Are you looking out for a mixed bag of fun and adventure on your motorcycle? If yes, then look no further than riding a motorcycle in India! The kind of diverse terrain, climatic conditions, food, people, traffic, languages, and style of living that you will experience in India may not be found anywhere else in the world.
I've ridden across India several times and have also spoken to a handful of others who've done various rides across India and I hear one thing time and again - if you can ride in India, you can ride anywhere in the world.
In preparation for such an adventure, what you need to ride in India is a fair amount of time, patience, energy, common sense, a reliable motorcycle and a few more pointers that will help you have a great motorcycle journey in India.
Riding motorcycles in India means that you'll be riding through ghat sections, crowded highways, bustling traffic, deserts, forests, coastal roads and a lot more. Consequently, it is better to plan your start point and destination point in advance in order to keep track of time and distance.
There are so many things to see, explore and imbibe that one may not realize how much time has passed. Also, it is important to be very practical and realistic in doing so, especially when you're riding through areas that have a hot climate where you would be taking more breaks for hydration, food and rest. So, a little bit of research and pre-map work is advisable before you give your motorcycle that early morning crank.
In addition,riding at night is not recommended as there are more chances of things going wrong on poorly lit roads and isolated highways, - you might want to avoid that too!
It is important and highly recommended to have riding gear on at all times while riding, especially in India where one could find irregularities in traffic patterns. You may find trucks being driven on the wrong side of the road, animals crossing highways and other factors that could compromise safety. It is best to wear a quality helmet, motorcycle riding boots, knee guards, riding pants, and a riding jacket with elbow, spine and shoulder armor.
Not only does riding gear help in protecting your important body parts, but it also does a great job of making the rider feel more confident so that he can continue focussing on his motorcycle exploration. One may feel hot in the riding gear, especially if you're used to cold weather conditions. A solution to that is to buy motorcycle gear that is breathable and which is usually made of mesh and textile.
Dual sport tires are excellent when it comes to riding on terrain that’s a mix of Tarmac road, muddy or gravelly trails. They have deeper treads along with a favorable rubber compound that inspires the rider with confidence as they grip well over rough surfaces and smooth surfaces alike.
Dual sport tires are also found to be long lasting because the tread in the center is usually made of a harder compound that is known to wear out at a slower rate, when compared to soft compound rubber. Since the roads in India are a combination of tarmac and no non-tarmac roads, it is your best option to have your motorcycles fitted with dual sport tires!
You may hear negative news reports while traveling in India that may give rise to doubts in your mind about safety, but don't allow that to bog you down. In my experiences, most local Indians I've met on a ride across India had been extremely hospitable and kind.
You may also discover that people who may seem unfriendly turn out to be the friendliest of the lot! So it is important to not be fearful but at the same time it is wise to be vigilant and alert, especially after considering the amount of gear you will be carrying on your motorcycle. When you balance the art of being friendly and being vigilant you'll have a lot more fun, thereby adding to the overall enjoyment a motorcycle ride can offer!
I cannot stress enough that compromising on food and water intake can adversly affect the experience of riding in India. India is a pretty warm country and time does fly here so before you could even remember the last time you sipped water, two hours would have flown by.
A hydration backpack allows you to sip water on the go so there's no requirement to pause the ride. In my experience, it is best to sip water every 30 minutes or whenever the lips run dry. In addition, compromising on food just to catch up on distance can give rise to acidity and gastric issues. Hence, food and water intake should be abundant in order to keep the energy and spirit levels high.
At the end of it all though, I feel the most important thing that you need to carry with yourself during motorcycle travel is positivity: it helps you have more fun, helps you be more social and most importantly, it gives you the strength to take on challenges with courage that eventually turn out to be the best memories you can take back home. Ride long, ride safe!
Lucas Knight has built up an incredible passion for traveling by motorbike and always wishes to contribute to the motorcyclist community. This is the reason why he created MotorManner.com where his passion is turned into useful and interesting information for the motorcycle lover.