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Old 01-19-2012, 02:05 PM   #31
klaviator
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Awesome

Looking forward to the rest.
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Old 01-19-2012, 04:31 PM   #32
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So far, so great!

Thanks.
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Old 01-20-2012, 12:57 PM   #33
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We returned to our hotel and the bikes would be taken there overnight, in preparation for what would turn out to be the craziest, funniest day I have ever spent on a bike.
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Old 01-29-2012, 05:13 AM   #34
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Alright, I know I've been a bit slack with this, but here is some more. You never know, I might even finish it soon.


We woke to another wet morning, had some breakfast, packed up, and headed for the car park where our steeds were waiting. Mine was already showing its British heritage with a puddle of oil under it before it had even gone anywhere. I pointed this out to our guide but he assured me it would be OK.



We did a couple of laps of the car park to acclimatise ourselves with the arse about controls then we were off. Just getting onto the main road was interesting but we quickly learnt to grow some balls and just ride out and hope that everyone else goes around you. It surprised me that we all managed to stay together as we weaved in and out of the traffic showing blatant disregard for what we know as road rules. There were many times that all of us had simply gone to change down a gear and ended up jumping on the brake resulting in the bikes sliding around on the wet bitumen. Fortunately we all managed to stay upright but as I was at the back of the pack I had some good laughs at what was happening in front of me, not to mention giving myself a few scares.

We were still in the outskirts of the city when the throttle cable on Peteís bike broke. I pulled up behind him but the others were all in front and had carried on. Next thing a vehicle pulls up and a bloke comes over and starts looking at the bike. We had heard stories of bikes being hijacked in Nepal So Pete starts telling this bloke to f#*k off, then I realised I recognised the vehicle from the day before. It turns out he is our mechanic and no one had bothered to introduce us to him.




They soon had the cable changed and we were mobile again. We regrouped down the road and continued to the checkpoint at the edge of the city where it seems that you pay the man some cash and you are free to go.
We were enjoying some nice roads and scenery through the valley until the traffic came to a standstill. As you do when youíre on a bike, we rode down the oncoming lane for a kilometre or two then we come across cars and trucks banked up in both lanes.

My first thought was what happens when this blockage is cleared and the oncoming traffic canít go anywhere, and if the same has occurred on the other side of the blockage, then no one will be going anywhere. So I thought best not to over-think these things and this is just the way things are done here. We filtered through the traffic and eventually even on the bikes we couldnít go any further.






We waited for 15 or 20 minutes and then sure enough, thatís an ambulance trying to get through.



It took about 10 minutes for it to travel around 200 metres to get past us, but it did mean that the traffic had moved a bit and allowed us to get moving again.
We filtered our way through until we eventually passed the remains of a motorcycle wedged under a truck, and then we were moving almost normally again.
A bit further down the road we realised that we had lost one of us in the traffic, which caused considerable confusion when our guide pulled over to the side of the road immediately after passing a truck.
No one really takes any notice of the lanes and the traffic is often 3 abreast going one way on what would to us normally be one lane going each way. When thereís something coming the other way every one just squeezes in and hopefully you come out the other side alive. The white line down the middle of the road is a complete waste of paint.
Anyhow, when our guide pulled over, we were spread all over the road so most of us had no hope of stopping in time and sailed on past. Some managed to turn around and others pulled off to the side where we had no hope of making a U turn because of all the traffic.
Eventually we all managed to regroup and continue on. Pete was still having trouble with the throttle on his bike sticking and it was causing him a bit of grief, so I swapped machines with him until we could get it sorted. Apart from the sticking throttle problem, his bike was great. I could change gears without hitting a false neutral on every change, as I was on my machine.
Soon we caught up with the rest again, having a smoko stop.




Here the mechanic fixed Peteís bike for him and he was very keen to give mine back to me. He wasnít a fan of the box full of false neutrals either.
I didnít take many photos on this run because the guide didnít stop much, and we were trying to stay together. On a few occasions we did get split up a bit and once we ended up with 1 bike going the wrong way at an intersection which no one had stopped at.
Colin got a flat tyre so we had a bit of a break while that got fixed.




When we caught up to the others, surprisingly they were stopped at a bar. By now I thought I could feel the bike getting a bit slippery on the back end, so a quick look confirmed that British heritage I mentioned before, and the whole left side of the tyre was completely soaked with oil.




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Old 01-29-2012, 10:08 AM   #35
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Old 01-29-2012, 07:28 PM   #36
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Interesting report. I always wondered why KTM had included a photo of "Overlanding in Bhutan" in an old (04?) 640A sales brochure and now I know. It was of a guy crossing one of those narrow suspended rope (wire!) bridges - did you cross any like that?
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Old 01-30-2012, 12:46 AM   #37
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Good stuff.
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Old 02-28-2012, 03:40 AM   #38
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bump

Finsh 'er off!!
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Old 03-01-2012, 05:24 AM   #39
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Sorry people. I haven't forgotten, just really busy.
I will get back to it soon.
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Old 03-06-2012, 02:40 PM   #40
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Originally Posted by Hill Billy View Post
Sorry people. I haven't forgotten, just really busy.
I will get back to it soon.

