Exploring the Unknown

Exploring the Unknown
Representing the 99%!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Who's There? A Trip to Dashavatara Temple on a Royal Enfield by Sabya Sachi Ghosh

All Photos & Words © Sabya Sachi Ghosh
Shekhoo Raja and I rode out to Deogarh to see the 1500 year old ruins of Dashavatar Temple (surviving Gupta age structure). We were also told that atop a fort adjoining the temple (fort originally built by Kanishka and later on added upon by others) were a group of Jain Temples.... what we hadn't expected was the vast amount of 1000 years old sculptures some 3000 in numbers standing solitary, silently welcoming us to mingle amongst them...and mingle we did. we cancelled our return to Oorcha and decided to spend the night there. More surprises lay in store for us..... the fort on one side had a 300 feet high cliff that overhang the majestic betwa and on its surface were sculptures and rock cut caves. The view from a four story watch tower was unimaginably marvelous. the jungle below us and the meandering betwa vanishing into the horizon was a sight perhaps ones sees when one looks down from heaven.... a recently discovered group of rock cut Buddha Images were hidden somewhere on the cliff face.... we couldn't go there because the ASI had not yet cleared a pathway through the jungle.... we'll let these pictures describe it all for you....























































































































































































Thank You!
All Photos & Words © Sabya Sachi Ghosh

39 comments:

  1. I would say that the Royal Enfields have an advantage over a lot of bikes that at least they can be worked on by most riders. They are simple and old school. When I had a Ural Gear Up I could keep it running when a lot of high tech bikes would be waiting for a tow.

    For me it was like working on a tractor.

    bwanaswan

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    1. I'd have to completely agree with you! As well, given how incredibly versatile these bikes are, it doesn't surprise me so many people are turning to them as small adventure bikes. The guys in India are going places where BMW GS' are having a hard time breathing (18 thousand plus above sea level) and given their significantly lower weight than a GS you won't wrench your back trying to lift the thing up should you fall... oh, lets not forget the roughly 85 mpg too...

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  2. Very Nice Mario; who do you know to be able to have these photos? Great stuff!! :)

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  3. Great pictures! A friend used to commute on a Vespa in Naroda traffic 2 up. He always craved a Royal Enfield even after moving to the USA. I recommended a Honda which he sneered at.

    dabsdog

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  4. Have you seen "Riding solo to the top of the world" ? I highly recommend it. I wish I'd kept my C5.

    r80rt

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    1. That film inspired me to buy one! Would still have it had I stayed in Europe. Thinking of getting one again myself...

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    2. Believe it or not, I bought the first C5 that was sold in the USA, If I hadn't got hurt and had to sell everything I'd still be riding it. Darn fine little bikes in my opinion.

      Royal Enfield Buzz Blog ? Meet Dannie Mullins: owner of the first C5 sold in the USA

      http://www.enfieldmotorcycles.com/blog/2009/06/meet-dannie-mullins-owner-of-the-first-c-5-sold-in-the-usa/

      r80rt

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    3. Would you believe me if I told you I was in fact the first person in the Republic of Ireland to actually buy the first Bullet EFI back in 2009! It's the bike pictured as the cover page for my blog!

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    4. That's great, It's always fun to be first!

      r80rt

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    5. Way to go Dan!!

      p.s. who's the handsome fellow who pushed you out of the picture and took your place...

      littletommy

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    6. That's my evil twin, he rode the crap out of that bike when I wasn't looking.

      r80rt

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  5. I did'nt know there was a desert in India.................

    telejojo

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  6. Beautiful tour! That's a newer FI Classic 350, isn't it?

    D the D

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    1. I believe you are indeed correct! I noticed too that Royal Enfield has considerably lowered it's sales price for all new and future models in North America too... might be worth picking one up down the road.

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    2. I belong to the Royal Enfield Forum. My old Military model got run over by a lady with a Nissan Sentra in a parking lot and totaled. Cop to Lady: "Really lady? You didn't see it there? It wasn't even moving!"
      They say on the forums that the new FI bikes are really much better on the highway and don't need all the PM the old ones did. All the American models are 500 thumpers. It was comfortable and fun. All the Harley guys wanted to kickstart it for me. LOL

      D the D

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    3. It was the one bike that Harley riders seemed envious of, even if only for the nostalgia of the bike itself. I owned the EFI one, it'll keep on going at 80mph all day long. Excellent fuel economy as well. I am very tempted to pick one up again in future... they really great bikes.

