Ride to Dahanu touching Valsad

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Riders: Rajesh, Kironbhai alongwith his friend Rohit as pillion, Vinod, Prannoy with his kid-bro Rohan as pillion, Sherzad, Kapil, Satyajit and myself.

At the first I wish to acknowledge and appreciate the participation of members turning up for the ride, which I had presumed that only Satya and me would be going on. Thanks to all who successfully transformed the ride which Satya and I conceived, into reality. Though Rajesh, Prannoy and Sherzad accompanied us till Manor, but I am thankful to them for turning up. Everyone met up at Ghodbunder naka before the cut off time. Times to get the wheels rolling and everyone is one their bikes growling away their engines with passer-by's staring at us with surprise, not having a clue as to what was going on with a bunch of bikes and bikers gathered at a place. As usual Vinod was appointed to lead and me being the drag, he was in complete gear i.e. he had put on knee pads too. Pre-decided speed was 80 kph. So finally was about time to roll off, blipping the accelerator with the rpm needle flickering, into first gear and vroom, we move on to our destination.

Riding on the highway with the cool wind, mild sunshine, a stretch devoid of even the minutest of bumps and most important no traffic. My thanks to those who prayed overnight for such a treat. Its always a pleasure being a drag, the group looks big and it feels
great to be a part of it. Everyone was riding in discipline, like a caterpillar formation, the exception being Satya, who was back at his old ways, riding most of the time in the right lane :( I was running on reserve and was looking out for a good petrol pump to refuel. Got scared even to get into some of the bunks seeing their condition, forget about filling petrol. Luckily I manage to find a good big BP bunk with Speed available, the price per litre being Rs. 45.07, quite less compared to what we get here in the city. Fill in 400 bucks and roll off again to catch up with the rest. Satya and Sherzad are kind enough to wait for me ahead, meet them and ride off together to join others who were waiting for us after the checkpost at Nalasopara, the place where we took halt for John on our last ride. Get off the place and ride off non-stop to Manor.

I wish we had such kind of roads and
traffic in Mumbai, we hardly used the brakes or the clutch, the accelerator held steady to trot at 80 kph, riding away without any worry or thought, gazing and appreciating the wonderful art of god that we call nature. Greenery on both sides, with the sun rising steadily, but still keeping the climate mildly warm. Was a perfect blend for a recipe that I should call riding bliss. Finally we reach Manor. Click some snaps by the highway and head to a restaurant for something to munch upon. A small get-together at the place, chatting, cracking jokes and sharing experiences of the days that went by. Snacks arrive and we declare an attack on them, leaving no evidences of them being ever served ;) Get out of the restaurant and my cybershot is at its work again. Rajesh, Sherzad, Prannoy and Rohan had to head back home and we to our destination. We wish each other and ride off again.

Go for some distance and the heavens open
up, starts drizzling, but not heavy. I stop and put on my rain trousers, good I was carrying those. But the drizzle is just a matter of minutes, it goes away. Occasionally I stop in between to click snaps while rest of the time, I was taking pictures while riding with one hand. We reach Charoti Naka and we discuss whether we head straight or take left for Dahanu. Everyone's in for Valsad, so no stopping any further. The stretch is the best you can find, it leaves you absolutely speechless, not an inch of a pit anywhere. You can just ride confidently without worrying about anything except rain. We keep riding without realizing that we've entered the State of Gujarat. Satya is the first to realise, courtesy the welcome board. Everyone's smiling that we've finally reached, though it wasn't a long distance, but psychologically it feels good that we've entered into another state. We take snaps as if we've scaled the peak of everest :) Since there wasn't any site seeing place at Valsad, we decided to take a first U-turn and head to Dahanu and we do exactly that.

Vinod, Kironbhai with Rohit,
decide to visit the local Mahalaxmi temple, while Kapil and myself ride ahead to catch up with Satya who had buzzed off from the pack and forgot to see his mirrors. Kapil and I ride ahead to find him nicely relaxed by the highway under a tree. These guys wanna video of themselves, fine I say. I shoot two of these riders flying away on their machines plus some good scenic snaps. The rest of the gang arrives and we ride back to Charoti Naka, take right to Dahanu, ride slowly around 60 kph through the village and finally touch the beach. Before we could do anything, we decided to have lunch. Hunted around for some good restaurant only to find none. The Beach resort that we took a halt last time, was completely occupied. Rode back some distance and found a cool restaurant. Was a good place to relax. Kapil and myself ate upon some veggie items while the other non-vegetarian species had chicken ;) Took our own time to eat and relax. I got my engine oil changed. Everyone's on their bikes again and head for the beach.

Kironbhai and Satyajit prefer to pass their time under the
trees whereas Rohit, Kapil, Vinod and myself get down on the sands. I am the only one to get into the sea to feel the water and sand slipping under my feet. Click some snaps with Rohit, who makes us seem like pygmies. Time up, mission accomplished, we free birds flying around the whole day had to fly back to their nests before dark. Get ready, packup everything and off we are. Same ride but now in an opposite direction. Just a few kilometers of riding and I find Kapil acting funny on his bike. Didn't make out what the problem was. Stopped and was shocked to find his gear shifter come off the bike. Try to fix it using the limited tools that had come with the bike, trying trying and trying, still it wasn't working coz the screw wasn't tightening enough. Just tore a piece from my wiper cloth and fixed on the shifter. Just a temporary solution for the time being. Anyway things worked and we move on.

Find a bit of traffic this time. Take a small halt for tea before
riding all the way non-stop to Ghodbunder. Everyone's there. Vinod had to head straight via the W.E. Highway, Kiron and Rohit decide to drop into a restaurant for some refreshment while Satya, Kapil and me had to take the Thane Ghodbunder Road. We appreciate and thank each other for the company on the ride. So everyone head towards different directions. Satya, Kapil and I ride till Thane. Satya takes left for Kalyan, Kapil takes the flyover for Chembur and me on my way home just closeby. So looking back at the trip, what I enjoyed the most as always was first the company of friends, next was the climate absolutely cool and third, stretches that seemed so straight as they would never end, a stretch where even the MotoGP riders would plead for. Was an absolute treat riding on them. I don't remember a single bump where I felt a jerk on my bike and curves good enough to pump up that rush of blood without any kind of risks been taken as they were visible enough for some distance.

My sincere thanks again to all those who turned up and made this trip a grand
success. The pics HERE