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Old 19th March 2012, 11:48   #16
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

Excellent pictures and the scenery. Must ahve had a lovely time. The roads look typical of the interior himalayan roads. These landy's are 4X4? The engine swap with Mahindra DI needs replacement of the transmission as well?
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Old 19th March 2012, 12:24   #17
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

Amazing trip there. Loved the Pics. I can imagine how wonderful this trip would have been.

Do leep the thread updated with the log and the pictures.
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Old 19th March 2012, 14:17   #18
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

please accept my respect for the courage two of you have scripted. And your photo documentary gave us the idea of the true nature of the road surface. Another star from East after our famed ADC. Please keep going.

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Old 19th March 2012, 14:47   #19
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
I remember trying to reach Sandakpu in my Ind-Suzuki AX100 mobike in 1994. I started off on the first part of the climb from Mane Bhajang, fell down a couple of times, then finally landed the bike in a ditch. Since I was riding solo, I simply could not not lift the bike up on my own, so I gesticulated to a guy sitting way up the hill - and he actually came down, taking almost 10 minutes to reach me - and helped me lift up the bike. Thus, I abandoned my ride to Sandakpu, and to return down the hill, it was not easy since the dirt road was very steep - and I had to keep toggling the gear lever in first gear to brake & finally came down. In those days, the old African Safari Land Rovers were the only means of getting to the top, no other vehicles used to attempt the journey.
I think the road conditions are now much better till Lamey Dhura. While going up we saw an RX 135 coming down. But he did not complete the trip as we saw him putting his bike into a Land Rover during our return journey.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
Hi,
There are some lovely walks in that area.

Regards
Sutripta
Please give some more details if possible.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderernomad View Post
Excellent pictures and the scenery. Must ahve had a lovely time. The roads look typical of the interior himalayan roads. These landy's are 4X4? The engine swap with Mahindra DI needs replacement of the transmission as well?
Thanks wanderernomad. The Land Rovers are 4x4. The owner was keen on educating me how the conversion was done and what changes were made to the gearbox, but alas I did not understand anything

Quote:
Originally Posted by nkrishnap View Post
Amazing trip there. Loved the Pics. I can imagine how wonderful this trip would have been.

Do leep the thread updated with the log and the pictures.
Thanks nkrishnap.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sanjoy50 View Post
pl accept my respect for the courage two of you have scripted. and your foto documentary gave us the idea of the true nature of the road surface . another star from East after our famed ADC. pl keep going.
Thanks sanjoy50, it is an honour to be named beside ADC da, but frankly speaking, ADC da is in a different plane altogether .
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Old 19th March 2012, 15:31   #20
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

Great narrations and pictures, that is some justified journey for a new 4x4 vehicle. This is one destination where i really want to drive down in my jeep some day.
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Old 19th March 2012, 15:40   #21
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

Superb. Heaven exists in India and can be reached by not many things with wheels.

Planters looks restored. The last time we were put up there, 2001 end, it was a little starting to break down. However, it was lucky for me and reassured me of something that is very close to my heart.
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Old 19th March 2012, 16:18   #22
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Thumbs up re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

Jioh Mama!!! is the word that comes first to mind after reading the t'logue and looking at the pics..Wonderful narration. Kudos to you and the White Tusker.. one of my biggest regrets is staying almost 2 decades in siliguri and not being able to make this trip
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Old 19th March 2012, 17:17   #23
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

A geat trip narrated wonderfully!
Kudos to your courage, white tusker and your navigator! initially, I thought its a planned journey and you know the route you will be taking, but then it seems you just kept exploring as you moved on and that needs a lot of courage!
Pictures of those Kangchenjunga ranges and other peaks are awesome!!

I recollected the time when we went to those Jayenti River range inside the buxa for a small trek, we had the water stream flowing then and we took some pictures when our jeeps (hired boleros) crossing the river at high throttle. It was wonderful experience and I can imagine how amazing it could be when you drive your own vehicle!

I'm not an expert about those areas, but it seems much difficult than the Ladakh trip and less traffic compared to those Ladakh routes.

I wish I can plan a trip to such places in future, I can just wish for now!
Every single picutre and your narration was inspiring to go for it! Thanks for sharing and keep posting pictures and more experiences.
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Old 19th March 2012, 20:52   #24
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackPearl View Post
Please give some more details if possible.
Requires facetime, map and a scratchpad. (At a pinch, paper napkins!)

The two local peaks are Tiger Hill, and Bagora. You could walk from one to the other, through Senchal. And lots of walks from Bagora.

The other walking area is north of Darj (Badamtam) down to the river, and up again.