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    4. Yes Sir! They're jealous of the kickstart and the "Thump Thump Thump" trumps their "potato, potato, potato"

      D the D

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  7. Sounds like the trip of a lifetime Mario! Geeeez, I'm almost 59...so little time left... :-(

    Wolf

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    1. LOL... 60 is the new 50! I have met folks well into their 80's and still riding Wolf... come hell or high water, even if I have to throw some trike wheels on your bike, we will get you riding till your dead and buried... :-p

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    2. Hahahahaha, thanks! (I think), lol.

      Wolf

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  8. Check this Video Out of a Royal Enfield:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DwV-Im0kGqg#t=72

    Point37

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  9. Hey Mario! Thanks for that. It's quite impressive. Love the photos too.
    India is a country I haven't been to yet. I really should go. Hope you're well and still doing some photography.

    Rob

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  10. The temple, in fact all the buildings, reminded me of Ganeshpuri India and Gurumayi’s ashram. I felt a touch of nostalgia. The statues of Ganesha, remover of obstacles, Shiva, (Kundalini), Kali-Durga, mother/destroyer, and all the others statues in the ashram came to mind. However, none of them shook their genitals at me, which was appreciated.Smile I thinks of those months in India fondly. It was very biblical in that the beggars were there in droves, the halt, the lame, and the blind, just as in the bible, crying, “Alms in the name of god” with hands outstretched.

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  11. Wow. So beautiful. When are we going? Lol

    Steve

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  12. this might have to on the bucket list, a friend of mine is sending back her pics of a current ride on an enfield over there. i suspect she went with this tour group:

    Cross Training Adventure Tours

    B1

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  13. Been there and done just that. Bought a RE 350 iron barrel from Royal Enfield.

    We --2 of us attempted to get to Mumbai,--not a chance, even after years of driving Bangkok nothing could prepare me for the traffic of India.

    Total and utter disregard to rules of the road, just simple ones like drive on the left seem too difficult for them. Cows would sit un desturbed chewing their cud in the middle of a high way.

    Besides the seemingly normal behavior of defecation in the street and on gas station fore courts and the unbelievable occasional dead person India was eye opening.

    After a few days near Pondecherry we gave up, returned the bikes to the shorwoom to howls of laughter and threw them the keys. I doshed out some money and gave him my address in Malaysia.

    That was 2008. I still have the bike today here with me in Malaysia and she is a lovely bike to ride but India!!!-- I have no reason to visit India again.

    Sniff it

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    1. Sounds like an adventure to say the least! Thanks for sharing.... though, I have to confess, am looking forward to trying it myself anyways. The trips the guys take on a regular basis is just too spectacular to give up the chance... though, it sounds like you have the right idea, avoid the major city centres and areas if and where possible.

      Happy Holidays!

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    2. We just went ahead and did it on our own. It would be better if you had a tour guide and the certainty of a hotel at the end of the day and even a cold beer which was also illusive.

      I must reiterate that the roads are the most dangerous I have ever seen. The country side can be worse as the speed is higher. The buses just don't care killing a few people per year with a large vehicle is acceptable loss to them.
      We gave up because it was obvious that a damaged bike would be very likely along with a broken limb or death following close behind. Good luck

      The Iron barrel bikes are no longer in production. you now have only the choice of new allumium lean burn crap as they are tying to compete with Honda, They have totally lost the plot.

      You would be able to buy second hand,--I fancy the diesel.

      Sniff it

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    3. That was very interesting.. I had no idea that things were that bad there. That's definitely eye opening for me. Thanks for the insight on that.....

      charlescpc

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  14. All very interesting points... Tour guide is a must. Actually, though I plan to head out there to meet up with some friends I know who live there, there is a place that actually offer tours! Check out:

    http://acorbinsayswhat.blogspot.ca/2013/01/destination-blazing-trails_10.html

    I have thought of the diesel RE as well actually. I remember seeing them for the first tim ages ago and thinking how interesting they actually looked. That is a good idea. I'd bring it home with me afterwards and park it in my living room!

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  15. Yes they are---- different. Do you know they are as much as 6 hp. They drip oil like you could not believe and starting has a procedure,--great fun.

    Sniff it

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  16. The story was great, the photos were great...Could you tell us more about the Royal Enfield motorcycle and how it performed? Any breakdowns or problems. Just curious about that bike, it's one of the bikes I looked at before I decided to buy my BOLT!

    Frodo

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    1. Having owned a Royal Enfield when I was living in Ireland (the new EFI unit) I can tell you anything you want about the bike! What would you like to know exactly? Once upon a time I wrote a little something on the ndia's RE site which has since been transferred to my blog - Betty-Ann Personally, I really loved the bike and used it as a daily commuter.

