Read Chapter 2, Day 1 here: The Dream Ride! Being a pillion through the mighty Ladakh on Duke 390.Chapter 1: The Day before The Ride
Spiti or Ladakh, regardless of the destination, good planning and preparation was imperative. We had our gears, routes, and The Duchess, all ready.
For the bike and luggage, we used the following:
- Luggage rack/saddle stand: NexusGears.
We couldn't source from Sahyadri, the best in the business; therefore, we had to buy this. Quality was okayish, quite substandard.
- Saddle bag: Rynox drystack.
These are absolutely waterproof and completely reliable even in super heavy rains.
- Rucksack on the rear: Spykar Jeans' rucksack.
This one is super sturdy and good for any kind of rough use, and it also served as backrest for me throughout the ride.
- Tank bag: Rynox dirt sack.
Needless to say anything about the quality, the tank bag is a must for everything that you'd need to be handy: basic electronics, documents, and of course, light snacks or dry fruits.
- Extra fuel: Two 2-litre Maaza bottles.
Maaza bottles are too good for this purpose, as they are thick and sustainable.
- Helmets and gears: 1 SOL and 1 SMK helmet, 2 sets of DSK riding jackets and pants, Tarmac Venom riding shoes (for the rider), Quechua Arpenaz 50 Mid Women's Hiking Boots (for the pillion), 4 pairs of riding and woolen hand gloves, balaclavas, bag cover(s), rain gears (and as many pairs of socks as possible!).
- Bike spares: Engine oil, clutch cable, ACC cable, bolts, temperature sensor, spark plugs, chain lube and cleanser.
- Other/Miscellaneous yet essential items: Bungee cords for tieing the rucksack, chargers, power bank, a pair of Sena SMH-5 Bluetooth headsets for both the helmets, camera lens, action cam, camera mounts, tapes.
- Documents: Flight ticket printouts, photocopies and original ID proofs, permits, route maps' printouts.
- Gel seat for me, the pillion: As you all know how the Duke 390 pillion seats are, without the gel seat, the pillion's rear wouldn't survive the ride.
P. S. We strongly recommend basic and minimal (yet sufficient) clothing, and, of course, thermals are a must throughout the ride!
So, owing to the literally "last moment" change of plan (from 4 people leaving for Spiti to 2 people leaving for Ladakh), we did need some kind of support, as it was just going to be the two of us now, without our friends or a backup vehicle. This is when India's human GPS, H. V. Kumar Sir (HVK) came into picture.
Our friend, Sushil, on the note of not being able to join us due to unforeseen and inevitable circumstances, quickly helped us with getting in touch with Kumar Sir—right from getting us registered on the #RoutO app to convincing Kumar Sir for helping us out, and bang on! We packed everything that was left and were set to leave at 04:00 AM on July 7, 2018!!!
I'll be back with D Day in the next chapter, leaving you'll with a few snaps from the day before.
This was basic load testing; the saddle bags (along with the luggage inside) were parceled to Amritsar with the bike.
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Basic toiletries for a couple!
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Near-to-actual load testing is mandatory before D Day!
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Hehe yeah, forgetting a document, dropping a glove while clicking pictures, all such minute experiences also make the trip memorable, isn't it @SHEKHAR 257 and others? More updates in Chapter 3, Day 2 are coming soo. Stay tuned!Good going Vrushali. Forgetting one document or the other is part of any trip. Good that you found it at the right time.
Eagerly waiting for next post.
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