Photographs: Krishnakumar Padmanabhan
Sixty enthusiastic motorcyclists set out on the first leg of the Himalayan Odyssey 2010, from the India Gate in New Delhi on Saturday.
The seventh edition of the Himalayan Odyssey was flagged off by the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Royal Enfield Motorcycles, RL Ravichandran.
The bike rally will test the endurance of the participants on the hilly terrain of Ladakh in Jammu and Kashmir.
The Odyssey offers the best way to the 'Enfield' bike lovers from different parts of the country to put their wheels, hearts and spirits together, to experience the mighty Himalayan mountain ranges from the saddles of their motorbikes.
The 15-day adventure ride will traverse about 2560 kilometres through some of the roughest terrains, breathtaking corners, and highest mountain passes in the world.
"There will definitely be a lot of challenges, like traversing the bike through ice and snow. Water levels will be there so it will be exciting to cross the water bodies," said Praveen Sathe, one of the participants.
Going beyond the Khardung La pass, the world's highest motorable road, into Nubra valley, which is situated 10,000 feet above sea level, this bike rally promises to be the toughest, highest and most thrilling ride above sea level.
"I am thrilled. I have just learnt to ride a bike just two months ago and you can imagine my thrill and excitement, how much it will be there inside. I wanted to do this so badly, but never in my life I could dream of coming here today that too for Himalayan Odyssey," said Asha, a biker from Bangalore.
The bikers will re-converge in the national capital on July 3.
While safety is the main concern, the basic pre-requisite for participation is that the bikers have to be physically fit, although medical help always remains with the bikers during their journey.
The Himalayan Odyssey is an annual event organised by the Royal Enfield Motorcycles.
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