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thinknotes 06-12-18 05:52 PM

Seeking travel companion for tour of Indian Himalayas
 
Greetings!
I am looking for one (or more) folks who are planning to ride the Indian Himalayas later this year, hopefully in late August/early Sept during the post-monsoon period. I am flexible on the route but was looking to do either Shimla-Spiti-Leh, or Srinagar-Leh-Manali. I am 50+ but fairly fit and a very experienced cyclist who has been touring for the past 2 decades in various parts of the world. For what it is worth, I grew up in northern India and speak the various languages of the area like a native. Thanks for your interest,
thinknotes (at) yahoo dot com

fietsbob 06-12-18 09:57 PM

Try posting on Adventure cycling , companions wanted, and British cycling .. CTC.org, too..

travelinhobo 06-13-18 07:40 AM

Could also try on the LP site.

thinknotes 06-14-18 12:44 PM


Originally Posted by fietsbob (Post 20391506)
Try posting on Adventure cycling , companions wanted, and British cycling .. CTC.org, too..

Thank you, appreciate the guidance.

thinknotes 06-14-18 12:45 PM


Originally Posted by travelinhobo (Post 20391917)
Could also try on the LP site.

LP as in Lonely Planet?

FlyingFranco 08-10-18 10:50 PM

I am not sure, I tried 3 time to post, and they never show in the list, maybe tomorrow, you will 3 similar post :-)
Hello

I am also planning a trip to India
I would like to do the Leh - Manali Highway that goes a little outside India I think.
Sadly, I am planing for 2019

If you are interested in helping me, I would gladly pay for it.
I have tonís of question and you are the first person I found that have knowledge of the area
I am from Canada

Happy Feet 08-11-18 09:43 AM

I'm not currently able to go but riding the Himalayas is one of my, perhaps "the", bucket list item trip for me so I'm very interested in your experience there. Please post relevant stuff about your planning/trip when you have it :)

jefnvk 08-11-18 10:49 AM

Agree with @Happy Feet, although I'm saving it for when I have a month off to fly in and buy and do it on an old Royal Enfield :thumb:

mev 08-11-18 11:00 AM


Originally Posted by FlyingFranco (Post 20500098)
I am also planning a trip to India
I would like to do the Leh - Manali Highway that goes a little outside India I think.

The Manali to Leh highway is a relatively popular cycling route. I expect you will find journals on crazyguyonabike.com. There is even a Wikipedia page about the highway. This road stays within India, but not far away from Leh one can bicycle to areas disputed between India and China.

In 2014 my brother and I set off to cycle this route. We were a little past Marhi on way to Rohtang Pass before realizing we were likely beyond our abilities and fitness levels. We turned around, took the bus from Manali to Leh instead. From there we took a rest day before cycling from Leh to Srinagar instead. This road was mostly ok, though on our approach to Leh we went through area of road closures as the road crews were clearing areas of landslides.

Happy Feet 08-11-18 12:01 PM

A question for those who know. Being a vegetarian I often have to consider local food customs if planning to eat from venders along the way. Is that region vegetarian friendly or would it be a challenge to eat in roadhouses, cafes etc...

jefnvk 08-11-18 12:11 PM


Originally Posted by Happy Feet (Post 20500742)
A question for those who know. Being a vegetarian I often have to consider local food customs if planning to eat from venders along the way. Is that region vegetarian friendly or would it be a challenge to eat in roadhouses, cafes etc...

I dont know about Himilayas specifically, but it is incredibly easy in the areas around Bangalore and Mumbai. Its harder to find meat than eat vegetarian some places there. If I were ever forced to give up meat, I'd switch to a strictly Indian diet :thumb:

By law, all packaged food products there are prominently marked with either a red or green dot, as were yhe menus many places. Red indicates the food contains animal byproduct (according to some legal definition), green says it doesn't. That said if you get to vegan or other more specific animal free diets, you may find it harder to know if what youre eating adheres, but I still doubt you'll have much of an issue.

Just watch out for the things that look like donuts at breakfast. While vegetarian, theyre actually fried dough with hot peppers inside. Definitely wakes you up though..

mev 08-11-18 12:31 PM


Originally Posted by Happy Feet (Post 20500742)
A question for those who know. Being a vegetarian I often have to consider local food customs if planning to eat from venders along the way. Is that region vegetarian friendly or would it be a challenge to eat in roadhouses, cafes etc...

I don't know for certain but would consider the following:
* Some parts of the road are remote with limited opportunities for anything.
* Manali is predominantly Hindu. Areas from there have many Indian tourists. I would anticipate places catering to Indian vegetarians.
* Leh is predominantly Buddhist. It has an international airport and a number of Western tourists flying directly there. Unlike some other districts, it has more of a reputation of being away from Kasmir violence, so Westerners fly directly in and out (e.g. saw a number of Europeans and also Israelis).
* Srinagar is predominantly Muslim. It has some tourists, but that seems to go up and down in different years.

