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Old 18th August 2015, 16:25   #196
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Default Re: Motorcycle trip from Bangalore-Asansol(WB)

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Originally Posted by Anirban001 View Post
I have a few more questions related to the planning of the Bangalore-Asansol ( WB ) motorcycle trip:

7. Is there anything I need to know regarding crossing the Andhra-Orissa border ?
8. What are the essential checks that I should get done on my bike before the trip?
9. How are the road conditions from Bangalore to Tirupathi ?
Andhra-Orissa border, as any other border, tends to have jams. On a bike that should not be an issue.

Get a normal paid service done a couple of weeks ahead of the trip and tell the guys that you are going on a long ride. Check the tyre. That's about it. Modern bikes don't need any special attention. Carry the necessary spares and tools.

I think Bhubaneswar to Asansol in a day is a bit of a stretch. That's my personal opinion.

Vizag and Bhubaneswar has lots of decent hotels.
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Old 16th September 2015, 23:46   #197
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore to Kolkata

Soon after AKRoy did this trip, I did it in December 2006 in my Bolero with my wife and our 3-year old son. It took us three days (Bangalore to Vijaywada, Vijaywada to Gopalpur, Gopalpur to Kolkata).

The next time, in 2010, we did it in an Alto K10, and on the second day we could do Vijaywada to Bhubaneswar (816 km), so the journey got over in 2.5 days.

This time we are targeting this in two days. Starting on October 16, we want to reach Durgapur by October 17. First day will be to Vizag and the second day straight to Durgapur. We will be in a Duster 85 this time, so hoping the comfort will be a lot better than the Bolero/Alto.

We are trying to locate coffee and loo stops on the way, but the CCD store locator doesn't seem to have an India-wide map. AKRoy had a lovely list of A1 plazas, which we used as a ready reckoner, so if anybody has some updated Excel of restaurants and coffee stops along the way, please share.

Anybody has ideas about the road conditions at various places now? Is there something we should be aware of?
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Old 2nd October 2015, 09:21   #198
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Default Re: Bangalore-Kolkata via Hyderabad/Nagpur/Sambalpur

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Originally Posted by ssjr0498 View Post
Abhirup,


You could PM me if you want any info regarding the CCU-BLR via the GQ route!

Cheers!
ssjr0498,
Picking up from an earlier thread. I can't yet send PM though.
Finally dropped the idea (at least for now) of taking the Hyderabad/Nagpur/Sambalpur route, and decided to fall back to taking the GQ instead. This is the rough plan:

Day 1: Start from Bangalore - 4:30am, via Kolar/Chittoor/Tirupati/Naidupeta/Ongole/Vijaywada, reach Rajahmundry.

Question:
Please suggest places for pitstop - for breakfast (can we find something in Chittor-Tirupati segment?) and lunch (perhaps some place around Nellore?)

It will probably be late afternoon/evening by the time we pass through the Vijaywada/Rajahmundry stretch? How is the road/traffic condition here?

Day 2: Start from Rajahmundry around 8:00am, reach Puri.

Question:
Any suggested place for lunch break? May be somewhere in between Vizag and Brahmapur?
Heard from some folks that that Andhar-Odisha border gets congested with traffic. Is it true? Any detour possible?
Also reaching Puri - map is suggesting to get off GQ near a place called Balarampur and take the Nua Jagannath Sadak. Is this the better approach? Or, should we rather go all the way to Bhubaneswar, and then take the road towards Puri?

Thanks in advance!

-- Abhirup
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Old 9th October 2015, 00:01   #199
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How is NH60 on the Kharagpur-Bankura-Raniganj stretch in terms of road conditions and safety ?
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Old 2nd November 2015, 12:57   #200
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore to Kolkata

Guys,
Has anyone completed this circuit lately ? I am planning to do the same in December 1st week. Any input is highly appreciated. Destination is Dhanbad (Jharkhand). Below is the plan.

