Sikkim is one of the
most beautiful places in India situated amid mountain peaks, lush valleys, and
free-flowing rivers. Bike trips to Sikkim have always been popular as there are
many biking routes in Sikkim that cover all four districts, and
each imparting a unique experience in terms of landmarks, people, food, and
scenery. The most celebrated route is the North Sikkim biking route, which
leads to the famous high-altitude Gurudongmar Lake.
Many popular bikers
from across the nation have toured this exceptional route of North Sikkim.
Known bikers like Sourav from Lostheels.com, Amit from Counting Miles, Deepak
from Extreme Moto Adventure, Sikkim local Arpita Sharma, and Dutch adventurer Noraly
Schoenmaker have overcome the tough yet beautiful terrains of the North Sikkim
Notice the bikers we’ve
named are both male and female. Well, that’s because Sikkim is one of the
safest places to visit for female riders. Owing to the inhabitant’s warm nature
and eagerness to help new people, Sikkim is a friendly place that guarantees
loads of experiences.
Another name that
comes to mind while talking of female riders in Sikkim is Vatika Jain from
Lucknow who became the first lady to ride to the highest lake in the country,
Cholamu Lake (5,330 m), Sikkim and got herself listed on the Limca Book of Records
as the first female biker to do so. She covered over 2,616 km from Lucknow to
the lake in less than 10 days. She was accompanied by her brother and two friends
(one is now her husband).
We were quite
intrigued by the story of Vartika, so we reached out to her to know more about
her journey to Sikkim.
Her ride to Sikkim
On asking how she came
up with the idea of riding to Cholamu Lake, she replied: “I always wanted to
ride to Northeast India and second, I found out that no other female rider had
ever ridden to Cholamu Lake before, which I saw was an opportunity to make a
name for myself. I wanted to be an example that women are equally capable of
riding bikes on tough terrains like men.”
On her way to Cholamu Lake
Recalling the most difficult part of organizing the trip she said, “It took me three months to get
permission for the lake for which I had to knock on several government officials’
doors. I even had a meeting with the home minister of the State of Lucknow for
Riding the route
As she was riding to
get registered in the Limca Book of Records, her route was straightforward with
no unnecessary detours or layovers. “I only visited a handful of tourist spots
en route Gurudongmar Lake out of which Khangchendzonga Waterfalls was my
favourite,” she said.
Speaking about the
challenges in Sikkim she said, “There were some minor logistic problems in
Sikkim that we faced upon reaching Lachen, which is expected because Lachen is
a secluded area with very little population.”
When asked to share
the feeling of reaching the destination she said, “Once I made it to the lake,
the view was mesmerizing. The water was in the shades of green and blue. The
lake had frozen edges, snow-capped mountains on the one side, and clean sand
spread on the other. We couldn’t stay for long as the oxygen level was very low
due to which I had started feeling dizzy.” She was all heart when praising the
locals of Sikkim. “I was warned by the locals regarding the effect of low oxygen.
They gave me popcorn saying it will help me from the dizziness, and believe it
or not, that worked.”