So if I have to guess, places with Indian tourists will both have vegetarian choices and pretty clear red/green labelling. Slightly larger places and places closer to Manali are best bets but it wouldn't surprise me to have some also along the main road since that is becoming more popular.

I would put the lowest chances at rural places in Kashmir, but even there if they get some tourists, they may have clearly separated vegetarian foods.

Leh itself should have vegetarian choices, but a bit of a wild card in more rural Tibetan areas (e.g. more likely to find Yak).

Happy Feet 08-11-18 12:52 PM

Thanks guys. I also love indian food (didn't know about the dot system) but am curious, as Mev says, if in the more remote Tibetan/Nepalese areas choices become more limited. In some parts of the rural prairies or up north sometimes the menu choice is cheese grilled sandwich and fries - which fortunately, I like!

Stormsedge 08-11-18 02:11 PM


Originally Posted by jefnvk (Post 20500661)
Agree with @Happy Feet, although I'm saving it for when I have a month off to fly in and buy and do it on an old Royal Enfield :thumb:

I'm adding this to my list. Excellent!

mev 08-11-18 02:27 PM


Originally Posted by Happy Feet (Post 20500811)
Thanks guys. I also love indian food (didn't know about the dot system) but am curious, as Mev says, if in the more remote Tibetan/Nepalese areas choices become more limited. In some parts of the rural prairies or up north sometimes the menu choice is cheese grilled sandwich and fries - which fortunately, I like!

The direct road from Manali to Leh is closed in the winter. Some spots along the way are nothing more than this temporary stand.https://cimg4.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...ca4911b124.jpg
Others might be slightly more formal (this one is in Marhi on way to Rohtang Pass; lots of Indian tourists going up to play in the snow, so expect vegetarian).
https://cimg5.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...5ec57660f4.jpg
Other spots like this one on road between Srinagar and Leh w/o much opportunity to have a stand:
https://cimg9.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...12789ecd8b.jpg

Happy Feet 08-12-18 10:51 AM

Mev, Awesome pics!

FlyingFranco 01-07-19 01:22 PM


Originally Posted by thinknotes (Post 20391106)
Greetings!
I am looking for one (or more) folks who are planning to ride the Indian Himalayas later this year, hopefully in late August/early Sept during the post-monsoon period.

I would like to have some news about your trip. Were you able to make it ? do you have a blog about it. I am really interested and like I said I am going this year and I have a lot of questions. I understand I should make my own thread but if you haave already went, you would be a great source of information.

I will be travelling with my solar eBike (not sure I can post a link here ?). I would like to know:
- what date did you traveled the Leh - Manali highway and do you have a approximation about the earliest time I could go
- How many day of food and water should I carry.
- it is ok to do some camping in India.
- my wheel are 20", it is easy to find replacement.
- I might be looking for a way to go from east India to Thailand (or Thailand to India) by boat. so far no luck in finding something, My bike is big.

p.s My first plan was to travel from Hong Kong to China then India but it seem that traveling in Tibet might be too complicated.

Thanks you

mev 01-07-19 07:55 PM


Originally Posted by FlyingFranco (Post 20736593)
I will be travelling with my solar eBike (not sure I can post a link here ?). I would like to know:
- what date did you traveled the Leh - Manali highway and do you have a approximation about the earliest time I could go
- How many day of food and water should I carry.
- it is ok to do some camping in India.
- my wheel are 20", it is easy to find replacement.
- I might be looking for a way to go from east India to Thailand (or Thailand to India) by boat. so far no luck in finding something, My bike is big.
p.s My first plan was to travel from Hong Kong to China then India but it seem that traveling in Tibet might be too complicated.

I don't now all your questions, but do know a few based on my travels in the Indian Himalaya as well as other cycling in India:
1. You can check status of the Manali to Leh highway online (https://devilonwheels.com/manali-leh...y-status-2018/). It is closed in the winter. Parts of it can be pretty cold any time of year, but before June it is likely to still be closed due to snow and after August it starts getting even colder - so I'd try for July/August as peak and perhaps September until it closed in October if absolutely necessary.
2. As far as carrying food/water, I'd suggest checking the Wikipedia page for service locations. They are fairly fixed and you won't find much in way of an actual grocery anywhere en route - so you may end up carrying a day or two in places and plan to stop at various points along the way.
3. As far as camping goes. For this route, you will have to camp in a few places to make the gaps and be set up for altitude. For India in general it depends but in my travels in more populated parts of India, I generally don't camp (or bring camping gear if that is only where I go). The reason is in those populated areas there can be people everywhere...
4. I don't specifics on 20" wheels in the largest metro areas I expect you might be able to find a bit of anything - though it can be difficult to do the search. In the remote areas you won't find anything.


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