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Old 5th July 2011, 18:51   #1
h14
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Talking Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai

Atlast after months of planning, we did manage to pull off this Chennai-Valparai trip last weekend. It was 1342kms in all with 12 members in 3 cars. The plan was to do it in 3 FIAT's but it did not happen and we had to be content with just two and leave the T-Jet behind.

The Rides:

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2411.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2039.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-dsc01300.jpg


Day1

We started off from Chennai at about 5am on Friday, July 1. The following was the route that we took:

Chennai-Villupuram-Trichy-Dindigul-Udumalpet-Mukkonam-Sungam-Aliyar-Valparai

We had breakfast on the way and then planned to stop for lunch in Dindigul. We reached Trichy without any hassles and it was on crossing Trichy that we got lost and all three cars took three different routes.

The directions boards were incomplete and on the flyover, both the Sx4 and the Palio lost ways while the Linea took the de-tour to Dindigul correctly. We did manage to get back on track after a few kilometers. Even this did not prevent us from getting to Dindigul on time for lunch at Thalapakatti

It was an extended lunch break of almost 2 hours and then we set off again towards Udumalpet. People who are not aware of this route from Udumalpet do note this diversion. After you cross Udumalpet, watch out for a junction called Mukkonam and take the left at that junction, which will lead you straight to Sungam. This road is two laned but is of good condition and less on traffic.

From the Sungam junction, one needs to take the left to reach Aliyar dam. The right at that junction will lead you to Pollachi. By taking this route, one can save time and distance as you can reach aliyar without having to get to Pollachi.

Though we had quite few breaks in between, we did manage to get to the Aliyar check post at about 4 pm. Made an entry at the check post and we started of on the scenic ghat. We stopped on quite few spots on the way and the photoghraphers in every one woke up on seeing these locations. Posting a few of them in here:

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2235.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2240.jpg

At the first hair-pin bend:

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2262.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2245.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2253.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_1823.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_1825.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2239.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2263.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_1854.jpg

The temperature did fall quickly and we reached Valparai at around 6:45 pm.

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_1871.jpg

We had booked the Villa Fair Winds (Villa Fairwinds)guest house, a property of the Woodbrier group. The package confirmed with them was Rs.30,600/- for 12 members for 2 days inclusive of all meals. It works out to 1275 per head, per day.

Some pictures from in and around the house:

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-dsc01211.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-dsc01212.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-dsc01213.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-dsc01214.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2296.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2301.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2298.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2302.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2304.jpg

That was pretty much for Day1.

Day 2 (July 2, 2011)

Day 2 was Saturday and there wasn't much of a plan. Started the day late and spent the early hours of the day with a slow stroll around the villa premises. After breakfast, we set off to the Lower Nirar dam. The dam was 12.5 kms from the villa. It was a leisurely drive that we took to the dam. The drive lasted for about 30mins.

There wasn't much water in the dam and there were no other population in there other than us. Spent some time in there and our photographers were back to work. Some clicks on the way to the dam:

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2011.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2012.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_1934.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2356.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2357.jpg

Last edited by h14 : 12th July 2011 at 17:55. Reason: Continued
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Old 12th July 2011, 15:35   #2
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Default Re: Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai

Unable to add more pics in the first post. Here's continuation of Day2.

At the Dam

Let the pictures do the talking as there isn't much to say about the dam.

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2358.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2359.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2365.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2366.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2368.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2380.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2389.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2394.jpg

The Team:

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2378.jpg

Few more click on the way back from the dam

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2014.jpg

Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai-img_2415.jpg

That was all for Day 2 as we headed back to the villa and remained there for the rest of the day.

Day 3

Day 3, Sunday was the return journey back to Chennai. We took a different route this time. The route was:

Valparai - Aliyar - Sungam - Pollachi - Palladam - Kangeyam - Perundurai - Salem - Krishnagiri - Vellore - Chennai

The roads were good throughout the journey. We started at 10 am from Valparai and reached Chennai at 11:30 pm. The return journey had about 4 to 5 stoppages including lunch at Avinashipalayam and Dinner at Ambur.

Overall it was an enjoyable trip with 1342 kms of sheer driving pleasure.

Driving Expences

Here comes the important part. It was two diesel and one Petrol. All 3 cars were filled up in Chennai. The next fill in the onward journey was at Ottanchathiram after that we topped up at Salem on the return journey and then again on returning back to Chennai. The toll and fuel expenses are below:

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As usual we did not pay at the last two toll plazas, ie., the one after Vellore and the next at Sriperempudur.

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Considering that we drove at decent speeds and driving in ghat sections I believe the FE returned by all three cars are very respectable.

But the fact that the fuel expense for Sx4 was equal to the expense of both Palio and Linea put together is just unbeatable in favor of the MJD's.

Last edited by h14 : 12th July 2011 at 18:03. Reason: Continued
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Old 12th July 2011, 22:29   #3
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Default Re: Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai

Nice Travelogue thanks for Sharing.

Who I am extremely surprised by the Mileage figures especially of the SX4, I never knew it could ever achieve that kind of figures.

If these are the figures that people get then I would any day prefer the SX4 petrol over an MJD sedan.
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Old 13th July 2011, 09:56   #4
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Nice Travelogue and good pictures.
Is the road between Trichy and Dhindukkal four laning complete.
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Old 13th July 2011, 11:49   #5
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Thanks Technocrat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gajadonga View Post
Nice Travelogue and good pictures.
Is the road between Trichy and Dhindukkal four laning complete.
@gajadonga, thanks. The Trichy - Dindigul section is far from 100% complete. I believe it will take at least 6 months, if not more for it to get to 100%. But, it is not bad either.
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Old 13th July 2011, 12:14   #6
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Good TL and the estates looks lovely in your photos. Thanks for sharing.

