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Old 9th September 2006, 00:12   #1
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Talking Bangalore-Jog-Goa in a Fully loaded Petra!

How we started...
As it always happens in my family, this trip started with a brief fight with my wife. When we learned that one day leave on 14 Aug will let us have a 5 day long week end, we were excited and wanted to have a holiday. She wanted to have a short travel time, but we were running out of places to visit. GOA is the place none of us had gone before. My son (6yrs) always wanted to go to a beach, and what better place can there be.
Wife wanted to take a flight to cut on the travel time and I wanted to drive. 4 days of ambiguity. Then 2 new factor were thrown in, the the game was my side.
1 Jog falls was full, and we don't want to miss that.
2 S-I-L and nephew joined the party and the economics of the flight were out of window.
Its gonna be a road trip !!!! We were 4 and a half, Myself, wife Veena and my son Vidyuth (1/2 ticket), Sister in law (Uma), her son Vinay, .


Route: Bangalore > Shimoga >Jog > Honnavar >Karwar > Goa

12-August: Set off to Goa
On Friday night, Got the car tanked up, packed everything and went to sleep at 12:00 to get up 3:30 next morning. We had planned to leave by 4, but turned out to be 5, late as usual. Every cubic inch of the 500lts boot of my petra was full. Man you should see the pic. Baggages, my son's toys, 4 Cameras, 2 Binoculars, Tool kit which was already there in the boot, Snack boxes by Mom-in-law, pillows, Kites.....

Actually by 5;00 I was on the Tumkur road. With 4 1/2 people and all those luggage in the boot, the handling of the car was not really sporty. I felt the tail being thrown around. By the time I reached Tumkur, I got used to this handling, and learnt the knack of getting her under control. Till Tumkur it is a 4 lane road , very smooth, and boring too. I usually do about 4 trips a month, Tumkur being my place. After that, into the BH road, the road is 2 lane, wide enough but very smooth too. I found myself doing good speeds around 100- 120, and got many surprise speed breakers. With so much load and high speed, many of them were not even felt.

After we passed Tiptur, people in the back seat slowly started waking up, and day break had happened by then. We had lost 1 hour when we started late. We had to make up for that time and could not go any faster keeping the safety of family in mind. So decided not to take a break till breakfast. After passing through 7 kms of bad stretch near Bhadravati, we reach Shimoga by 8:30. 3:30 hrs for 270kms, about 78kms/h average. Not bad uh!

We had breakfast at Shimoga and it was almost 10:00 when we were finally out of Shimoga. When I reached Sagar, I thought it was good to refuel as there after I will be driving through ghats and not sure of getting fuel. Filled with HP Power and it took only 26 liters! Man that's about a 14.2 kmpl mileage. Best FE ever got!

Here on, it was hide and seek with rain, so the speed drastically reduced. By 12:30 we were in Jog falls. It was raining all the way and just when we reached there it stopped, and mist around the falls cleared too. I was in Jog only for the second time. First time was a disaster. I do not even remember where the water was. And this time it was a bonanza. I had not seen Jog in such a glory, even in Pictures. Words are just not enough to describe the beauty and pictures do not do any justice either. If you envy me, doubt me, want to see jog, what ever... just go there and see. It is worth every ml of fuel you burn to go there. Rain and mist was still playing with us. Every time I take the camera out it would rain or cover the falls with mist. We were lucky to get a few pics. We spent about an hour there and started towards Goa. We did a brief stop at a vista point where we could see the river Sharavati was flowing through a valley, and all the mountains were thick green with white lines of waterfalls here and there, watter in the river was muddy. The drive down the ghat was exciting, I was able to do very good speed to the tune of 70 -90 kmph and the car felt very stable and planted. I had to cut down on the speed at some points where the road was wet due to weather. The beautiful scenery of the western ghats never let us get bored.

Pictures for your eyes only.....


NH 17
By 3:00 we were in Honnavar and joined the West coast highway (NH17). We had to stopped for Lunch. We had one of the worst lunches in Hotel Kamat in Honnavar. back on the road by 3:45.

