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Shekar

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Everything posted by Shekar

  1. Hi Friends, This is my last drive in 2018. First time I had visited Bidar Fort during first week of May, 2017 while returning from a Train Accident site near Kalgapur which is about 55 Kms further from Bidar from hyderabad. Me and my colleague went to the place to over see the recovery of a Locomotive (Railway Engine) and a coach which were drifted away from track due to derailment. Though unrelated to this forum, thought it will be interesting as it is also a mode of transportation. Few Photos... This restoration was planned after midnight of 04-05-2017 and we went by car instead of a train and actual work started at early hours of 05-05-2017 and completed by noon. Post lunch we started back and thought of visiting Bidar Fort on return. We reached a couple minutes before closing time of the fort at 5.00 PM. Security guards started locking the buildings (Museum, Jail etc). Even on request and telling them that we came from Hyderabad they did not stopped locking. We made a round of the fort saw it from locked gates and returned. At that I had decided to visit this fort during winter months but could not succeed. Couple of mobile clicks on first visit. Coming to the present trip, It was not planned in advance, One of my travel partner from Betul MP with whom I traveled to Ladakh in 2016 invited me for his daughter's marriage being performed at Udgir MH on 29th Dec, 2018. I checked up train services and bus services to the place but none is convenient. Then decided to go by car. When my wife declined to travel, I asked two of my friends to joint with me. One among them is also traveled with us to Ladakh. So plan was to start early and reach Bidar before 9AM and after visiting Bidar Fort, reach Udgir by lunch. (marriage was at 12.45). Total one way about 240 Kms. I read the log of ID member's visit to Bidar twice before starting. As planned I started at 5.30 AM and picked up both partners from nallakunta and started our journey by sharp 6.00 AM. We took Mehidipatnam and entered ORR at Kokapet. Though it was early hours we did not tried Kukatpally road as it is time for long distance buses. Reached Mahindra Paradise by 07.30 Hrs to have breakfast. It was too cool out side. We had Poori for breakfast and started again by 8.10 AM towards Bidar. NH to Bidar bypass road is in very bad shape at few places. Further road up to Karnataka border was not so good. Once entered Karnataka, road is newly laid and smooth. We reached the fort just before 9.00 AM. we saw the clock tower and Gawan madarsa on the drive and did not stopped and clicked any photo. We were the first in the parking lot near the entry. When we entered in to main gate, we saw the unlocking of buildings by security personnel. I just remembered my last visit. The weather is cool and the sun light is lovely for photos. Missing is greenery of monsoon. Some views from my camera at entry The Main Entry Reverse view from Main Entry The unique two lane mote We three together This is behind the walls of Rangeen Mahal. A beautiful garden used to be here for a view of Rangeen Mahal inmates from their balconies. Back wall of Rangeen Mahal I tried to click the main entry dome from inside. First we saw the Jail area. Some more photos. View of Main entry from inside. Left side is the Museum and exactly opposite of it is Raneen Mahal. Behind the tree is Jail complex. View from Jail complex entry. Left is entry for Solah Kambha Mosque Wide angle view of the building Next we went in to Mosque area. We only found that the Solah Kambha Mosque is locked same way Turkish Mahal is also locked. We asked the security guard available there about it. He said they will not be opened and similarly Rangeen Mahal also locked. We pestered him to tell us how the locks can be opened. He said if we know some one in ASI, it may be possible and none of the ASI staff have come yet. We contacted our Railway official but they said they have no contacts with ASI. Disappointed, decided to see the museum and large canon and start to Udgir. Some clicks at Solah Kambha Mosque. The Solah Kambha Mosque full view Turkish Mahal Building in which ASI office is situated. We decided to visit again with proper recommendation and started for visiting Museum and then the large Canon. Then came the luck A wood pecker near Museum. I will take a break and explain our Luck.
  2. Shekar

    Bidar Fort an Half full filled Thirst

    What I was told is the the way through water to Narsimha Swamy Temple is closed now since some one died of heart attack in the water. Ezpanding the path and air circulation arrangements are being made. Once they are in place, the path will be opened once again.
  3. Shekar

