Go Back   Team-BHP > Buckle Up > Travelogues


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 15th August 2012, 21:57   #121
Senior - BHPian
 
harjeev's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: New Delhi
Posts: 1,896
Thanked: 256 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

Awesome TL as ever.
Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
ADC, your TL of that drive was on my desktop for a long time as I prepared for this one!
Guess what this TL and ADC's last years is on my desktop now . Going through both of them, Checking for updates twice/ thrice a day.

Quote:
Originally Posted by laluks View Post
It was 15:00 hours already. Last time during IPHE drive also we reached here by 15:00 hours. But then that has raised a lot of questions in our minds. Me and HVK had a small chat on the same, and come what may we go ahead!!

Wait for the exhilarating Sach Pass drive.

continued...
Pardon me Laluks for asking but I've not gone through your previous years Leh TL. you said that 'Me and HVK had a small chat on the same, and come what may we go ahead!!' Does this refers to the last years trip or this year? If last year you were at this bridge, did you come via RotangPass-Tandi-Udaipur-Killar stretch or the same route that you've follow in this TL till now. Just wanted to get a better insight. Thanks
harjeev is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th August 2012, 22:01   #122
BHPian
 
AlphaKilo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: VOMM-EDDW-EDDM
Posts: 772
Thanked: 361 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

I have a few questions on this road:

1. Is this really a motorable road? It does have enough space for one vehicle at a time from one side, so I guess it must have been used by Army in former days(60's)?

2. Who uses this road today? Is it just bikers and enthusiasts?

3. Since I didnt see any vehicle coming from the other side, is it a one way, all the way to the top? What if any vehicle comes in the opposite direction? where to pull over and how to give space?

This path seems more deadlier than the deadliest road in South America - Death valley road.
AlphaKilo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th August 2012, 22:02   #123
Distinguished - BHPian
 
laluks's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 5,579
Thanked: 5,925 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

Quote:
Originally Posted by harjeev View Post
Awesome TL as ever.
Does this refers to the last years trip or this year? If last year you were at this bridge, did you come via RotangPass-Tandi-Udaipur-Killar stretch or the same route that you've follow in this TL till now. Just wanted to get a better insight. Thanks
We have come here through Keylong udaipur Khillar route last year. We reached this bridge by 15:00hours last time too. We were really worried about the two Swifts which accompanied us behind last year. We did not want to stay back at Khillar, so come what may we went ahead last time. That was the reference.
laluks is offline   (2) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 15th August 2012, 22:05   #124
Senior - BHPian
 
hvkumar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 7,368
Thanked: 3,325 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

Quote:
Originally Posted by ninjatalli View Post
What an scary yet amazing route to travel on! Have to state this - I went through the other 7 videos - kudos to you guys to even think, and successfully execute the drive through this route!
I had been wanting to drive on the Sach Pass road for the last few years even as it was being widened from what was almost just a mule path to a proper road, and I (and Lalu, along with the IPHE 2011 team) managed to drive on the Khillar-Sach Pass-Chamba "road" last year. I had eyed the Khillar-Kishtwar road at that time, and said, we must do this one! And then ADC's TL came along, and also another one from a biker friend Tarun.

I planned the drive in a square circuit to do it as follows:

Start from Kishtwar
Go SOUTH
Khillar
Go WEST
Sach Pass-Chamba
Go NORTH
Chamba-Sarthal-Bhaderwah
Go EAST
Bhaderwah-Doda-KIshtwar
hvkumar is offline   (2) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 15th August 2012, 22:11   #125
Senior - BHPian
 
hvkumar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 7,368
Thanked: 3,325 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlphaKilo View Post
I have a few questions on this road:

1. Is this really a motorable road? It does have enough space for one vehicle at a time from one side, so I guess it must have been used by Army in former days(60's)?
Yes, motorable. The Khillar-Sach Pass-Bairavgad road was built 12 years ago & widened 2 years back.
Along with the Khillar-Kishtwar road, they are crucial gateways to the Pangi Valley which is used to evacuate their farm produce.

No, Army is not concerned since this is nowhere near the border. It is built by PWD in both HP & JK.

These roads do not exist properly in any of the maps

Quote:
2. Who uses this road today? Is it just bikers and enthusiasts?
Apart from Bolero pick ups carrying farm produce, a few jeep taxis (3-4) every day in the Khillar-Chamba & KHillar-Gulabgarh sectors.

Bikers & enthusiasts? Hardly! I can count with my fingers the number of guys know - or write ups - about drives or rides on these roads.
In any case, looks like we may be the first to do the entire round circuit in one go: Kishtwar-Khillar-Chamba-Bhaderwah-Kishtwar, full of undiluted "road" fun.


