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    • By SK01
      Roadtrips... long drives... holiday to the hills driving our car, gives a high to all the drivers. Driving to the beaches or to the unexplored hills with our family or friends is an all-time favorite activity. Driving is fun, but a single error makes it a disaster.
       
      All drivers know the feeling - a frightening realization behind the wheel of the car when a wave of drowsiness hits, that you may be too tired to go on. A blink of an eye is all it takes for one to end up trapped inside a toppled car or a badly mangled car in the opposite lane.
       
      20% of the accidents on Indian Highways are caused by driver fatigue says a survey. It all happens in seconds, as said above, in a blink of an eye. Drowsiness is extremely dangerous.
       
      Pushing yourself beyond the limits, just to make it on time or just to boast to your friends of your achievements of "non-stop 800kms drive" is the last thing you would want to do.  

      You Can’t Afford to Drive on Through Fatigue
       
      Fatigue is a serious concern for everyone on the road. Feeling sleepy makes a driver, less attentive, and affects the driver’s ability to make quick decisions. You need to be able to navigate, merge safely, respond to unpredictable drivers, accidents, potholes or even the sudden appearance of a cattle. 
       
      Delayed reaction time can mean the difference between life and death – for you, or another person on the road. A tired mind also has more trouble concentrating, making it difficult to judge speed and distance. 
       
      Entering a trance-like state while driving is a trait we notice quite often while driving on highways at a constant speed, at constant cabin temperature. This is known as Highway Hypnosis. Becoming attuned to your body and its need for rest and sleep will make you a safer driver.
       
      Warning Signals that It’s Time to Get Off the Road
       
      Driving requires your undivided attention. If you notice one or more of these signs, it is time to get off the wheel and rest.
       
      Frequent yawning & fidgeting   
      Frequent lane changes without knowing  
      Tailgating  
      Erratic Braking  
      Inconsistent speed  
      Delayed reaction time  
      Missing on turns and signboards  
      Missing to check on ORVMs IRVMs  
      Missing to use indicators   
      Rolling down the window for fresh air  
      Blurred vision or frequent blinking  
      5 Tips to Combat Fatigue
       
      1. Surveys show that a short nap can increase alertness and significantly lower the risk of driver fatigue. Take a short twenty-minute nap, preferably before you become too sleepy.
       
      2. Avoid medications that may induce drowsiness. 
       
      3. Eat a healthy and balanced meal at regular intervals. Lack of proper food leads to a drop in blood sugar levels which makes us drowsy. Also, heavy meals make us lazy and sluggish increasing the drowsiness. 
       
      4. Coffee, smoking, turning up the volume on the radio and fresh air only work for short periods of time. Do not rely on them to keep you alert. (Personal experience, play those songs that give you a good feeling. Not too loud and not too much music. Play it at a medium volume, this will help you cruise at a constant speed making you feel attentive.) 
       
      5. Stay hydrated and also keep switching between ‘recirculating’ and ‘fresh-air’ modes on the air-con. A change in temperature helps you stay more alert. (Personal experience, roll down the window and allow fresh air and those traffic sound to enter the cabin. Hearing those makes us attentive and lets us drive till we find a good tree to rest under.)

      Above all, never forget to take naps at regular intervals. It's not only beneficial to you, but also to your car, its engine, and tires.  If you are really tired, never attempt to drive beyond the limits. It's your maturity and safe driving habits that ultimately call you a good driver, not your "800kms non-stop achievements". 
    • By SK01
      Exploring Yanam Part 1
       
      Origin: Ramachandrapuram, East Godavari, Andhra Pradesh.
      Destination: Yanam, Puducherry.
       
      Route Taken: Ramachandrapuram - Tallapolam - Draksharamam - Kuyyeru - Yanam
      Start Time:5:10AM
      Distance: 27KMS
      Time Taken: 1hr 
      Car: Honda City VX i-VTEC
      Mileage: 13.2KMPL
      Road Condition: Mix of good, average, bad and worst. 
      Scenic Views: Single lane roads with beautiful scenes at either side of the roads. The roads are surrounded by lush green farms on either side. 
       
      Trip Report
       
       
      Yanam, the place that I first visited in 2013, when I was 17. And this time again I wanted to visit the place only to know it better and love it more...
       
      Started early in the morning at 5:10 and reached the area in 1hr. 
       
      The only thing I thought I could do in the place is to take the initial sunrise photo touching the waters. That's a beautiful sight and I never missed that. But surprisingly this time I got more than what I expected. I got to know about the area more and explore the area and the backwaters. This time, unfortunately, I could take my favourite shot, the sun touching the waters because of clouds. But got a chance to explore the area a bit. 
       
      It was 7:00 AM, the sun just started rising pushing the clouds aside. And there I saw a person in a white shirt and white pant, assumed him to be a local and approached him to inquire more about the place. To my surprise, he turned out to be the government boat operator. Upon asking him, he arranged a boat ride into the waters and at 7:15 I was on the boat moving gently on the backwaters. 
       
