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Old 4th November 2012, 17:26   #91
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Default Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

23rd. September 2012 Day 2

Rishikesh to Janki Chatti by car.
Janki Chatti to Yamunotri and back Trek/Pony.


It was to be an early morning start, so that we could reach our destination, i.e. Yamunotri and complete the trek today itself before nightfall. Towards that end departure was scheduled at 5:30am from Rishikesh. But by the time the team could gather and get ready to leave, we were late by around half an hour.

Convoy lining up, getting ready to leave for the day..
Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand-kunal21.jpg


BM having spent this childhood in Dehradun was given the responsibility of leading the convoy from Rishikesh to Dehradun. We were just going to pass through Dehradun Town and just refuel on the way. Reached Dehradun at around 7:15am and stopped at a Petrol Pump to refuel. While the cars were getting refueled, some of the more enterprising Team Members located a "Chaiwalla" and teas were ordered for all.

Some very happy faces at the "Chaiwalla"
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Don't go by the look on his face, he is actually Very Happy!
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After spending nearly 45 minutes refuelling both the cars and ourselves we moved on ahead and reached the start of Mussoorie by around 8:30am, and waited for nearly 20 mins for the rest of the convoy to catch up!
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Drove through Mussoorie as soon as all the cars had reached and proceeded straight to Kempty Falls for a Breakfast/ Brunch Halt, reaching there by around 9:45am.

Kempty Falls in the distance
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The Breakfast/ brunch was divided between two restaurants so that we could be served faster! Piping hot Parathas was what mostly everyone had.
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The rides outside the restaurants @ Kempty Falls.
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to be continued.......
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Old 4th November 2012, 17:57   #92
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Default Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

23rd. September 2012 Day 2

Rishikesh to Janki Chatti by car.
Janki Chatti to Yamunotri and back Trek/Pony.


Finally moved on from Kempty Falls at around 11:00am after spending nearly an hour. We were now truly in the mountains, with the roads twisting and turning and rising all the while, with the mountains on one side and the valley and river on the other. Every bend, every turn, every metre ahead was a photographers delight. Alas we could not be stopping every 5 mins!

But did we??
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We reached Naugaon at around 1:25pm and topped up fuel in all the cars. Reached Barkot by around 2:00pm. The road branches off here, one going towards Yamunotri and the other going to Uttarkashi and onwards to Gangotri. We would be coming back to this point tomorrow on our return from Yamunotri.

Reached Syana Chatti at around 3:30pm and entered all the details of the cars and the passengers at the Police Check Post. Reached and crossed Rana Chatti at around 3:40pm only to be greeted by a huge line of parked vehicles, mainly Tourist Jeep Taxis , Tempo Travellers and a few Buses. Reason was that a section of the road ahead, had been washed away due to torrential rains and landslides last month. Today was the first day, they were allowing vehicles to pass after a part of the road was rebuilt. Unfortunately for us they were only allowing vehicles from the Janki Chatti side, going to Rana Chatti and onwards to pass. On making further enquiries, we were told that all the vehicles that were going through had been stuck on the other side for the past 45 days!

KSM-Vtec, SS, doctorque, VB and medecided to take the Bolero through and we did so, and crossed most of the damaged part, only to be stopped in our tracks by a truck, which was stuck in the middle of the road. The road being narrow, there was no way that we could have passed the truck from either side. And this was one of the vehicles which had come to repair the damaged road. A JCB finally managed to push out the truck from the quagmire and the next moment he was heading towards the Bolero, all horns blaring, lights flashing! With no other alternative, I had to head back to where all the other vehicles were parked, only problem being that I had to
do the whole heading back in reverse as there was no place whatsoever to turn the vehicle.

Thankfully KSM-Vtec and his trusted Walkie Talkie saved the day and I just followed his instructions to the 'T' and managed to backtrack, without any incident. In the meantime the Ritz, Indica Vista and the Punto had already reached the spot. A quick discussion and it was decided that we wouldn't risk taking the cars all the way to Janki Chatti (especially the hatches and the sedan). akaush, his parents & PC after parking the Ritz on the side of the road, decided to cross the damaged portion of the road by foot, cross over to the other side which was a few meters away from Hanuman Chatti and then hire a Jeep Taxi to go to Janki Chatti.