Quote:
3. Since I didnt see any vehicle coming from the other side, is it a one way, all the way to the top? What if any vehicle comes in the opposite direction? where to pull over and how to give space?
Hardly any traffic. 2 way road. You have to keep a sharp eye out for oncoming vehicles and maybe, you will have to stop 1 km or so before, find a shoulder or some space and wait for him to cross.
hvkumar is offline   (4) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 15th August 2012, 22:17   #126
Senior - BHPian
 
hvkumar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 7,368
Thanked: 3,325 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

Tyari-Sansari, another video

hvkumar is offline   (11) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 16th August 2012, 06:04   #127
Senior - BHPian
 
hvkumar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 7,368
Thanked: 3,325 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

Tyari-Sansari

How about this one to jog you up today morning? A true walking-on-the edge experience! This is where hoped that I had a IMAX wiiiiide camera!



Note that the entire road is a climb and not flat as it appears due to be, it is a climb all the way

Or maybe this one.....



The "road" had loose soil, tyres can lose their grip, so you have to be careful to keep up the momentum, most of the driving in the Safari was in first gear - so said Agent Vinod - but in the Scorpio, I was doing 3rd gear mostly, occasionally 2nd & slipping down to first whenever there was a U-turn hairpin bend (yes, there were some nasties like that too!)

Last edited by hvkumar : 16th August 2012 at 06:08.
hvkumar is offline   (12) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 16th August 2012, 07:13   #128
Senior - BHPian
 
rajeev k's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Emerging Metro
Posts: 3,288
Thanked: 1,661 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
The "road" had loose soil, tyres can lose their grip, so you have to be careful to keep up the momentum, most of the driving in the Safari was in first gear - so said Agent Vinod - but in the Scorpio, I was doing 3rd gear mostly, occasionally 2nd & slipping down to first whenever there was a U-turn hairpin bend (yes, there were some nasties like that too!)
Watching these videos would send shivers down one's spine and is definitely not for the light hearted, I suppose. Fantastic drive HVKji.
I remember that these kind of narrow and treacherous climb wasn't encountered in your Indo-Polish expedition, Right?
The urge to go out there is growing more and more inside.

Last edited by rajeev k : 16th August 2012 at 07:20. Reason: correction
rajeev k is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16th August 2012, 08:54   #129
Senior - BHPian
 
hvkumar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 7,368
Thanked: 3,325 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
The "road" had loose soil, tyres can lose their grip, so you have to be careful to keep up the momentum, most of the driving in the Safari was in first gear - so said Agent Vinod - but in the Scorpio, I was doing 3rd gear mostly, occasionally 2nd & slipping down to first whenever there was a U-turn hairpin bend (yes, there were some nasties like that too!)
Before anyone starts getting ideas and starts making this a Safari vs Scorpio bashing thread, let me hasten to say that this is only about contrasting driving styles. Safari too was being driven on these roads in 2nd/3rd gears till a certain point as was the Scorpio. So, gentlemen, don't start getting ideas that we are comparing the 2 here. Both of them were competent.


Quote:
Originally Posted by rajeev k View Post
Watching these videos would send shivers down one's spine and is definitely not for the light hearted, I suppose. Fantastic drive HVKji.
I remember that these kind of narrow and treacherous climb wasn't encountered in your Indo-Polish expedition, Right?
The urge to go out there is growing more and more inside.
Yes, driving such roads needs good driver temparament as much as driving skills. My Scorpio did not have a hand brake , because M&M does not supply a 50 paisa spring that fits inside the brake drum assembly (in my Scorpio, that had to be changed, but I could not find the part, so much for my being brand ambassador for Maindra), but we still got through these sections safely. MY co-pax were ever-ready to jump out of the car & shove the 2 stones under the tyres if, for any reason, the car were to start sliding back, and that itself was a good hand brake system.

Rajeev, we repeated the Khillar-Sach Pass section that we did last year during our Ladakh expedition.
hvkumar is offline   (6) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 16th August 2012, 08:54   #130
Distinguished - BHPian
 
laluks's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 5,579
Thanked: 5,925 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

Quote:
Originally Posted by lloydofcochin View Post
HVK,
So where has your partner in crime Lalu gone? Is he off to another drive?
Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
You may be right! It is a nice long weekend
Quote:
Originally Posted by laluks View Post
Yes I was . Just back from a 1500km dash to Dudh Sagar Waterfalls. Left by 01:00AM Saturday and back by 21:30 hours today. What a place .
You can read about this quick getaway here
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...bangalore.html (Dudh Sagar Falls, Goa - A Weekend Getaway from Bangalore)
laluks is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 16th August 2012, 09:02   #131
Senior - BHPian
 
parsh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Bombay
Posts: 1,474
Thanked: 900 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

hvk, laluks this must be your best travels till date, spine chilling routes and wanting more...glued to this, absolutely breathtaking. Your videos give superb experience of the routes for those of us who have not been able to do such things as yet. Inspite of your explanation, I can't help but wonder if at all another vehicle came from opposite side how on earth would you find a place to pass each other. I can now relate to what my bro was saying about these kind of routes up there and having done a very few of these.
parsh is offline   (2) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 16th August 2012, 09:39   #132
Senior - BHPian
 
hvkumar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 7,368
Thanked: 3,325 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

The question everyone has been asking,
How does one give way to another oncoming car?


