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Old 6th January 2019, 20:54   #1
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Default Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day2diveagar.jpg


Ever since I started (rather re-started) cycling was always contemplating on going for a long-distance tour. Discussed this idea with my friends and we finalized the destination. What could be a better place than Goa. We planned a “Self-Supported” Mumbai Goa tour along the scenic Coastal route the “Sagari Mahamarg”. Our idea was to move as close to the coast as possible enjoying the beautiful Konkan belt of Maharashtra. After few months of planning we decided on the dates in December.

Day 1(08-Dec-18): Thane to Murud
  • Distance travelled: 84Km
  • Elevation Gained: 990m
  • Ferry Crossing: 1 (Gateway to Mandwa)
  • Road Condition: Average

We started our day early at 3.15am and cycled from our homes for Thane station to catch the 4.20am local to CST. Buying tickets for our Cycles was not an easy task. These were not issued thru the regular counters (Don’t know why) and had to search for the TC and get the tickets issued paying Rs195 per Cycle (Getting the cycles back from Goa to Mumbai was way cheaper). We reached CST early in the morning and then pedalled to Gateway to catch the first (6.15am) Ferry to Mandwa.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day1cst.jpg

Reached Mandwa at ~7.15am and were away from the hustle of the city ready to start our ride. Destination for the day was Murud beach which was approx. 70Kms away from Mandwa jetty.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day1mandwa.jpg

This being a self-supported ride, we had to carry our luggage on the cycles. Additionally, we had to carry spare tubes, Pump and other tools for any emergencies. Our plan was to go light and carry as little luggage as possible.
We started riding along the coastal route towards Alibaug with breakfast enroute. Our first destination was the Revdanda fort followed by the Korlai fort.
We then hit a small ghat before reaching Kashid. Here we took couple of hrs of break for Lunch. While a lunch was not so great, We managed to rest on the hammocks under the shade of casurina trees over the beach.

We started again ~4pm for Murud to cover the last 18Kms of the day. Roads in this section were bad and the ghats as well were pretty steep. We finally reached Murud around 6pm. Went around the beach in the evening and then had dinner enjoying the local delicacies. Everyone was too tired for any other activity and we called it a day at 10pm.


Day 2(09-Dec-18): Murud to Harihareshwar
  • Distance travelled: 68Km
  • Elevation Gained: 1100m
  • Ferry Crossing: 1 (Agardanda to Dighi)
  • Road Condition: Poor

Today we started at 6.15am in-order to catch the first ferry from Agardanda. While the distance was just 10kms, the road conditions were bad with patches where the roads didn’t exist at all passing thru the jungle. We managed to reach on time to catch the 7.30am ferry to Dighi.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day-21.jpg

Our next destination was the Diveagar beach. This road again was bad with steep elevations. We reached Diveagar for breakfast and spent some time on this excellent beach. We then started for our next destination towards the town of Shrivardhan. We reached here by lunch and managed to get simple food followed by an hour of rest under the trees which was heavenly.

Meal and the rest gave us enough energy to start for the final stretch of the day to the temple town of Harihareshwar. We reached the place around 7pm and then visited this nice temple in the evening.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day2harihareshwar.jpg

This was a tough day as the roads were pretty steep and the conditions were not so good. We managed to get some excellent home cooked meal for dinner and then retarded planning for the next day.


Day 3(10-Dec-18): Harihareshwar to Karde
  • Distance travelled: 60Km
  • Elevation Gained: 850m
  • Ferry Crossing: 2 (Bagmandle to Veshvi), River crossing at Sakhri
  • Road Condition: Poor

If the roads were bad on day 2, they were worse on day 3. Today we rode for 5kms to reach the ferry point at Bagmandle. Ferry took us to Veshvi from where we rode to the famous turtle hatching village of Velas. This was one of the most picturesque villages which we saw during our journey. We visited this beautiful beach and had an excellent homemade breakfast of Poha and Bhakri here. We were truly delighted by the warmth and the affection shown by the villagers here.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day-3-velas.jpg

After a heavy brunch we proceeded towards the famous fishing town of Harnai. In order to cut short the distance and save time we managed to cross the river using a small fishing boat at Sakhri which directly took us to Kelshi. This was one of the most exciting rides.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day-3sakhri.jpg

This boat was not large enough to carry all of us along with our bikes together and we had to travel in two batches. After reaching the kelshi, we proceeded towards Harnai. This is one of the largest fishing ports of Maharashtra. Hundreds of fishing boats are lined up here and you could buy the fresh catch right on the beach.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day-3harnai.jpg

We had late lunch here and then proceeded to our final destination of the day which was Karde beach. We checked in a reasonable homestay near the beach which served us with some delicious home cooked meal.

