Monday, March 23, 2009
After two days of riding on the highway, I could see some options to ride off it. The map showed me a few diversions and I was keen on exploring them. The first destination was Kumta – a coastal town where I surprisingly got a good and cheap breakfast. I would remember the breakfast simply because of the cost. A plate of Set Dosa – 4 in number unlike the 2 served in Bangalore – and a cup of tea costing me just Rs. 9! It tasted pretty good and helped me stay strong to ride till lunch time.
There was an alternate route from Kumta to Gokarna which involved a boat ride. After riding for about an hour which included a few climbs, I reached a place called Agnavish on the banks of Gokarn river. I took a boat from there to another place called Tadadi, from where Gokarna is about 5 kms. The ride was on a conventional passenger boat with no fencing around the edges. I enjoyed my ride holding my bike on one hand and the camera on the other. Those were days before selfies became a buzzword!
I reached the other end, a fishing port; By now, I was quite accustomed to the ‘fragrance’ and could navigate through the area with relative ease. Another arduous ride and I reached the Gokarana town, where I found a restaurant for lunch.
The afternoon ride was towards Ankola and another boat took me across a river. The name of the town was synonymous with an Indian cricket player of the 1990s, a very popular twelfth man of the team. The ride was on a conventional boat and it was followed by a difficult stretch without any proper roads. The local Panchayat was busy leveling the surface and I was quite exhausted when I reached Ankola.
Being back on the highway comforted me a little as I was sure of a decent road until Karwar. However, it wasn’t all that rosy. The ride had too many gradients challenging me as well as my bike. The gears in my bike has almost become hopeless as it wasn’t shifting either to the high or the low in the front. I need to stop it every-time to manually push the gear to low. On the rear side, only the numbers 2,5 and 7 were functioning. The picturesque views after every climb made the climb worth the effort. The best views available were that of the area where Indian Navy have their base. It cannot be captured in a camera due to security reasons. The Navy is currently busy fencing the area with opaque walls and boards – I could view the place through some of the gaps. Photography was strictly prohibited and hence the joy can never be shared. I reached the Karwar beach after sunset but it still offered me some nice views. The beach and the small port were wonderful to watch.
Honnavar – Kumta – Agnavish – Tadadi – Gokaran – Akola – Karwar
More pictures from the day’s ride here