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*All pictures will be posted at the end of the topic*
Total Odo was 2600kms. We did it in 3 full days.
The initial thought was to go Goa.
But I heard that, Munnar temperature is dropping to sub zero and we can experience frost and fog.
So I convinced my brother for Munnar road trip. I thought of taking my Mitsubishi Lancer (1999 model, Stock condition). but dont want to take risk in ghat section. My brother owns Hyundai Eon newly bought. Hardly we are 2 and can go without missing any space comfort.
Planned to go by 10th of Jan in the early morning 3 Am. But due to my hectic second shift timings, I couldn't had enough sleep.
10th Jan 2019, Thursday
Woke up at 7am and took Orr at ghatkesar entry and halted Shamshabad by 9am. Had good breakfast started by 9.30. I have taken the pilot charge and slowly accelerated to 100kmph. we feel the small car Eon is stable at 100kmph for cruising and braking. didnt gave halt anywhere. by 12:30 we skipped kurnool and halted for lunch at Ananthapur by 14:30.
The temperature outside is around 30* . felt bit irritating in driving. slowly crossed penukonda and took halt for petrol pump.
There I spotted KIA's new sedan. photos will be attached at end. departed from that place and seen KIA's plant for the first time. Its a very large.
Realised that our average speed is coming down. then we planned to skip Bangalore city. Google maps didn't shown proper route. but I followed the suggested route by one of our members. ( He is Mr. ***)
We have taken branch lane at devanahalli town and heading towards Hoskote.
Its a single lane and bad road. full of traffic with loaded trucks. didnt check the time but we reached Hoskote. (Hoskote is on Bangalore- Tirupati highway * Old Madras highway formally).
Then next hurdle we have to cross Hosur. Even this is a very busy road. can see lot of cabs and loaded truck. We reached Hosur by 19:00 approx.
Thats where we took back our NH7/ 44. Thats full of 6 lane and full of hectic moving traffic. all people are rushing minimum speed of 80kmph. Their all driving shows full of recklessness.
all junctions are equipped with blue LED lights blinking in weird way. its very disturbing. We crossed krishnagiri and felt happy after that. All chennai pax diverted completely.
Slowly we reached dharmapuri by 20:30. Had Excellent dinner at Arya's bhavan. Proceeded towards Salem. Basically Salem is a very main junction. It holds roads coming from chennai side, bangalore side, coimbatore/ kochi side and kanniyakumar/ Madurai side.
All the national highway through salem is like gliding on the city with one single fly over. Awesome roads those are. The advantage of taking NH7/44 is, we no need to divert anywhere. all the road join this highway and divides their own.
Now, I feel bit drowsy and heading to Dundigul. Any how I managed 80kmph and used all my energy to reach dindugal. There we have to take right towards Theni/ Munnar.
11th Jan 2019, Friday
Almost 00:30 we took right turn towards Theni/ Munnar. we can use same road for Kodaikanal also. I handover steering to my brother and took power-nap.
Its a double road without divider. Every junction, there are strong barricades arranged in zigzag way. Somewhere before theni. A police checkpost arrived. police asked us the details and check our luggage, car and car docs. they allowed to pass from there. Later crossing then, ghat started with a strong hairpinbend.
The road has fresh tarmac and having cat eyes. Lots of hairpin bends and the elevation taking us drastically up. I feel temperature is coming down for every 2-3 hairpin bends.
approx 40-50 curves and easy 20 hairpin bends we crossed, (Watch for fallen stones on the road) and reached kerala border checkpost. through out ghat we got 4G internet (FYI).
thats where we had great ride seriously. And from then around 80kms , its a bad road. some places with no road. We can clearly seen the roads are washed out due to land slides. The temperature is really chilling outside. finally we reached Devikulam. At this place I have seen clear sky with infinity stars shining. This will be the best place for night photography. by this time its our own risk. we cannot spot any human presence. those are very remote places during night. by 05:00 we reached munnar. and my brother booked a nice room at pallivasal. its on munnar kochi ghat.
