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Old 9th September 2008, 09:51   #301
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Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post

I had a quick word with unni.ak who drove down to Alapuzha/Ambalapuzha via Mysore, Gudalur, Nilambur and Edappal. He reported bad roads from Gudalur to Kerala border. The ghats leading down to Nilambur have some damages on the curves. But the worst experience was reserved for the drive from Nilambur to Edappal
Oh my god. The Gudalur-Nilambur road was in such a good shape few months back. I was planning to take this in the first week of Oct.
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Old 11th September 2008, 07:13   #302
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Not only in Thekkady-Kottayam but also in various parts of Idukkki district, roads were blocked due to heavy rains in the last 2 days (as per local Malayalam TV channels).

I had a quick word with unni.ak who drove down to Alapuzha/Ambalapuzha via Mysore, Gudalur, Nilambur and Edappal. He reported bad roads from Gudalur to Kerala border. The ghats leading down to Nilambur have some damages on the curves. But the worst experience was reserved for the drive from Nilambur to Edappal, where he lost considerable time and hurt his car (Ford Fiesta). Very surprising, this entire route was in great form even 3 weeks ago when a friend of mine drove down from Bombay to Pattambi on this route.

Let us await a detailed report from unni.ak - he must be busy with his Onam celebrations.
An update on the B'lore - Mysore - Gundulpet - Gudalur - Nadugani - Nilambur - Perinthalmanna - Edappal - Chavakkad - Edapally - Ambalapuzha route that I took a few days back.

B'lore - Mysore: Super. Watch out for the bumps that are unmarked.

Mysore - Gulndulpet: Good, except for the first few kilometers after leaving the Mysore ring road. The potholes are pretty deep and chances of crashing into them (thanks to oncoming bright beams) are high, if you are driving at night.

Gundulpet - Gudalur: Bad. The infamous stretch of bad roads remain and have worsened after Gundulpet. Roads improve a lot once you enter Bandipur. As soon as you leave the Karnataka border and enter Tamil Nadu, potholes begin. The roads are patchy with large potholes almost till Gudalur.

Gudalur - Nadugani: Ok. Again, potholes are there but you can manage.

Nadugani - Nilambur: Roads are ok. When you start the ghat section, the roads are not that good. The ghat section has been done up pretty well after that initial few kilometers. Though congested, you can actually enjoy the drive.

Nilambur - Perinthelmanna: Bad at places. Congested roads again and driving through them at day is a pain.

Perinthelmanna - Edapal: Bad. I took the Perinthelmana - Angadipuram - Valanchery route which was bad. I hear that there is an alternate through Pattambi, not sure of the road conditions though.

Edapal - Chavakkad - Edapally: Ok. Work is going on and there are few stretched that are bad and a few sections that have been done up well. A mixed bag of things. Otherwise driveable. Do be wary of the traffic conditions though.

Edapally - Ambalapuzha: Good.

Overall Experience: Bad, this is the longest (time-wise) drive ever. 14hours, to cover 585kms. The distance is less by 40kms, but just not worth it. This route maybe an ok experience in an Innova/Safari/Scorpio kind of a vehicle. But in a sedan (mine being a Fiesta) or anything smaller, definitely not recommended.
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Old 11th September 2008, 14:50   #303
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I am planning to drive upto Kodungallor in the 1st week of Oct. Planning to take the normal BLR -> Krishnagiri -> Dharmapuri -> Mettur -> Bhavani -> Coimbatore -> Palghat -> TCR route. I am familiar with this route. Will wait till end of Sep to check on the road conditions.

I would however need help on locating a good restaurant in the Mettur area. Earlier, I used to start around 5:30AM from Bangalore, so I stop at Dharmapuri for breakfast and then Palghat for Lunch. This time I want to start by 4AM so that I can have my lunch at home in KDNGLR. I suppose I will be in Mettur by 8AM or so, would like to locate a good restaurant with good, neat rest room (I will be accompanied by my family, hence this "mandatory" criteria...). I don't mind even if it is a bit expensive place. Could any one help me in this regard.