Funny Incedent, We must have drove thro' Kumta I started feeling very sleepy. I looked around and found every one else already fast asleep! I found a safe place with good visibility to other drivers and pulled over, put on the Hazard lights and dozed off! I must have slept for about 30 mins, my wife suddenly woke up, thought some thing was wrong and panic. "what happened!!" Her panic drove my sleep away . (did I mention I was the only driver in the trip). So Back on the road.

Beautiful Karwar:
We had briefly stopped for a Photo session around Karwar, and reached the Kali river bridge, when it was about to sunset. They have made a beautiful little park on a hill adjacent to the river. My son wanted to play there, while we thought we enjoy the sunset. Clouds played spoilsport. It was the first sight of river joining the sea for my family. Thought of making a career in Karwar crossed my mind .

Pictures....




By 7 we had crossed the Karnataka border into Goa, here on the progress was very slow. Unfamiliar place and the road was getting narrow. We had to ask for directions many times. We also drove through narrow roads of Madgao wondering how do large trucks and trailers go on these narrow bilanes of so called NH17. I did not see any directions for a By-pass either.
It was then when we realized, we had grossly forgotten to bring along the address of the resort we had booked. We had the confirmation e-mail print, but it did not have the address or phone number. We wanted to reach Colangute beach. That's where I thought the resort was. I had tried to locate the resort on google earth when we booked the hotel and the web site had given the directions. that was our only hope to get there. When we approached Panjim we missed the road, and entered the Panjim city. Panjim city is really beautiful, but we were lost. I tried to ask for directions, but most people we found were not in a state to give accurate directions. U know what I mean! One auto wallah helped and asked us to go back to the junction where we missed the road. Finally we got on the right path and we were in resort a little short of 10:00 in the night. We had the dinner in the same resort and were in bed by 11:30. That was a long beautiful day!

13, 14, 15 August. North Goa sight seeing.
I do not want to go ga ga about Goa. I think all have seen it before me. But to give a brief, and to mention some of the interesting things that happened. All the time the roads were extremely good and clean (something we miss in Bangalore city)


13 Aug:
Colangute beach, It is really a beautiful beach. Sea was rough and not good for swimming. High tide too.
In the evening, we went to Panjim city Just to enjoy the city again. The roads are dream to drive on. Went to Miramar, enquired about the cruise. Kid was interested in going for the dolphin cruise, but were told it is only during October. Decided to come next day.

14 Aug:
Baga beach: This is one of the most beautiful beach I have seen. though the sea was rough the water was enjoyable. Kid never wanted to got out of water. We stayed till afternoon here and we had to move on for lunch. Meanwhile, Vinay wanted to collect stones for the fish tank. What a joy!

Football sized crab:Finally out of the beach and were hunting for food! Found a good sea food restaurant. We are all eat anything kind except for Uma who is a environment activist and a strict vegetarian. We wanted to have crab, were not sure about the size. In Bangalore we always get the same size which is good enough for one. This guy said, he will get us the crab to see and we can decide if the size is OK. What came on a wooden plate was a live crab which was of the size of a football!!! He was helplessly sitting on the plate with all his pliers tied so not risk any fingers! Suddenly 2 eyes came out of the shell and appeared to plead "don't choose me please, Bless my life". We did not get the heart to eat that poor guy. We said no. All other things we ate there were very good. But the service was very slow.

In the evening We went to Fort Aguada, Dona Paula, and Cruise. Cruise was fun filled, every one enjoyed. After the cruise we went to a restaurant called Mom's Kitchen, Food was very good and extremely expensive. Squid rings were a delicacy. They also have a collection of fine wine.

15 Aug:
Anjuna and Vagator Beaches, Both are very scenic, but we had decided not to get into water. Waves thrashing the rocks in Anjuna beach is fun to watch.



