Easy Riders: Motorcycling India

“Every year, several hundred wheel-crazed travelers arrive in India with plans to explore the subcontinent on a motorcycle–riding over the frozen Himalayas or through the sweltering heat of the Rajasthan desert to the humid greenery of the south. Some sign up for an all-inclusive guided motorcycle safari, others just rent or purchase a machine and find their own directions. But all come here with the intent of riding; few find themselves on a saddle by a fluke”.

Ravi J. Deka is a traveler who has taken on one unique adventure. While most people make their road trips in cars, Ravi makes her journey on a motorcycle. And of all places in India, where there are tons of pockmarked roads, chaotic traffic, and herds of wandering cows!

On her way she encounters many people, all of whom have the same suspicious questions of disbelief: “But, why a motorcycle? Isn’t it dangerous? Where do you stop at night? How does your family react, and are you married? Of the myriad questions, explaining why I prefer a motorcycle over a bus or a train is the easiest. “

Ravi’s bum might be sore from the bumps on the road, and arms and legs a little shaky from the inexperience of the long drive, but she recognizes one thing. For Ravi, there is no other way to appreciate the diverse country and get insights into Indian life, as when she rides her bike. Constantly she finds herself stopping to make connections with villagers praying or celebrating an event.. Plus, she is an adventurous traveler who wants to face unknown extremities; and what could be more thrilling than traveling on a motorcycle?

Ravi recommends making a motorcycle trip coincide with the cool and dry seasons due to monsoons and varying climates throughout the country. In her article, Easy Riders: Motorcycling India, she separates the country into three areas for exploring: the north, south, and east. She gives tips for riding in each of these three areas. In particular she advises June to September for Ladakh and the western Himalayas; September to March for Rajasthan/central India and Goa and the South, and September to May to ride in Assam, Meghalaya, and Northeast India.

Ultimately, motorcycling is quite an adventure but perhaps can be a little intimidating to the solo or a newcomer to the sport. If you are interested in completing a route but want to do so in a group, there are a few local tour operators and outfitters in India, that run expeditions of varying lengths throughout the country.

Source: Ravi J. Deka GoNOMAD.com