Welcome readers for the first post of 2018. The Uniqueness of this ride is we have a female rider in the Crew in her Vespa (from being a pillion rider to a rider) and she definitely had our eyebrows raised on her riding skills by exceeding the phase at times, kudos. And of course the proud moment of being the first female rider in TLT. Appreciate it, and I/We encourage more trip with her machine.
It’s been a month since anyone had a bike trip and more over being the first ride for TLT in 2018, everyone were excited. After exploring much in Karnataka we chose this time to drive towards Tamilnadu, visit Panchapalli (originally Panjapalli) and return via Bettamugilalam, believe it or not we were clueless till Friday evening on what to explore at Panchapalli, thanks to our friends Anitha and Manjunath guiding us to plan effectively.
Apache: Harish, Koushik
RE: Castro, Vino
Vespa: Paddy, Hema
The plan was to assemble at Electronic City toll, me(Koushik) and Harish from Marathahalli while rest of the crew from Bannerghatta. The start for me and Harish was quite different, involving as a peace maker in a road feud (what a beginning )
5:00 Everyone assembled at EC toll, wishing all a happy new year and off we started towards Panchapalli Dam.
The Hypothermic ride:
Starting few kilometres on the Hosur NH made us share the thought that weather is not so cold as previous year, but nature proved us wrong, gradually the temperature started to get down and by the time we were in Dhenkanikottai road everyone started to shiver, the cold was piercing, our hands and feet were benumbed, teeth chattered, chilled to the marrow, we reached a place where the fresh and crispy fog started covering like an invisible ghost, zero visibility, our engines were running cold even after the 55 KM run stretch. Stopped and checked the temperature, 13 degree it was waited waited and waited but it kept on freezing. A start that we never expected off, simply superb.
6:30 The artistic golden sun got up like a baby and started painting the dark black sky into a bright blue sky. Reached a village where we had our breakfast, hot and soothing traditional Kuli Paniyaram and Idly, running through plates after plates, so tasty and yummy. Village foods are always good.
And battling the cold with the help of hot steam
The water fuming like a warm steam, but don’t dare to get in, it’s icy chill
A peaceful place to be in.
8:00 Reached Panchapalli reservoir, it was impressive, mountains covering the entire nature in the front, water splashing across the reservoir walls, tree branches dancing welcoming the morning, gentle breeze, it was like an enormous garden in a royal palace.
We also spotted a boat, and also tried to move it to the water, unfortunately we weren’t since they were tied on either sides. But managed to snap photos, one seemed to be like we were actually travelling in the boat.
Learnt that the Panchapalli falls is dry, need to drive for a while in the off road and then to trek, localites mentioned as it is good for bird watching. We tried our best, but the muddy off road with loose rocks made it difficult for our vehicles to move further. But we still managed to trek for few distance and find some perfect spots for camping.
Note:The trek is through forest, draining your energy, better to carry ample water, people also warned about presence of elephants. So beware, apart from that, this place has lots of ware bouts and camping spots, all you need to do is be patient and explore.
Recommended for: , , Bird Watching, Elephants too (50 – 50 Chance)
Bettamugilalam – Aiyur Forest may not be known to most of the riders, yes it is a secluded area, but in riders perspective it is a heaven.
I bet you guys, it is a must drive through destination for a biker. The drive from marandahalli to bettamugilama is through the forest and to make it more interesting it is a mixed ghat section of off road and tarmac. It has all the twists and turns, narrow curves, number of hair pins, and the “W” curve, this had me feel nauseous as I was a pillion facing opposite direction recording Castro and his RE conquering the curves. My head was like taking a 180 and a reverse 180. God. Driving with a pillion facing the opposite direction that too in the ghat section puts an extra pressure on the rider since the pillion will be moving in opposite direction to that of the rider on curves and it’s the riders responsibility to balance, and Harish just mastered it out.
Then came the drive through bamboo forest, the location was picturesque that it made us to stop every 5 minutes. It is a treat for photographers.
Note: For all the riders and photographers out there, do visit this place, it will never disappoint you.
And the pleasing vocal from Castro, that made the scene more lively. We also found a perfect rest place for a power nap, instead it turned out to be chit chat moment, discussed on future rides, on the 2018 milestone too (will be updated soon), managed to bring down a jack fruit too and trying to hide it from the villagers , an hour of resting and back we started to Bangalore.
With all the fun Panchapalli and Bettamugilalam provided with, a perfect start for 2018, all we wished is for a safe, successful and fun exploring season ahead.
Until next time, happy reading.