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Old 27th April 2014, 21:34   #6766
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by anilagdr View Post
OK, great. That was nice of you. Would yo be in a position to tell me how long it could take. Also I suppose this is the route that gives less strain to the driver, since I am OK with ghat roads to Kumaly.
I use this route regularly to travel to my home town (Pathanamthitta). Atleast for me, this route gives a much much stress free driving as I exit Kerala roads and traffic earlier than NH47. Find the route details here.
It can be done in 10-11 hours including breaks and doing sane speeds. If you are new to the route, please look out for vehicles (especially 2 wheelers and mopeds) and people crossing over. The roads are really good and tempt you to drive fast, but be careful.
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Old 27th April 2014, 22:06   #6767
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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I use this route regularly to travel to my home town (Pathanamthitta). Atleast for me, this route gives a much much stress free driving as I exit Kerala roads and traffic earlier than NH47. Find the route details here.
It can be done in 10-11 hours including breaks and doing sane speeds. If you are new to the route, please look out for vehicles (especially 2 wheelers and mopeds) and people crossing over. The roads are really good and tempt you to drive fast, but be careful.
Thank you for the extremely useful info A350XWB. I have gone through the link you provided and am convinced that this will be the route I will be taking.
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Old 28th April 2014, 07:49   #6768
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rameshnanda
Guys, any update on Kochi-Munnar section? Is the road good now?
Yes, the bad sections near Pallivasal is relaid and now its in good condition throughout.
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Old 28th April 2014, 08:02   #6769
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Ooty-Masinagudi-Mysore: The cops diverted all traffic through longer Gudallur route. We managed to use some local contacts and finally he allowed us. Road condition is excellent except for the narrow stretch after Masinagudi.

Why were the cops redirecting you, was there any road block or some security issue?

@one-77: Where are the pothole locations, I had driven from Bangalore via Walayar, Palghat, Vaddekenchery and to Ernakulam but did not find any pot holes. Indeed yes, there were several trucks.

Last edited by nitinbose : 28th April 2014 at 08:06.
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Old 28th April 2014, 08:24   #6770
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nitinbose

Why were the cops redirecting you, was there any road block or some security issue?

@one-77: Where are the pothole locations, I had driven from Bangalore via Walayar, Palghat, Vaddekenchery and to Ernakulam but did not find any pot holes. Indeed yes, there were several trucks.
This ghat section is too steep and narrow and can't handle two way rush.
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Old 28th April 2014, 08:29   #6771
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by nitinbose View Post
Why were the cops redirecting you, was there any road block or some security issue?
Thats because the 36 Hairpin bend route is primarily used for ascent and not descent. Earlier, when it was allowed for descent also, many did not use engine breaking while going down. They keep driving on higher gears and then used to brake hard; and in the process fry the set-up. Not to mention the traffic which @cool clouds referred to.

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Originally Posted by nitinbose View Post
I'm sorry but I did not get the word 'dis'. The hairpin roads are definitely used for ascend and descends, were you also not ascending, so why the redirect? I'm afraid I'm not clear on this part.
Sorry Nitin. That was typo. I fixed it. Please refresh and see the same post again. The hairpin is as you mentioned used for ascent and descent. But many a times, when traffic gets impeded, cops take some action. And in general now they don't allow descent.

Last edited by ampere : 28th April 2014 at 08:59.
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Old 28th April 2014, 08:37   #6772
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Originally Posted by ampere View Post
Earlier, many dis not use engine breaking while going down.
I'm sorry but I did not get the word 'dis'. The hairpin roads are definitely used for ascend and descends, were you also not ascending, so why the redirect? I'm afraid I'm not clear on this part.
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Old 28th April 2014, 08:39   #6773
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by anilagdr View Post
Hi all
I wish to drive from Kottayam to Bangalore and back with my wife some time soon. What are the route options available? Will the route through Kumaly - Cumbum be too long? Veterans please do suggest your opinions. Since this would be my first long drive (>350 km) what are the preparations I need to take?
Since you mentioned its your first trip, my suggestion is to keep to National Higways/4 lanes. Whichever route you decide, plan for an early morning start, to escape on Kerala traffic.

If you are comfortable experimenting with new roads and has got plenty of time, then I suggest you can try Kottayam - TCR - Nilambur - Gudallur - Mysore - Bangalore. Be aware that this route even though shorter will take more time and very scenic. You can even split the trip to two days with some stopover at Ooty or Mysore if you wish.
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Old 28th April 2014, 08:57   #6774
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by nitinbose View Post
I'm sorry but I did not get the word 'dis'. The hairpin roads are definitely used for ascend and descends, were you also not ascending, so why the redirect? I'm afraid I'm not clear on this part.
ampere has corrected his post before I rephrased it. As he mentioned, it is too steep and if you are not used to driving in hills, you would probably use the brakes too much and there is a chance of brake fade and accidents. Also, it is not wide enough to be a two way, considering the amount of traffic, if people are allowed to descent also. I have seen that they usually allow the people to descent, who have booked accommodation in and around Masinagudi, because this route is much shorter to reach there.

