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Old 24th September 2009, 12:28   #721
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Originally Posted by abhinavj01 View Post
thanks again ranjit,

im planning to leave bangalore around 1-2am so i should be clearing ghats before sunset.
I am heading south goa (carmona, near benaulim). i dont mind the extra 100kms as long as time difference aint too much and roads are better.

For yellapur, hubli-yellapur better option than via shimoga rite?

If you specifically want to go via Yellapur, better go via Hubli-Kalghatgi. Bangalore to Goa via Shimoga-Yellapur will not be feasible. Roads are good, but very far.

I guess the Hubli-Yellapur-Ankola will be faster since you will be travelling on NH4 for most of the journey. It is maginally longer than the Shimoga route.

Otherwise, take Shimoga-Sagar-Siddapura-Sirsi-Devimane ghat-Mirjan-Ankola-Karwar-Goa. This is a decent road. I understand most private buses take this route.
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Old 24th September 2009, 13:21   #722
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When I travel to Ankola from Bangalore I take: Bangalore-Shimoga-Sagar-Talguppa-Siddapur-Sirsi-Devimane ghat-Mirjan-Ankola. I love this route as best one in summer or rainy season!

Just before mansoon road from sirsi to yellapur is relaid my cousin has confirmed it and also addy has travelled in it and still its in good condition except 2km.


Ravi.
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Old 24th September 2009, 13:48   #723
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Problematic areas:

Chitradurga - Haveri around 40km bad roads.

Haveri - sirsi bumpy/single lane/bad roads of around 15km

Devimane ghat is bit bumpy and also need to be cautious of local buses/jeeps.

Jog to honnavara bit patchy road.

NH 17 before and after Ankola has some issues, say around 20km.

Like jacs said there will be 10% bad road in everyroute we take.

Rest all fine I feel.

Ravi.
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Old 24th September 2009, 14:49   #724
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ravibhat View Post
Problematic areas:

Chitradurga - Haveri around 40km bad roads.

Haveri - sirsi bumpy/single lane/bad roads of around 15km

Devimane ghat is bit bumpy and also need to be cautious of local buses/jeeps.

Jog to honnavara bit patchy road.

NH 17 before and after Ankola has some issues, say around 20km.

Like jacs said there will be 10% bad road in everyroute we take.

Rest all fine I feel.

Ravi.
I was really scared to take the return trip through Sawantwadi - Amboli - Belgaum route after the recent updates on Ranibennur - Chitradurga bad stretch. But believe me, Amboli is a must visit route (I had a different picture on Maharashtra).

Ravi encouraged me with the same words "both ways you have 50KM odd bad roads", its very much true. Only that Ranibennur - Chitradurga has to be covered really carefully to avoid underbody scrap. I did this with full patience and hence less troubles, please note that my travel was on Accent CRDi with Full load and very less ground clearance. This route is bit lengthy with almost 80KM extra travel (from south Goa its again more) but one can makup the travel time in the good 4 lane stretches in GQ. My travel was slow since my Baby was active most of the time, averaged less than 70KMPH.

No doubt on the Shimoga route also, its worth a drive. Advantage over GQ is that most of the journey is through Scenic Green Lushes but on 2 laned path. Route Via Belgaum is scenic only in before Belgaum which is less than 20% of the journey, rest is all highways which will be adequate for a night journey (day drive will be boring, hence I chose my return travel).

So take your choice accordingly

Last edited by jacs : 24th September 2009 at 15:01.
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Old 24th September 2009, 15:59   #725
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Post Bangalore to Goa Trip - Memorable in more ways than one.

Onward Journey - Through NH4 and then NH4A with some diversions, the so-called golden quadrilateral.

Route 1: Bangalore-Tumkur-Chitradurga-Devangere-Hubli-Dhadvad-Kittur-Bidi-Khanapur-Nandgad-Londa-Ponda-Panaji

We drove during the night, have good drivers who can stretch 8 hours on the go, happily. The assumption was that NH4 is highly clogged during the day, turned out that its highly clogged all the time. It was a total mess driving till Hubli, every now and then one highway stip is missing and you'd have to take frequent diversions on the other side of the divider. The biggest problem was that, even on a good patch of road there are numerous narrow drain like strips missing. They are almost invisible at night and are nasty. More problematic were the huge speed breakers in the Tumkur highway which are not painted are easily missed unless you are on high-beam. If you are on low-beam then its too late every time, you have a zero gravity experience which kinda gets boring after a couple of times. Roads get better an narrower near Dharwad, we had to take a lot of diversions as advised by local policemen because of traffic clogging up the main roads (NHs and SHs) so we was more like at the mercy of the locals. From Nandgad, the real Ghat routes start (NH4A) to Panaji and you are met with some spectacular aweinspiring sceneries. Here again we encountered a lot of strips where the highway was completely missing and with lot of Lorry traffic (this was early in the morning, 7-8 am), made our whole trip uncomfortable. I must add though, they were the best drivers i have encountered driving across India, they will warn you ahead of hair pins and promptly give way when on the clear.

