Think about this question just over a decade ago, maybe there was not one. I am not referring to the question itself but figuring out what does this question refer to? Over the last few years, we have witnessed a metamorphosis in the way people construe the terms “biking” and “biker”. Gone are the days when one would say that he rides his motorcycle to work followed by an eerie silence.
Today, no matter what he or she rides, The Bike is an extension to one’s soul rather than an iteration to one of the most important inventions in the world – “Wheels”. And hence isn’t the connect with the machine so obvious ? To make this connect even better he/she travels. Travels away from the city chaos to places less seen and experiences the bliss that is nothing short of Nirvana. He makes friends and many friends. And one day, he is asked the quintessential question that I hear every younger or novice rider (please read as city rider) talk about. Hey ! Have you been there?
There ? Where ?
Dude – Ladakh !
For some reason this part of our mighty country has become the destination that certifies a true rider or should I say Jigar Wala (Daredevil). Seems like if you have not been to Ladakh on a motorcycle you no rider at all. Really ? No denying that the spectacular scenery and unforgiving terrain rising at dizzying altitudes keeps one on the edge. That with the challenges of unavailability of frequent fuel pumps , motion sickness and vertigo makes for a very arduous ride.
But, I beg to differ and IMHO there is so much to India that one could ride to than the “Lap Of The Himalayas” themselves.
My point is, as a biker ( traveler on bike) don’t bother about gaining acceptability from somebody else. Ride where your heart wants you to . Ladakh is another beautiful place that India has to offer. But don’t forget Rann Of Kutch, Coorg, ECR, Rajasthan, Saurashtra , the 7 queens in the east, Sikkim , Konkan.
So the next time somebody asks you the question , don’t assume it’s the snow clad peaks up north. And even if you have not been there, it is no blasphemy.
A rider – rides hard. rides safe. keeps riding.
Most importantly respects all bikers.
It is a discovery and not a destination.
There is so much more to Incredible India !