Saturday, 22 April 2017

Weekend Motorcycle Ride | Tamhini Ghat | Mulshi Dam

motorbike ride to Tamhini Ghat Mulshi Dam View Point
Bikes at Mulshi Dam View Point

Ride type: Highway


Ride difficulty: easy


Distance from Pune: 90km


As they say, unplanned motorcycle rides turn out to be the best. This was once such ride. Things were quite busy and there seemed no chance that I would be able to get out for a weekend motorcycle ride. But some plans got cancelled and rejoice! I had plenty of time for a weekend motorcycle ride! Since we hardly had any time to plan, we decided a very cliché motorbike ride.
We decided to first go across Tamhini Ghat and on the way back, go to Mulshi Dam View Point.

Tamhini Ghat is a very scenic place in the monsoons. But the reason to go there in this scorching weather was not scenery, but its adrenaline pumping corners. The second stop, Mulshi Dam View Point was a place I found out over Google Maps which turned out to be pretty amazing.

Directions:

From Chandani Chowk, travel towards Pirangut/Mulshi. Follow this route for about 60-65km and you will reach Tamhini Ghat. This same route was taken for my Shrivardhan Trip. To go to the Mulshi Dam View Point, after riding for about 30km from Chandani Chowk, take the right turn that goes towards Malhar Machi (You can ask the locals or google it). Once you reach to the top of the ghat there, you can see the entire Mulshi Dam. 

       

There were four of us and we were riding Royal Enfield Thunderbird 500, Royal Enfield Thunderbird 350, Suzuki Gixxer and my Bajaj Pulsar 220F. Since it would get too hot in the late mornings, we decided to leave early. We gathered at Chandani Chowk at 5.30am. I always love the vibe of Chandani Chowk on Sunday mornings. There’s a small tea stall with a dim light and steam coming from the tea utensil. Several motorcycle riders are waiting for their riding companions or maybe just taking a break. Some are sipping on the hot tea while some are busy adjusting their riding gear. Some are calling up their friends since maybe they are late and some are just standing there observing everything, like me. It’s amazing seeing how much the motorcycle riding culture has developed in Pune.

Motorbike ride to tamhini ghat
en-route to Tamhini Ghat

Anyway, we left Chandani Chowk at 5.45. It was still dark and the weather was just right. We rode till the Lavasa Diversion, where we took a short break for wada pav and tea, which was amazing by the way. With a full and satisfied stomach, we continued our ride. The roads here are narrow, but since the road quality is good you’ll be good if you ride carefully and not do any smart stuff. The cell-phone reception for Vodafone is good throughout the route. But in case of Reliance Jio, there is literally no network after about 30km from Pune in that direction.

Motorbike ride to Mulshi
en-route to Tamhini Ghat

After riding for some time, you are accompanied by the Mulshi Dam backwaters on your right side. This not only cools down the air, but also attracts a lot of birds in this summer heat, which is fun to watch. There are several nice places to click good photographs if you would like to do that.

bike ride to mulshi dam
Road accompanied by Mulshi Dam backwaters

We decided to go to Mulshi Dam View Point while returning, so the next scheduled stop for us was directly after descending Tamhini Ghat. But what’s schedule when you see a nice spot to click some pictures of the motorbikes! At the top of Tamhini Ghat is this spot overlooking the entire valley. We parked our bikes in a nice formation there and started firing up the cameras. This place was so beautiful that we couldn’t help but spend some time relaxing there. Mountains covered with golden dried up grass with little green patches of tress in between as far as your eyes can see. Lovely isn’t it?

Motorbike ride to Tamhini Ghat
Top of Tamhini Ghat

This entire route has excellent corners and its real fun taking on these corners. There are hairpins, chicanes, everything a motorcycle rider can ask for. The road quality is very good on most of the route. Except for some patches where the roads are worst. So it is recommended to be extremely careful on these roads and not do any smart stuff here or the fall could be pretty bad.

We descended Tamhini Ghat at around 9.30am where we took a break to have some snacks and tea. We had Misal Pav and Pohe. The small snacks centre where we had our food was a nice place. They had set up the tables under the trees which helped us cool down in the hot weather. It was really relaxing, which is why we ended up spending quite some time there. After we were full and freshened up, we geared up and left from there tracing back the same route towards Mulshi Dam View Point. It took us about one and a half hour to reach there since we were taking a lot of breaks and enjoying the scenery around.

Once you take the left turn from the main road towards Malhar Machi to go to Mulshi Dam View Point, the road is pretty average so careful riding is advisable. On reaching the top of the small ghat there, there’s a small plateau on the right side where you can click some nice pictures. You can see Mulshi Dam and its entire backwaters for here. Since it was too hot, we removed our riding gear and sat there in the cool breeze for some time to relax. The View from there was just amazing.

travel to mulshi dam view point
Mulshi Dam View Point

Before we could know, it was 11.30 and it was time to leave and head back to Pune. It’s a sad feeling leaving a beautiful place like this. With a heavy heart, we put on our riding gear and started to ride back. The weather while riding back was just sweltering. We were all sweaty inside our riding gear. It was getting very uncomfortable to ride. But taking a break was not an option since the more breaks we take, the hotter it would get. So, in spite of getting uncomfortably hot and sweaty, we decided to go on till we reach home. We reached home at around 12.30pm.

Ride to mulshi dam view point
Mulshi Dam View Point

Overall, the ride was a total success. Riding after so long was a fantastic feeling. When it comes to these destinations, they are perfect for an unexpected motorcycle ride or a short weekend drive with friends or family. There may be several places over there for a night’s stay, but we didn’t explore that. If you have not been to these places, it’s definitely worth a visit. Especially in the monsoons.

Ride safe!

Cheers!

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