We started from TGIF at 7:00 pm and reached Panaji at around 11:00 am the next day with an hour in cumulative for stoppages which included a game of badminton with the Petrol Pump operators at Alnavar (a small detour, our drivers don't fill up till the fuel indicators light up, only then they realize that some needs to be done fast)

Return Journey Route:

Panaji-Margao-Karwar-Ankola-Mirjan-Sirsi-Siddapura (Jog falls)-Sagar-Shimoga-Tiptur-Tumkur-Bangalore

The day we reached Goa our car had developed a snag, we could not start the car (some crank shaft position sensor had gone bad). So for the next 2 days it was parked at a Hyundai Service Station.

On our way back from Panaji to Karwar (near Karnataka Border), we were stopped by policemen manning the border check post to make sure we weren't "bootlegging" any alcohol. It seems that you are not allowed to carry wine across borders and you'll require a special permit for doing just that, you can however carry as much "scotch" as you want. This was according to the police sub-inspector whom we asked to for when the "thullas" were just being unreasonable. Imagine calling their b**sh*t and after 10 mins of haggle and the cops relenting without extracting a dime from us and then our car decides not to start.

Anyways after a couple of hours spent on summoning the Hyundai Emergency Helpline from both states (KAR and GOA since we were at the border). Our car decides to start up on its own. All of us had to join office the very next day so we decided to continue on our journey without letting the car stall (for another 13-14 hours of hilly driving). Yes we have good confident drivers who lack a bit of foresight sometimes. An Area Sales Manager of Tata Motors (a friend of ours) reassured that you can actually pump gas without turning off the car. So we did exactly that and did not turn off the car throughout the trip (while taking breaks or having dinner).

What else?, this route was much better till until Tumkur, we had to take NH4 to Bangalore again. Lots of Western Ghat driving, roads so narrow that 2 cars have difficulty passing each other. Lots of "utaar-chadaaws", really friendly people who give accurate directions with kilometers to go; and in "Hindi"; a real surprise for a North Indian staying in Chennai. You can average around 55 kmph even in the ghats, because of the quality of the roads and almost negligible traffic. And you can really enjoy the drive if you aren't trying hard not to stall the car. It would be impossible to get a quick fix or tow facility in this sparsely populated region. We started out at 12:30 pm from Panaji and reached Bangalore at around 4:00 am with around 2 hours wasted trying to start the car at Karwar and about 30 minutes cumulative for dinner and small breaks.


Lessons:
1. Never take a family car (i-10) on long drives
2. Helps to have a Maruti/Mahindra/TATA which are not too technologically advanced SUV compared to foreign brands, if you want to travel in India. The idea is to be able to fix a car with a hammer and not require a Electronic Handheld scanner, which has to be fully charged and properly connected to the CAN network of your car. And then wait for dime size sensor and spend 2 days trying to find out where the heck it goes in.
3. Generally every other foreign brand is "perceived" better in Quality but believe me on long drives if your car breaks down, you'd wish you had an Indian...
4. Have a flexible schedule that allows you to take logically rational decisions.
5. You don't need maps to travel in India (unless you are in Tamil Nadu and cant speak Tamil, no offense to any one but my experience has been such, may be my face is so hideous that people here cringe when they look at me...and talk gibberish afterwards )

In Bangalore, we decided to start the car once we had reached my friend's apartment.... It's been 3 days, the Hyundai guys haven't been able to start the car. They obviously had to tow it to their garage.
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Old 24th September 2009, 20:37   #726
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xoceter View Post
Onward Journey - Through NH4 and then NH4A with some diversions, the so-called golden quadrilateral.


Lessons:
1. Never take a family car (i-10) on long drives
2. Helps to have a Maruti/Mahindra/TATA which are not too technologically advanced SUV compared to foreign brands, if you want to travel in India. The idea is to be able to fix a car with a hammer and not require a Electronic Handheld scanner, which has to be fully charged and properly connected to the CAN network of your car. And then wait for dime size sensor and spend 2 days trying to find out where the heck it goes in.
3. Generally every other foreign brand is "perceived" better in Quality but believe me on long drives if your car breaks down, you'd wish you had an Indian...
4. Have a flexible schedule that allows you to take logically rational decisions.
5. You don't need maps to travel in India (unless you are in Tamil Nadu and cant speak Tamil, no offense to any one but my experience has been such, may be my face is so hideous that people here cringe when they look at me...and talk gibberish afterwards )

In Bangalore, we decided to start the car once we had reached my friend's apartment.... It's been 3 days, the Hyundai guys haven't been able to start the car. They obviously had to tow it to their garage.

