UDHAMPUR:14 days, 11 motorcycles and 1 dream expedition - the Himalayan Heights Winter Motorcycle Expedition from Leh to the Karakoram Range is a one of a kind expedition. The expedition of the Indian Army in partnership with Royal Enfield and Himalayan Motorsports Association was flagged off from Karu on 07 April 2019 by the General Officer Commanding, Trishul Division, Maj Gen Sanjiv Rai under the overall aegis of the Fire & Fury Corps.
The event commemorates the 20th Anniversary of the Kargil Vijay Divas, which is celebrated on 26 Jul every year to mark the victory of the Indian Armed forces over Pakistan in Operation VIJAY. The team comprising of riders from the Army Service Corps includes Maj K Renuka, Maj Bhupesh Rawat, Capt Arpit Kapila, Capt Jabez Philip, Capt Akshay Joshi, Capt Nikita A Nair, Sep Diwakar, Sep Abhijeet and Sep Shivsingh. The Royal Enfield team includes Sachin, Aditya, Hema and Nihal while the Himalayan Motorsports Association team has Vijay Parmar. The team is ready to brave all the odds in the unforgiving terrain and the extreme climate of the region, to complete a motorcycle expedition to the Karakoram Range, one that has never been attempted before.
Aware of the expertise, grit and physical fitness required for such a ride, the selection procedure was inflexible. In January this year, 19 hopefuls participated in an exacting selection process in Himachal Pradesh, organised by the HMA.11 superbly fit and skillful men and women were finally selected to be part of the team.
With due acclimatisation at every stage, the team will be roaring their engines over some of the highest motorable passes including Chang La and Khardung La, inhabited villages and iced water bodies, to an altitude of 18,176 feet. The motorcyclists will cover over 1000km through the entire expedition facing inclement weather, with temperatures dropping as low as minus 40 degrees, where breathing will be labored, blizzards may be frequent and visibility often zero. The motorcyclists will endure and showcase extreme courage and fortitude - qualities synonymous with the Indian Army and traits inherent to survival in operations by the troops of the Fire & Fury Corps.