Vehicle - Elite i20 CRDI
Total Occupants - 3 (including my wife)
Drivers - 2

1. Day 1 - Bangalore to Vizag (Stopover)
2. Day 2 - Vizag to Kharagpur/Durgapur/Dhanbad as much as can be stretched.
3. Day 3 - Reserved
  1. Is it doable?
  2. How are the road conditions till Kharagpur?
  3. Coffee shops/A1 plazas along the highway - inputs required
  4. How is NH 60 from Kharagpur-Bankura-Raniganj stretch - Doable in night ?
  5. Something we should be aware of on the entire GQ stretch ?
Please help
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Old 2nd November 2015, 16:27   #201
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anupams View Post
Guys,
Has anyone completed this circuit lately ? I am planning to do the same in December 1st week. Any input is highly appreciated. Destination is Dhanbad (Jharkhand).
I completed a solo bike trip from Bangalore to Asansol a couple of weeks back. It took me 3 days to complete the 2050 km journey.

A car trip is definitely doable in 2 days with multiple drivers.

Roads till KGP are really great.
The NH60 till Bankura should not be done at night as there are a few stretches that go through forests.

I stopped at bakeries/hotels in Vellore, Nellore and Vizag. Rest of the time, I munched on Snickers and stayed hydrated on plain water. Others could probably help you out with coffee shops/ plazas.

The stretch from Ichhapuram to Bhubaneswar is really dark and lonely in the evening. A good idea to avoid that. I, being alone, was somewhat scared.

Last edited by ampere : 2nd November 2015 at 16:43. Reason: Formatted quote
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Old 2nd November 2015, 22:14   #202
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore to Kolkata

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Originally Posted by Anirban001 View Post
The NH60 till Bankura should not be done at night as there are a few stretches that go through forests.
Agreed.
How is the road now, after monsoons?
Did you do Bankura - Ranigunj, or Bankura - Durgapur?

Regards
Sutripta
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Old 2nd November 2015, 22:27   #203
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
Agreed.
How is the road now, after monsoons?
Did you do Bankura - Ranigunj, or Bankura - Durgapur?

Regards
Sutripta
Most of it is in really good condition. For a car, it should be smooth.

I did Bankura-Raniganj.

No need to worry. The route is dotted with small towns and villages. Help should be available if needed.
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Old 2nd November 2015, 23:58   #204
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore to Kolkata

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Originally Posted by Anirban001 View Post
I did Bankura-Raniganj. No need to worry. The route is dotted with small towns and villages. Help should be available if needed.
My view exactly. Thanks for sharing my views.
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Old 3rd November 2015, 14:32   #205
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore to Kolkata

Hi Friends,

I am planning to travel from Kolkata to Bangalore soon in my Beat petrol. Any updates on routes/road conditions ?
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Old 3rd November 2015, 19:25   #206
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore to Kolkata

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Originally Posted by Anirban001 View Post
Most of it is in really good condition. For a car, it should be smooth.
Previously KGP - Bankura used to be really bad. So much so that KGP - DGP was better done using the GQ. Then I heard that the road had been repaired, so I did it in Feb/ Mar this year. Though still narrow, surface was good. But then I heard that post monsoon it had deteriorated. (Much like some of the Doars roads). Relieved to know it is still OK.

Anyone have any knowledge of current condition of Ranigunj - Dubrajpur?

Regards
Sutripta
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Old 8th November 2015, 09:35   #207
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore to Kolkata

Quote:
Originally Posted by anupams View Post
Guys,
Has anyone completed this circuit lately ? I am planning to do the same in December 1st week. Any input is highly appreciated. Destination is Dhanbad (Jharkhand). Below is the plan.

Vehicle - Elite i20 CRDI
Total Occupants - 3 (including my wife)
Drivers - 2

1. Day 1 - Bangalore to Vizag (Stopover)
2. Day 2 - Vizag to Kharagpur/Durgapur/Dhanbad as much as can be stretched.
3. Day 3 - Reserved
  1. Is it doable?
  2. How are the road conditions till Kharagpur?
  3. Coffee shops/A1 plazas along the highway - inputs required
  4. How is NH 60 from Kharagpur-Bankura-Raniganj stretch - Doable in night ?
  5. Something we should be aware of on the entire GQ stretch ?
Please help

Hi,

I just did this trip last month. We did it in a Duster 85 bhp and drove almost non-stop for about 14 or 15 hours each day. We carried food, stopped only to eat and pee (open two doors and half squat, for a woman) and could do it in two days.