Day 4(11-Dec-18): Karde to Velneshwar
  • Distance travelled: 65Km
  • Elevation Gained: 1097m
  • Ferry Crossing: 1 (Dhabhol to Veldur)
  • Road Condition: Worst

This was one of the most demanding days of our entire journey. We had all what an MTB rider would demand – Stretches of off-roading terrain, riding right on the beach, steep climbs in the forests and some of the best photo points.
Today again we started at ~6.30am thru an almost non-existing road from Karde to Ladghar. This was more like a pedestrian walk-way thru which we manage to ride reaching the beautiful Ladghar beach. We rode almost the entire length of the beach clicking some of the most memorable pictures.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day4ladghar.jpg

We started with the next leg of our journey from Ladghar towards Dhabhol jetty point which was approximately 27Kms away. Entire stretch of this journey was full of steep climbs and hairpin turns accompanied by poor road quality. We had to push really hard to reach the beautiful meditation centre, Parshuram Bhoomi(Burondi) at the top of the hill.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day-4-parshuram.jpg

After Burondi, Our next destination was Panchnadi, a very scenic hamlet nestled within dense tree cover of Mango, coconut and bettlenuts where we stopped for another homely breakfast.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day4pahchnadi.jpg

After breakfast, we continued with our ride towards Dhabhol. This was extremely tiring and demanding stretches of our ride. We reached the jetty but the ferry just left us and the next one was alteast an hour away. But the luck was in our favour and we managed to find an alternate fishing boat option to take us to Veldur.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day4dhabhol.jpg

From Veldur, our ride continued thru the never ending climbs passing thru the ill-famed Enron power project (Now Ratnagiri Gas and Power project) towards the town of Guhagar. By the time we reached Guhagar, Entire team was dead tired. We found an excellent restaurant offering simple veg maharashtrian meals which we all enjoyed.
From Guhagar we now had to ride to Velneshar which was our final destination for the day. We had two options; take the simple straight road or the other “So-Called” shortcut going along the coast. We obviously opted for the shortcut. This was again one of the most exciting and demanding stretches of our journey. At one point the road came to an end and we had to take a real “3rd degree” off-roading trail thru the mud with steep slopes which was so much fun. All of us thoroughly enjoyed.

At Velneshwar we checked in the MTDC resort and then visited the temple by the beach. Day ended with a nice dinner by the beach.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day4velneshwar.jpg

Day 5(12-Dec-18): Velneshwar To Pawas
  • Distance travelled: 83Km
  • Elevation Gained: 1339m
  • Ferry Crossing: 1 (Tavsal to Jaighad)
  • Road Condition: Better

After a difficult day# 4, We started with our day with a short climb very much from the resort. Today our first destination was Tavsal. After this first immediate climb, the road was OK and we reached Tavsal on time to catch a ferry for Jaighad. As we started our ride, We were again thrown with a very steep climb. Our team by now was ready for such challenges. Immediately after this climb, we were greeted with a hotel where we had a quick breakfast. Our next destination was the temple town of Ganpatipule. Road conditions were better now and we managed to move fast towards our destination. We took a short break at a nice village named Undhi to get our feet wet. Color of the water now had started changing and was much clean. We reached Ganpatipule by noon. We visited a famous Ganesh temple here and had the Prasad of Kichidi.

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One of our fellow rider managed to arrange for delicious Modaks which we all enjoyed.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day5modak.png

After a heavy meal, we started for Ratnagiri via the scenic Aare warey route. With a few climbs we manage to reach Ratnagiri on time.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day5aareware.jpg

Our final destination for the day was Pawas which was still 20Kms away. The Road towards Pawas was pretty good and we reached as planned. Pawas again being a temple town, We checked in a hotel opposite the Swami Swaroopanand Ashram and had the Prasad there for our dinner. It was pretty unusual for us to see the entire town closing down by 8.30pm. We as well crashed to bed early planning for the coming days.

