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Old 27th December 2013, 15:01   #6271
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Guys, I am planning to drive from tiruvalla to kollam. What's the condition of the MC Road now? Also what's the best road from kollam to Trivandrum. What are things I must look out for? Please help.
The M C Road from tiruvalla to kottarakara is fine,from kottarakara the road to kollam is narrow with traffic but ok.From kollam you have to take the NH to trivandrum which is 60 odd kms but with lots of traffic,no other way.
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Old 29th December 2013, 22:56   #6272
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Any updates on Chennai routes? I need to drive this week from Kochi and back. I wish to avoid Krishnagiri route, if possible.
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Old 29th December 2013, 23:25   #6273
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Any updates on Chennai routes? I need to drive this week from Kochi and back. I wish to avoid Krishnagiri route, if possible.
Palakkad-CBE-Salem-Ulundurpet-Chennai. Nothing major to update. Thats the option. Which section were you expecting updates? Trichur-Palakkad-CBE you know best! Rest is end to end 4-lane.
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Old 30th December 2013, 00:57   #6274
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Originally Posted by ampere View Post

Palakkad-CBE-Salem-Ulundurpet-Chennai. Nothing major to update. Thats the option. Which section were you expecting updates? Trichur-Palakkad-CBE you know best! Rest is end to end 4-lane.
Reached my chennai home just now. Took the same route from ekm except for the kl section where I took pollachi tiruppur onto perundurai.
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Old 30th December 2013, 07:50   #6275
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ampere

Palakkad-CBE-Salem-Ulundurpet-Chennai. Nothing major to update. Thats the option. Which section were you expecting updates? Trichur-Palakkad-CBE you know best! Rest is end to end 4-lane.
Thanks ampere. All my Chennai trips by car were on Salem - Krishnagiri - Vellore route. I travelled on Ulundurpet route only by night bus and had no idea. Infact, I never thought that its 100% four lane!
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Old 30th December 2013, 07:57   #6276
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Thanks ampere. All my Chennai trips by car were on Salem - Krishnagiri - Vellore route. I travelled on Ulundurpet route only by night bus and had no idea. Infact, I never thought that its 100% four lane!
Its a four lane. I think only a small section around Salem is on the verge of completion. (Others can confirm. Thats what I am aware). I would always prefer this to Krishnagiri.

As regards to reaching Salem, as I mentioned earlier, you guys know best!
Palakkad-Walayar or Vdakkenchery/Pollachi/Palladam as the conditions dictate.
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Old 30th December 2013, 08:23   #6277
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Originally Posted by ampere View Post

Its a four lane. I think only a small section around Salem is on the verge of completion. (Others can confirm. Thats what I am aware). I would always prefer this to Krishnagiri.

As regards to reaching Salem, as I mentioned earlier, you guys know best!
Palakkad-Walayar or Vdakkenchery/Pollachi/Palladam as the conditions dictate.
I took the same route for my Ekm Chennai trip yday night. Salem ulundurpet section is not fully 4 lane. You can take it as may be 95 %. Rest is like the LT bye pass. No issues in night travel as well.
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Old 30th December 2013, 09:45   #6278
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Did a Bangalore to Kottayam drive via Alleppy on 21/Dec. For a change, I captured the actual run time to compare it with what is mentioned in Google maps. Stayed overnight at Hotel Chinnis, Perundurai

A)
Amritha college, Hosa road ( 3:15 pm ) -- Chinnis hotel (8:10 pm)
Distance: 277 kms
Google maps time: 3 hrs 55 mins
Actual running time: 4 hrs 15 mins
Break: 45 mins for petrol+tea at Mc Donalds before Krishnagiri


B)
Chinnis hotel (6:20 am) -- Chanakya hotel, Palakkad (8:50 am)
Distance: 121 kms
Break: None
Google maps time: 2 hrs 5 mins
Actual running time: 2 hrs 30 mins

C)
Chanakya hotel, Palakkad (9:20) -- Changanacherry, via Alleppy (2:20 pm )
Distance: 215 kms
Google maps time: 4 hrs 10 mins
Actual running time: 5 hrs
Breaks:
Traffic jam near Aluva metro construction: Approx 1 hr,
Speed ticket at Vytilla: 15 mins
Petrol: 15 mins
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Old 30th December 2013, 09:57   #6279
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Back from another Bangalore - Chalakudy trip.

Left HSR Layout on 26/12 4:12 AM via the JP Nagar - Sathy route
6:55AM Chamaraj Nagar
7:30 AM stuck in Dhimbam Ghat for some time and heavy fog
8:30 AM Sathyamanagalam Ramavilas hotel. Good food and decent toilets
11:10 AM Palakkad bypass
1:35 PM Chalakudy. Traffic was horrific in this section.

