Go Back   Team-BHP > Buckle Up > Travelogues


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 7th January 2013, 19:50   #16
Senior - BHPian
 
nilanjanray's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 1,826
Thanked: 2,386 Times
Default re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Lovely photos, looking forward to the rest of the travelogue. Makes me nostalgic. I had done Lachen/Gurudongmar/army posts beyond (till 18000+ ft) and also Lachung/Yumthang in 2003- but in a hired local vehicle.

I woukd think that map coverage of strategic area such as North Sikkim beyond Chumthang would be minimal - isn't that a GoI mandate?
nilanjanray is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 7th January 2013, 20:59   #17
Distinguished - BHPian
 
anjan_c2007's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: India
Posts: 5,531
Thanked: 4,703 Times
Default re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Extremely well covered pictorially. Revived my old memories of the place, Debuda.I was there during 2005-06, had a very enjoyable stay and also did lots of sight-seeing.
Its news that the M.G. Road is not open to any automobiles these days. Earlier, they would close this road during evenings at around 6.00 pm for vehicular traffic.
I too had been to Nathula and had seen the Army conference room. It was not so well renovated then in 2006. We did not click pictures but the Army officers had handed us over a CD with our pictures.We met Chinese soldiers and shook hands. They appeared cheerful and friendly with us, but located across the barbed wire fence. I wonder how our soldiers brave the snow and temperatures in these areas. Most of the Army establishments here are of GI sheets and are just closed sheds from all sides.
Captain Baba Harbhajan Singh (August 3, 1941 – October 4, 1968) is a sacred name in the place and he is much revered. Every year, a soldier takes his memory to his hometown in Kapurthala dist in Punjab when the Baba is supposed to avail annual leave. His belongings are taken by a jeep to New Jalpaiguri, a train berth reserved with soldiers reaching his home and paying respects at his home there.
Back to the topic, law enforcement is too strict in Sikkim. Plastic bags have been totally banned and there is no trace of these - it helps keep the state clean. But littering is a habit with many of us.
Thanks again for reviving lovely memories! The Cheetah too has been thoroughly tested and has come out with flying colours.

Last edited by anjan_c2007 : 7th January 2013 at 21:01.
anjan_c2007 is offline   (3) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 7th January 2013, 22:14   #18
Senior - BHPian
 
parsh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Bombay
Posts: 1,517
Thanked: 956 Times
Default re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Debuda, a big thanks to you for bringing back the old memories of my exploits in Apr-May 2001. It was an amazing time there then and equally well revived with your pics of Nathula, Lachung, Yumthang, Tsomgo, China Border. I just can't express the ecstasy when we spotted the Kanchenjunga range first time (sorry, I will use incorrect easy name ). The difference is there was too much of snow, landslides, getting stuck into muddy/mucky roads inspite of having Mahindra Commander for travel etc and Tsomgo lake had thick icy white border to it. It was such a bliss and truly looked liked the Swiss Alps of India.

Also, equally very happy to see the XUV lived up to the terrain.
parsh is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 8th January 2013, 00:22   #19
BHPian
 
debuda's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Kolkata
Posts: 409
Thanked: 1,308 Times
Default re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Quote:
Originally Posted by girishglg View Post
Just curious did you do Gurudongmar bcos thats our must do in our next trip for sure!
I did not go towards Gurudongmar lake.

Quote:
Originally Posted by samarjitdhar View Post
Did the fact that you were in the navy help you with the permissions to travel right up to the trade gate in your own vehicle? As far as I have heard the Sikkim administration is hands in gloves with the local taxi operators such that they won't allow private vehicles (including 4WD ones) to go to these areas even if there are no army restrictions.
Yes, my being a retired Military Officer did help. My total expenditure for getting the two permits (Nathu La and North Sikkim) was Rs 30 only (the official fees for the two permits). Of course, I had to run around a bit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by A.G.The Rambler View Post
Just wanted to share one information i.e. Lachung river flows through Yumthang which meets Lachen river at Chungthang. Both the rivers meet together and form Teesta river at Chungthang.

BTW, how did your XUV perform in that terrain? Did you use any diesel antigen so that the diesel does not freeze or rather what was it like in the next morning?
Thanks for the info on the rivers.