Regards
Sutripta
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Old 19th March 2012, 21:11   #25
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

Feeling nostalgic. Had gone there in 1993 with friends. Saw an amazing panorama of the peaks on a full moon night. Almost twenty years back...even then Land Rovers used to ply on that rocky trail. We of course hiked up with backpacks.
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Old 19th March 2012, 21:58   #26
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kandisa View Post
Great narrations and pictures, that is some justified journey for a new 4x4 vehicle. This is one destination where i really want to drive down in my jeep some day.
Thanks Kandisa. You should definitely do this trip and let me know in advance so that I can join.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1100D View Post
Superb. Heaven exists in India and can be reached by not many things with wheels.

Planters looks restored. The last time we were put up there, 2001 end, it was a little starting to break down. However, it was lucky for me and reassured me of something that is very close to my heart.
Thanks 1100D. Yes, Planters' is doing very good nowadays and the manager was very happy with the turnaround after Gorkhaland problems.

Quote:
Originally Posted by adg_andy View Post
Jioh Mama!!! is the word that comes first to mind after reading the t'logue and looking at the pics..Wonderful narration. Kudos to you and the White Tusker.. one of my biggest regrets is staying almost 2 decades in siliguri and not being able to make this trip
Ha ha, thanks adg_andy. All is not lost yet, you can make this trip if you can spare some time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ketan View Post
A geat trip narrated wonderfully!
Kudos to your courage, white tusker and your navigator! initially, I thought its a planned journey and you know the route you will be taking, but then it seems you just kept exploring as you moved on and that needs a lot of courage!
Pictures of those Kangchenjunga ranges and other peaks are awesome!!

I recollected the time when we went to those Jayenti River range inside the buxa for a small trek, we had the water stream flowing then and we took some pictures when our jeeps (hired boleros) crossing the river at high throttle. It was wonderful experience and I can imagine how amazing it could be when you drive your own vehicle!

I'm not an expert about those areas, but it seems much difficult than the Ladakh trip and less traffic compared to those Ladakh routes.

I wish I can plan a trip to such places in future, I can just wish for now!
Every single picutre and your narration was inspiring to go for it! Thanks for sharing and keep posting pictures and more experiences.
Thanks a lot Ketan for those nice words. Even I wish that you can make a trip to this place.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
Requires facetime, map and a scratchpad. (At a pinch, paper napkins!)

The two local peaks are Tiger Hill, and Bagora. You could walk from one to the other, through Senchal. And lots of walks from Bagora.

The other walking area is north of Darj (Badamtam) down to the river, and up again.

Regards
Sutripta
Thanks Sutripta. I have been to Darjeeling so many times but never knew about these places. Now I know why you have those stars under your name

Quote:
Originally Posted by nilanjanray View Post
Feeling nostalgic. Had gone there in 1993 with friends. Saw an amazing panorama of the peaks on a full moon night. Almost twenty years back...even then Land Rovers used to ply on that rocky trail. We of course hiked up with backpacks.
Thanks nilanjanray. I cannot even imagine how wonderful the view will be on a full moon night!!

Here are a few random pics taken from the car during the Sandakphu trip -

Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut-dsc01648.jpg

Ever changing landscape

Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut-dsc01658.jpg

Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut-dsc_4394.jpg

Back in Darjeeling spoke to a guy with a 4x4 Mahindra Pickup and found that the transfer case on that vehicle is different from mine with a different shift pattern.

Inside view of 4x4 Mahindra Pickup

Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut-dsc_3846.jpg

Last edited by BlackPearl : 19th March 2012 at 22:11.
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Old 19th March 2012, 22:16   #27
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

It was drizzling throughout when we hiked up. We were wet and cold. No brandy to warm us up. So along with a friend, I crossed the border, went into Nepal and bought 4L of Roxie (Roxy?) from a shepherd hut - and brought it back in a jerrycan! That lasted us for two days and warmed us up. Anyway, around 9 pm, the weather cleared and that is when we saw the amazing panorama of the peaks shining in the moonlight.

Next night we did a campfire with some Israeli backpackers, and feasted on some chicken bought from the village a few kms down. While the negotiations were going on, our local guide helped himself to a few round of Roxy. On the way, he and my friend (who had been given the money to buy chicken) decided that since the chicken were about to die, they deserved a last drink (the guys were somewhat sloshed and feeling sentimental). So in the middle of the forest track, they started force feeding the two chickens some Roxy. One lay comatose after having some of the fiery stuff. So they put it down and focused on the other one.