      The engine takes a looooong time to break in as it is still mostly put together by hand but once broken in it will pull 80 mph all day. Strangely enough, the stock seat was the most comfortable I had ever had (probably because it is on springs) as is the ergo dynamics. It feels like you are riding a mountain bike with an engine so if you are use to riding big heavy bikes you may find yourself flipping it too easily on one side or the other when going into turns which can be unnerving at first.

      The polished casings get stained easily enough after a few days commuting in the rain. (Ireland has rain over 256 dye a year!) Other let down's for me were the stock chain (s**tty) but it was super easy to work on and adjust. If buying new, change the chain to a better O ring chain after break in period. Though she would do 80 all day she was happiest at 60. If broken in right vibes are not really noticeable after 60 but I have friends who were too rough and impatient and ouch, the vibes especially during break in if you push her past 50 are atrocious. Put it this way, this is not a "one night stand" kinda bike... she wants to be wined and dined and brought home to meet the parents. So do right by her!

      If you own the BOLT (Great bike btw) than owning an RE would be a real treat for you. I wouldn't hesitate to get one again . Funny enough the BOLT C-SPEC is one of the bikes I am looking at buying myself. Thus, share your thoughts about it as I have only ever did a test ride on one.

      Ride Safe

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  17. would love to do that tour

    if you are going lets us know - some might just want to figure out how to come along

    DrAlloway

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    1. The story behind Blazing Trails is actually really kinda cool. The owner is from the U.K. She decided to visit India ad more or less never returned back to the U.K. Instead, she started her motorcycle business touring around on RE's. I would love to go in two years time (40th birthday) so if anyone is serious, let me know and we can see if w can't arrange something - maybe even a group discount?! ;)

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  18. Sounds like they are a lot better than when dealers started getting them over here 15 years or so ago.Have two SR500 so like big singles.When I saw the 350 singles at dealers the price was real good and the so-so fit and finish were not enough to turn me off.Looked up sites and what a let down. They were total junk back then next to the cheapest Japan bikes.Guess thats why I never saw them at big events around.My SRs were not that great at taking interstate speeds.Even with two up on front sprocket both gave up before 80,000 but from what the owners of the Infields wrote about the ones they owned that would have been super for one of them.Still have not met a happy owner face to face with one.Still like the looks and if really better may look into them again.So whats the miles some get now.I ride a lot.

    Paul

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    1. Royal Enfield is as close to buying an original bike from the 1950's as you can possibly get. People coming from modern bikes will always feel disappointment if they are expecting to own a thoroughly modern Royal Enfield. They only changed their engines back in 2009 because of Euro III emission laws. That being said, if you go into it with the understanding that you are buying a piece of history, a time machine in itself that has been relatively unchanged for over sixty years, than you are going to enjoy the bike very much.

      I owned one and committed daily with it five days a week. The break in period is time consuming and you need to treat the bike like the modern antique it is. Expect to a proper break in period of at least 1500 miles. If you push the bike too hard too soon it will vibrate itself to pieces and you right off the bike! Expect to keep her at 50 mph to 55 mph for the first 500 to 800 miles. Afterwards increase her speed slightly to 60 and 65 until you hit the 1500 mile mark. Once broken in properly she will happily ride at 80 miles per hour all day long. However, honestly, she is happiest at 60 to 70 mph.

      They are overpriced here in Canada by at least a grand. They have already lowered the price considerably a year or two ago. That being said, it's a fun purchase and would make an excellent base for customization if you wanted to make a true cafe racer for example. Did I mention they get 85 miles per gallon too?! Seriously amazing mileage out of a tank not to mention that you can use them for nearly everything or just for pottering around on the weekends in the twisties.

      You should be mechanically inclined for basics like changing brakes, chain, sprockets, oil, etc... as dealerships may be hard to come by. These bikes are work horses in India and Mongolia and act as the "family car" for many. They are also Harley-Davidson's biggest competition in India (hence why the H-D Street 500 came about in the first place) and I would go so far as to say that RE's followers are far more passionate than your average H-D follower.

      So if you are thinking of getting one, don't hesitate to do so, so ing as you understand what you are getting and treat it accordingly.

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  19. I just came across this page with your beautiful photos when searching for photos of the Dasavatara temple for my course on Hinduism. I'm going to show some of the photos to my class tomorrow (properly credited, of course). Thanks for posting these.

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    1. Thank you very much Ginni for the kind compliments! We appreciate it and are happy you are enjoying the site. Best of luck with your course in Hinduism!

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