There was a man tending to a fishing net, in the dhaba where we had our lunch, and we inquired with him about the distance and condition of road to Chakrata. Road was good but the weather up there could be misty and cold, is what he told us. We paid heed to his advice and donned our wind-cheaters, even though it was warm at that time of the day. From Tiuni, the road started winding up the mountain, and we gained height rapidly. Glancing down we could see the river snaking along in the valley between the two range of mountains; it was so far below us. The road was very good, the traffic sparse, but we were a bit tense now, for the Sun was descending fast and we still had a long way to go. On this stretch of the road we saw a lot of small rocks strewn on the road, having found their way there from the slopes above, and quite often we came across the warning signs of “Falling rocks”. We proceeded with caution for some of these rocks were the size of football! Perhaps the Weather sensed our fear, and it started to play with us. The sky quickly darkened and the clouds started to rumble, the wind picked up. We accelerated, and prayed silently for the rain to hold back! Suddenly the wind died down completely and there was a heaviness in the air- we knew what was to come now. The first drop of rain hit my arm, and the game commenced! It was drizzling now, the kind one would normally enjoy, while stannding in the balcony of a flat or walking down the road, in a city. But these were mountains and we had no human settlement in sight. Then we saw the milestone of a village “Sawda” fly past, and caught the number 12 marked on it. We did the math, and decided mentally that we must reach it at all costs. Next thirty minutes were adrenaline filled! We were scared, the rain had picked up, the wind was now strong enough to shake us and the bike, every now and then we saw flashes of ligtening falling down; and there were no parapets on the road, to provide us a sense of safety, lest we skid off the road! But we rode fast and hard, all our concentration on the stretch of road that our bikes’ headlights could illuminate, and desperately counting each passing kilometer. After an eternity, which was actually only 20-25 minutes, we saw the lights of the village down a few turns, and we knew we were safe. As we entered the village, we stopped at the very first roadside tea shop, where the people were huddled together in the light of the stove, and joined them. By now it was raining heavily. After two cups of Tea, and roughly half an hour, the weather cleared, to our greatest relief! We still had around fifty kilometers to cover before we reached the day’s destination of Chakrata. Without wasting any time, we hit the road again and after a while found ourselves driving through beautiful Deodar forest. As we rode, through the gaps in the trees we could see the bright orange ball of fire slip behind the mountains. The rest of our ride was in pitch dark through the wooded road, and barring a rough patch of around ten kilometers near Deoban, the going was comfortable. However, we couldn’t make out much of the lanscape or the places that we passed in this darkness, and around nine ‘o’ clock, we rode into the eerily quiet, barely-lit cantonment town of Chakrata. As if the body and mind were waiting for it, both surrendered and after a hot meal and shower, it was only deep slumber!