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Old 2nd April 2012, 14:27   #2086
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Knowing Ksm-vtec from this entire thread, and a gypsy owner in the past, I did predict this. Hats off to your guts man. Let's see if the Swifts had done it across Chamba, though I guess they did it.

And yes, I had this hope as the SUV's did not come across any deep slush.
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Old 2nd April 2012, 14:34   #2087
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Originally Posted by Harshavarthan View Post

And yes, I had this hope as the SUV's did not come across any deep slush.
Not true!
The descent was full of slush, it was only our Geolanders tyres which propelled us through.
Check out the videos, slush was pretty bad in many places, but since I was driving in total darkness, I bulletted through, had I seen it in daylight, I may have hesitated and reconsidered whether to go or not go!
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Old 2nd April 2012, 14:36   #2088
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

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Not true!
The descent was full of slush, it was only our Geolanders tyres which propelled us through.
Check out the videos, slush was pretty bad in many places, but since I was driving in total darkness, I bulletted through, had I seen it in daylight, I may have hesitated and reconsidered whether to go or not go!
To add, just after the bridge we had enough slushy lumps which even scrapped the Scorpio's underbelly.
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Old 2nd April 2012, 14:36   #2089
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

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Originally Posted by KSM-Vtec View Post
Sach PASS

OR

Sach FAIL

?????

Thankfully, without any delay, Yogen replies “Lets do it” and Kunal and Anku agree and, we move on.


Was that the right decision? Was I being brave or just plain foolish? Will this foolhardiness result in a huge damage to the cars? Are we risking our lives? What if something goes wrong and we have a real bad ending to this wonderful trip? Can this mistake leave a dent on our road tripping temperament?
Did you guys carry any tents or such things? If at all you had to make an overnight halt at some place? Did you guys carry food supplies with you for such unforeseen halts?

Also, I'd like to know whether every underbody hit is cause for concern or is it okay if the monocoque takes a hit but you should be careful if the hit is below the engine compartment / suspension? Obviously there may not be a way to understand where the car took a hit.
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Old 2nd April 2012, 14:38   #2090
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I couldn't see anything in your night video's except the high beam.
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Old 2nd April 2012, 15:02   #2091
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Originally Posted by laluks View Post
To add, just after the bridge we had enough slushy lumps which even scrapped the Scorpio's underbelly.
....and my running board was totally battered!


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Originally Posted by shipnil View Post
Did you guys carry any tents or such things? If at all you had to make an overnight halt at some place? Did you guys carry food supplies with you for such unforeseen halts?
No tents in my car. Lots of warm clothes, blankets, we sleep in our car itself if contingency requires.

All Ladakh trips, I have 3 days food in my car - dry food of course, like dry fruits, biscuits, chocolates, kakhras, fresh fruits, Maggi noodles, Cup O Noodles, readymade soups/foods, etc. So much in my car that someone asked me if I was a Hindustan Lever/ Nestle delivery van!

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Also, I'd like to know whether every underbody hit is cause for concern or is it okay if the monocoque takes a hit but you should be careful if the hit is below the engine compartment / suspension? Obviously there may not be a way to understand where the car took a hit.
We take utmost care to avoid/ swerve whenever we see boulders on the road. But still hits are inevitable. In Scorpio & Bolero, GC is pretty good, so engine sump is protected provided you are careful. Most of the hits I deflected onto the running boards, which is the reason why I find that the most useful thing in my car. Suspension, yes, can also take a hit, and my lower arms were also found battered when I changed them recently. Whenever we feel or hear a hit, we stop immediately and identify the place where it could have hit, so that we can get a fix on the gravity of the problem.

Wen I have gone in my Matiz to Ladakh, I have come back with ruptured gear box casings, bent lower arms & broken exhaust pipes, all resulting from hits in the bottom due to the low GC in the small car. One bad hit and remember, you are grounded.

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Originally Posted by Harshavarthan View Post
I couldn't see anything in your night video's except the high beam.
What you saw in the video is what we saw out of our windscreen, same quality. You will note deep ruts on the road where slush has been churned up, and also the innumerable water splashing - visible in the light of the car headlights from time to time. Unfortunately, I am unable to reproduce the car cam audio which has recorded the sounds of the hits, splashing, etc.
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Old 2nd April 2012, 15:04   #2092
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

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Originally Posted by shipnil View Post
Did you guys carry any tents or such things? If at all you had to make an overnight halt at some place? Did you guys carry food supplies with you for such unforeseen halts?

