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The longer way back

Hero X-PULSE 200 at 2000km
31 August 2021
Early October 2021
10 October 2021
 

By Morris Njue

A random change of plans!

 

What was supposed to be simple 110km ride from Ukunda to Samburu turned into a 209km epic random.

 

We woke up rather hesitantly to what would be an easy ride with Triffy Faith Akinyi to Samburu from Ukunda, with a 20km dirt section.

We figured we'd be back by 1pm so no one was in a hurry. We had borrowed the Jincheng 200 dual sport from Samu Kenya since it was the only other bike in UKUNDA that is well maintained and has a history of handling madness and stupidity offroad really well. She would be using and SAKAYO and I would be getting to stretch ourselves once again in the most exuberant fashion we remember....and play we did!

I remember I topped up SAKAYO to the brim... Literally with Kshs 890 as there was some fuel there already (remember this...twill be important at the end) while the Jincheng was topped off with Kshs 300 and off we went. The few kilometers to Kwale town were undramatic, save for the little offroad section which i choose specifically to allow my wife to get to grips with the Jincheng's handling characteristics offroad as compared to tarmac. I assumed that I'd loose power and have to change down too many times climbing up to Kwale town, but, my mechanic has tuned it to perfection and i was "chewing the hills" on gear 3 at 60kph "kama nonsense!" (like nonsense)....of course, to use riding 125cc bikes, these are astronomical performance figures...you are allowed to laugh...

 

At Kwale town, we stopped for a small refreshment and proceeded into Shimbahills park road, all dirt, fillee with innumerable corrugations, random jutting rocks and the occasional hole here and there, coupled with changing soil colors and slope. It became a fine game and warm up to what would come! We stopped off at the narrow Marere bridge for some pictures and damage assessment. Having discovered that the bikes weren't bothered by abuse, we proceeded to Kinango, a murderously surprising offroad section, that despite the best grading efforts, it was still crazy enough to throw you and your bike into a bush if you weren't careful. Along the way, some rally cars passed us, providing a glimpse of what it is to have a car setup for racing adversity.

 
At Kinango, plans to Samburu took a change. See, we had been to Samburu before and tarmac wasn't at all exciting. She suggested we go to Lungalunga through the long dirt back road and since i hadn't been on it before, it was concluded as the next destination. After some water, we sped off completely in the opposite direction from Samburu, into the unknown.
 

Another stop on the Kinango Lungalunga dirt road. This area has a marsh behind me and floods, completely making the road disappear when it rain. So they made a concrete drive path to make sure it is passable in the rain.

 

The dry heat of the day was even more intense on this road as the areas past and around Kinango had become Semi Arid owing to aggressive deforestation. The road was poorly graded and provided us and the bikes with some much needed suspension system shakedowns and skills refreshment. It is a road that encompasses the word "offroad" in one breath; loose murram, deep soft sand, ruts and corrugations, numerous jutting stoned and boulders, long smooth hard packed murram where you can gun and do wheelies, several dry river beds with amazing views and the dry dry dusty heat to keep you sweating on your toes! By the time we saw tarmac at Mwaluvanga, it was a surprise because we assumed it would be punishment all the way to Lungalunga, but the county government has gone ahead and made life easier...not fun...not for offroading goons!

 

We arrived in Lungalunga at high noon, sun blazing but spirits high. My fuel gauge was still at F, completely unbothered by the more than 90kms already covered... Her tank readings were approaching the half full mark. After a hearty meal, we looked up the map and discovered that i was only a 21min ride to Vanga, the small fishing town at the edge of the ocean and decided to go there. The entire road is fully tarmacked, smooth with no speed bumps and all you have to look out for are cows and goats that keep crossing and walking on it leisurely, with their attendants equally unmoved by its significance. When we arrived in Vanga, she remarked that riding on tarmac is extremely boring and that she can't wait for her Tekken 250 to arrive...it was at this moment i realized i had created a monster!

 

At Vanga, we went about engaging with a local who happened to also want to get into biking because his first enquiry was about riding gear. He then led us to a fish landing site/office where the day's catch would be accounted for and sold, then a good majority of it hauled off to Mombasa. We bought our own amount (Kshs 400 for 2kgs) and left. We decided we would use the tarmacked back route via Majoreni then pop out on the Shimoni road for home. Like most tarmac tales go, it was over, unremarkably, save for the small stop we made to exchange bikes since she was tired of the Jincheng 200 and strain on her arms.

 

When we got home, my fuel reading were 1cm below the FULL mark, for a whole 209kms. For those who keep asking about consumption matters of the Bajaj Boxer x125, remember mine is tuned haul ass...imagine how much less your stock one will consume...

1 Comment

  1. Waweru says:

    Beautiful πŸ’•

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