#KRRC Ride 246 – Adventure ride – “Slopes of hell” , 10th Jan 2021

The name “Slopes of Hell” invokes images of the Dakar Rally, massive boulders, crazy trails and so on. The 36 riders who ultimately enrolled for this ride were given fair warning for what was to come. Special instructions were passed on to ensure each one was dressed in the appropriate safety gear. Needless to say, we were all excited for the ride to come.

As we assembled at 6:00 AM at Green Park, Baner, Pune, the briefing contained the same instructions. “Be careful, avoid hard breaking, follow the line, look for proper footrest in case you stop, stay in the high rev-zone”. Basically a recap of everything that was taught to us in the “Off road training session” (blog coming soon) – Check out the video below for an amazing recap of the session on the KRRC Channel by the very talented Vinil Chacko.

We set off at 6:35 AM, and reached the location on the foothills of the Kamshet ghat in about an hour. Looking up you can see the final destination – the tower right up there at the peak.

As we regrouped, instructions were passed for the ‘faster riders’ to start off. Vikram and Lalit being the hard core offroader in the group set off with a few of us, as we started off.

The actual slopes of hell are fun to ride on. Steep ride up, about 45 degrees slope, with completely broken gravelly, muddy, rocky paths. The rain over the past few days had rendered parts of the path slightly mushy as well. However, thankfully, it wasn’t complete slush, so there was not much loss of traction for the bike tyres.

The last part of the climb was through thick green foliage with a very narrow trail. This was the must fun part, particularly with the hill on the left, and a sheer drop on the right. Rocks on the road meant we were weaving out way around the obstructions, making this an extra challenge.

As we reached the top, we were greeted with some amazing view. Open clear skies, a gorgeous panorama of the Mumbai-Pune highway and clear visibility for several kilometers.

A parallel peak also has activities for paragliding – we saw quite a few people there and parachutes in the air – definitely a spot for you adventures and thrill seekers.

We chilled on the top for a while, with a few folks walking up the steps to chill on the top of the hill. Bikes cannot go to the absolute top due to massive boulders blocking the way (we tried πŸ™‚ )

As there is very less space up top to congregate, the leaders took a call to have the rest of the gathering back at the base. (also chai ki latt kagi thi!). We set off on the way back, and this was a bit more challenging with Mother Gravity playing a role in taking the difficulty up a notch. A couple of bikes had a tough time controlling the speed and did take a couple of minor falls due to emergency breaking, but nothing serious.

Chai commenced with the introduction session of the new riders. We also felicitated riders achieving KRRC milestones

  • Vikram – Badge for completing 5 rides
  • Pinakin – Star for completing 10 rides
  • Abhinay – Wings for completing 50 rides! 40+ of these rides were in the last one year, pretty much a club record of sorts.

Congratulations to all the winners!

The ride didn’t end here. There was a huge open field with a slight elevation right there. The whole group took off riding over the field, and, as always, posing for an epic group photo graph!

Finally, with all our saddling and off-roading appetites satiated, we set off for the short quick ride back home. The ride back was quite fun too, with Ride Leader Umesh zooming off on his Dominar. Brilliant ride back, super fun as always!

Here’s to the next one!

Route Map: https://maps.app.goo.gl/rPzHdbiRnxeZviDi7

all images by Anwar K. (KRRC)

#KRRC RIDE – 234 GHAT TRAINING SESSION 29th Nov – a baconbaba blog

KRCC ki Paathshala! pc: Karan A.

29th November marked the start of a series of much awaited training sessions organized by the Knight Riderz Riding Club (KRRC). The first session was the Ghat Riding training session.

With the seniors in the club having clocked several thousands of kilometers riding in some of the most toughest terrains in India (and abroad too), this was one session not to be missed!

We met at 6AM at the kick off point, where the pre-ride briefing was given.

Pre-ride briefing, 6 AM, Khadi Machine Chowk, Kondhwa | pc: Sid Shirke

The groups were split up very logically into 7 groups, based on the type of bike and the power/weight dynamics of the bike. This categorization made a lot of sense since though the basic theory/techniques remain the same, the weight and power of the bike play a huge part in the way it would behave while riding.

Grouping of riders by bike category

Each group had a ride leader assigned who would be mentoring the members in that group. The riders left the morning assembly point under the same ride leaders that they were assigned to.

As we reached the spot where the training was planned to start, we were baffled by how beautiful the location was. A small plateau in the middle of the Bopdev ghats surrounded by clouds – this was the perfect setting to kick off the training session. School aisi jagah pe hota toh aur bohot sare bacche padne aate!

We started off with an interactive session by Shohrat Shankar and Surinder Singh – two founders of the group. This covered cornering, overtaking, tilts, and several other critical factors related to riding in the ghats. they also shared some interesting anecdotes from their own rides in various parts of the world.

Shohrat and Suri – our trainers for part 1 | PC: Sid Shirke

The theory session was followed by introduction of new riders as well as felicitations of riders who had completed some important milestones.

Congratulations to all the riders for achieving their riding milestones
Karan πŸ™ŒπŸ½πŸ™ŒπŸ½ 75 Rides
Puneet πŸ‘πŸ½πŸ‘πŸ½ 50 Rides
Arko πŸ’ͺ🏽πŸ’ͺ🏽 10 rides
Pinakin, Vikas, Saurabh, Sandeep, Imran, Jayanth & Prashant πŸ‘πŸ½πŸ‘πŸ½ 5 rides

A quick snack break later, everyone geared up, waiting to put all the theory into practice. What followed was an intensive ride session. Each ride leader took each member on a ride on their own bike through a selected ghat section with some crazy twisties and mad angles so the rider could understand the gear shifts, breaking, and acceleration techniques. Immediately after, the rider took over with the leader sitting behind.

I personally felt an increase in confidence in both myself as well as my bike, and was able to maneuver the bike in a much safer, yet marginally faster way through the turns. We also took a few laps ourselves post our “guided” ride, to practice the techniques taught. It did take a bit of unlearning, to lose the habit of hitting the brakes in a curve, and let the gear shift/engine braking do its magic. But the feeling of accelerating perfectly out of a sharp turn is absolutely brilliant!

All in all, this was an absolutely brilliant session! I dont know how many ‘riding clubs’ out there take out time to teach their brothers, but the patience and dedication of the seniors and leaders of the club was par excellence.

A big thank you to all the ride leaders for taking out time today
Shohrat, Suri, Karan, Puneet, Mayur, Aniket, Amey, Sid, Prashant, Umesh & Abhinay. These guys are awesome! Cannot thank them enough for sharing their valuable experience and expertise by guiding the riders. πŸ™πŸ½

Next session is the off roading session – that one is going to be something else!

Until next time, here’s the BaconBaba signing off!