Tour de Thar 2017 - A Sneak Peak From The Purple Monster Team
Hmmm….NO… Maybe…I don’t know…maybe next year. This is what I started with when my sister and our friend Sagar, persuaded me to join the Western Motorsport’s Tour De Thar 2017. At first, I was very reluctant but at the very last moment I decided to join in. It is a decision which I won’t regret. It was the most exciting, adventurous, fun- filled, memorable trip I have endeavored upon.
|Purple Monster Team Nano|
Additional bait for the trip was to be part of team Nano which comprised of my brother-in-law, Rahul, my sister Anupama and my cute little 5-yr old niece Kanika. We could never have imagined Nano to be part of a team with the big guys read SUV’s mostly all 4-WD’s, but in the end we realized Nano was no small fly. Rahul and I took turns in driving the Nano for the entire tour. It was Rahul’s passion for long drives on the Nano that made this trip happen in the first place. Being number 2 in the convoy of 5 vehicles it was at times difficult to keep up with the pace but nonetheless we managed, and managed well.
There were quite a lot of exciting moments with the Nano, one was when we were just about to reach a place dubbed by Western Motorsports as WM sar, an expansive piece of dry lakebed, it was already dark and we were expecting to reach the designated spot and relax besides the bonfire but lo & behold what happens next is straight out of a thriller movie, we are in the middle of nowhere and you can’t make a thing out in the darkness that surrounds us and there you are the wheels of your car stuck in the sands of WM SAR, as if the tyre and sand suddenly discovered they were made for each other and they don’t want to part ways. An Innova got stuck in a similar fashion. So many thoughts were racing through our minds as we stepped outside our car, shivering from the thoughts and the cold night. The other cars had easily maneuvered in the sands and reached the camp site which was barely 100 mtrs away. Finally, we found solace in the expertise of Govindji who finally managed to pull out both cars from the sand and up to the camp site. But this was not without the efforts of everyone pushing, heaving, shoveling (even Kanika put in her efforts in the rescue part) and I would have probably lost couple of kilos! Phew. WOW the Nano Made it…wo hooo.
Next morning, we had another interesting episode with the Nano when Govind Ji decided to take the Nano from another route through the WM SAR to avoid the risk of it getting stuck in the sand again. He took the reins of the car and I was sitting beside him rather unprepared for what was coming. The Nano suddenly sped on the dry, dusty plains of the WM SAR like a cheetah running on the plains of Savannah. This was also beautifully captured on a video taken by one of the participants on the Innova. The Nano finally made it out the WM SAR without any glitch. Three cheers to Govind Ji & the Nano.
|Camel Ride With Rahul|
On our way back, I had an adrenaline-rush moment when we went to the Sambhar lake on the outskirts of Jaipur. This was another vast empty lake bed though in patches was moist. It was risky as well as adventurous to drive on this as one has to ensure to follow any tracks visible. If mistakenly you drive over a moist piece of land, rest assured, your vehicle is going to be stuck for a long time. I was driving the Nano this time with Rahul besides me and although initially engulfed in the sand storm created by the other vehicles which we were following we managed to sneak out of this dusty curtain and charted our own course beside the other tracks and boy-o-boy what feeling it was for a good 15-20 mins.
A special note about the place. Other than Jaipur I haven’t seen much of Rajasthan. I must say we drove past the most scenic routes you could ever imagine. This is not the Rajasthan I had in my mind. You cannot express it with words it has to be felt.
Each day of this tour had its moment of glory, each day was different. Be it the village resort near Jodhpur but away from the city, which was being run by a local family, although it had its share of modern equipment but at the same time it had the warmth of staying in a village, the local delicacies made there was lip smacking or the camping in the middle of WM SAR, or the camping in the Sam sand dunes, riding on a camel’s back in the dunes or the night at Osian with the intoxicating music played by the local Rajasthani folk singers which in the end made you dance like a trance or the folk music played by the same musicians amidst the dunes with the trickling warmth of the sun rising and early morning chill made your blood warm and mind going into a deep relaxation.
|Purple Monster Team Nano With Niece Kanika|
We also met so many people who came from different walks of life sharing the same enthusiasm, passion for adventure and at the end of each day our friendship become stronger and stronger till we all felt we are part of one family, sharing our thoughts, enjoying each moment to the fullest.
Finally, thanks to the organizers of the Western Motorsports for making this trip something to remember for a long time to come.