Saturday, 23 July 2016

10 Biggest Dangers To Bikers On The Road

1. Oncoming traffic

Maybe a driver is texting on his cell phone. Maybe a driver is eating a burrito. Maybe a driver is just daydreaming. It doesn’t matter what causes it, but all it takes to cause a serious wreck is for one driver to drift into the other lane.

A driver doesn’t even need to hit a rider directly since even being clipped by an oncoming car can knock a rider from his bike. Sadly, keeping a constant eye on traffic and riding like everybody is out to kill you is the only way to minimize your risk of colliding with oncoming traffic.

2. Cars waiting to turn
Intersections are about as dangerous as it gets, and part of that has to do with drivers making careless left turns. Motorcyclists all have stories about narrowly avoiding a collision with a car pulling out in front of them, and sadly, far too many have stories about actually being hit by those cars.
Drivers need to put down their cell phones and pay better attention to what’s going on around them, but riders need to also pay extra attention while riding through intersections. That added vigilance could save a life.

3. Panic stops
There’s always potential for a wreck when someone has to slam on the brakes, but it’s always more dangerous when you’re on a motorcycle. Since your front brake provides 70% of your stopping power, you have to use it, but if you grab the brake too hard, locking up your front wheel and throwing yourself off the bike are always risks.
Buying a bike with anti-lock brakes will help mitigate this problem, but if you don’t have ABS, it’s even more important to learn how your bike handles under heavy braking. That way you’ll be ready the next time you have to slam on the brakes to avoid hitting the car in front of you.

4. Gravel on the road
Motorcycles are very good at going around corners in normal situations on normal roads, but when you start throwing obstacles into their path, that’s when things get tricky. Sticks, dirt, and even roadkill can be difficult to handle, but the worst road obstacle is gravel.
Gravel kills your grip, causing your bike to behave unpredictably and easily causing a wreck. If you’re going to go down, a low-side fall is about as good as it gets. Unfortunately, riders trying to recover from hitting gravel can easily high-side as well, which is much more dangerous.

5. Too much speed through a corner
One of the best things about motorcycles is that they’re fast. For the cost of a new Honda Civic, you can buy a bike that will hold its own against quarter-million-dollar supercars. Experiencing raw, unbridled speed for the first time is intoxicating, but it’s also dangerous.
In a straight line, most riders don’t get themselves in too much trouble, but learning to take a corner is much more difficult. New riders are especially at risk of taking a corner too fast, but even experienced riders occasionally make mistakes.

6. Opening car doors
This isn’t usually a problem once you’re out on an open road since drivers rarely open their doors while moving, but in cities, riders have to be be on the lookout for people opening their car doors. Cyclists have dealt with this problem for years, but it’s even more dangerous for motorcycle riders who often travel at faster speeds than bicycles.
Despite the fact that they’re putting someone else’s life at risk, those drivers have no problem opening their doors to prevent riders from splitting lanes.


 7. Cars changing lanes
You would think drivers would care more about not murdering people, but despite the increasing number of motorcyclists on the roads and cars with blind spot monitoring systems, drivers still routinely attempt to change lanes without looking or paying attention. Unfortunately, two objects cannot occupy the same space at the same time. When a car hits a motorcycle while changing lanes, it’s the rider, not the driver who loses every time.
At highway speeds, that can easily be deadly even if a rider is wearing proper gear. On a crowded highway, it’s even more dangerous. Not all drivers signal their intentions before changing lanes, but most do. Paying attention to which cars are beginning to drift over can help you spot a dangerous lane change before it happens.

8. Other drivers behind you
Riding through an intersection is dangerous, but so is being stopped at one. Drivers who aren’t paying attention have a habit of rear-ending other vehicles, and in most cases, it’s unfortunate, but at least cars have crumple zones and seatbelts. When a distracted driver rear-ends a motorcycle, there isn’t much to protect the rider even in a low speed crash.
Even when you’re not stopped at an intersection, other drivers can still be a threat. Slow-moving traffic may even be more dangerous than stopped traffic. Vehicles are bunched much more closely in that kind of situation, and all it takes is a driver getting distracted for a second to knock a rider off her bike and into traffic.