I did not use any additives, nor did I take any special precautions (like covering the windshield or starting the car periodically when parked in the open).

Please see my detailed tech report at http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/test-d...ml#post3009618 (Debuda’s Silver Mahindra XUV500 W6 @ Jamshedpur)

Quote:
Originally Posted by anujatwork View Post
I also note that your XUV isn't wearing snow chains in Dec whereas in June all the army trucks going further above Tsongma needed them in diagonal wheels! Even our Innova in that month was skidding when we would happen to hit a few meters of frozen road in between.
Luckily for me, snowfall in Sikkim is delayed this year and I did not have to drive over snow / ice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nilanjanray View Post
I woukd think that map coverage of strategic area such as North Sikkim beyond Chumthang would be minimal - isn't that a GoI mandate?
You are quite right about the restrictions on map coverage of restricted areas. But my anguish with Garmin maps is due to lack of details even for unrestricted areas. Can you beat it -- places like Purulia and Nainital do not figure in Garmin maps! Many OLD (well established and mapped) roads in Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal are absent from Garmin maps.
debuda is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 8th January 2013, 09:17   #20
GTO
Team-BHP Support
 
GTO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Bombay
Posts: 47,729
Thanked: 89,228 Times
Default Re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Mindblowing travelogue, Debuda! Thanks for making us see it through your eyes & perspective.

Quote:
Originally Posted by debuda View Post
Windshield completely iced over. I (foolishly) first ran the wipers -- they didn't make any difference as the ice was frozen solid. Pouring hot water over the windshield was the only way out.
You could also direct your HVAC heater toward the windscreen. It would melt the base of the ice and also make the interiors warm

Just keep the blower at setting 1, and gradually increase if required. Don't want to crack the glass.
GTO is offline   (7) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 8th January 2013, 19:00   #21
BHPian
 
Heavy Horse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 275
Thanked: 284 Times
Default Re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Quote:
Originally Posted by debuda View Post
During end-Dec 2012 and early-Jan 2013 my wife and I drove from Jamshedpur in our 2-month old XUV-W6 to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung and Yumthang in Sikkim, India. It was an awesome driving experience. The total distance covered was 1925 KM out of which about 550 KM were in the hills.
Debuda, why don't you plan a trip that other BHPians can join in. I'm sure it's going to be real fun.
Heavy Horse is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 10th January 2013, 21:30   #22
Senior - BHPian
 
fine69's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: New Delhi
Posts: 1,407
Thanked: 859 Times
Default Re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

The pic taken from the top with the waterfall and the XUV below is poster material!

BTW any alternate to melt ice if one doesn't have access to hot water, salt?
fine69 is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2013, 07:53   #23
Team-BHP Support
 
ampere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 15,601
Thanked: 8,592 Times
Default Re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Debu-da what a nice way to put things in perspective! Going as a tourist in public transport is one, but taking one's own and into such
places is a totally different experience! Really felt very nice reading the whole account !

Even I have been to Sikkim, but seeing it through your eyes is a different story especially with the XUV involved !
ampere is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2013, 15:23   #24
BHPian
 
captain.torque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: New Delhi
Posts: 140
Thanked: 246 Times
Default Re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Quote:
Originally Posted by samarjitdhar View Post
Seems the best of the lot in the navigation devices seems to be Map My India though many a time my device has shown me driving through water or non-existent roads.
I beg to differ. Last summer had gone to Lansdowne with friends and was using the Map My India navigator, it was useless and frustrating. The maps were fine till we were on the highway but when we entered any town, instead of navigating us through the main arterial roads, it took us in to the heart of the city and I had to drive through crowded markets and narrow by lanes.

