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Old 9th February 2016, 10:54   #16
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

You finally took the plunge for this travel.

Excellent narration and pictures! Looking at your pictures of Nathang Valley and Kupup lake, I opened up my travelogue and went through it once again. Such is the beauty of the place!

Thanks for sharing this travelogue with us.
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Old 9th February 2016, 12:26   #17
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

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Originally Posted by ISO View Post
Beautiful writeup and thanks for sharing honest feedback about XUV.

Front wheel not giving traction seems design limitation of the XUV.

How was long hours driving comfort?
Hi ISO

I dont think front wheel traction is a design limitation. I think Mahindra has just got a bad tyre selection team for OEM supply or they simply go for the chepest OEM suppliers. With my new Pirellis I have done some pretty steep hairpins and mud slushing and the car has performed satisfactorily.

Long hours driving comfort is really good. The AC is excellent, bucket seats cushion you well. Even on the 16 hour sojourns on the Siliguri Kolkata route, we were tired after the 16 hour runs, but no backache/neck ache or any other discomfort. Infact on most days, I happily did local sighseeing after driving all days and never felt too tired.
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Old 9th February 2016, 12:33   #18
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

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whoa! this is one lovely writing, the pictures are pristine. It is definitely inspiring many to start a journey. You mention that the XUV was not able to handle the bad roads well, can you please elaborate? Did you book all the hotel stays in advance and what was the total cost?
Hi Loneridder. Please see the last part on ride comfort. I expected a huge monster like this with reasonably large tyres to perform better when handling potholes and road undulations. I felt every single bump in the cabin. When checked with the service centre, they said Monocoque vs ladder and frame is the reason this happens. Quite frankly, this is the one sore point about owning this car. Apart from this I love everything about my XUV.

I booked the onward hotels in advance. We had kept an outer budget of 2500 INR for tier B town and 4500 INR for tier A metro stops. We found almost luxurious accomodation in this price range throughout our journey. Stayed in Novotels/Radissons and similar properties within this budget.
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Old 9th February 2016, 12:35   #19
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

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Originally Posted by gearhead_mait View Post
You finally took the plunge for this travel.

Excellent narration and pictures! Looking at your pictures of Nathang Valley and Kupup lake, I opened up my travelogue and went through it once again. Such is the beauty of the place!

Thanks for sharing this travelogue with us.
Hi Gearhead, pls accept my sincere apologies on not thanking you in my write up. I did go through your blogs and they were inspiring as you did the trip in a hatchback with your family.

Again your pictures were truly inspiring as well. Thank you for the motivation. Lets hope we meet together on a sojourn in future!
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Old 9th February 2016, 12:45   #20
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

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Originally Posted by vikram31 View Post
Hi Gearhead, pls accept my sincere apologies on not thanking you in my write up. I did go through your blogs and they were inspiring as you did the trip in a hatchback with your family.

Again your pictures were truly inspiring as well. Thank you for the motivation. Lets hope we meet together on a sojourn in future!
No apologies please, my friend. We are here not to thank each other at every point of time. I feel good that my trip contributed a bit for your travel, and hope it inspires some more people out here.

We will definitely meet some day!
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Old 9th February 2016, 12:56   #21
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

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My key advice would be as follows for general days where you drive 500km or more in a day:

1. Tyres - For an enjoyable journey pls ensure your tyres are in great condition as well as suited to the terrain. For example, I travelled with HP - Highway Performance tyres in areas that needed AT - All terrain tyres. If you drive a sedan instead of an SUV, please ensure you have high quality rubber with a good tread especially on Sikkim like roads

Cheers
Hi Vikram, thanks for the detailed and excellent travelogue. It will take me a while to do such an extensive trip. hats off to you mate. Since you covered the distance to Nagpur on Day 1 in a single day from Mumbai, i thought of getting some inputs from you on the drive. I have a wedding planned around March for which i intend to drive down from Pune in my i20. Needed your inputs on the road condition, pit stops, suggestions etc. My car is ~5 months old, but the front tyre has suffered some extreme end punctures(between sidewall and road grip) due to a single drive with less tyre pressure. From then on i have investigated my tyres daily to ensure i don't repeat the mistake again. While many have suggested i take the overnite bus, i want a drive. Hoping fellow BHPians can come to my aid
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Old 9th February 2016, 14:02   #22
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

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Originally Posted by gearhead_mait View Post
No apologies please, my friend. We are here not to thank each other at every point of time. I feel good that my trip contributed a bit for your travel, and hope it inspires some more people out here.

We will definitely meet some day!
I am surely looking forward to that..I am planning something in Sep/Oct to Spiti. Maybe we could meet at some point and do the trip together?
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Old 9th February 2016, 14:41   #23
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

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I am surely looking forward to that..I am planning something in Sep/Oct to Spiti. Maybe we could meet at some point and do the trip together?
Will surely keep this in mind. Thanks!
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Old 9th February 2016, 14:44   #24
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

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Originally Posted by AveekKumar View Post
Hi Vikram, thanks for the detailed and excellent travelogue. Since you covered the distance to Nagpur on Day 1 in a single day from Mumbai, i thought of getting some inputs from you on the drive. I have a wedding planned around March for which i intend to drive down from Pune in my i20. Needed your inputs on the road condition, pit stops, suggestions etc. My car is ~5 months old, but the front tyre has suffered some extreme end punctures(between sidewall and road grip) due to a single drive with less tyre pressure. From then on i have investigated my tyres daily to ensure i don't repeat the mistake again. While many have suggested i take the overnite bus, i want a drive. Hoping fellow BHPians can come to my aid
Hi Aveek

To make you smile with joy, here is the first thing, you can definitely do Pune-Nagpur in a day as there is a way to connect Jalna right after Nashik directly..Pls see below:

Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim-punenagpur.jpg

The patch in the green box is what will take you directly to Jalna. A lot of people will advise coming to Mumbai-Thane-Nashik and Jalna. In my opinion, its just too long. Once at Jalna, your troubles on bad roads will start and go all the way to Karanja. Bad/patchy roads throughout.