Day 6(13-Dec-18): Pawas to Kunkeshwar
  • Distance travelled: 83.3Km
  • Elevation Gained: 1398m
  • Ferry Crossing: 1 (Fisherman’s boat at Dandewadi)
  • Road Condition: Better

Today again we started early at 6.45am. Our first destination was the famous Vijaydurg fort. We stopped in between at Adivare for a breakfast and continued till Dandewadi. In order to cut down the distance and time, we managed with a fishing boat again from Dandewadi to the Vijaydurg fort. This again was an exciting ride.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day6vijaydurg.jpg

This small boat took us to the Vijaydurg fort. Like all other forts in Maharashtra, this is not well maintained.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day6vijaydurg2.jpg

What we enjoyed the most at Vijaydurg was the sea food. After a heavy meal, we proceeded towards the final destination of the day, the temple town of Kunkeshwar. The road was better than what we had been experiencing. We reached Kunkeshwar via the town famous for its mangoes, Devghad. The entire stretch was scenic with multiple beautiful temples enroute. Kunkeshwar again is famous for an ancient Shiva temple. We reached the place on the evening and visited the temple followed by simple dinner in the evening.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day6kunkeshwar.jpg


Day 7(14-Dec-18): Kunkeshwar to Malvan
  • Distance travelled: 45.7Km
  • Elevation Gained: 622m
  • Ferry Crossing: Nil
  • Road Condition: Better

As planned, this day was reserved for fun. We started our day and 7am. Our plan was to reach Malvan as early as possible and then spend rest of the day on the beach enjoying variety of water sports. We first started with a ride on the serene Kunkeshwar beach. While the experience was great, We had a tough time cleaning our bikes as the sand made its way into the derailleur. We then continued towards our destination. Roads were better today with a few climbs. Had our breakfast at Achara and then reached Chiwle beach. From Chiwle we rode over the beach to Malvan.
Malvan beach offers variety of activities – Scuba diving, Parasailing and different kinds of water sports. We managed for a package deal offering all of these activities. We started with Scuba. This was the first experience for all of us which turned out to be really amazing.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day7malvan.jpg

While the clarity wasn’t great it was a nice experience. Scuba was followed by all different kinds of water sports – Banana ride, splash, sofa ride etc. The final one was para sailing. This again turned out to be really good.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day7malvan2.jpg

All in all, it was an exciting day spent at Malvan beach. In the evening we again rode on the beach towards Tarkarli and found a descent homestay which served us with some delicious sea food for the dinner. Goa was just round the corner now and we decided to conquer it the next day.


Day 8(15-Dec-18): Malvan to Querim (Goa)
  • Distance travelled: 65.6Km
  • Elevation Gained: 1072m
  • Ferry Crossing: 2
  • Road Condition: Better

This was the day which we were dreaming for long. We started our day with a walk over the beautiful Malvan beach. Had a nice breakfast and then started with our ride at ~10am. Today again after a few kms of ride, we managed to catch a fishman’s boat from Devbaug which took us to Parule. Devbaug again was an amazingly beautiful place.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day8devbag.jpg

From Parule, we rode towards Vengurla. Here again had some good sea food for Lunch. Took some rest and then again started towards Tiracol which is an entry point to Goa. We reached Tiracol at ~5.15pm and yes we finally reached Goa. What an experience it was. After months of planning, 8 days of pedalling, crossing several never ending climbs we finally made it.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day8goa.jpg

From Tiracol we took a ferry towards Querim. We checked in a Hotel at Querim and then went over the beach for a Goan dinner.


Day 9(16-Dec-18): Querim To Anjuna
  • Distance travelled: 33 Km
  • Elevation Gained: 306m
  • Ferry Crossing: NA
  • Road Condition: Good

Day 9 again was relaxed. We went for a walk over the Querim beach in the morning and then started towards Anjuna beach at ~10am. Reached Anjuna in the afternoon and visited German Bakery for Lunch along with some local Beer.
Evening again was spent relaxing on the Anjuna beach.


Day 10(16-Dec-18): Anjuna To Madgaon
  • Distance travelled: 64 Km
  • Elevation Gained: 456m
  • Ferry Crossing: 1
  • Road Condition: Good

Today was the final day of our journey wherein we had to ride till Madgaon station to catch our train. It was a long ride across the city thru the traffic. We took the route Via Panjim, Miramar Beach, Dona Paula and then finally to Madgaon station. It was a task handing over our bikes to the Railway parcel services authorities and getting them packed.

Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa-day10madgaon.jpg

While the process was cumbersome involving lot of paperwork, it was extremely cheap. We paid just Rs 45 per bike to get them moved to Mumbai(Panvel). We had our lunch and then kept waiting for our train. Train was well on time and we reached Panvel well ahead of time at ~3am in the morning. But the ordeal began after that. When we reached Panvel, the Parcel supervisor was just not ready to release our cycles. The reason being we had wrong slips (Green instead of Red). Any amount of convincing as well as the reporting issues on twitter didn’t help. The parcel supervisor made us wait till 9am to issue the cycles. We then boarded the over-crowded suburban trains to reach Thane finally reaching home.

Leaving the last bit of harassment by Railway authorities, our entire trip went off extremely well. Our entire team was pretty new to cycling. None of us had any past experience of such long distance tours. But we could make it due to excellent planning by one of our team mates.
Now the planning for next trip begins!!!

Last edited by Rehaan : 7th January 2019 at 14:18. Reason: Rotating 1 pic :)
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Old 7th January 2019, 09:53   #2
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

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Originally Posted by samre75 View Post
Ever since I started (rather re-started) cycling was always contemplating on going for a long-distance tour. Discussed this idea with my friends and we finalized the destination. What could be a better place than Goa.
Wow, just wow. As a cyclist, one always dreams of such trips but glad to see you actually go ahead and do it!

Quote:
We planned a “Self-Supported” Mumbai Goa tour along the scenic Coastal route the “Sagari Mahamarg”. Our idea was to move as close to the coast as possible enjoying the beautiful Konkan belt of Maharashtra. After few months of planning we decided on the dates in December.
Lovely route. I have done it in a car and I'm sure it must have been a wonderful feeling to have the sea on one side and the mountains on the other. Thanks for sharing.

Quote:
Buying tickets for our Cycles was not an easy task. These were not issued thru the regular counters (Don’t know why) and had to search for the TC and get the tickets issued paying Rs195 per Cycle (Getting the cycles back from Goa to Mumbai was way cheaper).
Would like to add to this point for other Mumbai cyclists as well.
  • Not all stations can issue a luggage ticket (cycle comes under luggage). In Mumbai, cycle ticket costs Rs. 195 on almost any route.
  • Fine for carrying cycle without ticket is same i.e Rs. 195.
  • If caught by TC, you can say cycle comes under weight limit of ticket, IIRC, II class ticket has 35kg and FC has 50kg. Out of the 4-5 times I've taken my cycle, I booked cycle once (first), rest other times just walked through. Never been fined despite once being asked by TC at CSTM.
  • Ofcourse you should always take ticket for yourself i.e the usual ticket you take while travelling.

Last edited by blackwasp : 7th January 2019 at 09:57.
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Old 7th January 2019, 12:33   #3
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

Great journey and effort! Got to know a lot more about it from Gurpreet (who happens to be my classmate from GIM).
Now added to my bucket-list as well, might not be Mumbai-Goa, will look for a destination from Bangalore!

Last edited by moralfibre : 7th January 2019 at 12:45. Reason: Typos
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Old 7th January 2019, 13:20   #4
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

Amazing! The travelogue is written extremely well. It must have given you a great sense of achievement when you were finally able to ride your cycles in Goa. Kudos!
I am sure there is a much longer story behind the scenes, in planning the route, finalizing the ferry points and the decisions on fishing boats.
Of late, I have become quite interested in alternate modes in routing because that opens out the map in dimensions which we could not have thought of. This is a great example of it.
Congrats on a successful trip and keep writing!
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Old 7th January 2019, 17:09   #5
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

Kudos to your team.
This is an extremely inspiring thread, I hope I will be able to write one some day.

Did you guys do any kind of practice runs ( One-day trips/2 day trips ) before the big one?

Did you face any challenges in getting your bikes packed at Madgaon?
Can we carry bicycles in the coach if we remove front wheel? is this allowed?
Finally, would like to know bicycle model of each team member.
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Old 7th January 2019, 18:19   #6
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Fantastic work!! And congratulations on a getting together a group of people who are committed. Absolutely brilliant I tell you.
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Old 7th January 2019, 18:34   #7
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

Super achievement, well done! What are the bicycles models used? Any problems faced with any bikes along the way?

