Ridin Sri Lanka on the Enfield!

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by SwellsRides, Sep 14, 2007.

  1. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    272
    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    This is my first time posting, so please be gentle. My friend warned me that I may catch some shit for our.. well un orthadox riding gear, but I can handle that. So here it goes.

    It was a dark and stormy night…. No really it was. But the following Saturday was beautiful! It turned out to be a great trip!!! The abridged version of the trip is:<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    The weather was great when I woke up Saturday AM, John thought it was going to rain and we would be postponed, so he drank his weight in Jagurmeister at a Friday night night party in Trinco. We met in Matale later than planned, after his hung over ass ran out of fuel before reaching me. There he was in his full face road bike helmet, big yellow bug eye rave glasses, weight lifting gloves and a bag wrapped in a big blue tarp bungeed to the back of his Suzuki Djebel trail bike. We call her Jezebel. It was going to be an interesting trip. He with all that, myself with a flat black German WWII helmet with flames, black t-shirt with a slogan on it that has caused my friends to call me "The Ambassador of Good F’n Will”, on a 2005, but engineered and designed in 1950’s Royal Enfield Bullet. We looked a very motley crew. We rode through the hills, and had a wonderful day of riding, even though we got lost and found ourselves way off course, where I hit a crater the size of the <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" /><st1:place w:st="on">Grand Canyon</st1:place>, at speed and bottomed out the suspension and almost tossed me over the bars. We found a hut that sold beer and stopped to refresh our selves and find out where we were.:beer None of the gents there spoke English, and from the looks of things had never seen a map. We would point to a town on the map, and they would say the name but couldn’t even tell us which direction it was in. Soon we figured out that the sun was on the wrong side of us, and we needed to flip 180. Oh well, the beers were good!<o:p></o:p>
    We spent the night in Badula, had some great food, many beers and headed out the next morning for <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:placeName w:st="on">Arugam</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">Bay</st1:placeType></st1:place>. We encountered a protest rally alnog the way, where we found ourselves sitting in the middle of some very angry people shouting slogans and waving banners in Sinhala, so I am not sure what they were upset about, but it was unmistakable they were UNHAPPY! We passed through many checkpoints with men with AK-47's asking us questions before laughing at us and letting us proceed. After searching the many establishments for one that had rooms, power AND cold beer, we settled into the Stardust Guest house for the next 2 days of sun, beer and watching the surf chica's on the beach. We rode down to <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Panama</st1:place></st1:country-region> where the road turned to sand, and we turned back. We stopped along the way and found a place that sold liquor (which was rare as the area is mostly Muslim) and bought a bottle of Gin, as we finished the scotch and rum the night before. We proceeded to finish the gin by sundown, in our search for more libations we ran into some Israeli surfers where we smoked a jungle bong, drank and had a BBQ with them for the evening. In the morning we rode back to <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Kandy</st1:place></st1:City>, almost running over a monkey along the way on our longest riding day of the trip. We hung out in <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Kandy</st1:place></st1:City> for the next 2 days trying to wait out the rain and our friend Kris came up and hung out with us for the night. We drank, told stories, sang with the Sri Lankan version of a Marachee Band and played snooker in to the early morning hours. Someone should have sent us to our rooms much earlier, as we were all over served. <o:p></o:p>
    It was then time to part ways, as John was headed back north, and I south. On the way back to <st1:City w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Colombo</st1:place></st1:City> there was a traffic jam, due to a stubborn elephant in the road. About 20KM further down the road I witnessed an accident happen in front of me. A government minister in an armored Mercedes was in a caravan with Land Rover Defenders loaded with men armed with AK-47's and Uzis. The first Defender made it through but the armored Mercedes was struck broadside by a large dump truck. The car spun, and came to rest next to me. The first Defender stopped and all the men jumped out cocking their guns and surrounding the car. After a few tense moments with me frozen in their sights they relaxed and waved me on through. I arrived back home safe and sound, though with all the diesel smoke my face and arms were black with soot. It was a great ride. It was just over 1,000 KMs in about 5 days of real riding, on what they call roads. My only regret is that I hadn't done this sooner, But I will do it again! <o:p></o:p>

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    #1
  2. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    Enjoying the view in the Knuckles Range

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    #2
  3. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    272
    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    Our fans!

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    #3
  4. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    272
    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    We rode so far East we ran out of island.

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    #4
  5. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    272
    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    Where do we go from here?

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    #5
  6. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    272
    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    Twisty's, Sri Lanka style.

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    #6
  7. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    272
    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    Budda atop the mountain pass.

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    #7
  8. GB

    GB . Administrator Super Moderator Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2002
    Oddometer:
    70,250
    Nice!! This has to be the first ride report from Sri Lanka! Thanks for for the intro and your report.. Nice FYYFF t-shirt! I'm sure it'll make you many friends! :lol3
    #8
  9. griffin738

    griffin738 type b

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2006
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    235
    Location:
    Arlington VA
    Nice work Steve! Awesome report, great pix. :thumb

    Glad you're on advrider - these guys are crazy, much like yourself. :freaky:freaky:freaky:freaky
    #9
  10. biking nomad

    biking nomad The Nomad

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Disneyland with the Death Penalty
    Nice ride!
    I believe its the first ever ride report I've read from Sri Lanaka even though its in my part of the world.

    Where's the Djebel from? Bought in SL or shipped in?
    #10
  11. Chanderjeet

    Chanderjeet IndiYeah !!

    Joined:
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    6,088
    Location:
    Stockholm, Sweden
    First from SriLanka. Amazing. I have never seen that part of the world that up close. Good to see some bullet cruisin in Lanka. Makes me proud. Btw, are there a lot of Enfields up there ?
    #11
  12. Chanderjeet

    Chanderjeet IndiYeah !!

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    Location:
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    Where did you get the bikes? Are they registered in Sri Lanka? Coz, the no. plates look almost the same.

    I have never seen the other bike.......djebel ?? More info on that ? :evil:lurk :lurk
    #12
  13. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    272
    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    Thanks guys! It was a great ride. There is one company here that imports the Enfields from India. Rumor has it that there are about 30 of them on the island, I have only seen a few very randomly. Both bikes are registered in Sri Lanka. The Djebel was probably imported from Japan, as a lot of the bikes here come used and with some parts missing, in a contanier filled with parts and bikes, then a shop just starts putting "franken bikes" together with the parts. Another friend here has a Suzuki TZR 200 that has a Yamaha instrument cluster, and a Yamaha key. There are other parts that don't fit quite right either.

    There is already talk of a follow up ride to the hills after the monsoon season is over. I'll keep you guys posted.
    #13
  14. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

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    Location:
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    I think I am doing this all Bass Aackwards, and will try to be better prepared next time, but wanted to add some additional photos to the original write up. Cheers!! :beer

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    #14
  15. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
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    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    Entering the Knuckles Mountain Range

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    #15
  16. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
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    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    View from the tea plantation

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    #16
  17. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    Maps?? Maps?? We don't need no stinkin Maps!!

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    #17
  18. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
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    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    :yikes Not a sign you want to see!! :doh

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    #18
  19. SwellsRides

    SwellsRides Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    272
    Location:
    Kathmandu, Nepal
    A Sri Lankan house tucked off the road. There was a military check point 20 meters up the road. They frown on you taking photos of those though.

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    #19