    Bidar Fort an Half full filled Thirst

    Thank you for liking @Anand Singh. There is always next time. We have passed in front of Gurudwara on return, but as we were already late did not stopped there to see it. I always love to visit Gurudwara and sit peacefully for some time inside.
  4. Shekar

    Bidar Fort an Half full filled Thirst

    Thank you @Ranger. Yes I am an expert in Railway Accident Rescue and Restoration. It took us more than 3 hours to visit the places excluding the old fort area. Took about 2 hrs for small edit. Took double the time to put up the report.
  5. Shekar

    Bidar Fort an Half full filled Thirst

    Not now but when I find a link in ASI, yes the doors will be opened.
  6. Shekar

    Hyderabad to Nagarjuna Sagar

    Hi Friends, This is the first travel after joining the group and happened on the suggestion of the group in Whatsapp. I saved a lot of leaves for traveling to the USA this October/November. But due to some reasons, that tour did not materialised and some 13 leaves were left to be utilised in December. First I had availed 3 days leaves from 12th Dec. First day I had attended a marriage engagement at Hyderabad and two more days plus Saturday & Sunday were with me. I wanted to go out only for 2 days and as per the suggestions of the group decided to visit Sagar on 13th & 14th. I made a booking in Tourism Hotel Vijay Vihar at Vijayapuri in the morning before starting. Me and my wife started at 10.10 Hrs from Hyderabad and reached Sagar by 13.00 Hrs with a stop at OOR exit on Sagar road to meet a family friend for 15 Min. and had a late breakfast at a way side hotel. (another 30 Min). Had buffet lunch in tourism hotel and out in car by 14.00 Hrs. My friend in Sagar project arranged for a visit to the dam and inside dam (inspection galleries). Generally visitors are not permitted to go on to earth dam and main dam for security reasons. Mean time local person called me asked us to reach the dam by 15.00 hrs as the staff have gone for lunch. Then we made a round in the hill colony where I had stayed for couple of years in the childhood. With great difficulty I could able to find out the quarters where we had stayed. All the Sagar quarters are now seems to be occupied by locals unauthorised including some top politicians. Quarter where I stayed in childhood We made a round up to the road bridge on Krishna river in front of the dam and came back to Earth Dam. Took permission from special police and entered on to it by 15.00 Hrs. We were asked not stop the car in between and not to click any photos. So we obeyed. Views of either side over the road bridge. When we reached main dam, the security staff received my car number and opened the gate and allowed us over the dam. After speaking to Irrigation AE, we stopped at first tower (Lift). Then we were guided in to the lift and taken to first inspection gallery at 140 Feet Down from top. There is an exit towards spillways side and a ramp which will lead us to first spill way on left bank. We did not carried the camera, but we took some snaps with mobiles. Three more inspection galleries are available below the one we visited. Lift for the same was having some problem and we did not go down further. These galleries are used to check the health of the dam. at every 10 Mtrs tel tale vents area available and the water leakage from these will indicate the internal leakages and the health of the dam. These galleries also used for repairing any leakages (How I do not know). We were told that every day morning staff will inspect all the four galleries each is of a length of a 1000 mtrs. After spending some time inside, we came on to the dam. due to heavy clouds and fog, we could not see the water in dam properly. With great difficulty we could able click some photos. After thanking the irrigation official we went to Ethipothala falls. We were not expecting any water in the falls but there were some. On the way back to hotel we had clicked sunset over the Sagar Dam. We could not get it exactly over the gates area. We came back to hotel before it was too dark and spent the time sitting in the balcony with Sagar backwater view. (Though the water is not visible due to fog) End of day One.
  7. Shekar

    Bidar Fort an Half full filled Thirst

    Thank you @sagar. Still I have to visit underground beauty.
  8. Shekar

    Hyderabad to Hampi drive meet - Report

    Thank you very much @sagar it's very much helpful.
  9. Shekar

    Hyderabad to Hampi drive meet - Report

    Wonderful trip and detailed report @sagar. I had joined the group on 8th december when the group was at Hampi. Missed the team event. It was a three years wait and now I am going to this place on 5th Jan, 2019. I will be traveling with My aunt (Mother's younger sister) who can not walk much. Please let me know whether all the places can be approached in the car or we have to do lot of walking.
  10. Shekar