The others decided to head back to Rana Chatti, hire a room in a hotel, dump everybody's luggage in the room after taking essentials for the night stay and then head to Janki Chatti by Jeep Taxi. By the time we managed to get all this sorted out it was nearly 5:30pm. So the plan of completing The Yamunotri Darshan today was out and could only be done the next day!

Luckily for us there was a Tempo Traveller parked right outside the hotel and he agreed to drop us off till the washed out road.

So the whole team got into the Tempo Traveller!
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It was nearly 7:40pm when we reached Janki Chatti, after some sections of very bad roads. Not that our cars wouldn't have made it, but the progress would have been real slow. In hindsight, it was a good decision I think!
The Mahindra Maxx's did a wonderful job of ferrying us to Janki Chatti from Hanuman Chatti, and they did so effortlessly! Wouldn't have been able to say the same about our cars!

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akaush had managed to procure accommodation for the night for the whole team.
The team at Janki Chatti heading to the hotel.
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He had also arranged for
dinner at a local restaurant/ dhaba.
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The dinner was a simple affair of Dal, Sabji, Roti and Chawal, but was very delicious. During dinner we discussed the next days plan, now that we had slipped on our schedule of completing the Trek/ Ride to Yamunotri and back. Finally decided to leave very early in the morning, 4:00am for those who wished to trek and 5:00am for those riding up to Yamunotri.

Managed to get ponies arranged for the next day, with a promise that they would be at the Hotel and ready to leave at 5:00am sharp! Returned back to the hotel and akaush, KSM-Vtec and me promptly went to arrange for the next mornings tea before we left for the trek and for breakfast after we got back from Yamunotri! The manager refused to budge on the pricing for the parathas, maybe cos we had our dinner in a different restaurant, rather than at his! After finalising the pricing and the quantity, it was time we hit the sack! Early start tomorrow and especially for those who had to trek up to Yamunotri.

It was 11:00pm by the time everyone retired for the night!

to be continued......
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Old 6th November 2012, 05:21   #93
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Default Re: Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

Great log for the second day BolBoleroSir !
Here is my side of the story:
From Mussourie until a few kms before Hanuman Chatti we were following BolBolero's Bolero closely and lost track of them after Rana Chatti. There was a small police post at Hunaman Chatti, some construction and travel guys standing there didn't allow us to go any further saying that the buses were coming out after 45 days. At first, I didn't believe them and wanted to go further, as I wanted to be with the Bolero ahead of us, however looking at the oncoming traffic and how furiously every bus driver was signalling us to take a U turn, we decided to park the car at a safe location and go further walking to see the road conditions.

I also talked to a few returning Marathi pilgrims (in my broken Marathi) and everyone advised us to cross the bad sector walking and take a Bolero after crossing the bad section.

PC, My parents and I quickly took the essentials out of the car and started walking. We found BolBolero trying to get his Bolero out of some slush with KSM-VTEC on the radio about 100 meters ahead of us. The Ritz would not have crossed this stretch without external help. After walking the entire bad stretch of about 1 km, we could not see any local bolero to take us further towards Janaki Chatti for about 20 minutes.

I called BolBolero from where we were waiting and after some discussions it seemed he wasn't very keen on completing Yamunotri if the roads were very bad, as he was not comfortable leaving his car at Hanuman Chatti ! I really wanted to return to meet everyone and see what other were doing. As soon as PC and I started walking back a local Bolero came with 4 seats left inside. We didn't knew if we were going to get another bolero after that, so we quietly hopped on to Bolero and picked my parents on the way.

Unfortunately in the Ritz - my parents and PC were all in only for the chardham yatra and not for a trip, so skipping Yamunotri was not really an option. I got some good snaps on the way and after reaching Janaki Chatti.

We informed the rest of the team about the local Bolero's and the bad roads ahead. PC was great help all the while in negotiating the rooms for the accommodation, the dinner and arranging other things. Unfortunately we didn't take enough woolens from the car so PC had to buy a sweater and my mom bought a shawl for herself at Janaki Chatti. We all bought ourselves woolen caps. We were very hungry and could not wait for the team for dinner.

It was a relief to see the team coming up to Janaki Chatti.
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Last edited by akaush : 6th November 2012 at 05:23.
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Old 9th November 2012, 16:29   #94
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Default Re: Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

Quote:
Originally Posted by BolBolero View Post
Veerji Sir, nothing of that sort! This trip was planned in a hurry and I did not bother you this year as you had just returned from Hemkund Sahib trip and was not sure if you would want to head back to Uttarakhand!
No R.A.C. for you Sir, you are VIP seat confirmed!