I own a TREK Merlin(MTB) and a Schwinn varsity(Hybrid) and I prefer taking the TREK on most rides even on tarmac considering the state of most of our roads. I would like to hear your thoughts on if a Hybrid or MTB is more suited for these kinds of rides. Again kudos to you and your team on this fantastic achievement! Keep riding!
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Old 7th January 2019, 19:31   #8
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

We had mix of MTB's and hybrid but looking at the road conditions MTB would be ideal. Other than couple of punctures on the way, we did not face any major issues.
For transporting the bikes back from Madgaon, we preferred the train originating from Madgaon itself (Konkan Kanya). There were no major issues and the bikes were delivered in perfect condition. We did basic packaging just to avoid any scratches.
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Old 8th January 2019, 09:03   #9
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

Wow..this has to be one of my to-dos in the short term. As a biker, such destinations are always been there, done that kind. Taking it on a cycle is just another orbit altogether.

A couple of questions though
1. How bad/good was the heat in the day?
2. How did you manage exhaustion from heat?
3. With bad roads in the beginning, any damage to any of the cycles (apart from regular punctures??
4. Do you think such trips can be undertaken on cycles that are mostly city cycles? Mine is a BTwin Nework 5

Last edited by roadrunner_nv : 8th January 2019 at 09:04. Reason: Made a question more specific
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Old 8th January 2019, 11:08   #10
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

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Originally Posted by roadrunner_nv View Post
Wow..this has to be one of my to-dos in the short term. As a biker, such destinations are always been there, done that kind. Taking it on a cycle is just another orbit altogether.

A couple of questions though
1. How bad/good was the heat in the day?
2. How did you manage exhaustion from heat?
3. With bad roads in the beginning, any damage to any of the cycles (apart from regular punctures??
4. Do you think such trips can be undertaken on cycles that are mostly city cycles? Mine is a BTwin Nework 5
We tried to start as early as possible each day and generally planned a Lunch break during the afternoon. While riding between 11am till 4pm was bad, we could manage it. We drank atleast 4-5lts of water during the ride. This as also supplemented by Lime juice, Coconut water and sugarcane juice which was available in plenty thru out the route.
We were fortunate enough to not have any damages other than puncture.
I assume BTwin Nework 5 is a hybrid. This should not be an issue. We had a few hybrids with us. But MTBs are preferred.
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Old 8th January 2019, 16:31   #11
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

Awesome effort and fantastic route with excellent pictures, I am sure it was exciting and equally tough to carry out such an arduous journey with the bare minimum luggage to pedal around with and least time to rest. I was really wondering how you guys were pulling on relentlessly wihtout actually stopping over and resting other than your night halts, especially since you mentioned most were not trained for such long distances.

Tarkarli and Malvan brought back very pleasant memories , we had driven there and had one hell of a time and was really thrilled about the place. We also did our first scuba diving here even though it was not all that clear, for a first timer it was really thrilling.

Hope you have captured all bikes with their names for all to see. Congratulations on this achievement and I am sure you all must have your sights already planned for the next big ride. Keep pedalling and spread the cheer.
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Old 8th January 2019, 16:55   #12
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

Wow great thread and achievement, Congratulations !!

What sort of preparation did you do for this ride ? since you rode an average of 65kms for 8-9 days.

I ride roughly 30kms/ week and was wondering what sort of number do I need to hit before I can think of a similar effort.

Edit - The last image shows lesser people than started, did any one drop off due to exhaustion?

- Slick

Last edited by Slick : 8th January 2019 at 16:59.
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Old 8th January 2019, 17:26   #13
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

You folks are awesome!

The sheer determination, topped off by the scenic route, good food along the way and friends by your side all along. What else could one ask for?

Kudos to the whole bunch!
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Old 8th January 2019, 17:42   #14
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

That's a refreshingly different travelogue - apart from hiking, I dont think one can get closer to the places you went through. Experiencing every bit of the way, without being confined to the a/c interiors of a car.

Nice pics, too.
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Old 9th January 2019, 14:36   #15
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Default Re: Pedaling through paradise! Cycling from Mumbai to Goa

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slick View Post
Wow great thread and achievement, Congratulations !!

What sort of preparation did you do for this ride ? since you rode an average of 65kms for 8-9 days.

I ride roughly 30kms/ week and was wondering what sort of number do I need to hit before I can think of a similar effort.

Edit - The last image shows lesser people than started, did any one drop off due to exhaustion?

- Slick
I would suggest be regular. Ride 25 to 30 kms each day for 3-4 days a week with a few longer rides over the weekends. Practice on climbs. That's essential. As you go closer to the tour, ride with weights. This creates a big difference especially on climbs.

This was a long 10 day tour. Not everyone could spare that amount of time and hence people dropped out midway in planned fashion. Remember you have a bike to carry back home and options to transport it are limited and hence need to be planned in advance.
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