Please get back to it immediately.

You are a procrastinating and naughty Hill Billy.

Why are you still reading this, mate? Get on with the story!
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Old 03-15-2012, 06:58 AM   #41
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OK Sorry about the delay folks but here is some more.

After a few refreshing ales we were on the road again heading for Pokhara.

As I said before, we werenít stopping very often, so I started taking a few pics on the move to try and capture the traffic and the roadside buildings



Unfortunately that didnít work very well so the photos are a bit ordinary.





Eventually we arrived at Pokhara and our first stop was the Bullet Base Camp.



This is a bar owned by an Aussie bloke who loves his Enfields. It was a pretty cool spot so we stayed for a beer or two.


a

After a while we carried on to our hotel where we cooled off in the pool then went for a stroll around town.
This had been a fantastic day of riding for me, although there werenít many photos, and I probably donít describe things very well, but the combination of a lot of things made it pretty good. The traffic was the most interesting thing for me. The way that you donít really bother whatís coming the other way, just pull out and start beeping your horn when you are passing, and if thereís not enough room beep your horn some more and someone will move over for you. Where I come from if you beep your horn at someone they are likely to chase you down and give you a beating. In Nepal it would be difficult to drive without a horn.
Then there are all the rocks on the road. It seems when a vehicle breaks down they donít move it off the road. They leave it on the road and use rocks as an extra park brake, then when they move on, the rocks are just left on the road.
In many places there are drains across the road which, with enough speed one could get the mighty Enfield well and truly airborne, but you sure knew about it when it came back to earth.
Then there was the issue of getting the rear brake and gear shift mixed up. This improved as the day went on but it never went away completely. This bike was an absolute piece of shit but strangely it was fun to ride.
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Old 03-15-2012, 07:10 AM   #42
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The original plan was to do another two days of riding and then have a free day in Kathmandu, but this place looked pretty nice which is more than I can say for what we had already seen of Kathmandu, so we decided to see if we could have our free day here tomorrow instead. To their credit, The Sacred Summits crew organised this for us for a minimal fee, so then it was down to the serious business of drinking some more beer.
Later on we went out for a bit of a wander and met this colourful character.


He looked like he has had a hard life.


The next day was a lazy day. We had to move to another hotel just down the road.
They obviously donít spend a lot of time planning things here. The eaves of these two buildings overlapped each other at the back corner.


We went and had lunch by the lake and then decided to go flying.


We seemed to be waiting for ever here, but fortunately there was a bar over the road.
It turned out they could only take 2 of us and luckily one of them was me. We drove for half an hour or so to the top of the hill, and this would be my transport back down again.


The view over the town and lake was spectacular and the flight was awesome, although a little short due to unfavourable weather conditions.



The rest of the crew were to meet us where we landed and yes, there was a bar there as well. In fact there are bars everywhere in this country. So we tested a few of them on the way back to town.
This one was in a nice spot by the lake so we stayed a while.


This is our guide/road captain Mahesh. He was a pretty cool dude and was very passionate about his Enfields.


We eventually made it back to our hotel. Lucky we had a patient taxi driver.
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Old 03-15-2012, 07:21 AM   #43
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Next morning was wet again but soon dried up. This was the view from the hotel restaurant


Some of the carvings in the woodwork were a little rude.


After breakfast we saddled up and headed back the way we came for about 100 kís to where we would turn off to Chitwan
Morning tea stop (warm beer)


The locals were quick to bum a smoke.


The dude on the right started playing that instrument which was OK for a short while, but we ended up having to pay him to shut up and go away.


Lunch stop (more warm beer)


We saw surprisingly little carnage on the roads considering how they drive, but there were a few bingles.
This bus had just been put back on its wheels before we got there.


We got to a junction where we had to turn off but two of our guys in their wisdom had gone ahead of the guide and were now tearing along in the wrong direction.
While Mahesh went off to hunt them down we walked about 10 metres and found a bar. This probably isnít the worldís smallest bar but it was the smallest one Iíve seen. This photo was taken from outside.


It was the trip from here to our hotel that claimed our only crash for the trip. Pete got a bit carried away on a dirt road threw the mighty Enfield away into a paddock.


Damage was minimal to both bike and body and he was in high spirits by the end of the night.
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Old 03-15-2012, 12:36 PM   #44
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OK Sorry about the delay folks but here is some more.
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Old 03-16-2012, 09:56 AM   #45
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