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Old 18th October 2010, 16:25   #2641
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Hi Guys,
Im planning for a trip to drive from Bangalore to Mangalore via (stop over) Chikmangalur immediately after Diwali.
I prefer to drive thru Charmadi to mangalore if theses are open!
Any adivise on the routes and road to avoid.
Thanks in advance
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Old 18th October 2010, 16:36   #2642
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@Rajesh KR - Yes i did this trip on my Wagon R. Not sure about the post monsoon conditions on Charmadi ghat. May be prasad will be able to help you here since he did charmadi just recently. From the above pics uploaded by Prasad its quite evident that charmadi is still foggy with low visibility but then in my opinion its pleasure and enjoyable though foggy because that is the time when charmadi looks extremely beautiful.

Since i experienced more dense fog (more than the pic shown above) during last month when i drove down to mangalore, i specially installed fog lights on my Wagon R since mine is LXI and does not come with factory fitted fog lamps. Hope this will help me during my next trip!
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Old 18th October 2010, 16:43   #2643
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I did the Mangalore - Bangalore route yesterday via Puttur-Madikeri-Kushalnagar-Srirangapatna-Mandya-Kengeri-Hebbal. I had done this very same route a month ago. But on this trip I observed that the road on the ghat section was better because the craters had been filled with some kind of cement mixture. The ride on the ghat section was definetely far better than a month ago even though you cannot call it the smoothest. Overall I feel that it is worth driving on this route when compared to the Shiradi Ghat route even though you incur the 30 odd extra kilometres.
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Old 18th October 2010, 16:55   #2644
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lazybrain View Post
@Rajesh KR - Yes i did this trip on my Wagon R. Not sure about the post monsoon conditions on Charmadi ghat. May be prasad will be able to help you here since he did charmadi just recently. From the above pics uploaded by Prasad its quite evident that charmadi is still foggy with low visibility but then in my opinion its pleasure and enjoyable though foggy because that is the time when charmadi looks extremely beautiful.

Since i experienced more dense fog (more than the pic shown above) during last month when i drove down to mangalore, i specially installed fog lights on my Wagon R since mine is LXI and does not come with factory fitted fog lamps. Hope this will help me during my next trip!
@lazybrain : thanks. mine is Vxi model with factory fitted fog lamps. i do not know if the fog lamps (OE) really help in those conditions. i suppose you need to have some yellow coloured fog lamps to drive in the foggy conditions, but my fog lamps are the same colour as the headlights.
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Old 18th October 2010, 17:21   #2645
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rajesh K R View Post
i suppose you need to have some yellow coloured fog lamps to drive in the foggy conditions, but my fog lamps are the same colour as the headlights.
Even my fog lamp is the same color like headlights. May be i will post in the relevant section whether it really helps.

By the way i missed to add road conditions from Belthangady to Mangalore via BC road if you are taking charmadi ghat road. Last month when i drove i experienced that stretch from Belthangady to Mangalore via BC road was the worst. My experience was quite frustrating. The roads were narrow, with frequent huge potholes and i believe i reached that particular stretch during wrong time - since it started raining very happily, lot of oncoming traffic from opposite which made my life difficult when overtaking heavy vehicles and heavy rains added on to frustration in such a way that due to water logging huge potholes were not visible until the last moment and by the time i realised it was too late (luckily i did not damage my suspension ). The maximum speed on this particular stretch is not more than 50 km/hour

I just wanted to know whether we have any alternate better route to Mangalore when we get down from Charmadi ghat so that i can avoid belthangady?
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Old 18th October 2010, 17:34   #2646
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rajesh K R View Post
@lazybrain : thanks. mine is Vxi model with factory fitted fog lamps. i do not know if the fog lamps (OE) really help in those conditions. i suppose you need to have some yellow coloured fog lamps to drive in the foggy conditions, but my fog lamps are the same colour as the headlights.
Not true, white fogs do as well as yellow if not better. See this discussion: https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/4x4-v...ml#post2034446

These are the white fogs on my Jeep:




Regarding fog in ghat sections, it can change from day to day. I have encountered fog in Agumbe ghats as well as Sampaje, and in daytime too.

Agumbe on 6th Sept 2010, one of the foggiest days.

The art of travelling between Bangalore - Mangalore/Udupi-p9065101.jpg

Agumbe on 11th Sept 2010, one of the clearest days I have seen, see the visibility, it is a rare sight at sunset point.

The art of travelling between Bangalore - Mangalore/Udupi-p9115108.jpg

The river along Shiradi ghats.

The art of travelling between Bangalore - Mangalore/Udupi-p9195120.jpg

Last edited by Samurai : 18th October 2010 at 17:49.
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Old 18th October 2010, 17:47   #2647
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Originally Posted by Rajesh K R View Post
Hi, did u do this trip on your wagon-R? I did a trip to Dharmasthala in March in my Wagon-R on the same Charmadi route. How is the Charmadi ghat road now? i mean after the rains.
Rajesh,

I came back to BLR on Charmadi Ghat on Sat. The road is pretty good in the ghats, except for 4-5 stretches on bends where it has gone bad to non-existent. We were able to cover Ujire-Kottigehara (40kms) in about 65 mins with two breaks to enjoy the beauty of ghats. It was raining for 75% of the time and foggy for the rest in the ghats. The fog was manageable. At couple of places, I did notice that there is no protective wall of any sort and appear very dangerous if it is raining or foggy. I strongly recommend this route for the scenic beauty, despite some of the problems mentioned above. Have a nice and pleasant trip.

