Royal Enfield, the most iconic motorcycle brand in India, flagged of the 13th edition of the Royal Enfield Himalayan Odyssey, its annual ride into the Himalayas, from New Delhi on July 9th.
The 103 riders participating on this coveted annual event will cover more than 2,500 kms tackling the harshest terrain and the world’s highest motor-able passes over the course of 18 days. But while this has happened for the last 12 years, this year’s edition has something special – In a first, there where will be an all-women riders group of 20 members participating in the journey from Delhi into deep within the Himalayas. The Himalayan Odyssey Women (HOW), will also be taking an entirely different route from the men’s riding group.
The men’s group will travel through Manali – Keylong – Sarchu – Leh – Debring – Keylong – Kaza – Kalpa -Chandigarh. Whereas the women’s group will follow the route of Solan – Narkanda – Manali – Jispa – Sarchu – Leh – Khardung La – Tso Moriri – Tso Kar – Manali – Gushaini – Chandigarh.
While the male team comprises participants from not only in India, but coming in from abroad as well, including countries like Thailand, France, Columbia and the U.K. The ladies team includes 20 women from all walks of life and from various small as well as big metropolitan cities.
The women’s contingent is co-led by Urvashi Patole and Sara Kashyap. Urvashi Patole is the founder of the all-women biking club called ‘The Bikerni‘, with whom she rode to Leh-Ladakh back in 2011.
Also, the 2016 Royal Enfield Himalayan Odyssey saw a lot of riders astride the Royal Enfield Himalayan, a bike that was specifically designed to tackle the harsh and treacherous terrains of the mountain region. This expedition will be the biggest test of their new adventure bike.
Speaking at the see-off ceremony, Shaji Koshy, Senior VP, Sales & Service said “The Himalayan Odyssey has championed leisure motorcycling in the way it has initiated scores of people to ride to Ladakh. With each passing year, a new set of riders are initiated into this extraordinary expedition. This year, we have introduced the Himalayan Odyssey- Women, an exclusive all women’s ride that promises to be the ultimate motorcycling adventure for all women who ride a Royal Enfield. We have received an encouraging response towards this and we hope this ride becomes an inspiration for many more women to take up motorcycling in India.”
image source: CarandBike