9. Inclement weather
Riding a motorcycle in rain is pretty miserable. You usually get soaked, other drivers splash water on you, and the large puddles that collect at the bottom of hills may as well be rivers that you have to drive through. The roads get more slick, visibility is reduced, and drivers rarely adjust their speed, making the road a dangerous place for motorcycle riders.

There’s also a reason riding in winter is not advised. Yes, proper equipment can keep you warm, but snow and ice are about as dangerous as it gets. Even if you’re not riding in an area with snow on the ground, you still need to be careful on long rides, because you never know what could be down the road a few hundred miles.

10. Drinking and riding
Unlike cars, motorcycles offer riders the illusion that they’re safe to ride even while intoxicated. At speed, they’re self-stabilizing, and with so much room in the lane, a little swerving seems like it will probably go unnoticed by law enforcement. Mix that with the drinking culture that surrounds motorcycles, and you have a recipe for trouble.
No matter how safe it feels at the time, alcohol slows your reaction time, impairs your judgment, and is a factor in an unnecessarily-large number of wrecks. Simply not drinking and riding reduces your risk of wrecking drastically. Don’t be your own worst enemy. Only ride sober.

Sunday, 17 July 2016

9 Best Rides You Need To Cover In India

Bikers get their share of wisdom while they embark on a journey with their sweethearts AND by that I mean their beloved bikes. Bike ride duration is the time to unleash the explorer in them and mend roads to self discovery. For such passionate bike riders, India seems to be the perfect match as it can offer such experience that practically has no match. Whether it is the highest snow-clad peaks of the Himalaya, the dense forests of North East or the most deserted places of Rajasthan; motorbike tours in India not only provide easy access to remote places but also helps in understanding the country’s diversity better. This list below will help you find some of the best places & routes for bike riding in India.



Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir
Ladakh can be the dream bike riding destination in India. Blessed with such mesmerizing beauty this region of Jammu & Kashmir state is a challenge that any crazy-adventurous bike rider would like to take. The trail being rugged, the weather being rough and unpredictable and cherry on top the continuous risk of landslides and other hazards keep the riders on their toes. Ladakh is the land of beautiful lakes, high mountain passes, Buddhist monasteries and meandering roads that are mostly unpaved. Therefore while planning a ride here, one is spoilt for choices but what you must know that you can never make a bad choice as each trail has its perks and thrills. Ideal Route: Manali – Rohtang La – Tandi/Keylong – Darcha – Sarchu – Tanglang La – Upshi – Leh (from Leh one can take separate routes to Khardungla and Nubra, Pangong and Tso Moriri and Hemis) – Lamayuru – Kargil – Drass – Zozi La – Srinagar – Patnitop – Chandigarh Best Riding Season: Mid June to Mid October

Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh
Another challenging and similar trail for bike riding in India can be found in Spiti Valley. Part of the state of Himachal Pradesh, Spiti has a lot of resemblance to Ladakh. So, if you could not plan a bike ride trip to Ladakh, you can conveniently settle for Spiti Valley as it allows the almost the same kind of adrenaline rush. In fact, the Hindustan-Tibet highway that leads into Spiti valley ensures that doze of thrill remain consistence all through for a rider. It is on this ride that you can approach the highest villages of the Asia. Kibber, Kaza, Tabo, Spiti and Pin valley make up for some visually attractive remote places and the Baspa and Kinnaur regions act as great destinations for nature lovers who can enjoy the beauty of apricot and apple orchards, Satluj river views and snow capped monasteries. Ideal Route: Shimla – Sarhan – Sangla – Chitkul – Baspa – Kinnaur – Recong Peo – Kalpa – Kaza – Tabo – Spiti – Keylong – Manali Best Riding Season: Mid June to Mid October