Ferry Ride: The next plan was to go to Salem Ali Bird sanctuary. This included taking a Ferry ride to cross Mandovi river. We reached the Ferry jetty I asked the captain, "does this ferry take me to sanctuary", he said "yes , get the car in". I ask "where should I buy the ticket?", "Just get the car on" I got the car on to the ferry the rear over hanging of the boot scrapped the road. For all of us it was the first ferry ride ever. Till I got the car on the boat everyone were not believing me that the car will be transported on a boat across the river. I was also preparing for a big expense for this ferry experience. I had thought it may cost me about 200 -500 buck for the ride. 4 1/2 people and a ton car, does not come cheap, does it! When the ticket guy asked me to pay Rs 10 as charges I was dumbstruck!! Had I driven that distance it would have cost me Rs 18.



Fish out of water:
On the other shore got off the ferry, again scraping the boot. and drove 10 mts to the sanctuary, only to be told that the sanctuary was closed because of high tide, and it is not the season either. However, the officer there encouraged us to take a walk inside to get a feeling of mangroves, and we did. Mangroves are really scary, full of strange insects, very very humid and very slippery too. During the low tide they take us through them by boat it seems. But now we had to walk through. We did not find a single bird of any kind. BUT we did find one interesting thing, a mud skipper. One that I had seen in NatGeo channel, a kinda fish which actually lives on land. It has adopted itself for land life. It just struck to me and told everyone, and again they do not believe me. It was assumed a overgrown tadpole! Here is the link if you need more info.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mudskipper

Photos....





From there we returned through the same ferry again scrapping the bottom, and to St. Xavier's basilica. a very peaceful place though!
Came back to Resort and started packing for next day for we had to leave.

16 Aug: Return Journey
All set to leave early in the morning, we packed everything we had into the car. Soon I found we had lot more than we had carried there. All we carried there - snack boxes + a lot of clothes bought in Goa + a guitar Vinay bought + a Pungi that Vidyuth bought + stones that were collected on the beach. Re-arrange is the word. All the cameras came into the cabin. Tripod took a place next to the co-driver's seat. and again, the car was jam-packed with stuff all around.

It was a little later than 6 when we left. We argued all the way till Panjim about the route we should take back to Bangalore. We knew that Panjim-Hubli road was bad. We decided drive till Karwar/Ankola and decide either take Ankola Hubli road or back as we came in. There was always a voice to go see Jog again. Pace was slow till we crossed Goa and stopped for breakfast in Karwar at 8.
Left Karwar by 9 and the argument started again. Finally, Veena pulled out the map and verified and declared, Ankola Hubli is actually a round about, so continue on the route we came. So going to Jog rekindled again. After a tank fill near Ankola, we were soon climbing up the western ghats. The falls on the road side as we stated climbing was in front of us unlike behind us when going to Goa.

Climbing up was sure an uphill task. Well had it been any other weaker car. 100 horses are not a joke. I am amazed the way Petra took the challenge and did it with class without a gasping breath. 3 rd gear was good enough for most of the parts. Vinay was busy videotaping the roller-coaster kind of drive.


Notice the boot which is fully packed



North Side of Jog
We were at Jog by 12:30. This time we decided to visit the opposite side of the falls. When we just reached, it started raining heavily. We were stranded in the car for a while. When we got out, I had never seen a beauty like this before. Actually, one of the falls is not visible at all from the south side. North side is a real beauty. and also takes very close to the falls and very difficult to photograph unless you stitch. While we were about to come back to car, we bought some Pineapple from the roadside vendor, and it was so good. We wanted to buy more but the rain started again.
Photo...



By 2:30 we were at Sagar for Lunch. We had a good lunch at a hotel, and were on the road again in about an hour. From here on it was a non-stop drive till Tiptur. Fatigue was growing upon me and the speed was reduced. Finally I decided to stop for a break in Tiptur at 7:00 evening. After a 45 min break we were off again and reached Bangalore at 11:00 in the night.
First traffic signal near Yashvantpur which was red, reminded me that I had net seen a traffic light for 5 days! Back to Bangalore, back to hard realities of life. Have to go to work tomorrow morning!
Overall, it was a fun filled trip for me behind the wheel as well as people behind me too. I am tempted to do this trip again in October, not to miss the dolphin cruise. Hope the work schedule permits!

Thanks for taking time to read a long report, Hope you have enjoyed it.[/quote]

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 11th September 2006 at 22:41.
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Old 12th September 2006, 00:10   #2
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Thanks mods for letting me format this report,

Adding a few pictures...

