- Posted by Anil Mohan
Dehradun to Delhi Cycling Story of Apurv Saklani and Sanjay Parashar
Apurv Saklani is working in a shipping company and rearley gets time to pedal around the city, so he chose to ride in morning hours before office. He started his morning rides and got a new ride partner as Sanjay.
Sanjay Parashar a corporate manager worked with Pepsi, Wringley and Pernord Ricard (Seagram's) to become a Entrepreneur primarily into outbound travel and export business, started cycling in Sept 2018, he met apurv during a ride after that they started pedalling together.
The Idea was borned
The idea of this ride was borned in 2016 when Apurv and his friend Harshit Sundriyal pedalled their cycles to mussoorie for the very first time. After conquering mussoorie they were confident to ride long distances and Delhi was the first place that came to their mind. After a regress analysis of the route, Apurv drafted a 4 day pedalling plan to ride from Dehradun to New Delhi. But the plan could not be executed as Apurv got busy in his new job and with passage of time it became a dream ride.
The dream triggered again when two fellow cyclists (Vinod Saklani and Anil Mohan) did the Dehradun to Delhi solo rides at different times. Now it was time to do it, Both Apurv & Sanjay were confident now as by the end of November 2018 they were cycling around 30-40 kilometers daily, they had done many century rides, full day rides, so both were mentally and physically ready to execute the plan. But there was a major change the four day plan of 2016 was now shortened to one day plan and their was target to complete it in 2018 itself. Finally the date 23 December 2018 was decided.
A night before the ride
The night before the ride both of them were busy in some previous commitments. Apurv somehow shifted his office party from Mussoorie to Dehradun and Sanjay was busy attending a marriage function. Both of them got very late in the parties and reached home between 1 am - 2 am. So, they decided to start a little late at 5:45 am instead of 5:00 am.
The journey started
The ride started on 23 December 2018 at 5:45 am from Balliwala, Dehradun. It was very cold and dark, but the enthusiasm was higher. Both Apurv and Sanjay reached Daat Kali Mandir at around 6:30 am and for the very first time they saw the front gate of temple opened, they stopped their worshiped the goddess, took blessings for the dream journey and started pedelling again. As Sanjay was aware of the enrire route, they decided to avoid Roorkee route and take the newly build Gagalheri to Muzaffarnagar flyover passing through Devband.
The respect of cyclists
They had many good experiences throughout the route, one of them is when they stopped at a fruit vendor at Gagalheri and ate few bananas, as soon as the fruit vendor came to know that these guys are cycling from Dehradun and moving towards Delhi, he refused to take money for the bananas and proudly clicked a picture with Apurv and Sanjay.
After around 111 km of ride, as both of them were very tired and hungry like anything they decided to have lunch at Ganpati No 1 Dhaba near Muzaffarnagar, they ordered some paratha and paneer, enjoyed a good cup of coffee and again moved forward towards the destination.They met few Australian guys at the dhaba, the Australian guys were very excited to hear that these guys are cycling from Dehradun to Delhi. They also ride their bikes and clicked few pictures with them.
Something unexpected happened
It was sunny now and the highway traffic was on its peak, the dust was disturbing, body was tired and suddenly what Sanjay observed is FLAT TYRE. Both of them were equipped with all the tools to repair a puncture, Sanjay was also carrying an extra tube. Someone told them that there is a bike repair shop around one kilometer ahead, so that decided not to take a chance by trying it themselves and dragged the bike to the repair shop and get the puncture repaired. This gap was good for both of them to re-energize for rest of the journey.
The zero milestone
After crossing meerut, they had a small break at Jain Sikanji, Modinagar. The evening ride through Modinagar, Muradnagar and Ghaziabad was through heavy evening traffic. At a point in Rajnagar they forgot the route to Delhi when a policeman helped them with the correct route. After few kilometers they found a milestone with Delhi 0. They were in Delhi. The mission was accomplished. Both were very happy and excited. The 245 kilometer milestones was zeroed. But the journey was not completed yet.
Target India gate
Now their target was to reach the iconic India Gate that represents Delhi, the real mission. As Apurv was not aware of Delhi roads so he called up his friend Deepak Mishra to help them with the shortest route to India Gate. Deepak was shocked to see them with cycle and it was unbelievable for him, he was very happy for Apurv & Sanjay and was very proud of them, Apurv and Sanjay followed Deepak and reached India Gate at 9:30 pm. The journey was over, the mission was accomplished, now it was time to celebrate both hugged each other they don't had words to express their happiness and feeling. They took out their windscheeter and clicked few pictures with their Cycling Club(Maitri Adventure Club) T-shirt. Thanked to the armed forces duty persons at India Gate for their service to the nation. They hired a photographer and clicked few photographs of their achievement.
Now the mission was over, they had booked a hotel in lajpatnagar, Deepak helped them in shortest route to the hotel. The total ride till hotel was 261 kilometers. They took hot water shower, good protein dinner and deep sleep. Next day they waked up at 9 am, their social media accounts was full of appreciations and congratulations messages. Many was amazed, happy and proud. After having breakfast Apurv took his cycle and started his commute to his previous office for some PF related work while Sanjay was resting in the room.
In the evening both went to Decathlon, Khel Gaon and had some shopping(Sports clothings). In Decathlon they met Anurag, a cyclist from Dehradun who was now working in Decalthlon, Khel Gaon, New Delhi. Anurag was aware of their Delhi to Dehradun ride through a common whatsapp group, he literally went of store out to see their bikes standing outside and come to meet them and introduce himself.
Back to home
After having dinner at their friends place. Finally they reached to ISBT to take Bus to Dehradun. Their tickets was already booked, but the bikes was not booked with the tickets, after having some words with the driver and conductor thet finally paid for bike transportation and boarded to the bus. On the morning of 25 December 2018, they reached Dehradun at 5:30 am and finally pedalled back to their home.
This journery of Apurv and Sanjay was very inspiring, they met many peoples on the way, inspired them and amazed them. They have radiated the positivity of cycling and cyclists to many from Dehradun to Delhi. I wish them keep pedalling, keep inspiring and have a very good & healthy life ahead.