Day 1, we did Vizag, at 120-140 kmph all day.
Started at 3.00 a.m., went via Whitefield > Kolar > Palamner (dense fog around 4.00 a.m.) >Chittoor >Tirupati >Naidupeta > Nellore > Ongole > Vijaywada > Rajmundhry > Vizag.

We had HVK assistance, so he kept asking us about location update on whatsapp and booked a highway hotel for us in Vizag.

We entered Vizag by 6.30.

Remember, we packed our own breakfast and lunch, and carried a lot of cold drinks in an ice-box. Red Bull helps tremendously. I was the only one driving.

Problem areas: entire stretch till Tirupati/Naidupeta is single carriageway. with oncoming traffic and blinding lights, you can slow down considerably. Speeding on that road can result in all sorts of fatalities. Although this was our third time, the GPS took us on a strange route through Naidupeta and we must have lost about 30 mins there, getting on the the GQ.

Vijaywada traffic will set you back by one hour.

Roads between Nellore to Vijaywada are three lane on each side, so don't waste daylight by stopping during this stretch. Just keep going nonstop. Except for five places where flyovers are being made, this is the stretch where you can unleash everything in your car. With 180 deg visibility, you can even see a cow from a remote distance. Safest stretch.

ALWAYS avoid the fast lane. Always. People and cows and people on cycles can jump on to the highway from behind the bushes at ANY point in time. Dogs are a huge menace. At some places in AP, there are even adamant crows, but then bird hit doesn't seem like a possibility.



Day 2
Started from Vizag at 4.00 a.m. and reached Bhubaneswar by 10.00 a.m. Again carried cupcakes and almonds/dry fruits for Day 2, and of course Red Bull and other drinks.

Between Bhubaneswar and Cuttack, that 20 km stretch will frustrate the hell out of you. Everybody from BBN will decide to go to Cuttack on two wheelers right as you enter BBN. And then they will potter along at 50 kmph just in front of you, covering the whole stretch of the road. Those 20 kms and also the traffic inside BBN can make you want to jump off and commit suicide.

Don't fret, however, because you will be rewarded with the loveliest stretch after Cuttack all the way to Kharagpur. You will not realize when you enter Kharagpur. We reached by 2.00, and were in Kolaghat, Shere Punjab, by 3.00 pm for lunch.

From here on, till Durgapur, the only problem area is Panagarh, which can set you back by about an hour again. The trick is to go behind some local cabbies, who find their way through the maze of trucks and somehow lead you out of Panagarh. Between Panagarh and Durgapur (and even beyond towards Asansol), the road is being made, so it can be a little frustrating.

We reached Durgapur by 7.00 p.m.

One word of advice, and you might want to save kilometers, but never take the Kharagpur-Midnapur-Bankura-Durgapur-Ranigunj road. It saves you 150 kms, but even HVK advised us against it. There are bad stretches, there's again the risk of driving through a single carriageway, and it is an extremely volatile area politically. Stick to the GQ and you will do better time. That's guaranteed.

Now, to sum up:

1. We drove continuously, at 120 kmph + speeeds. No stopping, except for some calisthenics and pee breaks. No long lunch/breakfast breaks.

2. Highway assistance from HVK helped us choose how far to go/where to stay

3. Red Bull is a must.

4. Lights. Now if you are going with your default lights, forget doing this in 2 days. My Duster's default lights are so pathetic, you can't see beyond 100 meters ahead of you. I put a couple of Hella 700 FF, which have a throw of half a kilometer, so I can't imagine how I would have gone without these.

5. Keep a Colin and a lot of newspaper to clean the windscreen. The normal wiper fluid won't be able to wash the dragonflies off the screen.

6. Avoid the fast lane if the median has tall bushes. This is like a RULE.

7. Don't speed on the bridges. Most of the joints have iron bars coming out, and even a tyre burst at 50 kmph can throw a car off the bridge down to the river.

