himalayan, try some new resorts and visit some familiar restaurants from our older visits here, apart from trying some new ones as well. We decided to do this trip in a nomad style and did a hopping itinerary, staying one day each at Ooty, Coonoor and Kotagiri before returning to Bangalore via the Mettupalyam - Avinashi - Salem expressway.

Just posting some random images shot during those four days.

Day 1 - Bangalore - Ooty

Stopping at the famous Gayatri Tiffin room restaurant in Mysore for their famous Masala Dosa
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9473.jpg


Taking a break at CCD, Gundlupet
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The beautiful forest roads of Bandipur tiger reserve
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Our stay at Ooty - Marlborough house, a Victorian era bungalow complete with the old world charm
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Our room at Marlborough house, it even had a small fireplace
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The dining area inside the bungalow
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The lawn at Marlborough house
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We went to a restaurant called 'Place to Bee' for lunch. It was actually run by a NGO which is involved in the conservation of (honey) bees. The food was continental fare and above average, although nothing wow.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_4550.jpg


An assortment of the continental food at Place to Bee
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We spent the rest of the afternoon and evening visiting a lake near Wellington and passing time admiring the vistas we encountered en route
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Since there was not much to do at Marlborough house, we visited the town and ate at one of our favourite eateries in Charring cross, Sidewalk cafe.

Pizza at Sidewalk cafe, served piping hot just perfect for the freezing Nilgiris weather
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_5818.jpg


Brownie lava cake anyone?
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The following morning we went hiking on the hillock adjacent to Marlborough house. Here are some sights from that short hike
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_4562.jpg

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It was soon time to check out of the Ooty property and move on to the next destination - Coonoor, just under an hour away.


Day 2 - Ooty - Coonoor

Our choice of property for Coonoor was a quaint little resort called Teanest resort, around a few km off Coonoor town.

Reaching Teanest Coonoor along these concrete paved roads inside Singara tea estate
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9485.jpg


The rooms at Teanest resort was very compact, yet well done and very neat. It had a nice seating area as well in addition to the regular amenities.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9497.jpg

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The in-house restaurant at Teanest, called Earl Grey
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9566.jpg

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Teanest resort was offering a tea-themed seven course lunch menu on request, with each course dish themed / flavoured with some element of Tea. This sounded interesting for us foodies, and we weren't disappointed with the food. Every course was done well
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-6fec65f34efd4bbf80696c630bc900b8.jpg


A very interesting dish - a vegetarian 'steak' made of Yam!
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-dscf2685.jpg


A post lunch stroll outside the resort directly among the tea estate flora
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Around evening, the resort folks had arranged a tea tasting session for us to explain the various types of tea. It was quite informative, although both of us aren't particularly beverage connoisseurs as such.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-dscf2696.jpg


Savouring some gourmet tea
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9551.jpg


to be continued in the next post...

Last edited by KarthikK : 26th November 2021 at 21:02.
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Old 26th November 2021, 21:00   #75
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4-day Ride to the Nilgiris (Bangalore - Ooty - Coonoor - Kotagiri - Bangalore) continued...


It was a cloudy evening and soon there were some sporadic bursts of thundershowers
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9539.jpg


Nothing like a plate of hot Pakoras on a rainy and cold evening in the mountains
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9562.jpg


The clouds soon cleared up and we were able to get some nice shots of the sunset
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Lazing on some uncultivated meadows
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Day 3 - Coonoor - Kotagiri

The next morning we went for a short hike through the tea estates. Surprisingly there were quite a few leeches even in the cold mountains of Ooty, blame the surplus monsoons this year.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9582.jpg


Treading through the green carpets of the tea plantation
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A close-up
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The house adjacent to Teanest resort
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9605.jpg


After a sumptuous breakfast, it was time to bid goodbye to Teanest Coonoor and move on to our next destination - Kotagiri.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9615.jpg


Making our way to Kotagiri
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Stopping at another of our regular restaurant visit locations in this region - Cafe Diem. This time they had opened a new balcony seating area with a lovely valley view, and we chose that for ourselves
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9629.jpg


Cafe Diem is famous for their continental fare, and we did have some amazing, delicious lunch here on the way to Kotagiri

Broccoli and cheddar cheese anyone?
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9637.jpg


Classic, woodfired pizzas with a thin crust
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Lemon tarts
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Our choice of property at Kotagiri was again by Teanest resorts, but this one was called Teanest Nightingale. It was a very small property comprising of just 4 rooms.
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The rooms were very nice and simple, with high ceiling to add to the airy ambience
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Every room had a small dining table outside the room
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Some relic, antique cameras and radio, etc kept in their drawing room
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There was a private sitout area but the view was completely covered by plants. Something the staff should clear up if they intend this to be a view
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Lazing around in the afternoon
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The garden outside Teanest nightingale
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View from the front porch
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We spent the rest of the evening hiking around the property
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We were lucky to spot this herd of Wild Gaurs almost 30-40 feet from where we were. They were extremely shy and retreated when they sensed our presence
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There was a 4 course menu here themed after 'Nuts and Seeds', mostly focusing on dishes made of uncooked fruits, sprouts and dry fruits. Was okayish, but not a shade on the tea-themed seven course menu at their Coonoor property.
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Day 4 - Back to Bangalore

The next morning it was time to bid goodbye to Kotagiri and head homewards.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9750.jpg


We got down through the other side of the Nilgiri hills via Mettupalyam and Annur to hit the Coimbatore - Salem - Bangalore expressway and reached home by nightfall. Overall a fun, slow, relaxed and enjoyable ride
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_9762.jpg


For the stats, this ride traversed a simple 700 km in 4 days.
Wandering Spirits Unleashed: My 2020 Royal Enfield Himalayan-img_0319.jpg

Last edited by KarthikK : 26th November 2021 at 21:02.
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