Thanks in advance..
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Old 11th September 2008, 16:00   #304
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Originally Posted by unni.ak View Post
An update on the B'lore - Mysore - Gundulpet - Gudalur - Nadugani - Nilambur - Perinthalmanna - Edappal - Chavakkad - Edapally - Ambalapuzha route that I took a few days back.
Looks like it is wise to take Krishnagiri-Dharmapuri route.
I am planning to drive in the first week of Oct.
Probably I will start at 3AM and reach home for Lunch.
I hope at 3AM, the Bangalore-Hosur stretch wouldn't be jam packed.

Any update about the 4-lining in TN-Coimbatore stretch?
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Old 13th September 2008, 00:08   #305
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Default Updates after 17 Hours of Driving and 770 KMS - Phew

Reached home yesterday at around 2300 Hrs started from Bangalore @ around 0500 Hrs thnx to a very scheming friend of mine who managed to delay my sweet departure from Bangalore at 0300 Hrs to 0500 Hrs.

BLR - mysore good empty roads made good speed.

Mysore - Gundulpet - Nice roads but some nasty potholes till about 5 kms outside Mysore.

Gundulpet - Sultan Bathery( had breakfast from here) - Kalpetta - Vythiri - Adivaram - Thamarassery - Calcut ( Bypass) - Kotakkal - kuttipuram - Edappal Good roads but the infamous Thamarassery choram ( Ghat ) section could do with some real re surfacing. This shouldnt be a problem as anyways we don’t hit three digits speeds on these rods anyways. but do keep a look out for the rogue truckers. Had lunch at about 1330 Hrs at Edappal KTDC Restaurant.

From Edappal towards Kunnamkulam First ten kilometers can flex the capabilities of most of the off roaders on TeamBHP - for the sedan horrible would be an understatement.

From Paravur i did the mistake of underestimating the traffic pattern on NH 17 and decided to take it till Edapally and suferred for it , so here is my advice , if you wanna go beyond cochin just turn off from NH 17 at Paravur and join NH47 at Aluva and continue. Both ways road are pristine and you will reach NH 47 where you have ample chances of overtaking and moving ahead unlike the two lane version on NH 17.

Had a tea break from Vytilla and Carried on due to personal reasons had to touch base at Pandalam also before finally reaching Trivandrum , so drove down to Haripad via NH47 took a right turn to mavelikara and then reached pandalam - the road were exceptionally good and had well marked speed breakers.

From here i get on to the MC road and it starts pouring cats and dogs to make things worse the roads are terrible extremely bad till about 25 kilometers after Kottarakkara. I would not even let my enemy go this way in future. Could not move above 50 KMPH and zero visibility unmarked deviations abrupt road terminations Turn offs leading nowhere etc. Easily the worst road i have see till date and extremely dangerous I pity those people who are forced to commute on this road for a living.

So from Pandalam - Adoor - Kottarakkara - Trivandrum took me about 5 hours to cover a distance of about 80 Kms ( i am not sure here i coudl be wrong where i felt this more like 200 kms ). Usually covered in under two hours easily under better ambient light and better road conditions.

So Nh17 was and i guess will be heaven till Paravur and then NH 47 will be a clean fast drive to Trivandrum .

@HVkumar thank you for the route advice and is there any more detail that you would want ... and no i did not encounter any wildlife in the Gundulpet - Muthanga Section. But yes it is a wildlife sanctuary if i had hit this place under the cover of darkness the chances would be higher for sure.

Last edited by hellstar : 13th September 2008 at 00:10.
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Old 13th September 2008, 09:07   #306
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Hellstar, that seems to be have one hell of a drive - probably the longest of your Bangalore-Trivandrum drives to date.

Since you wanted o go to Pandalam, maybe you could have come onto NH47 via Trissur and gone on M C Road itself from Angamali via Perumbavoor, Muvattupuzha, Kottayam, Chengannur, instead of the Haripad route.