Also, I'd like to know whether every underbody hit is cause for concern or is it okay if the monocoque takes a hit but you should be careful if the hit is below the engine compartment / suspension? Obviously there may not be a way to understand where the car took a hit.
We were carrying a lot of food supplies (lot of dry fruits, glucose biscuits, khakhras, chips, chocolates, 25 liters of water etc)

In these regions it gets so cold and windy that unless you have a proper expedition grade tent it is better to spend the night in the car itself (we were 2 in 1 car anyways). We did have some blankets etc.

So if we were to get stuck the plan was to sleep in the cars if we had no other choice. This way you know that the cars are also safe!

Underbody hits on the engine sump, axle, gear box, fuel tank areas can be really dangerous and can put one into a helpless situation. A hit on the Chassis is ok, but you never know so its best avoided.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harshavarthan View Post
Knowing Ksm-vtec from this entire thread, and a gypsy owner in the past, I did predict this. Hats off to your guts man. Let's see if the Swifts had done it across Chamba, though I guess they did it.

And yes, I had this hope as the SUV's did not come across any deep slush.
Quote:
Originally Posted by laluks View Post
To add, just after the bridge we had enough slushy lumps which even scrapped the Scorpio's underbelly.
@ Harshavarthan - As pointed out by Lalu, there was a lot of deep slush in the beginning itself which actually made me ask that question to the bolero drivers.

In fact the initial slush sections were so deep, long and accompanied by steep falls on the left that it became very challenging.

We were forced to build momentum and slide all the way hitting the under body all the time. But we did a recce on foot before had to ensure the absence tall and sharp stones that could damage the under body.

Last edited by KSM-Vtec : 2nd April 2012 at 15:06.
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Old 2nd April 2012, 15:28   #2093
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

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Originally Posted by KSM-Vtec View Post
Was that the right decision? Was I being brave or just plain foolish? Will this foolhardiness result in a huge damage to the cars? Are we risking our lives? What if something goes wrong and we have a real bad ending to this wonderful trip? Can this mistake leave a dent on our road tripping temperament?
Hello KSM-Vtec,

Three cheers & Hats-off to explorer inside you & your risk taking ability. The same goes for Anku. I have read your Gypsy trip to Ladakh & the challenges you faced then (like pulling the accelerator with a string)

But did you had plan B in mind? Because you had less than 2 hours of day light & destination was atleast three hours away (for big cars). What if Car had a under body hit & it came to a halt? What if either of the cars go struck & had to be pulled out & such other unpredictable things?

The plot (as narrated by H V Kumar, LaluKS & you) is getting thicker & it is no less than reading a thriller novel. It is getting exciting to follow thing thread everyday.

Just waiting to hear more from you all. I am sure you & the other Swift would have reached successfully.

Thanks,

Last edited by Jignesh : 2nd April 2012 at 15:29.
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Old 2nd April 2012, 15:28   #2094
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Come on Kaushik, carry on with your swift saga, answer any questions after the story is complete, otherwise Ekta Kapur will feel sad if this episode is stretched further
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Old 2nd April 2012, 15:50   #2095
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jignesh

Hello KSM-Vtec,

Three cheers & Hats-off to explorer inside you & your risk taking ability. The same goes for Anku. I have read your Gypsy trip to Ladakh & the challenges you faced then (like pulling the accelerator with a string)

But did you had plan B in mind? Because you had less than 2 hours of day light & destination was atleast three hours away (for big cars). What if Car had a under body hit & it came to a halt? What if either of the cars go struck & had to be pulled out & such other unpredictable things?

The plot (as narrated by H V Kumar, LaluKS & you) is getting thicker & it is no less than reading a thriller novel. It is getting exciting to follow thing thread everyday.

Just waiting to hear more from you all. I am sure you & the other Swift would have reached successfully.

Thanks,
Well the cars were being driven by Yogen YP and Anku AP in the Sach Pass section, so hats off to them. Kunal and myself were doing the recce and spotting.

We were very clear that we cannot take a chance with the underbody at all nor could we afford to get stuck because there was not going to be any help around. The Plan B if we came across a section which could damage the underbody or could get us stuck was to turn back and spend the night in Killar.

Quote:
Originally Posted by motomaverick
Come on Kaushik, carry on with your swift saga, answer any questions after the story is complete, otherwise Ekta Kapur will feel sad if this episode is stretched further
Sure Motomaverick, will post soon.