Had sleep till 10am and woke up. just took drive aback to munnar and had a very good breakfast at sangeetha restaurant(Pure veg). took drive to Top station. we can spot a big lake with dam and tea plantations while going. the climate was not so good to enjoy and photography. may be I reached in wrong time. Try some farm fresh carrots at stalls. be prepare for parking. as thats a narrow stretch, so can take parking a bit outside. I collected the information about the cold place where the temperatures goes subzero.
We are completely tired and driven back to room and had sound sleep very early.
12th Jan 2019, Saturday
Woke up in the morning 5 and vacated our room by 5:50. took drive to munnar first and had tea in a bakery. Thats too chilling climate outside. I can approximate 6-7* C.
We were actually returning to Hyderabad by covering few places. I took the drive and heading towards Udumalpet. while going out from munnar, I saw people gathered beside a small lake.
There I found water is emitting vapor. After getting down from the car, literally my fingers were freezing. I have taken my jacket and camera with me.
Spotted frost on grass and photographed few moments.between beautiful sun rise moments started. So I decided to move on from that place.
The road again going up from the actual plane. There we crossed so many tea plantations. these are actaully beautifull than top station plantations. the road is bit mixed with bad patches. overall you fell, this what munnar is.
U can see a mile stone mentioning about sea level. thats 5500 meters. I missed to take that click. after going some distance, the road slowly takes to you to down. Later you will enter into annamalai wild life reserve. the road is bit narrow. u will follow a valley through out in the right side. be very careful on that road with upcoming traffic.
By 9:00, we reached a forest checkpost. Hardly its 15 kms to Udumalpet. then we have to take to left towards Coimbatore. with the help of google maps we skipped coimbatore. reached mettupallyam by 12:00.
Had good lunch at Kallar Railway gate.
My brother taken the steering for nilagiri ghats. this is bit tough than munnar ghat in traffic and ghat elevation. I didnt planned any ste visits in ooty except chocalates shopping.
we continued to masinagudi, thats actually 70kms to get down. there is another route, which can takes u down in just 35kms. unfortunately traffic police not allowing any vehicles. probably its a one way.
we crossed mudumalai and bandipur. later halted at nunjangud for sacks. took mysore outer ring road towards bangalaore. he still we can skip bangalore city while coming from mysore side. we can take left at Maddur, towards Kunigal. the road is 2 lane without divider and occational speed brakers. thats awesome road u can drive. After reaching Kunigal, u can find an awesome Mangalore bangalore highway with 4 lane with divider. U can take that road till Nelamangala. after reaching nelamangala, u can take road to dodballapur and then to chikballapur. these two road are with bad patches and will all single road. There we have taken our NH7/ 44 towrds Hyderabad. My brother driven all the way to hyderabad with 3 power naps.
13th Jan 2019, sunday
We reached Hyderabad by morning 9:30 safely.
All the photos can be accessed through below link.
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.
Day 0 : Hyderabad 14th December
Medical check list:
Crocin - body pains and fever Metrogyl - motions Avomine - motion sickness Surbex- T multivitamin - resistance Band aids - safety Soframycin ointment - safety Wikoryl - sore throat and cold Diamox - Altitude sickness
Vehicle check list
Periodic Service and all liquids top up Wheel alignment and balancing, check tyres for punctures, check spare wheel Jumper cables (available at Ranijung) Towing ropes and hooks (available at Ranijung) Air pump Spare bulbs Torch Duct tape Knife/scissors Zip ties Basic tool kit Dash cam Car charger (two, front/rear) PUC (pollution)
Camera check list :
Don't forget to empty memory cards Tripod stand Action Camera Car mount Chargers and extra batteries Gimbal
Personal check list
Passport Passport size photos Original license Original RC Original Insurance AAdhar card
Gandikota meetup on January 26 and 27th