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Originally Posted by h14 View Post
As usual we did not pay at the last two toll plazas, ie., the one after Vellore and the next at Sriperempudur.
BTW, what is this?
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Old 13th July 2011, 12:21   #7
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Thanks hdnivara. Regarding your query on those two toll plaza's. There is something fishy about the Chennaisamudiram and SriPerembudur toll's. If you examine them, both these toll plaza's do not have the automatic gates and also unlike the others, there are no personnel seated outside the toll booth involved in writing down your vehicle's number.

What I mean to say is that you need not pay in these as they never try to stop you if you deny payment. I have never paid in these two toll plazas for the past 4 months. Try it the next time, just look straight and drive ahead, no one will bother to stop you.

I have already shared the same information in here http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/long-t...ml#post2395913 (Cara Mia Fiat Linea!)
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Old 13th July 2011, 16:46   #8
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Default Re: Team Outing: Chennai - Valparai

@h14.... Nice travelogue there.
"" As usual we did not pay at the last two toll plazas, ie., the one after Vellore and the next at Sriperempudur..."" --- Could you please tell me why ?
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Old 13th July 2011, 17:15   #9
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Thx Reisender. Reg your query on the toll, please check post number 7, I have stated the details in there.
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Old 13th July 2011, 19:42   #10
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Nice short one there! The Mukkonam-Sangam route was a good find.
You must have realized that when you drove back (Must have been a pain to cross Pollachi!)

Last edited by ampere : 13th July 2011 at 19:44.
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Old 14th July 2011, 10:23   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by h14 View Post
Thanks hdnivara. Regarding your query on those two toll plaza's. There is something fishy about the Chennaisamudiram and SriPerembudur toll's. If you examine them, both these toll plaza's do not have the automatic gates and also unlike the others, there are no personnel seated outside the toll booth involved in writing down your vehicle's number.

What I mean to say is that you need not pay in these as they never try to stop you if you deny payment. I have never paid in these two toll plazas for the past 4 months. Try it the next time, just look straight and drive ahead, no one will bother to stop you.

I have already shared the same information in here http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/long-t...ml#post2395913 (Cara Mia Fiat Linea!)
Good one here. Let me check in my next Bangy-Madras drive.
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Old 14th July 2011, 10:40   #12
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I am surprised you went via Dindigul to Uduamalipet. I thought it would have been shorter and faster to turn off NH45 at Perambalur (before Trichy) and go direct to Namakkal and Pollachi? This would have saved you lot of time too, and the roads are all excellent.
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Old 14th July 2011, 10:50   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by h14 View Post
Thanks hdnivara. Regarding your query on those two toll plaza's. There is something fishy about the Chennaisamudiram and SriPerembudur toll's. If you examine them, both these toll plaza's do not have the automatic gates and also unlike the others, there are no personnel seated outside the toll booth involved in writing down your vehicle's number.
Interesting!! Will note on next drive. Going by that logic, If I remember CBE L&T bypass doesnt have automatic gates either and around mid day I havent seen someone outside on all toll gates.

In the same context, Paranur toll isnt L&T operated. IIRC the BOT period should be over by now as Tambaram-Mamandur section of NH45 was completed more than 15 years back.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
I am surprised you went via Dindigul to Uduamalipet. I thought it would have been shorter and faster to turn off NH45 at Perambalur (before Trichy) and go direct to Namakkal and Pollachi? This would have saved you lot of time too, and the roads are all excellent.
HVK I did the same (via Dindigul) returning from Munnar. I can get Madras-Perambalur-Thuraiyur-Namakkal part. How are you suggesting from Namakkal onwards ? The best I can think of is Namakkal-Karur-Kangeyam-Dharapuram-Udumalpettai, but distance wise it would be comparable. The advantage is you save time navigating through Trichy city.

Last edited by narayans80 : 14th July 2011 at 11:00.
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Old 14th July 2011, 10:55   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
I am surprised you went via Dindigul to Uduamalipet. I thought it would have been shorter and faster to turn off NH45 at Perambalur (before Trichy) and go direct to Namakkal and Pollachi? This would have saved you lot of time too, and the roads are all excellent.
I did consider that route, but we were told that the roads to and after Karur are under construction and were asked to avoid it. That was the reason.

Quote:
Originally Posted by narayans80 View Post
Interesting!! Will note on next drive. Going by that logic, If I remember CBE L&T bypass doesnt have automatic gates either and around mid day I havent seen someone outside on all toll gates.

In the same context, Paranur toll isnt L&T operated. IIRC the BOT period should be over by now as Tambaram-Mamandur section of NH45 was completed more than 15 years back.
I am not sure of the CBE L&T, but the same applies for the Paranur toll as well. I have included Paranur toll in that log just because both the other cars paid in there, while I did the same and ended up saving Rs.20/-.

Last edited by h14 : 14th July 2011 at 10:57.
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Old 14th July 2011, 11:05   #15
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If these sections of road have completed their toll period and are now supposed to be free usage how come NHAI has given contracts to a vendor for toll collection post 2011.

NHAI Projects - MEP Toll Road Pvt Ltd

It would be good if we get some sort of clarity on the toll periods across all NHAI stretches
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