Prasad
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Old 18th October 2010, 17:59   #2648
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One more suggestion/tip i have and would like to add upon what prasad said above. if you come across fog on charmadi and there is no visibility drive dead slow and try to stop at places since you can find big to small waterfalls throughout the stretch of Charmadi ghat especially if it is raining. You can get involved in photography around the water fall. I presume this will relieve you from some anxiety . i did exactly the same rather than over stressing and pondering myself over zero visibility. Trust me you will crave to drive again and again on charmadi since the view is too scenic to miss and it looks like heaven on earth when it rains!
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Old 18th October 2010, 21:26   #2649
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Originally Posted by lazybrain View Post
One more suggestion/tip i have and would like to add upon what prasad said above. if you come across fog on charmadi and there is no visibility drive dead slow and try to stop at places since you can find big to small waterfalls throughout the stretch of Charmadi ghat especially if it is raining. You can get involved in photography around the water fall. I presume this will relieve you from some anxiety . i did exactly the same rather than over stressing and pondering myself over zero visibility. Trust me you will crave to drive again and again on charmadi since the view is too scenic to miss and it looks like heaven on earth when it rains!
Would there be leeches around waterfalls? We did see several falls, but were little scared to venture as we weren't prepared to tackle leeches, if they show up.

@LazyBrain: The last pic in my post is the densest fog I've encountered (earlier ones near KaLasa and in Mullayanagiri) and now you say it is manageable!! Manageable, yes; but wondering how the zero visibility fog you encountered might have been. Definitely try the drive in the next monsoon and you are right, one would crave to drive again and again in Charmadi.

Thanks,

Prasad
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Old 18th October 2010, 22:19   #2650
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prasad14 View Post
Would there be leeches around waterfalls? We did see several falls, but were little scared to venture as we weren't prepared to tackle leeches, if they show up.
We did not venture inside the water. Just admired the beauty from the road . So never got exposed to any leeches as you mentioned. But we saw fee people (youngsters) playing inside the waterfalls. if there would have been leeches they might have reacted!! But just a matter of chance did not see any untoward and may be you are right (since i took charmadi route first time in Sept - Usually always drive from Shiradi ghat)

Quote:
Originally Posted by prasad14 View Post
@LazyBrain: The last pic in my post is the densest fog I've encountered (earlier ones near KaLasa and in Mullayanagiri) and now you say it is manageable!! Manageable, yes; but wondering how the zero visibility fog you encountered might have been. Definitely try the drive in the next monsoon and you are right, one would crave to drive again and again in Charmadi.
I wish i had pic of the fog so that i would have shared with you guys. the fog we encountered was so bad that i was tailgating a KSRTC bus (i know its a bad idea to tailgate but then thought that was fair enough for that situation since at least i can follow the bus's tail lights and get a clue where we are heading!)

Thanks,

Prasad
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Old 19th October 2010, 14:49   #2651
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prasad14 View Post
Rajesh,

I came back to BLR on Charmadi Ghat on Sat. The road is pretty good in the ghats, except for 4-5 stretches on bends where it has gone bad to non-existent. We were able to cover Ujire-Kottigehara (40kms) in about 65 mins with two breaks to enjoy the beauty of ghats. It was raining for 75% of the time and foggy for the rest in the ghats. The fog was manageable. At couple of places, I did notice that there is no protective wall of any sort and appear very dangerous if it is raining or foggy. I strongly recommend this route for the scenic beauty, despite some of the problems mentioned above. Have a nice and pleasant trip.

Prasad
Thanks Prasad. i have been thinking of doing a Dharmasthala, Hornadu & Sringeri trip in the near future.
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Old 19th October 2010, 14:57   #2652
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@Samurai San,
I really have not got the opportunity to test the fog lights in the fog in ghats until now. There was no fog in the ghats the couple of times i had the opportunity to drive thro' them.
Looking forward for a fog filled drive thru the ghats !!!
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Old 19th October 2010, 15:47   #2653
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Rajesh, I have seen more than my share of fog.

See this: Fog - Samurai's Photos

Never use high beam in fog like many do, it is self defeating. Long range lights diffuse the fog all the way creating a white wall in front of you.

What you need is lowly placed short range wide light (white/yellow doesn't matter) that illuminates the immediate 10-20m of the road along with the sides. OE fog lights generally do this.
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Old 19th October 2010, 20:50   #2654
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Originally Posted by lazybrain View Post
i was tailgating a KSRTC bus (i know its a bad idea to tailgate but then thought that was fair enough for that situation since at least i can follow the bus's tail lights and get a clue where we are heading!)
I routinely take Sringeri - Agumbe route from Bangalore on my way to Udupi and since I usually start at 2am from Bangalore, I invariably have to drive through fog somewhere on the way. The trick I have learned is to concentrate on the edge of the roads surface and stick to its contours. Basically you need to have a frame of reference else you wouldn't even know where the roads are heading. I sometimes turn off the headlights altogether and use only fog + parking lights if the fog is too dense. It goes without saying that you need to have a check on your speed.

Like Samurai san said, it is foolish to use high beams and try to look straight ahead, all you'd see will be a white wall of light.
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Old 19th October 2010, 21:20   #2655
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bullinb - that was really useful info and tips. I will surely follow that next time

Samurai's tip to avoid use of high beams was too good as that is the mistake most of us do (including me) when there is zero visibility during fog conditions.

Thanks guys
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