8. Be VERY careful at all the toll booths. They hand you a bunch of notes, and many can be fake currency. There are fading 100 rupee notes that have gone pink, 50 rupee notes that don't have a flower, and many others. Wait and count everything even though the person behind might be honking.

9. At the toll booths, enter the truck lane. There might only be two trucks ahead of you, whereas the other lanes appear shorter but probably have seven cars ahead of you. Time saved.

10. You will be shocked to know that Karnataka has the cheapest diesel. At AP or Telengana, diesel is about Rs 5.00 more. Even WB is Rs. 2.00 more.

11. About the car, am sure you know what all to do before starting off. A good spare tyre, a puncture repair kit, or put slime, if you can. A hydraulic jack helps lift the car very easily and is available for only Rs 1500.

12. At Ichhapuram (AP/Orissa border) and at Jaleshwar (Orissa/Bengal border) please take the wrong side of the road to avoid getting stuck in truck traffic.


13. I might sound incredulous, but for driving pleasure, if you are in South Bangalore stick to the GQ, and go via Hosur-Krishnagiri-Vellore-Chennai. It will save you time and also lower the risks, despite being about a 100 kms more.

14. Long stretches of driving means blood circulation in the legs and hands can get affected. Please get off and stretch when you want to stop for peeing. This is a serious thing and can result in clots otherwise.

15. Airtel 4G LTE/3G, GPS, whatsapp with the navigator, unless you have a GPS in the car already.

Call me/pm me for any kind of assistance. Dhanbad on day 2 will be quite a stretch if you get stuck in Panagarh and then have to negotiate the roads between Panagarh and Asansol. But with two drivers, I think you should be able to make it. To contradict what I said earlier, maybe it makes sense for you to take the Bankura road. But you have to ask people. In WB, any bit of political unrest can result in road blocks and other stupid things, so that's gonna be a calculated risk you will have to take.

All the best.

Last edited by Oreen : 8th November 2015 at 09:43.
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Old 8th November 2015, 18:14   #208
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore to Kolkata

The 4th bridge across Godavari is operational , toll is 51/-. This cuts down the distance by 40 km. One has to take SH42 after Eluru.
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Old 8th November 2015, 22:05   #209
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore to Kolkata

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Hi,

We did it in a Duster 85 bhp and drove almost non-stop for about 14 or 15 hours each day.
...

I was the only one driving.
......

7. Don't speed on the bridges. Most of the joints have iron bars coming out, and even a tyre burst at 50 kmph can throw a car off the bridge down to the river.

......

13. I might sound incredulous, but for driving pleasure, if you are in South Bangalore stick to the GQ, and go via Hosur-Krishnagiri-Vellore-Chennai. It will save you time and also lower the risks, despite being about a 100 kms more.

Hats off to you, sir. Blr-Vizag is an incredible amount of distance to cover in a single day, that too for a lone driver. You have driven like a rally driver on a timed run.

We did BLR-Vizag a few years back in my Swift VXi, but we were 2 drivers and kept switching drivers frequently (every 2 hrs) to avoid fatigue setting in. It still took almost 19 hours to cover the stretch. GPS and google maps on smartphones were not as ubiquitous those days and we did lose quite a bit of time due to getting lost near Chennai.
We took the Hosur-Krishnagiri way out of Bangalore instead of NH4 and I completely agree with your tip about using this route. The effect of extra distance is completely negated by higher average speed, safer driving conditions and therefore lower fatigue for the driver.
We also noticed that the tolls on this stretch are very close together (sometimes just 20-25 km apart) and stopping frequently at tolls and losing time becomes annoying. I wish tolls were spaced further apart or there was a way to make a single toll payment for the entire route(thats wishful thinking!!).

Great tip about driving slow on the bridges. Thanks.
Kudos on the great drive
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Old 8th November 2015, 23:21   #210
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore to Kolkata

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The 4th bridge across Godavari is operational , toll is 51/-. This cuts down the distance by 40 km. One has to take SH42 after Eluru.
How is the condition of SH42 in general, I suppose its two lane highway, does it really save time w.r.t. continuing on NH5?
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