Last edited by A350XWB : 28th April 2014 at 08:59.
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Old 28th April 2014, 09:20   #6775
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Originally Posted by nitinbose View Post
Why were the cops redirecting you.....
Quote:
Originally Posted by A350XWB View Post
.... it is too steep ....
See this picture to get an idea how these 36 bends looks like. Some bends are tighter and narrower than this.
Attached Thumbnails
All Roads to Kerala-36.jpg  

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Old 28th April 2014, 09:30   #6776
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coolclouds View Post
See this picture to get an idea how these 36 bends looks like. Some bends are tighter and narrower than this.

Looks beautiful, tempting and challenging !!

Quote:
Originally Posted by arjithin View Post
Since you mentioned its your first trip, my suggestion is to keep to National Higways/4 lanes. Whichever route you decide, plan for an early morning start, to escape on Kerala traffic.

If you are comfortable experimenting with new roads and has got plenty of time, then I suggest you can try Kottayam - TCR - Nilambur - Gudallur - Mysore - Bangalore. Be aware that this route even though shorter will take more time and very scenic. You can even split the trip to two days with some stopover at Ooty or Mysore if you wish.
Thanks a lot arjithin, but I have travelled a lot upto Erode by the Walayar route and so I think this time around I will try the Dindugal approach.

Last edited by aah78 : 28th April 2014 at 19:11. Reason: Posts merged. Please use MULTI-QUOTE/QUOTE+ when responding to multiple posts. Thanks!
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Old 28th April 2014, 09:52   #6777
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by arjithin View Post
If you are comfortable experimenting with new roads and has got plenty of time, then I suggest you can try Kottayam - TCR - Nilambur - Gudallur - Mysore - Bangalore. Be aware that this route even though shorter will take more time and very scenic.
Gudallur-Theppekkadu (on the way to Gundlupet) is practically non-existent. Please don't attempt this in a low-GC type vehicle. I just did this route on 18/4.
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Old 28th April 2014, 10:01   #6778
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Originally Posted by bdman View Post
I am planning a night time drive, as I find driving through Kerala during the day very difficult due to traffic congestion. Driving through the short Alathur to Vandakancherry stretch was like driving on the surface of the moon. Huge potholes! And blinding headlights from oncoming heavy vehicles who would do anything to avoid the potholes even if it meant driving on the wrong side of the road. That 10km took me 30 minutes. This was last year.
Precisely for the same reasons you have mentioned (potholes and other road surface issues), + due to the unknown hazards that plagues our roads, I suggested a day time drive. You need to be very alert and careful during night time due to blinding headlights, and general fatigue. I see that you would have driven on 405, 101 and Kerala traffic should not be of a great challenge to you! During my last trip to Kerala (April 2014), I found the traffic dense, but did not bother me at all. Just budget 15-30 mins extra to reach your destination. Drive day-time and drive safe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anilagdr View Post
Hi all
I wish to drive from Kottayam to Bangalore and back with my wife some time soon. What are the route options available? Will the route through Kumaly - Cumbum be too long? Veterans please do suggest your opinions. Since this would be my first long drive (>350 km) what are the preparations I need to take?
You have three routes.

1. NH47-Thrissur-Coimbatore-Blore.
2. Kottayam-Kumily-Theni-Dindigul-Blore.
3. Kottayam-Kollam-Punalur-Tenkasi-Rajapalayam-Madurai-Bangalore.

Regarding route #2, I found the drive through the Kumily Ghat a bit stressful and intimidating. Unending stretches of real ghat drive and I was a bit flustered. This was during 2012, while driving from Thekkady to Ashtamudi. If you want to minimize your ghat section driving, and a slightly better and longer route (660 Vs 580), can I suggest route #3? Minimum ghat driving and good condition roads all the way till Bangalore. Evaluate your options.

Let coolclouds have the final say.

Last edited by aah78 : 28th April 2014 at 19:11. Reason: Posts merged. Please use MULTI-QUOTE/QUOTE+ when responding to multiple posts. Thanks!
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Old 28th April 2014, 10:30   #6779
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Gops2009 did this route in March and in his words:

" Returned on Monday the 17th after a trip to kerala, left Bangalore at 4:00 AM on the 14th ( Friday) took a new route suggested by fellow BHpians, Suresh_Gs and Amphere- as I wanted to avoid the city like traffic across Kerala.
So took the Bangalore- Hosur- Krishnagiri- Salem- Dindigul- Bhatlagundu- Theni- Cumbum- Vandiperiyar- Mundakayam- Pampadi – Kottayam wonderful roads all the way , briiliant drive and would recommend this route to any team BHPian driving to Kottayam, reached Kottayam by 2:30 PM with 2 food breaks, 2 Bio breaks and one refuelling stop."
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Old 28th April 2014, 15:55   #6780
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Went to Palakkad and Kottayam on 19th and came back yesterday in the same route. Roads are in pretty good condition overall. Total driving time of 9:00 hours was quite good while returning till EC with a 5 AM start on Sunday from Kottayam through Muvattupuzha, Angamali, Kuthiran, NH47. Total distance was about 590 kms.
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