Begining of the descent...
What you see at the right top corner os the top of Jog.. if you jjump from here you will reach the bottom . The water seem to be above a few trees.

Jog on Google earth


My dirty car amidst dirty graffiti


at the vista point

Ferry..where I scraped my spare wheel well

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Old 12th September 2006, 09:53   #3
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Well written.

I was looking for route info to Karwar, and in came you at the right time.

How much time did you take to Karwar? Also how is the road signs-are they in English also?
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Old 12th September 2006, 10:22   #4
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Hi,
nice report there! Nice read to start a day..
all the more tempted to go to Goa. We planning to go in Oct. Whats dolphin cruise?
thanks
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Old 12th September 2006, 10:29   #5
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Nice Report !! nice pics too...

Abhi
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Old 12th September 2006, 10:41   #6
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This is wonderfull report DRC, I travelled from bangalore to Ankola (my parents stay @Ankola) 3rd week of August when Jog Falls was very beautifull, my 21 months old baby girl shouted immediately after seeing Jog Falls "Wa Wa Waaa !!!!!". My mother and my wife could not speak for a minute when they listen our baby overjoyed by seeing water falls and speaking about it.

That week Jog Falls was in full glory for sure, it would have made any person excited and overjoyed.

I love Blre-> Shimoga -> Honnavar drive for sure. its great road.

Ravi.
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Old 12th September 2006, 14:44   #7
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That is a great travelouge
It will be helpful for guys who are planning to visit these places in mansoons.
Overall a nice Report.
Boot of petra is big and it really helps in these kind of trips. btw I always make full use of my car boot on my trips outside bangalore, it easily accomodates By Son's Pram along with other luggage.
cheers
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Old 12th September 2006, 15:41   #8
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Thanks guys for the encouraging comments.. keep them coming

@whitenight..Yes the road as well as road signs are good and signs are in english too. I took about 12 hours all breaks included to reach Karwar

@Kutlee.. A cruise in which they take you to the sea where you can see dolphins (if you have luck.. of course, I was not lucky ), Been on such a cruise in California.

Last edited by DRC : 12th September 2006 at 15:44.
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Old 12th September 2006, 18:06   #9
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Excellent Report. There are few in the forum whom's report will not be missed at all. You are the new addition to that list. Great Pics too.
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Old 12th September 2006, 18:53   #10
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Fantastic report. Can I see the Dussera holidays coming? Over to my wife...
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Old 12th September 2006, 22:16   #11
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@greatdrive, My son's toys include a bicycle!
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Old 13th September 2006, 07:02   #12
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Wow Drc,
Excellent report.....
i can see the de car FULLY LOADED... lol
Jai
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Old 13th September 2006, 11:49   #13
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Arrow Thats A Lovely Report

Quote:
Originally Posted by DRC
Thanks guys for the encouraging comments.. keep them coming

@whitenight..Yes the road as well as road signs are good and signs are in english too. I took about 12 hours all breaks included to reach Karwar

@Kutlee.. A cruise in which they take you to the sea where you can see dolphins (if you have luck.. of course, I was not lucky ), Been on such a cruise in California.
Hai DRC,

That was a lovely report and graphiic too. Reminded me about the same route I took last year from Honavar to Jog, lovely ghat roads with thin traffic and yes...... the pinaple shop. We too enjoyed the pinaples, there's not much eating joints that side.

Our trip to Hubli from Jog through Siddhpur was real bad, the road was a 100 KM of hell at that time.

We were lucky at Kolva beach in Goa, we got to see the dolphins. Its a matter of timing and luck I guess.

--Ramky

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Last edited by ramkya1 : 13th September 2006 at 11:50.
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Old 13th September 2006, 12:10   #14
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After reading DRC report, I would like to visit Jog falls. Any tips who went there or nearer places from Hyderabad? (defnitely not by car at this moment). Train/ plane etc

Cheers
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Old 13th September 2006, 12:42   #15
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Nice trip and nice report :-) DRC ! Keep posting more of your travelouges.
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