The Off-road Adventure Series – Chikmagalur (09-07-2011)
“Are you ready to get lost???” were the first words muttered by Bijoy Kumar, the head of Mahindra’s Adventure Initiatives while briefing the participants of the legendary Great Escape which is known to be the big daddy of off road adventures. The event took off from The Golf Club with the intent of capturing the toughest terrains with the wackiest routes. The plan was to sail away through the muddiest paths and seek the 4×4 expertise. But, the monsoon was on the opposite side. This year the rain god’s were annoyed and it hadn’t showered since a week! Hence, most of the journey was dry except some portions where we could find some slimy paths to test.
The Chikmagalur event received an overwhelming response from offroading enthusiasts, leaving everyone asking for more. This edition of the Mahindra Great Escape was conducted in association with JK Tyres, Bosch and Servo Lubricants (Indian Oil). The rally was flagged off at 10:00 am from Chikmagalur Golf Club, Chikmagalur. Iconic Mahindra SUVs such as the Scorpio, Thar, Bolero, Getaway, Legend, Major and Classic negotiated an arduous route of over 70 km. But the centers of attraction were the Thar’s which had participated in humongous numbers
While there were many winching points in the whole trail, it was seldom utilized except in one or two cases. The convoy had to pass through the serenest coffee estates, cover the most beautiful lakes and the narrowest paths of Chikmagalur. . It had over 75 vehicles from the Mahindra stable maneuvering the challenging route. The 70 km trail took almost 4-5 hrs to cover –mostly due to regular stops at frequent intervals. The lunch and refreshments were later arranged at the Golf Club.
The USP of the event were the 4WD vehicles of the participants. It was also a forum to just display the enigma and pride of owning one. These beauties were majorly MM540’s & CL series (modified). It also stood as an excellent platform to promote the new baby – THAR. It stormed the event with amazing attendance.
Through the years, the Great Escape has acquired a reputation as one of India’s premier off-roading events with each edition seeing eager participation from die-hard Mahindra fans and customers alike. From the hills of Coorg and the tea estates of Munnar to the undulating sand dunes of Mandawa in Rajasthan, the Great Escape has blazed a unique trail across the length and breadth of India. This year the number of events is scheduled to double to 20 from 10 as of last year. It has already completed 2 events – one at Shahpur and the other at Chikmagalur. The rest are 19 are to be held all across India right from Goa to Kohima. One can further track its calendar at http://www.mahindraadventure.com/index.aspx.
First initiated in 1996, the Mahindra Great Escapes have evolved into spectacular weekend events. The routes are meticulously chosen to ensure excitement without compromising on safety. All through the route, there are rescue vehicles to help those in need. In addition, there are experts along the route who are ready to guide the drivers through difficult terrain that may require skilful driving.
The event ended with an adventurous note and also left the masses waiting for the upcoming Save the Yak expedition, New Year Escape and more…