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Old 18th June 2014, 21:46   #16
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

Sorry about one error in the post above - The snow is near Khardung La and I have mentioned it as Rohtang.
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Old 18th June 2014, 22:23   #17
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

Quote:
Originally Posted by maverick.munish View Post
Wonderful Travelogue with some really amazing pcitures.
Hats off to you for driving across from down south in Bangalore to the hills of Kargil and beyond and back.
On a secondary note, I would like to ask you a very basic question around the driving etiquette of people across the length and breadth of your journey.
I have heard that just like the language and cultures changing every few kilometers within India, so do the driving styles and sense.
Did you encounter any specifics and what scared you the most while driving on those stretches.
Hi Maveric Munish, being down south, in Bangalore known for only traffic jams, it was really a stress buster to get out of town. I can comment on your question based on my experience.

The lorry traffic was really really huge after crossing blore outskirts enroute to Mumbai. There were certain road rash games that were played between Pune to Mumbai via the Pune Mumbai express way. As it was heavily raining and occasional potholes, few bus and taxi drivers took harsh turns without any indication. This was a pain to gauge.

Within Mumbai city, it is similar to Bangalore, where the traffic etiquette is not that great. From Vapi to Amritsar, we would only see majorly lorry traffic and most of the lorry drivers do allow path for the car drivers as such.

In Rajasthan, the toll roads were not really maintained properly and few farmers, leave their cattle in the middle of the road. this was a serious concern even in MP, UP as well while returning. Not 1 or 2 cows, every batch will be minimum 25 to 30.

The roads in Delhi, was really good and broad and I personally liked them. No much bike traffic, only cars, bus and mini commercial vehicles. In Jammu and Kashmir, it is majorly lorry and Indian army who always leave path for fellow travelers. A big salute for their tolerance level. Took some pics with those guys as well.

Entire Leh, until Manali circuit we hardly found many vehicles - only lorry and cab operators, who tend to occupy the roads or sometime leave path when you just honk once.

From Rohtang to Manali/Kullu, the cab/tourist operators are very rude. Most of the cars were hatchback etc but they never allowed vehicles to overtake even if that was a vehicle registered in HP. Then you can imagine my case, who is having a different state registration vehicles.

After Manali, then Delhi it is more or less similar to Bangalore, where either it is peak traffic or not much traffic. It was not difficult for me to get used to that.

While entering Maharashtra(to Nagpur), the lorry/bus and tour operators created havoc at the checkpost, due to which there were traffic block for almost 4 hours, which at times i see in Bangalore city roads itself.

Hope this answers your question.
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Old 20th June 2014, 10:18   #18
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

Awesome log! Marsimek la was quite an adventure! Did they just let you go on request without any permit? Lucky!!
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Old 20th June 2014, 12:05   #19
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

ru153, the pictures just took my breath away...Splendid camera work... No matter how many posts come up, one never gets tired of the spectacular visuals of Ladakh !
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Old 20th June 2014, 23:34   #20
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

Man this has always been a lifelong dream for me! Hope I too can drive down one day and experience the true bliss of Magnificent India!

Great TL. Please keep the posts coming!
(I have an exam in a few hours and here I am going through this thread )
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Old 21st June 2014, 00:04   #21
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

Quote:
Originally Posted by ru153 View Post
Please PM me if you need anything. Would be happy to help another BHPian do this circuit

Hi,

Kudos to you and your wife for doing this amazing journey. Your TL is very nice and pictures are very good. I wanted to do this trip from Mumbai to Leh, Nubra, Pangong, Hanle, Manali - Mumbai in my Innova. Which areas would be difficult in Innova to do and do I need to put engine guard in my car.

Thanks.

Mod Note : Please quote ONLY the relevant bits of a post. Quoting a full, long post inconveniences our mobile readers.

Thanks!

Last edited by Aditya : 23rd June 2014 at 12:25. Reason: Entire post quoted
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Old 22nd June 2014, 01:11   #22
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

That's incredible - 9000+ kms in 3 weeks. That's just impossible without proper research and planning.
Rightly said, a trip like this would reveal a lot more things than what we would have expected out of it. I am sure, it has left a lot of sweet memories etched in your minds and has certainly expanded your horizon.

Congrats on your wonderful trip.
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Old 22nd June 2014, 23:12   #23
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

Quote:
Originally Posted by ru153 View Post
Day 25: Started from Agra to Nagpur. The roads are in a decent shape will entering Madhya Pradesh. However, once you enter MP, the story is different. Potholed stretches and very bad traffic.
Total distance: 825 kms
We reached Nagpur by late night.

Looks like some confusion about road conditions, Last year September the bad patches on NS corridors were Gwalior Jhansi (and in many instances it was recommended to take Gwalior Shivpuri Jhansi) , Seoni - NAgpur, (MP Mah border) and between Hinghanghat and Adilabad in Mah - AP Border. Beyond Jhansi (Babina) till Seoni the roads were in good condition. The roads inside MP were not as bad as its sounding in your post.
This year things have improved dramatically and now between Delhi and Hyderabad only Mah AP border section is pending, rest is good roads.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 8090guy View Post
This has been my favorite research topic. Several experts in the forum have answered a resounding YES to the question. My answer too is yes. Here are a few more insights.

Please note, I have never visited Leh. So take my opinions with a pinch of salt. I have planned Leh trip 3 times to the minutest detail, only to drop it later. I planned to take my Swift ZXI. All three times I planned to do in Sept, and I was confident of doing it. Trip got cancelled due to other reasons.
In case you wish to make it this year, we are all set to travel to Leh around End of August. Adding someone with extensive research in our convoy would be great. You are most welcome.
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Old 24th June 2014, 11:34   #24
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

Very nice travelogue, I plan to do the same trip soon.