Big mistake. The comatose chicken had a delayed reaction of super stimulating fiery liquid. It gave a squawk, jumped 10 feet into the air and then ran down the hillside forest. Securing the other chicken, the guys gave chase, but couldn't catch it. They got plenty of gaalis for squandering our precious money (were on a tight budget, being 1st year college kids 20 years back), and bringing back one chicken instead of two.

We hiked down to civilization through the forest via Rimbik. Another noble village chicken sacrificed its life to feed a few ravenous college guys. It was executed with my own Kukhri, no less (those days I used to carry a big Kukhri when trekking through the forests or mountains - for chopping firewood and for misc. stuff).

Good memories, those. Sorry for hijacking your thread, but your lovely narration and pictures brought back those memories.
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Old 19th March 2012, 22:59   #28
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

On the fourth day we started from Darjeeling at around 11 o clock after a sumptuous breakfast at Keventer's. We came down via Peshok. All our cars taken to Darjeeling have to participate in mandatory photo shoots on this road -

The Baleno (BlackPearl) on the same road, about 6 years back

Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut-baleno_peshok.jpg

Same place, different time and different feel... Note the numbers, 7056 and 7650

Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut-dsc_4516.jpg

Though it is a longer route than the Hill-Cart road, we prefer this route because of the scenic beauty, less traffic and better road quality (no toy train tracks passing over the road).

A few more pictures -

Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut-dsc_4551.jpg

Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut-dsc01793.jpg

Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut-dsc01800.jpg

Quote:
Originally Posted by nilanjanray View Post
It was drizzling throughout when we hiked up. We were wet and cold. No brandy to warm us up. So along with a friend, I crossed the border, went into Nepal and bought 4L of Roxie (Roxy?) from a shepherd hut - and brought it back in a jerrycan! That lasted us for two days and warmed us up. Anyway, around 9 pm, the weather cleared and that is when we saw the amazing panorama of the peaks shining in the moonlight.

Next night we did a campfire with some Israeli backpackers, and feasted on some chicken bought from the village a few kms down. While the negotiations were going on, our local guide helped himself to a few round of Roxy. On the way, he and my friend (who had been given the money to buy chicken) decided that since the chicken were about to die, they deserved a last drink (the guys were somewhat sloshed and feeling sentimental). So in the middle of the forest track, they started force feeding the two chickens some Roxy. One lay comatose after having some of the fiery stuff. So they put it down and focused on the other one.

Big mistake. The comatose chicken had a delayed reaction of super stimulating fiery liquid. It gave a squawk, jumped 10 feet into the air and then ran down the hillside forest. Securing the other chicken, the guys gave chase, but couldn't catch it. They got plenty of gaalis for squandering our precious money (were on a tight budget, being 1st year college kids 20 years back), and bringing back one chicken instead of two.

We hiked down to civilization through the forest via Rimbik. Another noble village chicken sacrificed its life to feed a few ravenous college guys. It was executed with my own Kukhri, no less (those days I used to carry a big Kukhri when trekking through the forests or mountains - for chopping firewood and for misc. stuff).

Good memories, those. Sorry for hijacking your thread, but your lovely narration and pictures brought back those memories.
With such lovely narration, we are not going to stop you from hijacking this thread... please keep them coming and with some pics of those days if you happen to have them.

Last edited by BlackPearl : 19th March 2012 at 23:02.
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Old 19th March 2012, 23:14   #29
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

Thanks BlackPearl for the execellent travelogue. Was planning for a trek last year to Sandakphu but never made it due to some family problems. And you fulfilled my dreams this year along with some wonderful photos to complement. But if I ever go there, I would love to spend a night at Tonglu, heard that the sunrise from Tonglu is awesome.

Once again, thanks for the travelogue and please post as much photos you have.

5* no doubt.

One more question, can Maneybhanjan, Chitrey be done with normal cars like hatchbacks.

Last edited by Joy : 19th March 2012 at 23:22. Reason: Asking info.
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Old 20th March 2012, 00:19   #30
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Default re: Destination Sandakphu, the Land Rover territory. Update - another trip till Phalut

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Originally Posted by Joy View Post
Thanks BlackPearl for the execellent travelogue. Was planning for a trek last year to Sandakphu but never made it due to some family problems. And you fulfilled my dreams this year along with some wonderful photos to complement. But if I ever go there, I would love to spend a night at Tonglu, heard that the sunrise from Tonglu is awesome.

Once again, thanks for the travelogue and please post as much photos you have.

5* no doubt.

One more question, can Maneybhanjan, Chitrey be done with normal cars like hatchbacks.
Thanks Joy. Sad to hear about your family problems. Hope you can make it this year.
I think a hatchback can make it till Chitre, but the road will be quite steep for a Front Wheel Drive car.
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