Sir, The Bombay Bolero and The Kerala Bolero both had leaf spring problems and needed to be recambered. My Bolero work was done with that evening itself, but the Kerala Bolero work was carried out the next day. Not that the Bolero's wouldn't have been able to tackle the roads! The hatchbacks and the Sedan also could have managed to complete the trip, but just that they would have to traverse carefully and slowly, cos many of the roads were badly damaged during the cloudbursts this year and were not fully repaired as yet. Hence the decision to hire MAXXs'!
100 Million thanks Gautam ji,next year dead SURE........Pls keep it in your mind .Next year where are you planning sir.?I mean which part of India???
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Old 12th November 2012, 00:03   #95
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Default Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

24th. September 2012 Day 3

Janki Chatti to Yamunotri and back Trek/Pony.
Janki Chatti to Uttarkashi by Car.


As decided the previous night by all, a few of the Team members had decided to Trek all the way to Yamunotri and back. KSM-Vtec, doctorque, Uncle M, Gamer, VK, NS, AS, BM and akaush's Father had decided to trek and left the hotel at around 4:00am so that they would reach before the rest of the team or atleast around the same time.

The Trekkers!
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The rest of the team was up and ready by 5:00am and so were the ponies.
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Thankfully the hotel provided us teas at that early hour!
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It was 5:30am by the time we started off for Yamunotri on the ponies.
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Views of the Snow clad mountains in the distance.
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Reached Yamunotri at around 7:00am. Almost all the team members who had trekked to the top, had already reached before the ponies, barring a few, who reached along with the ponies!

First view of the Yamunotri Temple.
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A bath in the Tapt Kund at Yamunotri, before the Temple Darshan.
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River Yamuna flowing from the Mountain near the Temple.
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The team spent around 1 hour at the temple and afterwards;
A quick Chai and Naasta Stop!
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It was 8:00am by the time we left for the trek/ pony ride back to Janki Chatti.
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A few of those who had taken ponies on the way decided to walk down!
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Views on the way down to Janki Chatti
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Reached Janki Chatti by 9:30am, but by the time we could finish our pre ordered breakfast, teas, etc., it was nearly 11:00am. We left shortly after, hiring the Maxx's again to take us till Hanuman Chatti. Crossed the damaged/ slushy road to the other side. Reached Rana Chatti, where we picked up our luggage from the hotel and were ready to move by around 12:20pm.

More than half the day had already passed and reaching Gangotri seemed out of the question. Besides both the Bolero's had developed some issues with the Rear Leaf Springs and would need some attention! Decided to reach Uttarkashi and get the Bolero's attended to.

It was nearly 5:00pm when we reached Uttarkashi and we were greeted by a sudden downpour. Looking at the downcast sky, we abandoned all plans of proceeding further for the day. Luckily for the Bolero's we soon found a mechanic, who was ready to get the Leaf Springs recambered. Unfotunately he could attend to the Bolero's , only after he finished the work at hand!

In the meantime JeepCaptain, KSM-Vtec and laluks went to locate accommodation for the team, with the guidance and presence of JeepCaptain'sfriend, a resident of Uttarkashi. They managed to get accommodation in Shivling Tourist Complex a beautiful hotel on the banks of the Bhagirathi with ample parking for all the cars.

By the time the work on the Bombay Bolero was completed, it was nearly 8:00pm. The other cars and the team had already moved to the hotel and settled in. The mechanic could attend to the Kerala Bolero only the next day as it was time for him to shut shop!

Reached the hotel and informed the members of the situation regarding the Kerala Bolero, a quick discussion and decided to hire Jeep Taxis for the next days journey to Gangotri. The Kerala Bolero repairs would get attended to by JeepCaptains's local Friend.

Had very average dinner at the Hotel restaurant and retired for the night by 11:30pm.

to be continued......
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Old 16th November 2012, 12:58   #96
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Default Re: Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

A few pics to add from my side. Enjoying the ride back from Yamunotri and the last pic is the rain at Uttarkashi.
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Old 4th January 2013, 13:02   #97
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Default Re: Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

Hi Guys!

