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Old 6th September 2007, 10:12   #16
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@shankyz : Night driving is probably the safest in hills as you can see the reflection of the oncoming vehicle on the curves and moreover there are but only a few times when the headlights of the oncoming vehicle will be straight into your face.
These days a lot of road widening is going on especially near koti and jabli so ought to be a bit careful.
Nearby places that you can see are Chail, Kufri, Junga, Naldehra, Matiana and if you can relish a 3 hr drive suggest go for a picnic to Ghanasidhar about 25 kms from Narkanda.
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Old 6th September 2007, 10:28   #17
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I would say, safest and the riskiest, depending on the roads and circumstances, since for novice drivers not knowing the rule of the road on hill driving and a slight lack of judgement, can cause big problems. Few tips:

- Always give right of way to a climbing vehicle
- Always wait till you can see a clear road before overtaking, never overtake on a curve.
- Always stick to your side, and never try to cross the lanes specifically during a curve, stick to your lane.
- Drive slowly on turns, bends and curves, avoid getting onto loose gravel and mud on the side of the road.
- Always take on the hills with a healthy vehicle, check coolant, oil, tyre pressure etc.



Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderernomad View Post
@shankyz : Night driving is probably the safest in hills as you can see the reflection of the oncoming vehicle on the curves and moreover there are but only a few times when the headlights of the oncoming vehicle will be straight into your face.
These days a lot of road widening is going on especially near koti and jabli so ought to be a bit careful.
Nearby places that you can see are Chail, Kufri, Junga, Naldehra, Matiana and if you can relish a 3 hr drive suggest go for a picnic to Ghanasidhar about 25 kms from Narkanda.

Last edited by dadu : 6th September 2007 at 10:32.
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Old 6th September 2007, 15:28   #18
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Originally Posted by Shankyz View Post
Thanks Markiv

I am myself apprehensive of night driving, the headlight of oncoming vehicles in Highbeam Mode, the trucks who are always in large numbers is a major headache.

I am planning to go sometime in October. Hope the rush will also subside by then.

Any suggestions of some nearby places and good hotels (Will be going with family)
Couldn't understand why the rush will subsie in October !
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Old 7th September 2007, 13:02   #19
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Couldn't understand why the rush will subsie in October !
@breezydrive : Exactly

@shankyz : The road when you join NH1 is a pain till about next 5-6 kms due to construction. After that it is a breeze till Panipat, which has construction on for a quite long flyover. Then breeze again till Ambala. After that take the turn for Chandigarh on the Rajpur Road, and continue towards Zirakpur. There also heavy construction.

After that head to Kalka, and ascend towards Shimla. You might want to visit Kasauli enroute Shimla. There is a McDonalds and Cafe Coffee Day, just in case for your tastebuds or any children being accompanied. Do visit Chhail and if possible try to stay overnight. You can check my travelogue to Chhail

Since most of the roads are quite broad, I dont see why you could not travel at night. NH1 being an important and crucial roadway link, forget that any rush will be subsided.

One thing I have noticed on all trips on NH1 is that the truck and bus drivers really follow rules. One honk or dipper, and they make way for you.. So, no rash drivers enroute

Start late evening, so early morning you reach Shimla, and have the whole day to enjoy. Some people would want to rest after a long trip before they enjoy. Suit appropriately and do post pics

dadu has given you some of the very important tips for hill driving.
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Old 7th September 2007, 17:24   #20
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Thanks Wanderer, Dadu, Cutdcrap

I think driving at night is not such a bad idea then, I was a bit apprehensive as I have not visited there so am not aware if the roads are tricky, ofcourse have travelled on NH1 sometimes and its a good highway for a long drive, was thinking about the hilly roads.
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Old 7th September 2007, 18:50   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shankyz View Post
Thanks Wanderer, Dadu, Cutdcrap

I think driving at night is not such a bad idea then, I was a bit apprehensive as I have not visited there so am not aware if the roads are tricky, ofcourse have travelled on NH1 sometimes and its a good highway for a long drive, was thinking about the hilly roads.
Hi , Knowing the stretch that you planning to do like the back of my hand .,.. my personal advise to you is to do the stretch at night as its much easier to drive in the hills but keep 2 main things in mind --

1. You are not sleepy ... be wide awake !!
2. Have a good set of lights on your machine .

The Kalka - Simla stretch is a flat out stretch with wide roads , few bumps and some sharp curves but look at the white line on the centre of the road and you can get to simla without using brakes unless you need to STOP DEAD .