Western Arunachal Pradesh
With its most humbling landscape, Western Arunachal Pradesh is one of the best places for bike ride in India. Yes, there are high chances that you would find unpaved roads and landslides all through the journey but the nature’s beauty compensates for everything here. Waterfalls, terraced paddy fields, alpine forests, mountain streams, small human settlements, now covered roads (in winter) and the opportunity to witness unique tribal culture makes this high altitude route an irresistible one for an adventurist. Bomdila, Dirang, Tawang, Lake District, Gorshem Chorten, Ziro, Parsuram Kund and Namdapha National Park are the part of this paradise called Western Arunachal Pradesh. Ideal Route: Bhalupkong – Dirang – Bomdila – Tawang Best Riding Season: March to May or October to November

Kolli Hills, Tamil Nadu
This particular place will get your heart racing for sure! Kolli Hills a scenic hill station in Eastern Ghats of Tamil Nadu. The hills are famed for its 70 continuous hairpin bends, which by the way are more than enough to get you all excited. This tropical hill is also famous for its Agaya Gangai waterfall, ancient Shiva temple and Pineapple farms. A weekend bike ride from Bangalore to Kolli Hills seems an ideal plan. Ideal Route: Salem – Rasipuram – Kolli Hills Best Riding Season: All year around

Valparai to Vazhachal Forest
South India has some breathtaking biking routes and one of its best examples would be Valparai to Vazhachal Forest. An ideal bike ride on this route would be during the monsoon season. The route connects Pollachi in Tamil Nadu to Chalakudy in Kerala, which is prominently covered with fine tropical rainforests and cloud and evergreen forests. The trail passes through stunning waterfalls and numerous dams and reservoirs. And since this area is either part of the Anaimalai tiger reserve or the Vazhachal forest reserve, wildlife sightings makes a significant part of it. Well-maintained roads and the emerald beauty of forests are the highlights that can surely allure bike riders here. Ideal Route: Pollachi – Valparai – Vazhachal – Athirapally – Chalakudy Best Riding Season: All year around

Mumbai – Goa
It is one of the most famous road trip routes in India and it deserves all the fame that it gets. Popularly called NH17 (National Highway 17), this route offers a trip along the western coastline of India. NH 17 connects Mumbai to Kerala, so in case your adventure instinct doesn’t get satiated with a ride between Mumbai and Goa, you can simply get some more petrol in your bike and vroom off to the state of Kerala. The ride between Mumbai and Goa gives a feel of riding on foreign roads with exquisite landscape to view and cherish. Best Riding Season: October to February

Jaipur – Jaisalmer
If you can endure some harsh and challenging roads, this one should be an easy-peasy for you. However, the desert can be tricky sometime but what is life without a couple of risks and challenges, right? During the bike ride enjoy the rich culture of Rajasthan and the hospitality of the people of the state. The roads are paved, a few pits here and there is a part of any bike trip in India. However, what will catch your eyes the most is landscape that has the mix of brown and green hues. While passing through the rural Rajasthan, one has the opportunity to learn about living life without the modern amenities, also the local cuisine taste the best in these rural settlements. Of course the Rajputana architecture will follow you everywhere. Ideal Route: Jaipur – Nagaur – Jodhpur – Ramdevra – Jaisalmer Best Riding Season: October to February

Ahmadabad-Kutch
The maverick riders will love to take this challenging yet beautiful route in Gujarat. Starting from the bustling hub of the state to the remote and surreal Rann of Kutch, the route is nothing less than a proverbial diamond in the rough. You can choose to drive around the Kutch region where both white salt desert and salt marsh await to greet you. En route visit can be paid to Indian Wild Ass Sanctuary and also Dholavira can be included in the route. Since Kutch is a culturally wealthy region, a bike ride to the villages is a good idea as well. Ideal Route: Ahmadabad – Surendranagar- Little Rann of Kutch- Great Rann of Kutch Best Riding Season: December to March

Darjeeling-Sikkim
This is another popular route for bike ride in India. Beginning from the beauty of East, Darjeeling to the surreal destination, Sikkim, a bike ride on this route is a scenic one. However, in no way shall the biking trail here be considered easy, the route is a witness to many steep and winding roads that are enough to keep the adrenaline rushing. A heady m̩lange of religions and fine hill culture make this route an anticipated one by both an adventurist and a nature lover. Also, the views of the Kanchenjunga are the big time bait of this route. Ideal Route: Siliguri РDarjeeling РKalimpong РGangtok РPelling РYuksom Best Riding Season: All year around

Thursday, 14 July 2016

Tips For Riding Offroad

Anyone can ride on smooth tarmac, but it takes a different set of skills to take your bike to no man's land! Although it can be extremely fun, it is a lot more challenging. Here are some tips to make sure you keep your bum on the saddle.



 1. Manage Your Speed: Nothing increases risk more than a too fast speed for your ability and/or the conditions. Keeping your throttle hand in check is fairly easy to do, but managing speed on a steep, muddy downhill trail is tough. The trick is to see the problem well before you get to it and slow down to a crawl so you aren’t trying to scrub off speed where gravity and almost zero traction create the equivalent of a slip and slide.

 2. Keep Your Eyes Up: We look down when we are scared or tired. The problem is that as soon as you look down, you’re unable to deal with the terrain that is suddenly under your front wheel. This problem compounds until you are so far behind what’s going on underneath you that you get more scared, look down more and eventually crash. This pertains to most athletic activities, including street riding.

 3. Use Momentum: When traction is limited, you must rely more on momentum. This means keeping your eyes up to see what’s coming and getting on the gas before you are on a surface that has little grip.

 4. Believe You Can Do it: If you hesitate, you will likely not make it up that steep incline. So, go for it! That said, avoid terrain that is over your head.

 5. Stand Up, Sit Down: It’s nearly impossible to ride an off-road bike well if you aren’t good at riding while standing. It’s also important to know when it’s best to stand and when to sit. In general, stand for any significant bumps so your legs absorb the impacts and sit for corners, especially corners with berms so you can load the rear tire for the drive out.

 6. Find the Center: Whether sitting or standing, you must find the spot where your body’s mass is located for optimum maneuverability and fluid control. This means sitting forward on the seat and standing so your belly is over the steering stem.

 7. Bent Arms: The bike is going to move up, down, left and right at great frequency. Yet, you must hold onto the handlebars and operate the controls while the bike is jerking around. Bent arms allow the bike to move as necessary and for your hands to still control the throttle and brake with precision.

 8. Counter-lean: This is something street riders have a hard time with when they first start dirt-riding. If you lean with the bike (or low and inside) then the bike will slip out from under you. The bike must lean to turn, but if you stay on top of the bike, your weight keeps the load pressing vertically to allow the tires to grip the terrain.

 9. Forget the Clutch: Forget using the clutch for upshifts. There is usually no time to go for the clutch lever when you’re accelerating out of one rocky, muddy mess into another one.

 10. Use the Clutch: On the other hand, you want to use the clutch to control drive as much as possible. By slipping the clutch you can stay in a taller gear to avoid excessive shifting and control your speed with greater precision.

 11. Use the Rear Brake: On muddy terrain, you’ll rely heavily on the rear brake. Skidding the rear tire is not usually a big deal, but skidding the front will quickly toss you on your head.

 12. Use the Front Brake: Yeah, I know what we just said, but when there is traction, you can (and should) use both the front and rear brakes when descending hills. This may sound tricky, and it is. But, sometimes you need all the slowing power available, just learn to apply the front brake carefully.

 13. Learn to Wheelie and Jump: Not so you can be a squid, but so you can get over fallen trees, big rocks. If you can’t wheelie, then at least learn to loft or bunny-hop over obstacles.

 14. Steer with the Rear: When you don’t have a lot of grip, trying to steer with the front tire is a bad idea. Instead, get the bike turned in the general direction, but get on the gas to prevent a front tire washout.

 15. Make sure Your Bike is Ready: It sucks to be stranded in the woods.

 16. Take Breaks: Off-road riding uses a lot of physical and mental energy. If you get tired, you will start looking down and your timing will become imprecise. Before you know it, you’re on the ground.