Firstly i really want to apologies for not being able to post on the TL at all. As some of you may know i got busy with some more travelling post this trip and this time it was by road but a NON motor-able one. We did a trek from Base Camp of Mt Everest(will try and post a TL soon). Followed by a few other smaller long weekend trips. As a result of the above work at office suffered and that kept me away from TBHP for a long time. My apologies again to ALL specially Laluks and all our team members who have spent so much time in contributing to the TL)

Secondly i would like to thank each one of the team members who could make it for the trip! It was a huge success only because each one of us was present. A special thanks to BolBolero (GB) for everything, HVKumar (HVK) all the help as always and above all "Buddies" (our TBHP group of friends who meetup each and every evening). Thanks to all of you for reading & appreciating the TL and the trip!!

Finally all i can say is we are looking forward to do more and more trips year after year!!
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Old 5th April 2013, 13:21   #98
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Default Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

Guys,

Sorry for the delay. After a long hiatus, am going to post some more pics of the drive to Uttarakhand. And this time I am hoping to complete the travelogue in the next few days!
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Old 6th April 2013, 08:12   #99
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Default Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

25th. September 2012 Day 4

Uttarkashi to Gangotri to Uttarkashi


Not a very early start to the day, it was 6:35am when the team left the Hotel for the drive to Gangotri. The difference today was, that we were going to be travelling in hired Mahindra Maxx's!

Our first break/ stop of the the day for morning tea at Helgugad at around 8:00am. Everybody took the opportunity for clicking some pictures and stretching their legs.

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At the village of Sukhi and just before Jaspur Bend we got to see some mountains in the distance, which had received fresh snowfall, maybe the night before!

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We reached Harsil at around 9:50am and stopped for a while to click some photographs. Harsil also has a Helipad for tourists who are short on time and wish to fly down to Gangotri!
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Another short photo break at Lanka Pul, just before Bhaironghati.

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to be continued......

Last edited by BolBolero : 6th April 2013 at 08:33.
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Old 6th April 2013, 10:04   #100
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Default Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

25th. September 2012 Day 4

Uttarkashi to Gangotri to Uttarkashi


We reached Gangotri just a little before 11:00am.
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Many of the team took a dip in the Holy Bhagirathi River. Though how they managed the cold water is a mystery!
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The Darshan and Pooja by the team took nearly One hour and then another 30 mins for Lunch/ Snacks/ Teas.
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Wish we had more time on our hands to Trek to Gaumukh the source of the Bhagirathi, but that would be a 3 day trek both ways, for which we just didn't have the time.
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We left Gangotri at around 12:30pm.

A longish Photo Break at Sukhi at around 2:00pm.
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to be continued.....
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Old 8th April 2013, 12:41   #101
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Default Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

25th. September 2012 Day 4

Uttarkashi to Gangotri to Uttarkashi


Some Apples @ Harsil
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This time around took some snaps of the devastation caused by the Flash Floods.
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Finally reached Shivling Tourist Complex Hotel at around 5:00pm. The Kerala Bolero was all repaired and ready to move on, so were the other cars. Since it was already 5:00pm and we would get only about 2.5 hours of drive time, before we would have to stop for the night, a decision was made to stay the night at Uttarkashi itself and leave early the next morning For Gaurikund.


Dinner was ordered from a local Chinese restaurant, which was lapped up by the team! It was nearly 12:00am by the time everyone went off to sleep!


to be continued......
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Old 19th June 2013, 15:57   #102
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Default Re: Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

I am shocked with all these news pouring in.

Kedarnath Temple badly affected
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Source of the picture.
http://www.indianexpress.com/picture...ud/2922-1.html


http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/i...w/20652564.cms
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Old 19th June 2013, 16:35   #103
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Default Re: Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

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I am shocked with all these news pouring in.
Really hope that all people trapped in the region be rescued ASAP. A little selfish, but anyone has any knowledge if any BHPian was in the region too taking a trip?
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Old 19th June 2013, 18:49   #104
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Default Re: Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

Was watching all the news channels now. Devastating, unprecedented scenario.

Kedarnath temple to be closed and to remain out of bounds for a year.
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Old 19th June 2013, 19:22   #105
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Default Re: Chota Char Dham - A Road Trip to Uttarakhand

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Originally Posted by laluks View Post
Kedarnath temple to be closed and to remain out of bounds for a year.
Indeed. It is a miracle to some extent that the temple is still standing, but word-of-mouth news is that it may not be possible to completely remove the debris from around the temple, because it has shifted on its base, and removal of the mud holding it up can lead to it collapsing. I really don't know whether to believe this or not, but looking at the pics, it wouldn't be impossible.
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