Wow!!! What an experience......You also scare me a bit. I am leaving to Goa in my 118 NE 1991 model on saturday morning. I intend to go through the Shimoga route that you took while returning. Lets see how it goes. I am quite prepared for an adventure.

Last edited by funkykar : 24th September 2009 at 20:38. Reason: Quotw too big. Shortened it to make it look crisp
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Old 24th September 2009, 20:46   #727
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hey xoceter and funky... i too am leaving on saturday early morning (1-2am) taking my 1985 Audi.
I am still divided between tumkur-shimoga-yellapur-ankola-karwar route and tumkur-hubli-yellapur.... route. :( looks like i might end up leaving it to fate or the flip of a coin to decide.
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Old 24th September 2009, 22:14   #728
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Originally Posted by abhinavj01 View Post
hey xoceter and funky... i too am leaving on saturday early morning (1-2am) taking my 1985 Audi.
I am still divided between tumkur-shimoga-yellapur-ankola-karwar route and tumkur-hubli-yellapur.... route. :( looks like i might end up leaving it to fate or the flip of a coin to decide.

Wow!!! amazing! I feel more excited that there is someone else doing something similar. For me more than Goa, its enjoying the drive with my best friend (118 NE). I am taking the Shimoga route and intend to try and stay at Jog on Saturday night.

Lets exchange our numbers. Just in case we need. My number is 98450 46840, Pls send me a SMS so that I can store your contact

Hope you are carrying some basic spares and tools you may need

Last edited by funkykar : 24th September 2009 at 22:15.
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Old 24th September 2009, 22:38   #729
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Yeah, I would also like to know how is the weather in Goa these days. I would be in Goa for 3 days starting Sunday not taking the car though.
hot during the day, muggy even. Light showers in the evening and night, should be drier by Sunday.
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Old 24th September 2009, 23:10   #730
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change in plans.... seems like i will be heading to north goa instead of south... my paranoid wife does not want to go via amboli-sawantwadi as she says the ghats are too steep (wonder wat she means by that) :( will have to traverse through whole of goa now
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Old 24th September 2009, 23:18   #731
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funky and abhinav, all the best for your drive. which ever route you take, make sure you refill whenever your tank is half empty & have all your emergency hotline numbers ready. I am sure, our car breaking down was an one off incident. Haven't really heard a lot of complaints about Hyundai cars generally going bust.

Just that, if you are going via Hubli, its best to avoid night driving not because its dangerous but it just simply painful and not worth the trouble. The trip will take you around 14-15 hours overall so plan likewise.

Weather in Goa is awesome in every respect especially on weekends :-), avoid taking gfs along IF possible.
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Old 25th September 2009, 00:00   #732
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Great... Seems to be many people are heading towards GOA in this season. We too are planning for next week
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Old 25th September 2009, 08:43   #733
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Originally Posted by abhinavj01 View Post
change in plans.... seems like i will be heading to north goa instead of south... my paranoid wife does not want to go via amboli-sawantwadi as she says the ghats are too steep (wonder wat she means by that) :( will have to traverse through whole of goa now
@ Abhinav: Pls do give me your contact number of SMS me on 9845046840 just in case we need to cotact each other during the trip
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Old 25th September 2009, 08:45   #734
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Originally Posted by xoceter View Post
On our way back from Panaji to Karwar (near Karnataka Border), we were stopped by policemen manning the border check post to make sure we weren't "bootlegging" any alcohol. It seems that you are not allowed to carry wine across borders and you'll require a special permit for doing just that, you can however carry as much "scotch" as you want.
How do you get that special permit? I would want to get lot of wine from Goa, not because its cheap, because I love it. Any way out?
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Old 25th September 2009, 09:29   #735
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Originally Posted by abhinavj01 View Post
change in plans.... seems like i will be heading to north goa instead of south... my paranoid wife does not want to go via amboli-sawantwadi as she says the ghats are too steep (wonder wat she means by that) :( will have to traverse through whole of goa now
Uh - if you are going to N Goa, amboli is to the north of Goa and is the shortest route.
BTW, the "ghats" at Amboli are pretty tame, not steep at all. I have done this route a number of times, even a novice driver should have no problem.
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