CHALUKYAS 1200 – My first ultra randonneuring experience – Part II

Warning: Long post as well as late post.

Ride story:

Breakfast at 4:00 am

Got up at 3:00 am on the ride day and had breakfast by 4:00 am and checked out of the hotel by 4:30 and reached the venue by 5:00. It was raining not so heavily. Wearing our rain coats and waiting in the rain opposite kanteerva stadium.

Kanteerva stadium to VRL refreshments (86 kms)

After collecting the name card and got the bike check done and greeting each other in the rainy day, had a good start.

early morning rains near kanteerava stadium, bangalore, 14-0ct-2021

At the sixth kilometer my co-riders Hub got jammed and could not be rectified. Asking for help from passers by for cycle mechanics number, few passing cyclists stood by and helped us only to find it could not be rectified. Finally two riders who started late gave contact of nearby cycle shop and also spoke to him. The cycle shop was around 1 km from the point of breakdown.  Soon we went there and identified the most suitable cycle. The owner Sachin came to the spot and helped us and we could not rectify the issue then and there. Alternate cycle was suggested. Only M size cyle was available which is the closest possible thing. We know we were running out of time for our first control point. After dismantling and fixing the handlebar extender, water bottle cage, spare tyre and seat, we have lost a good two hours. Resumed our journey with great spirit. Our consistent practice helped a lot. We need to reach VRL refreshments by 11:40 while we started at 8:30. Managed to cover 80 km in three hours in the traffic and elevations.

Some tense moments handled wisely

VRL refreshments to Hotel Anand Vihar

After having breakfast at VRL refreshments and started, we were the last of riders. Saw one rider quitting due to back pain at the same location. After a ride of two hours, had to fix puncture for fellow rider and used the chance to fill up water bottle. Felt a good relief after seeing few riders on the way. Talking to them was such a big relief. They all had lunch break and riding fast. Soon we were slowing down and decided to have lunch. Had lunch at around 4:00 PM in the evening and again started riding. It was a very long ride through chitradurga. Rode through wind tunnels, where our average speed dropped to 12 kmph. At around 200 kms we had to take a deviation from pune highway towards hosapete. Finally reached check point at 8:20 PM in the night. Covered 160 kms in 8 hours with a lunch break and puncture break. Looks good on paper but not sufficient for long rides with good elevation en route. Most of the star riders have already left the CP by the time we arrived. The few who were there greeted us. A Great dinner had been arranged by BR. Tried to have a power nap but couldn’t. After a gap of one hour, resumed our journey.

Hotel Anand Vihar to Hotel Nandagokula – Night ride (138 kms)

Before starting from CP we were advised to carry food for the night ride. Fortunately numerous coffee shops were available till mid night post which climate took control. Temperature started dropping and had to take many coffee/Tea breaks. In the land of coffee only tea was available at most places. Took pics inside a wind tunnel and headed to nearest petrol bunk for sleep. I slept for a good 45 minutes while others were chatting. After waking up from sleep, had a warm up run for half a km and then resumed the rides. Rode 64 kms in the next three hours to reach the CP with 1.5 hours buffer. Reached around 6:45: 386 kms in 24 hours seemed too slow but for the elevations. Since its early morning decided to have breakfast later.

Touring around Pattadakkal, Aihole and Badami and reaching Pakwan hotel

Group of monuments at pattadakkal
Aihole

We were made to take pictures at the three UNESCO heritage sites. Thanks to the organisers for routing through these beautiful heritage sites and making it a mandatory selfie point. Rolling terrains, Good roads, bad roads, village roads, gravel roads, mud roads, concrete roads, Tar roads. This is just preparing us for the deadly 100 km ride from 523 km to 623 km till gokak.

Badami cave temple

Hot sun greeted us all the way. No clouds. No use of carrying rain coat. Literally dehydrating ride since we were riding at noon. Finally reached pakwan hotel around 3:30 in the evening. With 1.5 hours to closing and tiredness forced us to take lunch here. Almost full of cyclists here felt happy again. By the time we reached everyone were leaving. It was Day 2 evening and we have not yet slept after riding for 36 hours with only breaks for eating and resting. A good one hour break left us with only half an hour of buffer time and we have to start hoping we get to sleep in the 623 km CP at Gokak.

