September 03, 2017

The U-Turn


do not read between the lines
rights to exaggeration and bragging reserved
its not how it happened; its how I remember it
no characterization intended
data and information may have been skewed to suit the story-line
everything is relative to your perspective

The map above shows the exact path we took. Starting from Bangalore on 11th of August 2017 and back at the same point on the night of 15th August 2017, taking the most scenic route possible.
In the space of five days - we went around (almost) whole of the coastline of Tamil Nadu and Kerala.

The plan was named 'the U-Turn', because it seemed to us that we had no real motive for doing this but just going to the tip of the country and turn back. 

The journey was broken down in 5 parts and despite some apprehension from our end as well as others, the calculation seemed pretty much on the lines expected. The only thing that took a toll on was our asses, which had turned to steel by the end of the 5th day. 
Below are the snapshots of the timeline of each of the days - 

Day 1 | Bangalore - Mahabalipuram - Pondichery - Cuddalore

Day 2 | Cuddalore - Rameshwaram

Day 3 | Rameshwaram - Kaniyakumari - Kovalam

Day 4 | Kovalam - Allepey - Kochi - Kozhikode

Day 5 | Kozhikode - Mahe - Mmangalore - Hassan - Bangalore

The distance between Bangalore and Delhi is nearly 2150 KMs. The cumulative distance covered in these 5 days were slightly over 2300 KMs. It was a foolish and proud thing to do. Perhaps we were just feeding this need to be on a move. The kind that had been lit up the recent Leh trip. Not that this circuit we chose was in any way gonna get close to the experiences of the Manali - Leh ride; but this in itself was way more fulfilling than we had anticipated. 

The first stretch was along the coast of Tamil Nadu covered entirely on the East Coast Road. Bangalore - Mahabalipuram - Pondichery - Cuddalore - Chidambaram - Valinkanni - Rameshwaram - Tuticorin - Kaniyakumari. 
The roads weren't exactly besides the coast all along, but one gets its fare share of the sea view all along the way. The roads are way better than one can ask for and devoid of any hampering traffic. 

The next stretch (in Kerala) was taken through Kovalam - Allapad - Allepey - Kochi - Guruvayur - Kozhikode - Mahe - Kannur. Here the roads were more scenic and a lot closer to the sea but also with traffic. The average speed became almost half of what it was in Tamil Nadu. Hence the last two days involved almost 12 hours of riding to meet the goal for the day. 

The final day saw us trudge back home via Mangalore - Sakleshpur - Hassan. 

The highlights of the trip have to be Dhanushkodi - the road being built up right to the edge of the sea, water splashing on both the sides of the road. The ride along the coast of Kerala, though took a lot longer than we would have liked, but it was as scenic as it could get. 
We were lucky to not have rains dotting out journey, except for the outset from Bangalore and then inset into Bangalore, the latter having us dripping to the bone by the time we made it under the roofs of our homes.   

Its tough sitting on a bike for long hours. The asses turned to stone. We had this 30-20-10 rule. The first 30 mins was easy, the next 20 minutes you shift around and then you stop for 10 minutes. Thats how we knocked off over 2000 KMs - one hour at a time. 
While the trip, by the time it ended, had kind of suggested retirement from such adventures, but i guess we are not done. 
Whats next, I m not sure.
The spirit remains kindered and will be while we get back to being the busy, and the tired, and the pursurer and the pursued. 


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