How is the MC Road widening work going - looks like you wouldn't have been able to make out, judging from the low visibility situation? Pity it took so long, takes just 2-3 hours to go from Kottayam to Trivandrum in good times.

I am told that all roads leading to Edappal (e.g. from Perinthalmanna) are bad. But the road from Perinthalmanna via Cherplasery, Shoranur to Trissur is in good shape apparently (update 3 weeks ago).

Now the next big question is: which is the bes road to Kerala?
NH47 Palakkad-Trissur, hellstar reported it to be in a bad condition
Edappal-Kunnamkulam, bad
Gudalur-Kerala border and Perinthalmanna-Edappal, bad condition

Looks to me that to avoid the Edappal stretch, you should continue on NH17 from Kuttipuram via Ponnani and connect with Kunnamkulam that way (instead of the shorter state highway route from Kuttipuram to Kunnamkulam via Edappal. Any idea about that road?
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Old 13th September 2008, 13:38   #307
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From Paravur i did the mistake of underestimating the traffic pattern on NH 17 and decided to take it till Edapally and suferred for it , so here is my advice , if you wanna go beyond cochin just turn off from NH 17 at Paravur...
Here is an alternate to ENTER Cochin from NH17. (already mentioned in previous pages, but here are the landmarks).

The route is Kodungallur (NH17) - Maliankara - Cherai - Vypeen - Gosri bridges - Ernakulam High Court Junction. Turn right after the 2nd bridge at Kottappuram (Kodungallur). There is a signal light here, and you have to enter left (one way towards Parur) and then take a right after just 2 car lengths. First 3 KMs are narrow and winding, and you will find it difficult to overtake any vehicle. You will reach a fairly wide bridge (newly opened) which takes you to Palliport / pallipuram, about 2 kms north of Cherai beaches. Here onwards, it is a fairly straight road (with a couple of S curves over a 25 KM or so stretch), but very busy. Do not try any speeds above 60KMs here - this is a heavily populated, rural area.

Advantage over Parur - Edappally route being straight roads, and direct entry into the city.

For those wanting to go to Fort Cochin / Mattancherry area, you can, instead of turning left to enter the Gosri bridges at Vypeen, take the Junkar. For those wanting to enter Alleppey district, during day times on a week day (when marriage parties will be scare, hence the junkar will not be too crowded), this is the better option - Vypeen - Junkar (ferry) - Fort Cochin - Thoppumpady - Palluruthy - Edacochin - Aroor jn. (abt 15 Km from Thoppumpady to Aroor). I am not sure if the ferry is round the clock. You may be better off using the roads throughout if you reach Kodungallur between 9 PM and 5 AM.
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Old 13th September 2008, 17:15   #308
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Hi hellstar,

that is one hell of a long drive ata stretch!

> so drove down to Haripad via NH47 took a right turn to mavelikara

You took a left and not a right.
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Old 13th September 2008, 21:57   #309
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Hell Star,

That's one hell of a ride, nice update too.

Lots of rain yesterday and today throughout the drive.

Drove Yesterday from Coimbatore Airport to Palakkad / Nemmarah. Up to walayar, Kerala Border road is good, from there till Palakkad, the surface is OK, not too many pot holes compared to last month, seems to have been patched up.

Today drove an Alto from Nemarah to Cochin and back.

From Vadakkancherry to Kuthiran OK, pot holes are patched up, the road edges have become deep, due to slush and due to rain, the mud has run-off on NH 47 till Trichur, if you run-off its dangerous, saw 3 accidents due to autos / cars running off the roads. Kuthiran has become worser, smaller cars will hit bottom if not careful, lots and lots of pot holes compared to last month. From there till Mannuthy, BP Trichur are OK, more or less same condition of road like last month. Traffic was very light today due to holiday and could make it in 2 1/2 hours both ways. Roads have not deteriorated as much as I thought it would have due to rains.

--Ramky

=========

Last edited by ramkya1 : 13th September 2008 at 21:58.
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Old 14th September 2008, 00:04   #310
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Hi hellstar,

that is one hell of a long drive ata stretch!