Started like this and then…
sunflower fields on way to pakwan hotel

Pakwan hotel to Gokak (Deadly 96 kms)

While starting from pakwan hotel we had seven hours and 15 minutes to ride 115 km. This time includes sleeping time for whole second day night and continuing for the third day. Even imagining seemed difficult. We could see many riders  in this stretch. Endless amount of village people stopped by and enquired us. We got bored answering the same question time and again. We joined HariRaju and Lokesh. Four of us took turns to the enquiry. Finally decided to act dumb. Still motor bike riders came in front of us and kept asking the same questions. And the roads were bad roads combined with rolling terrains with no lights except our bicycle lights. As usual one of my water bottle flew away when I left my cycle in one of the ditches in the middle of the road. Waited and looked around and could not locate it. Continued the ride. Now came endless amount of tractors with baggase loaded and we could see few fellow riders fixing punctures enroute at many places. We were quite lucky not to have any puncture or may be I finished all my quota of punctures earlier this year in February. Then came good roads. Picked up speed and reached Landmark hotel to see 60 cycles parked there.

Gokak to vidhaan soudha

Spent 5 hours at this spot but slept only for 2 hours. Half an hour for dinner, 20 minutes for toilet and bath and changing clothes, 10 minutes for water filling , getting signed in brevet card, collecting drop bag, putting your phone, bike computer and battery bank for charging. Packaging was right except I carried way too much protein bars. I consumed 6 protein bars for 1200 kms. However I carried 24 nos which is excess.

Had a sumptuous meal at landmark hotel, gokak arranged by BR and a good 2 hour sleep after 40 hours only to start again. Started at early morning 3:30 in the dark, reached Reliance petrol pump, which was a selfie point. Had a tea break. It was 5:30 in the morning. Henceforth only good roads. Increased pace and caught up with other riders on the way near vidhaan soudha. Missed home made sweets by Belgavi cycling club by reaching late by 5 minutes. However it was not a CP.

Vidhaan soudha to Sugar N Spice

Saw Rudhra from WCCG tambaram chapter during the 1200 km ride only once. He iss a super fast rider. Had breakfast there in a small hotel and then crossed two ghat sections. My road bike crossed 60 kmph mark for more than 5 minutes. I was very much worried about the sudden speed anxiously holding the brakes despite which my bike moving at 50- 60 kmph. Riding in hot sun is better for me than in the cold lightless night. Reached Sugar N Spice and welcomed by Huballi cycling club members. They filled our water bottles while we had our lunch. It was day three evening and I was sleeping in hot sun in the verandah of the hotel only to be interrupted by the alarm set for 30 minutes.

Sugar N Spice to DVG socials

My corider Naazia started hallucinating during the ride. Despite covering 120 kms in 6 hours, the balance 16 kms took 3 hours to complete due to severe hallucination for her. The mistake on our part is not sleeping on the way and relying on facilities provided at CP. Instead of sleeping at CP, had we slept on the way at some petrol bunk , could have completed the ride much earlier. It costed us too much. Had good food arranged by BR and a very sound sleep for a couple of hours.

DVG socials to Kamat Upchaar

Woke up at 3:30 am and got ready for the final day ride. It was a great and fresh morning ride. After an hours ride, we reached our first 1000 km mark riding bicycle. I took a screenshot of it and shared in social media. At 6:30 we stopped for breakfast at the top of a hill in a small road side shop. Had idli and vadai with sambar and chutney and resumed our journey for final 200 km.  I was sleeping on the roadside in broad daylight due to lack of sleep. Reached Kamat upchaar at 1:30 PM in the afternoon.

Kamat Upchaar to Finish point

Started after an hour and half break, Heard lot of stories from fellow riders regarding their hallucinating experience and some were still hallucinating in broad day light and still riding at good pace. It started raining 60 kms before we reached the CP. My rear derailleur got jammed. Rode without shifting gears and completed. The last sixty kms in rain and traffic was very tough for riding as well as navigating.


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