    Hyderabad to Hampi Route updates

    Hi all, Please suggest best route to Hampi. I am leaving Hyderabad on next saturday 05-01-2019. Suggest me also the places to visit in sequence in Hampi. I will be at Hampi on the day of journey (Evening) and next day full day and night halt at Hampi. 3rd day I will proceed to Badami.
  11. Shekar

    Bidar Fort an Half full filled Thirst

    Let me continue explaining my luck. While clicking the Woodpecker, I had gone through ID drive to Budar to check whether you guys have seen the Rangeen Mahal and Turkish Mahal or not. I did not found any photos of those. Decided once again to come with proper recommendation. When we are approaching the gate of Museum, we noticed a person appears to be watching us for some time asked us " Museum Dhekna Hai Kya?" we said " Ha" then he asked "Rangeen Mahal Dhekana Hai Kya" first for a second we did not believed our ears but when he repeated those words again, without wasting a fraction of second we said "Ha aap dikhavogi kya" he said "Ha chalo". We felt happy and the Mahal is not disappointing. Originally 7 storied building and some floors buried in the mud and top floors fallen. Let photos talk. Water ponds (Bath Tub?) inside Rangeen Mahal. We were told there used to be a beautiful canopy over it and curtains are draped for privacy. Other water ponds On the right is the dance hall and queen can watch it from first floor. There are floors below this. ASI had dug to find it but cont completed it for unknown reasons. Entry to main palace with wooden pillars with carvings and beautifully painted ceiling. Beautiful entry. Extreme end is the outer wall of the fort from where you can see the park and road. Both side of the main hall (s) we can see small and big rooms with doors. Walled sit out from where one can see out side of the fort. View of the lawn from balcony of the room. Beautiful wooden ceiling in one of the room. Main entry as seen from the top floor of Rangeen Mahal. The dome in the photo is of main gate. View of Turkish Mahal and Gagan Mahal Another view from top Said to be kitchen exhaust (Top closed later by ASI to avoid damage). Intricate carvings in lime mortar on the walls of dance hall Nicely designed main arch to dance hall. The black border is made out of black stone. Ceiling of dance hall. When we finished visiting this, we asked the gentleman will you show us Turkish Mahal too. After asking thrice he reluctantly said yes but asked us to wait for some time. Then we asked him about showing us the underground palace and Karez under ground water system. He said both are permanently sealed with welded grills as few died after entering the Karez system and people are misusing underground palace for other purposes by breaking the locks. Later we discussed this with security, they said it all depends on the ASI officer of that period. In fact we thought they can charge tourists and employ extra security and also to meet cost of some lighting and fresh air systems. Hope some day some officer will think similarly. We decided to spend that some time asked by our guide in visiting Museum and Big Canon. There is not much in the museum. We were asked not to click our cameras in the Museum as if some secrete is in side. Then we went to visit the big canon. Some photos again... Ammunition store A structure on Fort wall. ASI should have installed information boards at various places in the absence of proper guides at fort. The Big Canon. We were guessing how it could have been manufactured in 15th Century and how it was lifted to such height. . Canon balls lying at the private houses in the fort. Another smaller Canon on adjoining bastion View from Big Canon Long shot of the mai fort area This road will lead to ORR of Bidar Solah Kambha Mosque view from Big Canon This we found near Ammunitionunation stores. are they used for to make canon balls? We returned back to museum and along with our guide? we went to see Turkish Mahal. Crowds have increased by the time and many were in the Solah Kambha Mosque area and we did not asked for inside view of the Mosque. Avoiding ground floor (said to be damaged) we were shown other floors. Some photos... Garden View from Second Floor. There is a water tank on first floor to feed water to the fountain and water channel in the garden. There is deep well in side the palace still its water being used for watering the garden. Second floor low level arches and small rooms are available on either sides. Top most floors roofs have fallen Gagan Mahal under repair. This exactly behind Tukish Mahal and has a separate entrance. Some more ruins Ground floor roof exists Solah Kambha Mosque top view and other buildings as seen from third floor. Garden view from third floor Staircase. There used to be a canopy over it. After coming out of this, we have thanked our guide in the best manner and started to visit the ruins in the backside. (Old Fort) Both Dewan I Am and Takth Mahal are also locked up. We found many people who have come this side after seeing the direction boards are returning with much disappointment. We are not disappointed though and I know they are ruins not worth putting efforts to pester some one to open them. After making a quick roundup we started back and we are sure late for the marriage as it already past 12.00 noon. This is the vent hole for the Karez system in the fort which is 2 Kms of water channel dug under ground. People can pickup water from these vents. Total 21 such vents are provided of which 17 are existing now. We started from Bidar at 12.30 Noon and reached Udgir at 2.30 PM. Complete road SH4 is being laid with cement and in horrible state. We returned in different route SH122 and via Bidar reached home by 9.30 PM. Hope I did not dumped too many photos. Thanks for reading.
  12. Shekar