> so drove down to Haripad via NH47 took a right turn to mavelikara

You took a left and not a right.

yep thats correct , but by the time i realised it the edit option was diabled already . but the turn was a left turn all right .. :-)
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Old 14th September 2008, 00:36   #311
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I did B'lore-TVM & back last month. Drove overnight both ways & in some heavy rains.

From B'lore took NH47 thru Hosur, Krishnagari, Dharmapuri, Bhavani, Palakkad, Cochin, Allapey, Kollam, TVM. This is one of the worst routes I've ever driven. Road widening work underway, narrow underpass roads, roads in Kerala not so great with potholes & crazy traffic! Took me almost 18 hrs Damn!

Drove back in a different route. TVM - Nagarcoil-Trinulveli-Madurai(bypass)-Salem(bypass)-Dharmapuri-krishnagiri-Hosur-B'lore. This one is best with 4 lanes & wide roads & less traffic. I did the stretch in 13hrs & the distance covered was less than route 1.

Cheers, AR
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Old 14th September 2008, 19:52   #312
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just back from kerala after the onam holidays.The route that I took was Manimala - Erumely-Mundakkayam-Kumily-Kambam-Theni-Periyakulam-Batlagundu-Sembatty-Ottanchatram-Dharapuram-Kangayam-Perundurai-Bhavani-Mettur-Thoppur-Palakkodu-Rayakkottai-Hosur-Sarjapur-Marthahalli-CV RamanNagar(blr)
The distance- door to door is 603 kms and I could do it in 12 hours... I was really surprised by the road conditions.(Thanks to HVK who suggested this route to me).Will recommment this to anyone going to Kottayam side.
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Old 14th September 2008, 20:39   #313
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I am also just back from Kerala. Please find below my travel details:

Forward journey: (sep 6) started from Whitefield at 4.30 AM. Took Blore-Mysore-Nilambur-Perinthalmanna-Pattambi-Shornur-Vadakkancherry-Trichur-Angamaly-Muvattupuzha. Total 520 KM and I took 12 hrs. Roads after Gundelpet (around 15Km) in very bad shape.

Return journey: (Sep 14) started from Muvattupuzha at 4.30AM. Took M'puzha-Angamaly-Trichur-Palaghat-Coimbatore-Bhavani-Mettur-D'puri-Palacodu-Hosur-Whitefield. Total 525 KM and I covered in 9.30 Hr. Roads are in excellent condition.

I would suggest all to take Blore-Hosur-D'puri-Mettur-Bhavani-Coimbatore-Trichur route.
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Old 14th September 2008, 21:52   #314
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I am also just back from Kerala. Please find below my travel details:

Return journey: (Sep 14) started from Muvattupuzha at 4.30AM. Took M'puzha-Angamaly-Trichur-Palaghat-Coimbatore-Bhavani-Mettur-D'puri-Palacodu-Hosur-Whitefield. Total 525 KM and I covered in 9.30 Hr. Roads are in excellent condition.

I would suggest all to take Blore-Hosur-D'puri-Mettur-Bhavani-Coimbatore-Trichur route.

Hey thanks, I was waiting for an update about this route.
I know that Bangalore-Dharmapuri and Thrissur-Muvatupuzha are in good shape.
Can you tell me how is Bhavani-Coimbatore and Palaghat-Thrissur (bypass).
How is the work progressing in NH47 TN part?
I heard the Palaghat-Thrissur (bypass) condition has deteriorated a lot after rains.

9.30 Hr pretty good. I now have reasons to believe that the road conditions are better than I expected.
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Old 15th September 2008, 12:05   #315
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Can you tell me how is Bhavani-Coimbatore and Palaghat-Thrissur (bypass).
How is the work progressing in NH47 TN part?
I heard the Palaghat-Thrissur (bypass) condition has deteriorated a lot after rains.
Bhavani-Coimbatore is in very good condition. Road widening is going on but its manageable.

Last 20 Km of Trichur-Palaghat route and Palaghat-Walayar route is little bumpy, but you can ride on a speed of 70 KMPH.
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