Cheers

PS - Have a gud trip ... Oct is a great time to go to SImla !!
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Old 10th September 2007, 20:51   #22
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Any updates on the construction activity near Zirakpur?
Is it over or still going on? Pls advise if I should take
(A) Ambala ->Rajpura ->Zirakpur
(B) Ambala Centt -> Zirakpur
(C) turn of just before Ambala and come out straight at Panchkula

Any good hotels recommended at Shimla ?
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Old 11th September 2007, 10:20   #23
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@shankyz : Construction activity is still on at Zirakpur and is a major pain in the neck. In my view avoid Zirakpur. This can be done in many ways. Take a left turn after about 500 mts of crossing the Markanda bridge at Sahabad. It goes straight to Panchkula (75kms).
Other route can be take a right turn after the Derrabassi market towards Ramgarh. The turnoff here is slightly tricky and you will need to ask fro directions.
Avoid taking the turnoff from Ambala towards Naraingarh as its slightly messy and the road needs a lot to be desired.
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Old 11th September 2007, 13:25   #24
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Shankyz, regarding hotels it is very difficult to advise unless you specify a budget range. In general, I hope you are aware the you will need to park your car at the public parking lots and then go to the Shimla mall by the govt. operated 'lifts'. In short, there is little possibility of finding a hotel that is well located and to which you can drive up. My recommendation would be the Holiday Home (HPTDC), a little removed from Shimla. You can park your car in their parking lot and not use it for visits to the mall. Simply call for a cab (Maruti Omnis) to take you to the lifts (typical charge Rs 50/- each way). Being HPTDC, you could use the on-line booking feature to book your room/s in advance.
As a special tip, I would say you must visit the Institute For Advanced Studies (you can use your own car to drive there). It is a worth visiting heritage property that oozes history (take the conducted tour). Excellent gardens and a so-so little cafeteria. This place is not on most tourist agendas.
Enjoy your trip!
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Old 11th September 2007, 13:59   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderernomad View Post
@shankyz : Construction activity is still on at Zirakpur and is a major pain in the neck. In my view avoid Zirakpur. This can be done in many ways. Take a left turn after about 500 mts of crossing the Markanda bridge at Sahabad. It goes straight to Panchkula (75kms).
Other route can be take a right turn after the Derrabassi market towards Ramgarh. The turnoff here is slightly tricky and you will need to ask fro directions.
Avoid taking the turnoff from Ambala towards Naraingarh as its slightly messy and the road needs a lot to be desired.
when you refer to "Take a left turn after about 500 mts of crossing the Markanda bridge at Sahabad. It goes straight to Panchkula (75kms)", do you mean right turn (while going from Delhi to Ambala), which road do you mean , there are several roads but unable to find one that leads straight to Panchkula ?

Also, if I take a right at DeraBassi, do I take a left before Saidpura towards Mubarakpur?

or the straightforward route via Rajpura is clean and fast?
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Old 13th September 2007, 20:15   #26
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Hi again guyz,

Planning to make some hotel reservation can you please suggest some good ones at Shimla & Chail ? How are the HPTDC hotels ?
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Old 18th September 2007, 16:31   #27
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I think you can use your own car if you go to the Oberoi Cecil? Any idea guys?
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Old 18th September 2007, 17:14   #28
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Sorry for replying late. Yes I mean the right turn if you are going from Delhi. The marker says HIIDC estate Saha. It goes via Saha, Shehjadpur, Barwala, Ramgarh.
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Old 19th September 2007, 13:35   #29
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hptdc.nic.in : hotels.
HPDTC hotels are quite good. The HHH (hotel holiday home) is a good option, try gettin the rooms facing the mall. It takes 10min by walk to reach the mall from a small path starting from the backside of the hotel.

Route after ambala:
Head straight on NH1 till Rajpura, right from here, and then straight to Panchkula-Kalka-Shimla. This is the best option.
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