    Bidar Fort an Half full filled Thirst

    Thank you @sagar Yes I need to visit this place again with my family friends. Otherwise they will kill me.
  13. Shekar

    Hyderabad to Nagarjuna Sagar

    Thanks for liking @raman. Sriparvata Arama is few hundred meters before Haritha Vijayavihara (Tourism Hotel) when we are going to Sagar from Hyderabad. Its adjacent to Sidhartha Hotel. What I heard is it is a Japan funded project costing more than 100 Crore. Likely to be open for public in couple of months.
  14. Shekar

    Hyderabad to Nagarjuna Sagar

    Day 2, 14-12-2018 Friday, Surprise or disappointment was in our store. Without knowing it we got up early and ready by 8 in the morning. Weather is same as yesterday and we could not see the water in Sagar from our room. We just asked reception guy about boat timings to Nagarjuna konda and where can park our car. He told me 9.30 and 14.30 Hrs and it will take about 2.30 - 3.00 Hrs to come back and we can park our cars near temple near launch point. We had our breakfast at the hotel. Some one wrote that the breakfast here is not good. Yes Idli was not good but bonda and pongal were good. We reached the boat point by 9.00 Hrs only to know that Museum at Konda is closed on Fridays and boat will not run. If more tourists are available (abt 50), they will run a jolly trip taking them close to dam and back. But not even 5 tourists including us were available at that time. I felt bad being so ignorant and all the friends in Sagar with whom I was talking yesterday did not inform me even when I was telling them that tomorrow we will visit Museum. Yesterday, we had lot time to catch up with 14.30 boat as we were at boating point by 14.00 Hrs. We could have visited the dam today. Else we would have returned to Hyderabad is known at evening. My Wife said, let's go back home. But I said having come all the way here, let us make a round to opposite side of the dam in to AP. We slowly drove to the bridge over the river and entered AP side. Once we crossed first ghat and reached old bridge area, we had a clear view of the dam. We took some snaps here before going further. After a little photo session we went further and reached launch point on AP side. There also we got same answer and there are no tourists today. I found a new tourism hotel opened up by Govt of AP. There we a sign boar indicating ANUPU is 8 Kms. One of my friend told me that if you have time pl visit Anupu Buddhist place. Initially we deleted from our mind as the hotel receptionist told it is not worth traveling 24 Kms. But now we have time and it seems we had already traveled 16 Kms towards Anupu. Sowe went further and reached Anupu Buddhist excavated site. The place is like a small valley amidst small hill all round. ASI is maintaining it in better way. It is so peaceful and pleasant in these days and one can visualise how secluded and peaceful it could have been in those times. Buddhist devotees from Japan came in a sleeper bus of Bihar registration and started prayers in the lawns. Some wild flowers in the lawns. In the return journey to hotel we stopped once again at the spot where we took dam photos as more light has come now for quick clicks. We checked out of the room by 12.00 Noon and stopped at SRIPARVATA ARAMA site. though it was closed for visitors, we entered in to its first enclosure through Sidhardha Hotel. From there entry is closed with steel pipes and we were told the work is in progress and none will allowed further. They also said the ARAMA is likely to be opened for public by Feb,2019. Started from here at about 12.30 and reached ORR before 15.00 Hrs and had our lunch at Sendriya Aharam opposite to RTA office Manneguda near ORR on Sagar Road. Reached home by 16.00 Hrs. Much about roads and food etc has been written for this route. So need not repeat.
  15. Last time when we went to Visakapatnam, my friends staying there told us that there is nothing at Lambasingi to visit and enjoy except the journey. They also told me that the place is dirty. After reading your report, it seems they are wrong. Once in 2-3 years we camp in Vishaka, next time we plan to visit the place.
