Be it mountaineering or river rafting, nothing is more exhilarating than climbing hillocks, wading through water and taming any kind of terrain in your beast…
Off-roading, the mudslinging adventure has always been a favourite sport for the adventurous driver and rider looking for that extra adrenaline rush. The sport has recently become more accessible to people who may not have an off-roading car or bike. Nowadays, it’s common to see more and more people using one of the ultimate offroad scooters to get that same buzz and adrenaline rush that those with other off-road vehicles experience. With more ways of enjoying off-roading, hopefully more people will start participating in the sport.
It is however a specialised sport that has several technical skills required to perfect it to make it exciting and yet safe.
It can prove to be risky and often there are occasions when the vehicle may need towing or winched, often encouraging off-roaders to practice in groups.
It must be understood that this is not a cheap sport; the cost of maintaining your off-roader and the cost of optimising performance and safety can burn quite a hole in the pocket.
Yet for the inclined and adventurous, the costs are worth it considering the high of climbing or roaring on bumpy terrain, negotiating flowing water and of course, clicking the perfect off-road mud splashed selfie!
We explored a few great havens around Pune and here is what we found for you :
A well known destination for adventure sports, Lonavala also offers off-roading adventure. The muddy roads of Lonavala during the monsoon are a refreshing ride to break free from of the monotonous weekly routine. Also the ride uphill towards tiger point and the smell of the wet soil can be truly satisfying for the off-roader.
The arduous tracks of Panshet Ghat behind the Panshet dam (on the river Ambi),around 50 Kilometres from Pune makes for the ultimate thrill in mudslinging adventure. A bike is a much preferred option here. Make sure you have good off-road tyres and an off-road mudguard to nail this course.
The fog covered hills, small waterfalls along the road and the contrasting colours in the terrain, (while travelling from Pune) makes for a promising off-road experience. The roads pass through the nearby villages and small Ghats. Don’t forget to take a break and gorge on some Bhajji Pao and Chai at the makeshift stalls while you drive to your destination.
A traffic free, densely covered tree trail with innumerable streams and paddy fields, the ride towards Lavasa offers more than that. Although the short and steep roads make it a bit difficult for bikes, the experience is worth the try.
Pune in fact offers several kinds of terrain right from Lonavala up to Kolhapur for you to off-road along the beaten track.
The best time to go off-roading is during the monsoons -between the months of July and October.
Always a good idea to start by joining a off-roader/ rider group in the vicinity and learning from their experience. It takes experience and practise to master this exhilarating sport..
Here’s wishing you many hours of safe and happy off-roading !
Originally Curated in 2017 by Loveleen Kaur for Pune365. Reproduced by reader demand.
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