Automobiles Destinations

Motorcycle Travellers Meet 2016

Motorcycle Travelers Meet is a two night and two day meet designed to host inspiring speakers, workshops, interactive sessions and provide opportunities to engage with like minded travelers who have taken up extraordinary journeys and pursued their dreams. All of this in a small outdoor residential setup at Goa. If you were just thinking ‘oh yeah, beach party’…well, this ain’t it.

Keeping in mind the insight and knowledge gathered from last year’s MTM that was held in Bangalore, there was no second thought as to if I should be attending this year or not. Got notification of the registrations open online and so a few days later, having learnt that the tented accommodations that were the cheapest were sold out. So, intimated my friends who would very likely attend this and registered immediately for a triple sharing room accommodation.

By the end of the day, that was sold out leaving with double sharing and cottage type accommodation still available. Fortunately, my friends managed to get double and in the cottage type before they were all sold out. This time round, I roped into two of my school mates to join in – Deepak (my cycling buddy) and Vageesh (from Davangere whom I would be meeting in person after about 25 years). Kiran (good friend), Vivek and Anunay (from Beaux Adventures).

With still demand for people wanting to attend MTM, the organizing team managed to open a few more slots in tented accommodations which too got sold out pretty quickly. Haroon – (fellow Krieger/friend and last year’s MTM roommate) and his friend Sunny registered too. We were now a group of eight members in all. Now, it was just the wait until the day we ride out to attend the Motorcycle Travelers Meet.

Day 1 [10 Nov 2016] – Bengaluru to Molem, Goa

With the schedule for the day’s ride, we all met up at Yeshwanthpur at the start of the flyover road leading to Tumkur by 6am. Vivek, Haroon and I were on KTM Duke 390, Kiran on Yamaha FZ, Anunay on Mahindra Mojo, Sunny on RE Himalayan and Deepak driving solo in his 4-wheeler Mahindra Xylo respectively. Morning tea from stall nearby and half hour later, we started to ride on and by 10:30am we stopped at a vegetarian restaurant for breakfast and then onward to reach Davangere by 11:50am for a short break. Here Vageesh joined us riding on his RE Himalayan. By 4:45pm, we were about 30km from the venue and so stopped for a tea break. Took a few group snaps here and got to cheer on a group riding Yezdi motocycles who were also heading to the same place as we were. By about 8:30pm, we reached the venue having covered about 553km. Got to the registration desk and checked into our respective accommodations. Freshened up, had dinner followed by a good night’s rest.

Day 2 [11 Nov 2016] – Resort at Mollem, Goa

Up by 8am, freshened up, had tea and checked out all the bikes that turned up for this event. After breakfast, the event started at 10:30am with welcome and introduction given by Huda, a member of the MTM organizing team. This was followed by:

An informative talk on Riding Skills by Shumi (from Overdrive) and Anand (from IndiMotard GreaseHouse). Motorcycle primary functions, important parts that make it, finer detailed differences between a cruiser,sports and a tourer, rider and motorcycle partnership were covered.

Raj Andagere and his ‘Looong road home’ – An architect by profession in a city in Australia, quit his regular day job and started out to ride on his customized Honda CRF250 motorcycle. After lunch and at about 2:30pm, we had Mr.Navroze Contractor (biker/traveller and film maker) giving talk on film making to help all fellow bikers/travelers in making/recording videos of places ridden to and the journey itself.

At 3:30pm, Atul Warrier spoke of his ‘Warrier trails’. After a short Tea/Coffee break at 4:30pm, we had Perry Rodan and Ellen speak of their travels in their Mercedes Benz truck converted into a mobile home, their Innowan. At 5:30p.m. and to end the day’s session we had Sam and Stew speak of their ‘World travels’.

Day 3 [12 Nov 2016] – Resort at Mollem, Goa

The day’s sessions started off early at 9:30am with Anand (from Greasehouse) giving an insight on ‘Motorcycle maintenance’ what to do/not do and how its done. Followed by ‘500 days on a borrowed motorcycle’ by DK Chauhan. A simple guy but with a good sense of humour and his way of relating his experience was interesting, lively and entertaining at the same time.

Then we had a talk on ‘Cross border travel for Indians’ by Jay Kannaiyan featuring Shiv Prasad Shetty, Rohit Upadhyay, Kedarnath, Deepak Thimmoji, Rahul Gavande, Pankaj Trivedi who have done successful travel across borders and some intend in doing it again. Each had their share of inputs, dos/donts to share with us.

