After the recce David and I did earlier this week, the stage was set for the rest of the gang to experience first hand, what David and I experienced. We'd built up the anticipation, the excitement, the "can't bear to wait anymore" energy through the week, the only question was.... would it turn out to be a case of belied expectations? From the reactions from the gang today, I guess I pleased my public! To view pics click here.
My eldest son Krishanu decided last night that he was going to ride with me. I can't quite make up my mind, whether it was a case of "OMG I'm going to get some great pictures" or, I want to ride the new bike, or I want to test me endurance, that were the deciding factors. Perhaps all three. You see he's decided that he wants to become a professional photographer covering Travel and Nature, so that may have been one incentive, and boy did he get some great shots! What's more this was his very first longish ride, and he came through with flying colors.
So it was Prasad, Krishanu and yours truly who started off from Bandra. Dasrath met us up on the WE Highway at SantaCruz. Amithab, David and Swapnil were at the Aarey Main Gate on the WE Highway as planned. Apart from not being able to find the Cycle chain keys (which finally got located in my youngest son's pocket in the wash), and Chris running late the start went off smoothly. We reached the appointed meeting point about 7 minutes off target, not bad. Chris was running behind, and he finally caught up with us at the beginning of the trail. That is when I discovered a deflated front tyre, and the rest of the ride for me was one of filling up every 15 minutes of so, until I finally got it fixed on the way back.
What started off as much awaited exciting ride, soon turned into a trek and some serious forest and mountain riding as well, with our decision to take the Gomukh Trail in Borivali Nat'l Park to go see the old temple there. Except that there is no temple anymore I'm told. Amitabh and David led the charge down to Gomukh, only to discover that it was steep uphill, unable to ride most of the trail, and far to far away to do in a reasonable amount of time. That coupled with the fact that we were headed towards restricted area (something to do with a Radar installation), lead to a decision to turn back. And none to soon. We ere quite exhausted with the climbing after all the riding.
So we head back and exit via the main entrance to the Borivali Nat'l Park on the WE Highway. Swapnil and Chris departed early due to prior commitments, and so the Bandra team finally got back home about 12 noon.
Apart from the irritation of tending to a slow leak, I loved the ride, the company, the scenery, all of it. I will be leading another team sometime in the near future, of people who could not make it o this installment.....And we sorely missed Zuhair and Faisal, who were unable to attend since they opened their new Bike Studio in Bandra. We also missed James and Kevin, who were unable to attend due to last minuted commitments having come up. . Ciao for now..... take care and