A few questions regarding the Fortuner:
* Why was the battery down? It doesn't happen usually. Didn't you check your battery before the trip?
* How did you manage to 'tilt' the alignment, especially on regular highways? I have found that the Fortuner is pretty forgiving in such matters
* What type of Fortuner do you have? 2WD or 4WD?
* Were you running on stock tyres? How did they hold up?

Lovely landscape photos, btw.
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Old 24th June 2014, 17:01   #25
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination



My friend, you have wonderful writing and narration skills. I read and saw your posts in one sitting, and the time just flew...

Thanks very much for sharing this wonderful TLog and all the best to both of you, for many more trips such as this one. That will also ensure that we get to enjoy them too, through your words and pictures!
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Old 24th June 2014, 17:27   #26
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

"changed the suspension to Bilstein and got light films on the windows from 3M."

How did Bilstein suspension work in this 9KMs journey ?
Did it help in any of the muddy , bad roads of Leh ?
Is this suggested for Leh trip for other SUVs like scorpio ?
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Old 25th June 2014, 12:27   #27
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

Hi RU153,
This has been an amazing Travelogue. Like many others on this forum, this is a dream destination for me as well and I am still waiting for my time to get there. Would love to know the other details like the fuel, hotel expenses etc. It would be great if you could share your trip logs if any. Thanks again for this wonderful TL and keep driving. Cheers.
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Old 25th June 2014, 18:13   #28
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

Wow, what a journey. From the south to the north, just the two of you. Travel, is so exciting and an automatic thrill. Everyday something new, very exciting and unpredictable.
Can imagine what a nuisance jerry would have been. There is something known as a glue pas which you could have used. Cheers
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Old 25th June 2014, 23:20   #29
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Default Re: Bangalore to Ladakh - A drive as great as the destination

Quote:
Originally Posted by nilanjanray View Post
Very nice travelogue, I plan to do the same trip soon.

A few questions regarding the Fortuner:
* Why was the battery down? It doesn't happen usually. Didn't you check your battery before the trip?
* How did you manage to 'tilt' the alignment, especially on regular highways? I have found that the Fortuner is pretty forgiving in such matters
* What type of Fortuner do you have? 2WD or 4WD?
* Were you running on stock tyres? How did they hold up?

Lovely landscape photos, btw.
Hi nilanjanray,

Thanks for the compliement. With regards to your question;

1. You are right, for a new vehicle the battery should have not gone down. However, we faced battery draining, because i did not use the vehicle for ages and once we started testing, the vehicle did not start. When logged a warranty complaint, the service advisor said, we need to use the vehicle regularly if not frequently.

But once the trip was over, i went to the service team and blasted them and made them to change the battery, as it had some manufacturing defect. Later, they changed it to new battery and now it is up and running perfectly. It could probably be an exceptional scenario.

2. You are right on this as well. But as kms passed by, i got used to the vehicle. However, in rajasthan, we met with an minor accident. In order to save the cow, i had tried to turn the vehicle on a curve, but there things went slightly out of control. Thanks to bilstein struts, the vehicle felt more planted the the OE struts thereby not resulting in big damages.

3. I have a 4WD fortuner.

4. I did not change the stock tyres. Since we had planned to do this trip during september, during which the peak season was complete and not much of snow, the stock tyres did a decent job. Since the OE tyres are A/T (all terrain) category, i guess it was sufficient. But after the trip and due to bilstein's presence, the tyre has worn out when compared to the status it was before the trip. On our return from khardungla to our surprise, it had snowed. So out of no where, i just went little bit on the snow/slush as well. No adverse impact noted.

Hope this answers all your queries. Thanks again for your compliments again.



Quote:
Originally Posted by rajeevn View Post


My friend, you have wonderful writing and narration skills. I read and saw your posts in one sitting, and the time just flew...

Thanks very much for sharing this wonderful TLog and all the best to both of you, for many more trips such as this one. That will also ensure that we get to enjoy them too, through your words and pictures!
Hi Rajeevn,

Thanks for the compliment. I had made my draft version, which got edited based on some feedback from my wife and modified here and there.

I would also, like to thank tsk1979 (tbhp member) who had written such wonderful tlog on this part of the world.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Ranga View Post
"changed the suspension to Bilstein and got light films on the windows from 3M."

How did Bilstein suspension work in this 9KMs journey ?
Did it help in any of the muddy , bad roads of Leh ?
Is this suggested for Leh trip for other SUVs like scorpio ?

Hi Ranga,

Bilstein struts really worked well. I haven't tested the tfort on muddy roads similar to off roadinig n all. I hear from people that, it does give better handling capacity.

Generally, the problem with such large size vehicle is keeping those vehicle grounded at highspeeds, which is what these struts does. So, in a typical muddy/slush scenario, i guess, bilstein may put the vehicle, into wheelspinning kind of a situation.

After bilstein, suspension, the suspension might get a little harder as well.

On a personal note, bilstein struts may not be mandatory for any vehicle to pass through Leh circuit. But, if you are keen follower of performance, it does help.

We saw lot of scorpio's rented ones, which were used by fellow travellers with stock set up. So, for the leh trip alone, bilstein may not be a mandate for your scorpio.

Wish you a all the very best for your proposed journey.




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Old 26th June 2014, 10:45   #30
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Thanks for reverting. Fantastic that you kept on going after the setbacks and took them in your stride.

The stock tyres - AT 20 - are not A/T but all season H/T tyres, just fyi.
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