  16. Yeah it was little scary some times as there is no network, Navigation not working, no mile stones indicating the next town ahead and none found on the roads to ask. We were told by the bridge engineer not to click random photos on roads or in villages. As it will attract Naxals suspecting and may create trouble. We followed his advise. But I will visit this place again in 2020 duly booking cottages at Chitrakote in advance. (By the time both roads will be completed.)
  17. Summary 1. Dates - 28-07-2018 & 29-07-2018 2. Members - 03 (Myself with Wife and Son) 3. Car - Toyota Etios 4. Total Kms - 1205 5. States - Telangana - 620 Kms, AP - 065 Kms, Chattisgarh - 520 Kms 6. Stay - Hotel Suri International, Jagdalpur. Good 3.5/5 Points - Other options – Hotels available in Telanagana at Warangal, Forest guest house Tadvai, Bhadrachalam & Kothagoodem. In Chattisgarh -Limited hotels at Dantewada, Many hotels at Jagdalpur, Tourism cottages at Chitrakote waterfalls. 7. Food - Hotel Suri – Good 3.5/5 points - Other options – Near Rayagiri & Warangal. Once Warangal is crossed very basic food available at Tadvai/Eturunagaram. Once entered in to Chhattisgarh, one small food point available at Bhupalapatnam and till jagadalpur no food options until Bhadrachalam is reached from Sukma side. Good food is available at Tourism hotel at Chitrakote waterfalls. 8. Roads LB Nagar- Rayagiri – 60 Kms 4 lane one toll Rayagiri – Mulugu x Road –92 Kms 4 laning upto Kazipet is in progress and pot holes are available on existing road. Mulugu x Rd – Chattisgarh border on NH 163 – 150 Kms 2 lane road mostly good except in towns Telangana border – Bhopalapatnam 38 Kms. Only ballast road but level without much damage. Bridge over Seethanagaram Vaagu not constructed. It will swell after any heavy rain. Bridge before 6 Kms to Bhopalapatnam was not completed on date of journey. But by August,2018 end it might have been opened. Complete forest area and not advisable for night travel being Naxal area. Bhopalapatnam – Dantewada – Jagadalpur – 240 Kms. 2 lane road NH-63. Good Road except few culverts are under expansion. Jagadalpur – Chitrakote waterfalls – 40 Kms. 2 lane Good road. Chitrakote Waterfalls – Sukuma – Kerlapal – 156 Kms. 2 lane road good. Last 20 Kms cement road. Kerlapal – Konta -61 Kms. Cement Road work in progress. Except last 10 Kms, entire road is single and none of the culverts are constructed. It may take another year minimum to completion. Konta to Bhadrachalam – 70 Kms. 2 Lane Good Road. Bhadrachalam – Kothagoodem – 40 Kms. Most of the Road 4 Lane work is completed and Good. Kothagoodem – Suryapet – 136 Kms. 2 Lane mostly Good except few patches. Moderate to Heavy traffic route. Suryapet – Hyderabad (Home) – 130 Kms. 4 Lane Very Good. Two Tolls.
  18. We had spent about an hour at the falls enjoying the views and clicking photos. Tourism resort is adjacent to the falls and we had breakfast in the resort and it was good. I had checked up availability of the cottages in the resort before starting but they were full for couple of months in advance. View from the cottages is awesome (I had checked up standing near them). By 9.15 Hrs we are on the road again to drive back home about 600 Kms. This time we have decided to drive through Jagdalpur-Sukuma- Bhadrachalam-Hyderabad. Do not know the condition of the road but surly can not go back in the same route we came here. Up to Sukuma and 20 Kms beyond it was good 2 lane road with sparse traffic. After that CC road work is in progress and most of the next 60 Kms only single road is laid with huge height difference between lanes and most of the road is through forest. There were many culverts and none have been completed. Night driving is not advisable. With difficulty we reached Andhra border at Komta and all mobile signals are active now. Once entered in to AP and further in to Telangana, roads are good. We reached Bhadrachalam by 15.00 Hrs and after having Darshan reached Kothagudem and took a couple of hours rest at my friend's house. Started from there at about 19.00 Hrs and reached home by 12 mid night with a break at Suryapet. completed 1205 Kms drive home to home.
  19. Day -2, 29-07-2018 Sunday We were ready by 6.30 in the morning and checked out the room after a cup of coffee. Chitrakote falls are about 40 Kms away from Jagdalpur and we reached there before 7.30. We were told that the flow had decreased since past two days. but it is still high. As it was early morning, number of visitors at the falls were less even though it was Sunday. Weather was too cloudy and I was disappointed with the camera. Let the photos speak further..
