Rough altitude profile (inaccurate):
Final Update for now: Six of us finally finished the tour - Avinash, Gourish, Goutham, KP, Prasad and Me. Abhinandan did days 1 & 4 of the tour. All of us are back in Bangalore and probably reliving the adventure 🙂 I will post the photographs, the route we took, maybe a detailed story and statistics in a few days (hopefully).
Update: 5:20pm We reached Kushalnagar half an hour ago after visiting the Tibetan monastery. Afternoon was the hottest in terms of temperature. We all enjoyed the last leg of our journey and hooray we are done! 360kms and 5 days of fun. We are waiting at the bus stand now to come back to Bangalore.
Update: 12:50pm Another very relaxed day this is turning out to be. We reached Dubare elephant camp quickly. The elephant ride was supposed to start at 9:30, and none of us were really interested. So we proceeded towards the Harangi reservoir. The chief minister was coming visiting, so a huge crowd had gathered - but no water was released to show him. fortunately there were no security hassles as the CM came on a helicopter. But the public wasn't allowed inside - and that includes us. So back we came. A short distance from the junction and we reached Nisarga Dhama - an island on the river cauvery and a popular picnic spot. And we are just lazing around after lunch here. We have ridden a relaxed 40km till now. We intend to roam around it a bit and then visit the Tibetan colony at Bailkuppe. And then we will stop at Kushalnagar and catch buses back to Bangalore. Did I forget to mention that the overall weather till now was fantastic?
Update: 6:10am We are starting off towards Kushalnagar; our last day of riding. Many interesting places to see on the way...
Update: 6:20pm We reached Siddapura an hour ago. Not too many choices for lodging. We might probably settle for Diamond lodge. Forgot to tell you, we didnt make it to the falls. We reached a point three km away from the falls and found that going to the falls needed us to walk for a few hours since the falls is deep inside the forest. It needs forest department permission too. Overall we figured we couldn't spare the time for it. So we decided to go to Siddapura and stop there for today. We used some interior roads on the way. We enjoyed excellent weather most of the day - including some showers. Some breathtaking vistas too. And an excellent (but sparse) meal at a place called Hatur. Overall an eminently relaxed and enjoyable ride of 60km - and that brings up the 300km of the tour.
Update: 9:40am finally we are starting after repairs ! 18km to the falls.
Update: 8:50am Abhi is pumping air to his front tyre using our small hand pump.
Update: 8:30am We are starting off from Virajpet towards Barpole Falls. We slept so late yesterday that we didnt get up till 6am. Now Abhi has joined us. Surprise - his front tyre has no air. I am pissed with him for this. This means we are getting delayed all the time 🙁
Seven of us are going on a 5 day tour of Kodagu district - basically Madikeri and places around it. We will be meeting at 8:45 PM at Majestic, and catch a bus to Somwarpet (in Coorg) - our cycles go with us. After that we spend five days riding around. We intend to leave Coorg on Sunday night. The rain god seems to be showing us some mercy, after the downpour that sent Jog falls to everyone's inboxes 🙂
Update: 11:45pm Reached Virajpet at 9:45pm riding in the dark. The weather today was just too good. It drizzled for some time in the afternoon. We faced the hot sun for a relatively short time. But we reached Kakkabbe at about 3.(I just dozed off while writing this and woke up at six. Abhinandan woke me up to say that he is outside the hotel. By the way, he is rejoining the tour which is very good indeed.) Coming back to the story. Next we went to the Padi Igguta temple - after a short uphill climb. Iggutappa and Cauvery are the gods of Coorg. Unfortunately the temple was being renovated. So back we came to Kakkabbe, had tea. At this point somebody suggested us Chelavara falls. We decided to go to the falls. Sorry the text box has run out!
Update: 11:20am Just returned from Talacauvery. A nice uphill slope for 8km, fantastic weather, even better view of the surroundings. Very pleasant ride indeed! Coorg honey and jam made for a great combination. We quickly went to the temple, climbed up the hill and came back. This was the highest point in our journey till now. The ride downhill was even better. 11 plates of 'pundi' at the hotel completed the experience. Checked out of the hotel just now. Off to Kakkabbe.
Update: 6:00am I was so sleepy yesterday night that i just dozed off. Had forgotten to mention a few thing. We are staying at KSTDC. Good rooms. Bad food. Relatively expensive. And there is this police station next door. They had quite a few questions for up yesterday 🙂 we plan to climb up to Talacauveri next. It is the starting point of the river kaveri. A good 8km climb.
Update: 10:00pm We reached Bhagamandala at 6:30. It was a pleasant ride - there was every hint of impending rain but it never came. We benefited at times since the clouds shielded us from the sun for quite some time.The road was downhill for a long time - and we lost much altitude. The constant theme for the afternoon was paddy fields with mountains in the background. So we will have some fun tomorrow. slightly more than 150km for the entire tour at this point.
Update: 2:10pm We just reached Madikeri. Abhinandan had found the going difficult yesterday and wants to join up later in the tour if possible. So that reduced the size of the company to six. We had an excellent ride amidst greenery to Abbi falls. A few uphill sides too 🙂 The falls was full of water. The weather has been anything but rainy, actually quite sunny. We had the first incident of the tour too - Gowrish lost control on the last descent to Abbi and had a bad fall. Fortunately its not too bad - he has escaped with a few scratches and skin scrapes on the face.
Total distance till now - 118km. We intend to reach Bhagamandala by evening.
Update: 5:30pm We reached my uncles house an hour earlier. About 80km of riding happened today. One highlight was the long descent from Somwarpet. We are relaxing after coffee for now.
Update: 1:30pm reached Somwarpet and rushed into Ganesh Darshini for lunch. 56km travelled till here. The last few km were mostly uphill. No sign of rain - instead we have bright sunshine. This change in weather happened yesterday here -and is the official reason for non avialability of juice, ice cream, etc. Four of the riders are half asleep after lunch ! We will be staying at my uncles house about 25km from here, nobody is in a hurry .
Update: 10:30am caught the two "leaders" finally -they were waiting for us in Shanivarasante. Many nice views of paddy fields along th way. Next stop Somvarpet.
Update: Its 8:30am and we have reached Kodlipet after a ride of 24km. Only the last six km was good road. But we are now in coorg and after this all roads are good, or so the locals claim. Gowrish and Avinash have good way ahead and we are have stopped for breakfast. Their mobiles brent reachable and we hope to catch them in Somwapet. Mean while, everybody enjoyed the views of the hemavathy river.
Update: We have changed plans already! We could not arrange transport for our cycles to Somwarpet, so we made a flash decision to start near Sakleshpur. The bus has dropped us Ballupet - about 8 km from Sakleshpur. Ballupet is in Hassan district. The road from here is bad for about 15km (the locals say). Prasad has a 25 year old cycle - a Puegot with thin tyres. So we have decided to play it safe and wait till daylight before we start. I see the kaka shop opening - so passing time should not be a problem 🙂 By the way, it is 4:30am now. We will start towards coorg in just over an hours time.
Currently confirmed riders are : Avinash, Prasad, Abhinandan, Gauthaman, Gourish, KP and Me. As we ride along, you might see the hills that we climb below (it will basically be the altitude profile of our route).
PS1: If it's all blue, then you are looking at the sky and we haven't started !
PS2: I intend to update this graph from my mobile phone (with GPRS), so no guarantees 🙂