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Thumbnail Pictures of Rajasthan #2 and Punjab, India

(February April, 2012)

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Pushkar, Rajasthan, India

(February 2012)

Pushkar Lake, surrounded by temples and ghats, on a gorgeous cloudless day.

Pushkar is surrounded by mountains, making for plenty of hiking opportunities. Most travel agents offer guided sunrise hikes. Or you could just walk off in any direction to find a hill to climb.

Looking east at the Camel Fairgrounds and the setting sun.

Kingfishers are awesome little birds. Small birds with a fierce jabbing beak. We saw a kingfisher holding a dead mouse nearly as big as itself.

On the banks of Pushkar Lake in Rajasthan, India. The lake is surrounded by ghats (steps descending into the water) for the many pilgrims that visit. Our hotel overlooked the water, so we could hear the pooja bells ringing every morning at 5 am!


Pushkar to Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India

(March 2012)

We took off across the plain to camp under some trees and found this pond.

Water is not common in the desert here in Rajasthan, India.  When Gretchen found this spot she had to jump off her touring bicycle and stick her feet in. 

The blue city of Jodhpur under the towering walls of Mehrangarh fort. Even if you've grown bored of forts, this one is still worth a visit.

Hanging out at the Omlette shop at the gates of Jodhpur.


Jodhpur Fort, Palace and City, Rajasthan, India

(March 2012)

The old city in Jodhpur, India and the looming fort and palace overhead.  We spent a full day exploring the unorganized city and another touring the fort. 

The clock tower, an excellent navigator to help you find your way around town.

You can see that the balconies were built at different times using different types of marble.

Gretchen and our favorite cannon. Some of the cannons were spoils from different wars.


Jodhpur to Bikaner, Rajasthan, India

(March 2012)

Ten year of continuous bike touring and I am still smiling.  Everyday I see something new but the turning of the pedals is one of the few remaining things that seems the same as the day I left my Arizona home in 2002.  These days I care less and less where I go - as long as I am going.  One of these days I will find the road that takes me home but not this one - it is going to climb back up into the Indian Himalayas and bring me along. see for mor information.

A herd of goats and sheep came through our stealth camp on the side of the road in India.  Gretchen scooped the smallest baby goat and played with it as his mother watched,  One of the goats even tried to eat my touring bicycle derailleur pulley.  "That is not black jam, my goat friend"

These solar panels are manufactured in Malaysia. This station isn't operational yet. I'm sure they will clean off the layer of dust before getting started. We saw many small solar power stations, a few wind farms, and a geothermal plant along this highway.

Typical roadside scene in the desert of western India. The oranges are especially yummy.

Tim circling a temple in Osiyan, India on his touring bike.  After that we entered a remote desert section and stealth camped 3 nights in a row - we were ready for a shower and beer.

Riding through the sand is slippery business.

One camping accessory I'm so glad we've brought along - a tarp to sit on at these dusty campsites.


Bikaner to the Punjab border, Rajasthan, India

(March 2012)

Pushing a heavily loaded touring bicycle through the sand has to be a cyclist low point.  We had to get away from the road so we pushed back to the tree line in the distance and camped between two sand dunes.  We woke up to a tequila sunrise that only an empty desert can produce and a herd of little deer-like animals

We thought by laying the bikes on the sand, we might stay hidden from the road. It worked until some people appeared over the sand dune behind us. The ladies carrying bundles of sticks on their heads left after a few minutes, but the goat herder guys obviously didn't have as much work waiting on them. They stuck around for a long time to have a good stare.


Rajasthan border to Chandigarh, Punjab, India

(March 2012)

Free camping in a military field with a very large Sikh Temple in the background.  At night it was all lit up in different color lights and in the morning the Indian Army was driving their tanks around us.  The nice thing about India is no one cares where we camp. 

Cue Simpsons theme music! You don't realize how huge the cooling towers are for nuclear power plants until you're riding right next to them.  We saw an even bigger one 50km later

Orange trees and wheat fields. Punjab is irrigated by canals which bring water from Pakistan.

More young Sikhs asking for 'snaps.' We were endlessly asked to pose for photos during our visit to Punjab.

Friendly roadside shoe repair man.

What's that smell? The roadsides of Punjab are full of marijuana plants! Sometimes it grows wild and sometimes it appeared to be cultivated. We saw that some people were feeding it to their farm animals, which might explain why those water buffaloes look so laid back.

We were invited in to spend the night by the man in the pink turban and his family.  He owned a farm growing cotton, wheat, and oranges.  After touring the farm and learning all about the irrigation system, we spent the evening learning about the religion of Sikh.  This was some very valuable information because we plan to spend the next couple weeks crossing this state, camping on the farms (some fields are flooded overnight) and seeing the Sikh Temples.  Kindness does not require a common language. 


Chandigarh, Punjab and Haryana, India

(April, 2012)

Tim and Uncle Narinder Singh posing with the newspaper picture and story taken earlier that day.  Tim is wearing the same shirt as in the picture and Uncle, being Sikh, has on his white turban. 

This little girl was terribly shy and not super excited about having her photo taken with foreigners. That's why she's got that going-to-the-dentist stare on her face.


Nek Chand Fantasy Rock Garden, Chandigarh, Punjab, India

(April 2012)

The Nek Chand Fantasy Rock Garden was built over 15 years by one man. He arrived in Chandigarh from Pakistan after Partition, and found inspiration in all the trash left over from the city's construction.

Walls made of recycled industrial waste.

Ladies with unnaturally long arms.

Creepy babydoll head sculpture.

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