My advice would be to start at 5 am. Stop by a nice Misal/other bfast point and drive straight to Jalna. There are some decent dhabas that will serve you good dal tadka and roti (do not order any fancy veggies/non veg dishes on the hghway pls). If you start from Jalna by 1.30 or so, you should be able to reach Nagpur by 7-7.30.

Please explain what you mean by extreme punctures. Are they in the middle of the sidewall and are there multiple punctures? If not, you should be fine as I expect good as new tyres on a 5 month old car. The i20 is a fine machine to drive at good speeds but please keep in mind its low GC. Will certainly scrape a few potholed on the Jalna/Karanja patch so drive slow and try to drive on the extreme left of the road. Also, post sunset the last patch to reach Nagpur (the last 1 hour or so) will have extreme truck traffic and high beams. so try to reach as close to sunset as possible. Please PM me if you need more help.

Cheers
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Old 9th February 2016, 14:56   #25
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

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Originally Posted by vikram31 View Post

The patch in the green box is what will take you directly to Jalna. A lot of people will advise coming to Mumbai-Thane-Nashik and Jalna. In my opinion, its just too long. Once at Jalna, your troubles on bad roads will start and go all the way to Karanja. Bad/patchy roads throughout.

Please explain what you mean by extreme punctures. Are they in the middle of the sidewall and are there multiple punctures? If not, you should be fine as I expect good as new tyres on a 5 month old car. The i20 is a fine machine to drive at good speeds but please keep in mind its low GC. Will certainly scrape a few potholed on the Jalna/Karanja patch so drive slow and try to drive on the extreme left of the road. Also, post sunset the last patch to reach Nagpur (the last 1 hour or so) will have extreme truck traffic and high beams. so try to reach as close to sunset as possible. Please PM me if you need more help.

Cheers
Thanks Vikram once again. We plan to leave early morning, so will try hitting Amravati before sundown.

Well the punctures were on the shoulder. Have been running for a couple of weeks now with no issues. Sidewall is intact.
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Old 9th February 2016, 15:12   #26
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

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Thanks Vikram once again. We plan to leave early morning, so will try hitting Amravati before sundown.

Well the punctures were on the shoulder. Have been running for a couple of weeks now with no issues. Sidewall is intact.
Cool. Pls drive safely after Amravati. The road is pretty good from there.

Shoulder punctures should be just fine. Pls recheck tire pressure on every fuel refill. That should keep things safe.
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Old 10th February 2016, 15:54   #27
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

Wow!, what an amazing journey that would have been and thank you for a great travelogue. The pictures I am sure provide only a small idea of the kind of vistas you must have been treated to.
I have an XUV myself, and the only gripe I have with the gaadi so far is the suspension- it sucks big time and one can feel even the smallest bump on the ground. Otherwise, the vehicle is a true highway cruiser and mile muncher. Couple of other useful additions would have been the automatic shifts and the sun-roof, both of which, I believe, are available in the face-lifted version.
Thanks once again for sharing...
Cheerio.
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Old 10th February 2016, 22:15   #28
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

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Originally Posted by alphadog View Post
Wow!, what an amazing journey that would have been and thank you for a great travelogue. The pictures I am sure provide only a small idea of the kind of vistas you must have been treated to.
I have an XUV myself, and the only gripe I have with the gaadi so far is the suspension- it sucks big time and one can feel even the smallest bump on the ground. Otherwise, the vehicle is a true highway cruiser and mile muncher. Couple of other useful additions would have been the automatic shifts and the sun-roof, both of which, I believe, are available in the face-lifted version.
Thanks once again for sharing...
Cheerio.
Hi alphadog, Sadly I agree on the suspension part..i love the xuv so far but i think my next upgrade would probably be the endy..
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Old 11th February 2016, 01:18   #29
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

Welcome to the East.... Had done a great adventure.

Kudos to you for fulfilling one of of bucket dreams.

Nice Travelogue and Nice Photography.

Waiting for the next.
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Old 11th February 2016, 10:09   #30
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Default Re: Bucket List Item! Cross Country Drive - Mumbai to North & East Sikkim

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Hi vivekkr_99 - dont waste time planning too much. Just pack your bags and start your engines. Most things after that point will happen well. I think you should be able to backtrack my return leg from Trivandrum. That is, join Vizag from Trivandrum and then Puri-Kolkata and northwards. Please get in touch with me as you finalise. Would love to assist in any way I can. Cheers
Thanks a lot Vikram. Yes, planning to backtrack your return leg itself for our onward journey. The only difference might be that we will bypass Kolkatta while going - instead planning to take the Puri - Farakkha - Gangtok route. We are 3 families with kids traveling together (in separate vehicles, though) - so a little bit of advance planning will be required - primarily to stay in the same hotel itself. I will PM you for any details once we finalize the plans... Thanks again for that wonderful write-up !!

-Vivek
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