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moving on - once you enter God's own country two things you've to be careful about - chessboard like single lane road full of patchwork (the chessboard disappears after Vadakkencheri); you wouldn't have seen such patchwork in your life. sure, you can do decent speeds on the patchwork, but it would give your suspension a good workout

you'll also encounter idiots on the road who'll try to kill you just to get ahead of the lot! see example below (tried to play chicken with me and lost):
I too encountered some idiots in my travel. Everytime I saw someone overtaking from left in NH47, its a Bangalore registered car. Had a very close call of smoke situation like the one in IronHawks photos at Mannuthy due to a drunkard; but luckily he was able to stop his beat just inches short of my car. I coulnd see his white beat due to the tire smoke for few seconds


Return was on 29th, again at 4:12 AM. Took the Pattambi - Gudalur road this time.
Progress till Vazhikadadavu was fast. Averaged about 58kmph and my Ritz gave a wonderful 20.75 kmpl petrol mileage (tankful to tankful, no AC and around 350 kg load) . Nadugani Ghat is in pathetic condition, scrapped the car underbody multiple times due to the deep potholes and heavily loaded car. Reached Gundlupet around 10 AM. Went to Mysore to see Mysore palace and lost a lot of time there. Finally reached HSR layout around 4:35 PM. To escape the mysore road traffic, I took the Mysore - Bannur - Malavalli route this time. Route is decent in surface quality, narrow, got lot of speed breakers and heavy in farm equipment traffic.
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Old 30th December 2013, 12:18   #6280
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Originally Posted by ampere View Post

Palakkad-CBE-Salem-Ulundurpet-Chennai. Nothing major to update. Thats the option. Which section were you expecting updates? Trichur-Palakkad-CBE you know best! Rest is end to end 4-lane.
Just a quick update. Did the Pollachi route from CBE to Thrissur, last night. The road from Vaddakancherry through Namara was narrow and winding but had a beautiful surface. Highly recommended esp if you drive something like our Jazz; and don't wait to turn off at Alathur, as someone advised above. Its still a 50 odd kms over the regular walayar stretch, but we made it comfortably in 4 odd hours. Lots of private vehicles on this stretch. The pollachi stretch is wider and faster but prone to speed devils.
The walayar stretch right up to and beyond Alathur is pathetic with patchy stretches and roadside work with steep embankments which are a drivers worst nightmare at night.
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Old 30th December 2013, 12:43   #6281
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Originally Posted by Juggy View Post
Just a quick update. Did the Pollachi route from CBE to Thrissur, last night. The road from Vaddakancherry through Namara was narrow and winding but had a beautiful surface. Highly recommended esp if you drive something like our Jazz; and don't wait to turn off at Alathur, as someone advised above.
Very true. The Pollachi-Kollengode-Vadakkencherry is quite a good surface. I just meant folks can apply their judgement based on the GQ status to choose the alternative in case its needed. But yes Palldam/Pollachi is pretty good alternative to bypass jams (if any nowadays) at Walayar.

Last edited by ampere : 30th December 2013 at 12:45.
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Old 30th December 2013, 15:26   #6282
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Drove from Palakkad to Bangalore yesterday. Saw some of the worst jams on the highway.

First one, near Avinashi. There was some political party's (KMDK?) function, and the under-construction 4-laned highway stretch was choked with people and cars. A few kms ahead, I saw the morons of the worst kind - a Tata Ace on the fast lane, facing the wrong direction and no lights at all, while it was already dark (6:30-ish), plucking up the myriad flag masts installed on the divider.

The next one was in Dharmapuri toll booth. For some reason, there was a very long queue of vehicles headed towards Bangalore. It was so bad that two additional lanes (which were meant for vehicles proceeding to Salem were blocked, and) opened towards Bangalore. Of course there were many smartalecs that tried to squeeze in, causing more delays.

The last major hold-up was in Thoppur ghat section, thanks to two truck breakdowns. Most of the loaded trucks were on the middle and fast lane, blocking the other vehicles.

Road condition was average to bad between Walayar and Madukkarai, the L&T bypass till Neelambur was decent but uneven, and then Avinashi mess began. Road surface was good.

Took me 8 hours this time, with two food breaks - one at Saravana Bhavan Classic before Vaikundom and the other one at CCD Shoolagiri (surprisingly, their EDC machine was working and accepted cards this time - it wasn't the case for the last 6 months), and a couple of short tea breaks.
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Old 30th December 2013, 15:34   #6283
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ampere

Palakkad-CBE-Salem-Ulundurpet-Chennai. Nothing major to update. Thats the option. Which section were you expecting updates? Trichur-Palakkad-CBE you know best! Rest is end to end 4-lane.
I am planning to travel tomorrow. What is the best way to get onto Chennai road at Salem during day time?

@Pramod: Sad to hear about the delays. Can't help on break downs but delays at toll booths may be avoided. It kills all the fun of a good road. Last day, I got nearly 7 minutes delay at a booth. There was a shift change and they closed system without blocking lane. Re opened only after counting cash and operator change.

I wish to see a prepaid card system accepted at all toll booths with a dedicated lane

Last edited by coolclouds : 30th December 2013 at 15:42.
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Old 30th December 2013, 16:07   #6284
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Can't help on break downs but delays at toll booths may be avoided. It kills all the fun of a good road.
Delays at toll booths cause all these:
  • higher fuel consumption. An improved FE is one of the reasons I choose toll roads. There would be many others who think on the same lines
  • frustration, thanks to city-like traffic
  • delay in arriving at the destination
  • and last but not least, kills all the fun of a good road, like you mentioned

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I wish to see a prepaid card system accepted at all toll booths with a dedicated lane
That's too much to ask for, at this point of time. A dedicated lane, well
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Old 30th December 2013, 16:17   #6285
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Originally Posted by coolclouds View Post

I am planning to travel tomorrow. What is the best way to get onto Chennai road at Salem during day time?

Getting to Chennai road is easy. One option is,while nearing Salem, you can see aboard pointing to right to take foe Chennai and madurai. Take this and it will put you to a circle where you can take right and then you are on Chennai route. Option two is to proceed all the way on the nh47 and then take a deviation to join nh7. Both these routes will not take you inside city and hence it is straight forward
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