At about 2:30pm after lunch, we had talk by HV Kumar – a frequent traveller to the North East of India, sharing some of his experience gathered in his trips. Some time during the talk, Deepak Thimmoji stood up and made some statement that made himself seem like a bickering petulant child wanting some extra attention. Ignored him.

Kiran Ghag shared his experience of doing his ‘Bucket list ride’ in the United States of America. Followed by Sean Alexander (Big Bad Bikes) giving his talk on ‘Packing & gear selection’. Basic/generic stuff yet inadequate to the audience, most of whom have had their share of know-how and information with this regard. It seemed more for him to get an experience of being on stage to talk to an audience than what he had to share. Good attempt nevertheless.

Deepak Thimmoji and his SE Asia challenges. Had being following his journey after having had to listen to him earlier on at Moto Cafe, Bangalore where he shared a short video footage of his trip. On FB, amongst pictures of places he rode through, he also shared pictures of himself with some local women from those places, ‘honeys’ as he put it. Here at the MTM, he spoke of his ‘honeys’ which started to sound more and more cheesy, wherein I eventually lost interest in whatever he had to share. Personally lost regard for this person and passed him off as a well-to-do but silly man.

Tea/Coffee break was a refresher and a good break followed by the young Knast Brothers who are travelling on their KTM Adventure bikes and ‘In search of adventures’ had much to share of their travels through various places. Next up was Katie and Mickey on their ‘Trails to the forgotten’. Kate did most of the speaking, while Mickey being the hyper active guy he is, was tied to his chair on stage by a MTM member in all light-heartedness. He being a good sport went along with it. They were a fun couple.

It was 6:30pm and the MTM organising team got on stage to share their gratitude to all the speakers, participants and everybody present there to have made the event a success again. Deepak Thimmoji again to share his video footage ‘Dream ride 2’. Chose not to watch this part, for I had already watched this earlier back in Bangalore. Got to the dinning area to have dinner with my friends and figure out what our next day’s plan of action would be.

Day 4 [13 Nov 2016] – Goa to Udupi
The plan was to ride to the beach at Goa, stay there for a night and the following day head down to Udupi. We bid our goodbyes to everyone we got to know there at the MTM and left from there. Haroon, Sunny and Anunay decided to head back to Bangalore. So our group now had Deepak, Kiran, Vageesh, Vivek and myself. We decided to skip the Goa beach idea and headed directly down to Udupi, my hometown and home. Reached by 8pm and having freshened up, we packed ourselves into Deepak’s Xylo and we headed to a good restaurant for dinner before getting a good night’s sleep.

Day 5 [14 Nov 2016] – Udupi to Mudigere

The plan for today was to ride back to Bengaluru. Vageesh had to head back to Davangere and so started early. Rest of us having had our breakfast started via the Charmadi Ghat route. Why? The roads were better than that of Shiradi Ghat route but even more so was the switchbacks curves…oooh they were sexy good and fun to ride. The best part of the day’s ride. We rode past Horanadu check post and stopped at Bean Coffee House for a break. Here, the person seated at the next table with 2 others overheard our conversation about Leh and got talking, He showed pictures of his trip to Leh.

Sipped on coffee as the sun sunk like an orange ball at a distance with cool breeze making for a relaxing evening. We started to contemplate if we should carry on riding or halt here for the night. It started to drizzle and eventually rain making us to settle with the preference to stay back. Deepak got in touch with our schoolmate over phone and he arranged for a home-stay to spend the night at. Lovely place with tasty home cooked food. Watched tv and off to bed.

Day 6 [15 Nov 2016] – Mudigere to Bengaluru

With reluctance to get back, we bid goodbye to the owner of the home-stay and continued to ride our way back to Bangalore. This part was rather boring with nothing eventful to write about but for a quick short stop just after the Nelamangala toll booth for a quick group snap, bid goodbye to each other and rode our separate ways to get back to our respective homes.

What was supposed to be just a 2 day event turned out to be a very invigorating and eventful week thanks to the MTM team, my friends and new friends made at the event. In total, about 1250 km covered during this trip.
Looking forward to the next MTM which will be even more.



For more info, visit the MTM website : http://2016.mtmgrid.in

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