  20. As our trip was unplanned, we did not pack any food. By the time we crossed it was beyond lunch time and we were hungry. But did not got a tea till we reached Jagdalpur in the night. There could be some eateries on the way but may be due to bandh we did not found any. About 17.00 Hrs we reached Dantewada. Had darshan of Maa Danteswari part of less known Shakti Peetas. The temple is at the confluence of the Dakini and Shankini rivers. We did not ventured in to the town and started our journey towards Jagdalpur. We initially thought of visiting Chitrakote falls before reaching jagdalpur but due to 2.30 Hrs time lost at bridge, we had postponed it for next day morning. We reached Jagdalpur by 19.30 Hrs and checked in to Hotel suri International. Found this hotel through Make My Trip site.
  21. After travelling in the same road condition 6 Kms before Bhopalapatnam, again road ended. With previous experience, I just went in to water stream only to see it is a bigger stream and no culvert there. A bigger bridge is under construction over it. Two wheeler are being transported in small local made boat like things. When I asked the people nearby (First time I saw many people here)., they said car can not cross the river. Suggested to try with the bridge engineer whether he will allow on the bridge as all the slabs are completed. I found site engineer on other side of bridge and walked to him and requested to allow our car to cross the bridge. (Material have been dumped on either side of bridge to prevent vehicles). Site Engineer who is from AP told me that the last slab was laid a couple of weeks back and he is not allowing two wheeler under pressure for locals, how can a car be allowed. He added that even if he allows me, Naxals will abduct him by evening. He asked me to go back to Hyderabad as there is no road from Hyderabad to Bhopalapatnam from any side. The roads are open only in summers till monsoon sets in. Then he asked me how you came up to this place as today is Naxals bandh in entire Chattisgarh. Even locals will not come out of their homes. And also told me that till couple days back, Seethanagaram Vaagu (Stream) was flowing at 6 ft height and no vehicle could pass it. I could see the bandh effect till I reached Jagdalpur. I thought and told him that I travelled for 300 Kms and for 6 Hrs and do not want to go back. Requested him for any alternate solution. After pestering him for almost 45 minutes, he said if we can wait for 2 Hrs, he will allow me to cross as local Bijapur district SP is crossing in opposite direction (His vehicle will be first after slabs) and same time I can cross so that locals will not question him. Ultimately it took us nearly 2.30 Hrs wait at the bridge from 12.00 noon to 14.30 Hrs. In the tension, even i did not took a snap at the bridge. Once we entered Chattisgarh no mobile network is available. Later we came to know that only BSNL will work at CRPF camps at 3 Kms range. Except in towns, we did not had a mobile connectivity in entire Chattisgarh.
  22. Shekar

    Hyderabad drive Meetups

    Yes I am also curious, when will be next trip. Does car pooling is done in the trips.
  23. Shekar

    Bangalore to Hyderabad, Places to visit

    These temple were constructed in 16th century by military captains (Father and Son) of Vijayanagara Empire. We were told that the Hampi Vittala Temple and these temples were constructed at same time. One is Chinthala Venkataramana Swamy (God Vishnu) and other on the banks of Penna River is Bugga Ramalingeswara (God Shiva) Temples. Gali Gopurams of later were not completed but no one will disappoint by visiting these temples. Beautiful sculptures in black stone. Another thing I noticed is the cleanliness of the town. Said to be efforts of JC Diwakar Reddy Brothers.
  24. Shekar

    Bangalore to Hyderabad, Places to visit

    Tadipatri where two historic and heritage temples are available worth visiting. A small detour from Anathapur and the road joins again at Gooty.
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