Over to Kunal - doctorque for his narration of this section....
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Old 2nd April 2012, 16:05   #2096
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

Take a look at these 2 pictures of one of the difficult slopes -





this is of the steep slope that made the Scorpio stall.
Why? Because it is steeeeeep, has lots of stones, and unless you are able to get the right power band, you will run out of breath before you reach the top. You go too slow, you lose momentum, but if you run too fast, you risk vehicle damage. If you brake anywhere, you also can lose balance and skid to the left side steep fall or fall into the ditch on the cliff side.
The stones are so loose that they keep sliding down when the tyres bite into them, making the tyres lose traction, and you cannot even brake. This slope I reversed when I failed the first time and then powered the vehicle up in first gear.



Check out the waterfall photo - looks easy?
Steep slope.
Sliding stones.
Water blinding your visibility.






Huge boulder to the right. You cannot drive on top of it, it will hit the lower arm or worse.
Huge fall - slope - towards the valley side which can pull the vehicle to that side if the stones start slipping and the vehicle will not have enough power to counter-balance the pull.
I have to watch out that my vehicle top does not hit the overhanging cliffs, so I have to give that much room to the right side.
So I have to strike a narrow pathway and nudge the vehicle through that gap, at the same time, swerving it where the boulders are on either side, so that I actually have to zig zag my way through


I don't know about you guys, but I was profusely sweating in the cold at these manouevres. At least, I found it extremely difficult, maybe for some it may look like a cakewalk.


THIS WAS THE DAY PHOTO - IMAGINE DOING THIS IN THE DARK?


Assuming the Swifts had left at 6 pm from Khillar, they would have reached this point at 8 pm!!!! But DID THEY?
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Old 2nd April 2012, 16:09   #2097
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

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I don't know about you guys, but I was profusely sweating in the cold at these manouevres. At least, I found it extremely difficult, maybe for some it may look like a cakewalk.
Hello H V Kumar,

The Water Photo above is really scary. I understand you sweating while driving in this section.

But tell us one thing, if given your driving experience & your big car you were finding difficult, how would it have been for Swifts when they drove here couple of hours after you crossed?

I know you too were short of time, but they (Swifts) were literally running against time as they they had to cross this dangerous sections before day light fades?

Thanks,
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Old 2nd April 2012, 16:17   #2098
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But tell us one thing, if given your driving experience & your big car you were finding difficult, how would it have been for Swifts when they drove here couple of hours after you crossed?
Absolutely, that is why the message was passed on through the oncoming Bolero pick-ups that the Swifts should ideally avoid this sections. If the large cars were under strain to do this, what can one say of the small cars?

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know you too were short of time, but they (Swifts) were literally running against time as they they had to cross this dangerous sections before day light fades?

Thanks,
We were just on time to scale Sach Pass and get through at least half the bad sections before the sun set. The Swift's time line at these hot spots would have in the darkness. As I explained in my earlier post, had the Swifts come this way, they should have reached the waterfall at around 8 pm, which would have made for total zero visibility......and am not counting the prospects of fog. As you saw, we faced intense fog during the descent from Sach Pass, I am sure that there will be fog in the ascent to Sach Pass too after sun down!
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Old 2nd April 2012, 16:34   #2099
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Take a look at these 2 pictures of one of the difficult slopes -




Assuming the Swifts had left at 6 pm from Khillar, they would have reached this point at 8 pm!!!! But DID THEY?
Wow these are some really scary pictures, specially that waterfall one with the huge rock in between, plus i guess you had to close your windows to avoid water, which can also cause fog inside the glass.

Did i also see a windshield crack in one of the pictures?
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Old 2nd April 2012, 16:41   #2100
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Wow these are some really scary pictures, specially that waterfall one with the huge rock in between, plus i guess you had to close your windows to avoid water, which can also cause fog inside the glass.

Did i also see a windshield crack in one of the pictures?
Yes, the windows were closed, and I had to drive blind for a few seconds. Before that, I had to size up the track, work out where I should swerve and give extra power - all without doing a get-down-and-see reccee which was impossible because of the water spray.

No fogging though, it was too short - just a few seconds. As you would have seen from the video of the drive through the Fall, which I had uploaded in earlier posts - #1986, I think - I could not see anything through the water screen.

Windscreen crack - yes! I had cracks in 3 different places, from before I started on the trip. But the one you see prominently across the driver's view screen started very small - at the bottom - and rapidly widened and grew by at least 1 - 2 feet through the trip. By the time I reached Sarchu - onward journey - I was alarmed at the extent of the crack and so I used duct tape to try stop it widening, but that did not yield any results.
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