Here is the answer from our last year's drive, one from the Khillar-Sach Pass sector, watch from 2:05 timeline onwards:



You can see how I am caught unawares by the Mahindra Max, and just manage to brake in time, and immediately start reversing. Did not find a suitable place. Repositioned myself, reversed lot more till I found a small shoulder - with the left tyres just slipping down at the edge - so that the 2 cars can go through. Sometimes, you have to move up & down with absolutely no margin for error, but in this case not required.

Everyone has to be understanding of each other's situation, there is a lot of meaning to the word & old-world protocol "Pehle Aap" ("You first") & be mindful that honking, growling & standing your ground is not going to help anyone. Be thankful to the elements that you got through!


Rule #1: Look ahead for oncoming vehicles
Rule #2: Look ahead for places to pull over & wait
Rule #3: Wait
Rule #4: Manouevre your vehicle as the other squeezes through, so that you move forward, backward & sideward to simultaneously get into the space he has vacated
Rule #5: Any mistake can be fatal

I have lots of patience, I always look ahead & wait, even if the wait takes me 10 minutes! I intend to live long, real long!
hvkumar is offline   (10) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 16th August 2012, 09:48   #133
Senior - BHPian
 
hvkumar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 7,368
Thanked: 3,325 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

Back to the Tyari-Sansari section, and one more video from the drive:



You can see how steep the climb is now, parts of the road are chipped off, so you have to be careful where you step.....

Too much to the cliff side and you can hit your body, too much to the valley side and you can tumble down. Maintaining momentum is the key, as is gear selection. Wherever there are sharp or tall rocks on the "road", one also has to maneuvre away so that you do not rupture your tyres or hit the underbody. There are several places where you see fallen rocks, indicating how landslide-prone this whole region is. Definitely lucky that one did not tumble down when we drove through....

Also note the shoulders that can be used to push your car into if there is an oncoming vehicle. Of course, you need lots of nerves - and total understanding of the car - to push it precisely to the edge.

I have said this before, and I repeat.....this is a driving skill & mental temperament game, not just of vehicle capabilities. I never saw any T-Forts, Yetis or brutish Mahindra Thars here flexing their 4WDs. Only the humble Mahindras & Sumos, which no one talks about, and which are always my favourities to take on such terrain. Will you dare take your 25 lakh SUV here?

Last edited by hvkumar : 16th August 2012 at 09:52.
hvkumar is offline   (12) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 16th August 2012, 11:08   #134
BHPian
 
WindRide's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 600
Thanked: 183 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

Realised i had stopped breathing while viewing those videos.

Difficult to believe those roads are actually two-way. Unless you are a seasoned hill cabbie, its impossible to reverse and give way on those treacherous and narrow bends.And what can you do if your vehicle decides to act up bang on a narrow stretch with rock wall on one side and void on the other?

hvkumarji - What is the rule for reversing on such tracks? I saw in your video that you immediately started reversing on seeing the other vehicle. Who should reverse? On gradients, i will assume its the vehicle coming up from a slope, but on flat tracks?

>> "Will you dare take your 25 lakh SUV here?"
case of being big on cash and low on guts? But then the rich dudes can always say "There is a fine line between madness and guts"

Last edited by WindRide : 16th August 2012 at 11:09.
WindRide is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16th August 2012, 11:17   #135
BHPian
 
codelust's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 195
Thanked: 284 Times
Default Re: Cliffhanger Himachal, Hidden Kashmir and a search for Mughal Ghosts

Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
MY co-pax were ever-ready to jump out of the car & shove the 2 stones under the tyres if, for any reason, the car were to start sliding back, and that itself was a good hand brake system.
Strangely, we had the same problem in a Thar during our drive in June and it had no hand brake for the duration of the trip through the Himalayas. The drill was the same there of the co-passenger scrambling to pick up a big rock wherever we'd stop.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
The question everyone has been asking,
How does one give way to another oncoming car?
Another important aspect is wing mirrors. A lot of people in India seem to keep them closed to 'protect' them from damage. I find it impossible to drive anywhere without them open on both sides, especially in the hills. I can't imagine backing up anywhere in the hills without using my wing mirrors.
codelust is online now   (3) Thanks Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Yusmarg - The Hidden Wonder of Kashmir Fauji Travelogues 10 26th December 2013 07:45
Hill Climb Challenge @ The Mughal Rally (Kashmir). June 2013 GTO Indian Motorsport 2 18th June 2013 18:22
OHC OE Fog Lamps: Hidden treasure or Hidden trash? ankitahuja Modifications & Accessories 38 7th November 2012 00:04
Rally of the Mughal Road. (Kashmir) Passiontodrive Indian Motorsport 9 27th June 2011 13:46


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 03:23.

Copyright 2000 - 2017, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks