|Venky on a rocky downhill..on the Giant Warp|
Started at 4:50 am on Saturday and began to ride to Vineeth’s place to hitch a ride to Manchanabele. Got there just in time to catch a breath before Vineeth and Vickram arrived with their bikes on the Xylo. The plan is to reach Manchanabele reservoir by around 7am and begin to ride the trails there. We stopped at a small eatery en-route and had idli and coffee.
The view of the lake as we approached the reservoir was breath taking. We parked near the lake and rode alongside the lake. The initial few kilometers is partly paved and partly broken road. As we proceeded further it turned into a double track and a bit further into a single track.
Vineeth had the route loaded on his handheld GPS and was leading the ride. He is one hell of a rider and an awesome guy. Even as we were sticking to the trail, we took liberal detours and had fun down hilling and climbing at various places.
On the way back, Vineeth and Vikram were ahead of me and were struggling to get past that patch of the rocky trail without setting the foot down. I thought I found a better line and began to ride on the rock to the right of the track they rode. It was about four feet high and offered around a foot or so of riding line. I was riding smoothly until the right pedal struck a rock and I was thrown to the left. Airborne.
Venky found his monkey instincts and jumped off the bike and the four foot high cliff to land on both his feet. The bike landed in the same spot as I moved away in one slick move with my heart in my mouth. Vickram and Vineeth wondered what was the earth shattering thump all about!
The two creek crossings were fun as was the awesome rocky downhill in the middle of the trail. A guy who probably thought that he’d found a few mysterious creatures jumping of the cliff, approached and found us hauling our bikes up the rocky hill and riding down it on the bikes. He was sure that we were from the Military undergoing some training. Otherwise why would any sane person do such a thing? He lit up his cigar and gave us some unsolicited advice before we moved on.
I guess we should spare more time next time we go there so that we can explore the area more and may be do some repeats of the loop to make the 50 km or so hike to get there, more worth the while.
Here are the photos from the ride: https://picasaweb.google.com/hivenkat.d/ManchanabeleTrailMarch19th11#