Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Sideburn in the Himalayas 2016 Edition! UPDATE

UPDATE: Sorry, there was slight confusion over the dates. Now corrected. Please check carefully before booking flights.

Sideburn's inaugural 2015 Himalayan adventure with Helmet Stories was so fantastic we've decided to do it again in SEPTEMBER 2016

Ride the unforgettable road of the Pangi Valley and the Himalayas in the far north of India with Sideburn's rep, 'Co-Built' Anthony Brown and respected local tour leaders, Helmet Stories

Seven days of riding, camping and feasting with India’s most fun motorcycle tour company and your favourite motorcycle magazine. Read all about it in Sideburn 23

PRICE: 110,000 rupees (approx. £1100, US$1600, €1400, AU$ 2300 at current exchange rates).

INCLUDES: Royal Enfield 500 Bullet bike rental; meals and drinks on the road; all accommodation (twin sharing in hotels, individual tents when camping); sleeping bag; guides; back-up truck; full support of mechanics and catering staff.

WHEN: 11-19 September 2016 (see notes below)

WHERE: Chandigarh and Pangi Valley in Himachal.

You must be in New Delhi on Saturday 10 September 2016 , to be able to catch a train at 7.40am on Sunday 11th*. Fly home  on 19 September 2016**. Helmet Stories can suggest hotels if you want to arrive before or leave later to have more time to acclimatise and relax.

* It is possible to get cheap internal flights, to avoid the train journey from Delhi to Chandigarh (though the train is a good experience) and the very long taxi journey back to Delhi (which is not such a good experience).
** Your flight home is dependent on choosing the road transfer (included in price) or booking your own internal flight back to Delhi. Vir at Helmet Stories can help advise internal flights.

12 places only.


The trip is run by the highly experienced Helmet Stories company.
All payments to Helmet Stories.

50% deposit on booking.
25% two weeks before trip
25% on arrival in Delhi

NOT INCLUDED: Flights to and from New Delhi; any accommodation before the 11th or after the night of 18th; transfer to Delhi railway station on day 1; Internal flights if you choose those over the organised transfer; Specialist personal insurance (highly recommended); Riding kit (bring your own); Tourist visa; Damage to the motorcycles.

Sunday 11 September, Day 1: Transfer from Delhi to Chandigarh by train, 250km. Train leaves at 7.40am so you will need to be in Delhi the day before. 
Nice hotel in Chandigarh and time to explore by taxi.
Alternatively, book a cheap internal flight (at your own cost. About £50). Helmet Stories will supply details.

Day 2: Chandigarh – Manali transfer by 4x4 - 185 miles 
Early start to reach Manali by late-afternoon. Last hot running water for four days in a luxury hotel. Meet the bikes. 
Day 3: Manali ­– Urgos - 110 miles.
Very easy if the sun is out, very tough if the rain gods come out to play. There's perfect tarmac with hairpin after hairpin, mud to play in, wooded tracks running along feisty rivers and a campsite shaded by willows at the end of the day. A perfect start to come to terms with your motorcycle, a 500cc Royal Enfield.
Camp overnight.
Day 4: Urgos – Phindri - 55 miles.
Challenging riding on this ball-breaking road. Couple of chai stops along the way. Stunning camp on a lush mountain side. Time to hike to the gushing river of snow melt for a refreshing wash.

Day 5: Phindri – Sural Bhatori via Killar 
70 miles of the same terrain as Day 4. Cliffside dirt roads. Rewarding riding.
Camp overnight with an unforgettable view (see below).
Day 6: Sural-Sach Pass– Satrundi - 75 miles.
Even more ball-breaking roads and crossing a 14,500ft (4500m) mountain pass. This is not a gentle blast down the Pacific Coast Highway.
Camp overnight in a forest clearing.
Day 7: Satrundi – Khajjiar - 75 miles
Tarmac begins (sort of...) We ride through the mini-Switzerland of India. Overnight in a hotel (with a huge monkey god statue in the grounds). Back to hot running water!

Day 8: Khajjiar – McLeodganj - 80 miles
The last day of riding is marked with scenic back roads, mainly tarmac and ending in the official home of the exiled Dalai Lama. Overnight in a hotel. Say goodbye to the bikes and the loyal mechanics.
Monday 19 September
Day 9: McLeodganj – New Delhi airport by van/bus (or optional internal flight) - 600km/370 miles. It is possible to fly home the same night if you arrange a late flight out of Delhi.

* Organisers reserve the right to change the itinerary without prior warning.


Guy #97 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Guy #97 said...

I'm in

Anthony Brown said...

Yes guy i like your commitment

wilksville said...

can you make it 2 weeks later please ? :-(

Unknown said...

Hey guys, I tried emailing Helmet Stories with no response yet. Are there still spots open?

Sideburn Magazine said...

Hi Unknown
I checked with Vir and he said he'd replied to everything he had. Send your email to dirt @ and I can forward it.
I think all the places are filled, but perhaps someone will drop out.