From Chandigarh, I had a full day of riding (on the roughest paved road I’ve ever seen) to get to Mcleodganj. First thing in the morning when I left, there was a very light fog…just enough to accumulate on my visor and blur my vision, but little did I know, it wasn’t enough to keep the dust down. So every couple minutes, I’d use the trusty finger squeegee on my left glove to clear my visor. Unfortunately, with each swipe, not only was I wiping away water, but I was also slightly scuffing the visor with the dust that was being kicked up from the road. When the fog cleared a couple hours in, my visor was definitely not clear…shit. Luckily, I typically like to have the visor up when the weather is good, so it’s at least not the worst thing. But by the end of the day, the amount of diesel exhaust I drove through was pretty obvious.
What’s in Mcleodganj? The Dalai Lama and Mountains.
I didn’t see the Dalai Lama, but I did go through the temple. Right before I had to give up my camera, they had this huge banner honoring Tibetans that had self-immolated…grim.
Of course, I had to do a little hiking in the mountains.
Gatekeeper of the hiking trail
Unfortunatley, as I was getting towards the final destination on my hike (a nice ridge line), where the view was supposed to be the best, the clouds and snow started rolling in, so I was left with this view.
Back home, friends and I would often joke about how it’d be great to have a beer/food/etc. waiting at the end of a big hike or climb. To my surprise, this dream finally came true. At the top of this ridge line, there was a little shop where I warmed up with a nice cup of coffee. While in the hut, I saw this devout Buddhist dog that spent most of the time meditating.
Leaving Mcleodganj this morning, I had quite a bit of slow riding on rough roads again (took me about 6 or so hours to go 176 miles…) along with a nice long stretch on a dusty dirt road that was under construction. So by the end of the day, I had a nice accumulation of exhaust and dirt on my face…more much than my previous day of riding.
That didn’t stop the staff of the hotel I was staying at from wanting to have a photo shoot with me and the bike before I could even get unpacked and checked in.
But they upgraded my super cheap room to the executive suite, with free meals, so I guess it’s all good.
Time to start looking for an Arai helmet dealer somewhere on my route so I can pick up a new visor.
Or if anyone has any suggestions on how to buff out the scratches, let me know. And just so you know, I already tried toothpaste. It got a shitload of tartar off my helmet, but the scratches are still there.