      The boat driver Ramakrishna, is a very nice guy. I finished taking photos and started talking with him. he spoke many things, from the political situation in Puducherry and Andhra Pradesh, their lives, the local MLA and not to forget, the insider information about the place.  Yanam, a very beautiful place, mostly unexplored and left undeveloped. "Yanam chala manchi ooru Saru, Kani Chala mandi teliyaka raru. Tourists perigite maku income perugutundi" said the boat driver. 
      Yanam indeed is a really beautiful place, there are many places to explore from Yanam. 
       
      The first one, 
       
      Bhairavapalem Mangrove Forests (Where we can find many rare migratory birds. It takes 2 hours to come and 2 hours stay on this island. Total of 6 hours. Price for 10 is 6000 INR) Koringa Mangrove Forests And many small unexplored islands (We can find many migratory birds)  
      I think the area should be developed, but that development shouldn't destroy the natural beauty and serenity of the place. The local activities early in the morning, sunrise, birds chirping and the fishing activities are really beautiful and the development should not destroy these...
       
      Part 2 coming soon... I'll be writing about the places that in have visited in part 2.  
       
      Places to stay:
      The Regency Hotel (best for families as per trip advisor) Sarva Inn Puducherry Government Guest House   
      Few Pictures
       
       
       

       

       

       

       

    • By SK01
      Hey all,
       
      Dussehra vacations are on the way and I started planning from today itself for my next wildlife trip. 
      Woke up in the morning to see a mail about the vacations 😁
      for me its going to be a long holiday from 13th October to 21st October.

      What could be more happier on a Monday morning than opening a mail about the long holidays... 😍
       
      So coming to the point,
       
      I request people over here to give some information about the forests reserves in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, AP mostly as I will be spending most of my time in Vijayawada and Ramachandrapuram (EG Dist).
       
      Been to Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve this year  visited Nallamalla forests the previous year, and Maredumilli forests before Nallamalla (couldn't spend much time though). this time also I'm planning to visit some place and want to spend some time, at least a day or two in the forest. 
       
      everyone please give the list of places which will also be useful for wildlife enthusiasts like me as there are very less posts on wildlife here. 
       
       
    • By SK01
      A day to be remembered forever, 2016 is the year that I have joined in this beautiful group since then Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve was always on my bucket list. many attempts plan since then and nearly after two years, I got the chance to go. I don't want to stress more on the routes and other details as there are enough threads regarding the same. rather I would like to share my favourite photos that I have shot in my three days stay and safari and Pangdi and Madnapur gate. never the less I will share with you people some necessary information like stay, safari details, gates, and some knowledge of wildlife that I have gained. 
       
      Started at 6:00 in the morning from Kompally and reached by 3:00 in the afternoon. remember that no one can help you with the routes. it's always better to contact someone at the resort and ask them to guide you in person. except Jio, no other sim card is going to work. I stayed at Mahua Tola Resorts, I can say that it is the best in the place. a  bit on the higher side, yet friendly staff, manager and good food. we were the only family the three days and never we felt insecure. Manager Shukla is a very nice person, he will come with us to the Safari and make it a very memorable and enjoyable one. 
       
      Coming to the safari, it's always good to ask the resort people to book. because at the gate I have seen few facing some problems. if it's the resort people, its hassle free. this is personal opinion though. 
       
      As people see, it's not so easy to spot a tiger. a tiger spotting depends on our luck. a tiger mainly sits just beside or few meters away from us inside the forest, yet not visible most of the time. it's just because of the bamboo trees. Tadoba is full of bamboo trees and that makes it very difficult to spot one even if it near us. you will be tempted by the pugmarks, but not always you'll see a tiger. I was really lucky to spot Tigress Junabai with her cubs on my last day safari with the resort manager Shukla at Madhapur gate. Ultimate sightings I can say. It is my father who spotted her while she was resting under a tree shade few meters away from us covered with bamboo trees. 
       
      I'm not a pro, yet telling my experience with the camera focusing modes and how I got a perfect focus mode settings by experimenting and with the knowledge I have on focus modes which I have learnt studying few books, articles and discussing it in our WhatsApp group. 
       
      The device, Sony Alpha A6000 with 55-210mm zoom lens. manual mode, shutter speed around 1/500 and above, ISO range 4000 (thanks to my cameras high ISO range ie, 25600), Aperture F:6.3
       
      Focus Mode: Auto, Focus Area: Wide, Metering Mode: Multi
       
      This was the mode that I have shot at first only to get the defocused face of a tiger. Thought "this is over, I'm not going to get any more beautiful photos". thought of the focusing modes and settings I have learnt before and adjusted it again to try my luck. 
       
      Focus Mode: Auto, Focus Area: Centre, Metering Mode: Spot
       
      And then I got some amazing pictures. 
       
      Used Auto Focus Continues while the subject was moving and I can say that this is the camera for super fast autofocus. never missed a detail while shooting with this in AF-C mode. 
      You can check out the langur monkey and male spotted deer jumping. shot in AF-C mode with shutter sped around 1/1000 or above. couldn't get a zoomed one because of the lens. 
       
      Here are the pictures. 
       
      PS: I have written Neelghai female. but that's a male Sambar deer. 
       






























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