On our way back I kept on driving on a particular stretch of road-- suggested by the navigator obviously-- for 2 and a half hours before suddenly teh road disappeared and i was left in the lurch.
captain.torque is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2013, 15:35   #25
BHPian
 
dreamseller's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 400
Thanked: 351 Times
Default Re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Loved the way you have conveyed your triplog through pictures. Especially, the amount of trouble taken to frame those exposures in commendable.
I'm looking forward to visiting Sikkim sometime in March. Is it as tough to get ILP even if I'm taking a motorcycle?
dreamseller is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2013, 16:26   #26
BHPian
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: New Delhi
Posts: 155
Thanked: 214 Times
Default Re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Debuda,

Thanks for a wonderful writeup with great and telling pictures. Awesome trip and explanation thereof. What you are the Lady are doing after retirement, with so much courage, perseverance and passion, Sir, most of us don't have the temerity to do it in our earlier years. Hats off to you both, and keep such travelogs coming in to enlighten us some more.
rajeevn is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2013, 18:18   #27
BHPian
 
Sowmya's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 494
Thanked: 16 Times
Default Re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Nice blog. Please can you provide more details on accommodation and stay. And also the route ?
Sowmya is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th January 2013, 20:24   #28
BHPian
 
Rajeev1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 142
Thanked: 101 Times
Default Re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Debuda - beautiful pictures posted by you. Can you let me in on the secret of how you manage to take these snaps. Especially the ones which feature the XUV in scenic locales. I wonder how much time it would have taken to frame the snap of the XUV agaisnt the waterfall backdrop which seems to have been captured from an elevation. The pictures are worth the effort. Waiting for more :-)
Rajeev1 is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 13th January 2013, 06:48   #29
BHPian
 
debuda's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Kolkata
Posts: 409
Thanked: 1,308 Times
Default Re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Quote:
Originally Posted by fine69 View Post
BTW any alternate to melt ice if one doesn't have access to hot water, salt?
Check out http://www.wisebread.com/3-cheap-and...lus-bonus-tips

Quote:
Originally Posted by dreamseller View Post
I'm looking forward to visiting Sikkim sometime in March. Is it as tough to get ILP even if I'm taking a motorcycle?
I have no idea whether one can get an ILP to travel to Nathu La or North Sikkim in a motorbike. During my recent trip I did not see a single two-wheeler on those roads.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rajeev1 View Post
Can you let me in on the secret of how you manage to take these snaps. Especially the ones which feature the XUV in scenic locales. I wonder how much time it would have taken to frame the snap of the XUV agaisnt the waterfall backdrop which seems to have been captured from an elevation.
Stopping the car and getting out to take pictures, especially when the roads are treacherous and / or one is under stress to reach the destination by a certain time, can be quite an ordeal. Usually, I try to eliminate the latter stress by starting early and setting realistic destination targets for the day.

Probably the ideal solution is to have a driver-photographer combo team, where the driver concentrates only on driving and the photographer keeps looking for photo-ops and takes some pics from the car itself. Whenever the photographer needs to get out of the car and shoot, he can do it quickly (while the driver pulls over) as he already has the camera in his hand and has made the necessary settings in advance.

In my case, I am the driver-cum-photographer. However, any picture with me in it is obviously clicked by the old girl.

Regarding the waterfall picture -- we spent about 10 minutes at that location and there was a 'viewing point' at an elevation near the waterfall. I climbed to that viewing point to click my picture.

Last edited by debuda : 13th January 2013 at 06:50.
debuda is offline   (4) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 14th January 2013, 14:37   #30
BHPian
 
r0ckstar.1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 141
Thanked: 63 Times
Default Re: Drive to Gangtok, Nathu La, Lachung & Yumthang in my XUV500

Wow! That is one visual treat you got me. Thanks for taking the pain to take so many photographs and share with us Commendable that XUV is able to take these treacherous roads, that too a 2WD one.

I wouldn't dare taking the paths that you took and drive on snow without a 4WD. That picture of XUV treading the snow is a bit concerning for me. Hats-off to you . Looking forward to more on the travelogue. Wondering when will I be able to drive in these regions.
r0ckstar.1 is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Mahindra XUV500 : Test Drive & Review manson Official New Car Reviews 7771 11th December 2017 09:51
Drive to Chilka, Vizag, Araku Valley & Gopalpur-on-Sea in my XUV500 debuda Travelogues 31 1st July 2015 00:53
Drive to Kashmir Valley & Ladakh in my XUV500 debuda Travelogues 67 17th September 2013 00:23
Icy Nathu-La Sheel Travelogues 21 25th December 2012 09:39
Need stay recommendations at Darjeeling / Gangtok / Lachung / Peling / Lachen lightinin95 Route / Travel Queries 0 28th August 2010 14:26


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 04:08.

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