Sinhagad bike and hike (SB&H) basically means cycling 18km from RajaRam Bridge (RRB) to Sinhagad base (Aatkarwadi), parking and locking the cycle at the base, then hiking (by the trekking route) up & down and finally cycling back home after an optional short tea break.The hike up is ~2.3km with ~515m of elevation gain. A regular SB&H person will do this in 3h 40m (RRB toRRB) including all the breaks.
Sometime around Oct 2011, Dr. Sandesh Doshi, Nikhil Shah and CA Prashant Tidke had joined ‘Thursday Sinhagad hikers’, a group of industrialists who would assemble at RRB at 4.55am, car pool and go to Sinhagad for hiking. After hike up we used to have a short limbusharabat break at the top, leisurely ,hike down, have short tea break and finally come home by car. We used to reach home byabout 8am. Those days we used to hike up in around 45minutes. After 6 months Nikhil Shah felt that we were spending too much time (3h 15m home to home) for just 45minutes workout and suggested that we could come on bicycle to better utilize the time and we started coming to Sinhagad on cycle. That’s how Sinhagad bike and hike took birth. Of course we had to get up about 30minutes earlier and we reached home 15minutes later than ‘car & hike’ but then we got 45kms of cycling free for just 45minutes of extra time spent. This not only made us eco friendly but also pocket friendly. Not to mention the added fitness benefit of the combined activity. This also gave us freedom to do the workout faster or slower as per the time obligations
THE WEEKLY RITUAL
The Weekly Ritual Event is held every Thursday. It is on a smaller scale and observes an almost consistent but regular number of participants. We seldom have new riders from across the city happily joining us at the dawn.
Below is the Event Format:-
We leave our house at 4.15am (or as per your distance from RRB).
Reach RRB at 4.25am.
Have a mandatory selfie at 4.28.
Depart sharp at 4.30am.
Reach Gurudatta hotel at 5.25am (55minutes for 18k).
5-6minutes transition time for parking & locking the cycles, loo break, eat something quick and put valuables on the cycles in the backpack.
Walk up the 380m long cement road in about 4 minutes.
Begin hike up at around 5.35am.
Reach the top at 6.15am (in nonstop 40minutes or as per individual’s fitness).
5 minutes limbusharabat break at the top.
Start hike down at 6.20am and are back to
Back to Gurudatta hotel at 7am.
10-15minutes tea break chatting with other regulars.
Start return journey at 7.15am.
Back home by 8.15am.
So, in all it is a 4 hours ‘home2home’ a no nonsense activity done at a decent pace. After all you do not wake up at 3.40am for a leisurely workout. At the same time you have to work the entire day without feeling tired. Even then cycling is at a moderate speed and certainly not leisurely. Over the years many more folks joined, became regular Sinhagad Bike and Hikers and all have reaped benefits of it. Those who know about SBnH will agree that it is a challenging event, which tests your physical as well as mental toughness. However, all the efforts invested in it, provide profitable returns, guaranteed! As Doc Sandesh Doshi says, it is a totally paisa vasool workout. General Rules for the Weekly Ritual Rides:
1. Our aim to get people out of their bed and report at RRB at 4.25am. We start together but that’s it. Thereafter everyone goes at his/her own pace and completes the workout. Nobody waits for no one unless there is real problem. The idea is if anyone wants to do this workout at a fast pace and gohome in a particular time then it is unjust to ask him to wait for some slower fellow. The slower fellow albeit does the workout mostly solo but then he has a real time proof that someone has gone ahead of him and that keeps him motivated.
2. Punctuality is our hallmark. We depart from RRB sharp at 4.30am even if there is someone coming just few minutes late. Standing instructions are not to wait for any late comers. If anyone is late, hehas to catch up with others and meet them en-route somewhere. People over last 6 years have appreciated our penchant for punctuality and that helped us maintain the overall discipline and imbibe importance of punctuality in our members.
3. You are expected to be self sufficient and self supported. You must have a helmet on your head. On your cycle you must have a bright front light, rear blinkers, water bottle, cycle lock, portable air pump, puncture kit, some handy cash, nutrition and a multifunction tool kit. If you develop a flat tyre, you are supposed to do it by yourself (and not make someone wait for you) or be prepared to put the cycle in a tempo and go home.