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Old 26th September 2008, 10:22   #76
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Magnificent trip with very nice pictures.. Congratulations !! You certainly did a record thing on a SX4, you should send the trip log/url to maruti udhyog. They'll be happy to feature you in their star customers after seeing the achivement done on SX4
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Old 26th September 2008, 12:04   #77
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Giving it 5 * rating. For your sheer guts
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Old 26th September 2008, 12:30   #78
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Locomotive, the more I see your SX4 on those terrains, the more I have started loving my SX4. I am now very confident for my Leh Tip next season.
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Old 26th September 2008, 12:53   #79
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Thanks you all for your kind compliments.

if you want to do this trip just go ahead and do it. There is a lot of information available on the internet (including Team-BHP) on this route. It is definately doable but you have to be aware of the risks.

Thats what we did. the moment I saw snaps of this route I knew I had to do it. So I read up about it to understand what it takes. Then planned a rough itenary and budget (I do not like detailed plans, I think they spoil some of the fun), made a list of risks and things to carry or do to reduce it, took 2 weeks off from work (unfortunately that was the maximum I could get) and then forced my brother to do the same. (we did try to rope in some more people but they could not make. Now they cry at the thought of it )

The next major step was convincing my folks about this trip. Mom was dead against it. But we got Dad (who had started this whole roadtrip idea years back in his trusted Palio) involved in the planning for the journey. In fact he also wanted to come along, but we were not too keen as this journey would have been a complete frenzy and we did not know where we would put up for night between Manali and Leh (Dad prefers a relaxed pace and stay in good hotels).

having convinced (not entirely though) parents that this journey was not a death wish, we finally set off. But I have to admit, 90% of parents would not have allowed this ever, hats off to ours

And thank God we went for this journey. It has been such a life changing moment. We have not stopped talking about it since we came back and i think we will not do so till we go back next year. In fact we have already started planning for it.

The biggest change will be that we will start from Delhi next time. That saves us a good 6 days to explore Ladakh. So all you Delhites (and in general those based in the North) you have a fantastic locational advantage. Just go meet God on your holiday!!!
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Old 26th September 2008, 13:04   #80
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I will write later on the costs, cars performance, the risks involved and initial planning. This takes some serious time. Got some actuarial exams to study for (Exams are just a month away and my career depends on it), but it is very difficult to keep away from Team-BHP
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Old 26th September 2008, 13:06   #81
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Hey Loco,

Amazing write up and pics man. SO what all precautions did u take to make the trip possible in a non-4 WD vehicle.

It'll be great if you can add more details of the sections that were tarred and that were completely broken. Where you got faced the steepest inclines. What other problems you might have encountered. What are the altitudes of the places u stayed, etc etc.

Basically, something from the point of view of the road and the vehicle.

Naman


Quote:
Originally Posted by Locomotive View Post
Thanks you all for your kind compliments.

if you want to do this trip just go ahead and do it. There is a lot of information available on the internet (including Team-BHP) on this route. It is definately doable but you have to be aware of the risks.

Thats what we did. the moment I saw snaps of this route I knew I had to do it. So I read up about it to understand what it takes. Then planned a rough itenary and budget (I do not like detailed plans, I think they spoil some of the fun), made a list of risks and things to carry or do to reduce it, took 2 weeks off from work (unfortunately that was the maximum I could get) and then forced my brother to do the same. (we did try to rope in some more people but they could not make. Now they cry at the thought of it )

The next major step was convincing my folks about this trip. Mom was dead against it. But we got Dad (who had started this whole roadtrip idea years back in his trusted Palio) involved in the planning for the journey. In fact he also wanted to come along, but we were not too keen as this journey would have been a complete frenzy and we did not know where we would put up for night between Manali and Leh (Dad prefers a relaxed pace and stay in good hotels).

having convinced (not entirely though) parents that this journey was not a death wish, we finally set off. But I have to admit, 90% of parents would not have allowed this ever, hats off to ours

And thank God we went for this journey. It has been such a life changing moment. We have not stopped talking about it since we came back and i think we will not do so till we go back next year. In fact we have already started planning for it.

The biggest change will be that we will start from Delhi next time. That saves us a good 6 days to explore Ladakh. So all you Delhites (and in general those based in the North) you have a fantastic locational advantage. Just go meet God on your holiday!!!
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Old 26th September 2008, 13:13   #82
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Yes loco, you've definitely reignited the passion in me to visit the valley of breathtaking beauty. We don't even realize that we have our own swiss alps in our backyard, which is worth a moment in our lives.

I have decided to take my baby WagonR up the terrain, I am confident that she will be able to handle it pretty well with a little of cautious driving and doing my home work properly. I have even started the prep work and things-to-do for the journey, how to prepare her for the highway to ecstasy, a journey of a lifetime.
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Old 26th September 2008, 13:13   #83
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Quote:
Originally Posted by naman View Post
Hey Loco,

Amazing write up and pics man. SO what all precautions did u take to make the trip possible in a non-4 WD vehicle.

It'll be great if you can add more details of the sections that were tarred and that were completely broken. Where you got faced the steepest inclines. What other problems you might have encountered. What are the altitudes of the places u stayed, etc etc.

Basically, something from the point of view of the road and the vehicle.

Naman

Certainly Naman, but allow me some time please. I will put down all the details I have.
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Old 26th September 2008, 13:16   #84
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while going through my write ups I noticed some horrendous spelling mistakes and typo errors. Oops sorry!!
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Old 26th September 2008, 13:21   #85
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Did the need arise to use the fuel in the jerry cans ?
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Old 26th September 2008, 13:24   #86
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shakensoul View Post
Yes loco, you've definitely reignited the passion in me to visit the valley of breathtaking beauty. We don't even realize that we have our own swiss alps in our backyard, which is worth a moment in our lives.

I have decided to take my baby WagonR up the terrain, I am confident that she will be able to handle it pretty well with a little of cautious driving and doing my home work properly. I have even started the prep work and things-to-do for the journey, how to prepare her for the highway to ecstasy, a journey of a lifetime.

Go for it man!! just prepare well. Koko Singh's "Driving Holidays in Ladakh" was quite useful.

And indeed we have some of the world's best terrains. I truely feel proud having seen it. I would like people to know about it and see it. But I do not want it to become a popular tourist attraction. It will ruin the charm of this journey.

This should be always an enthusiasts journey, our journey (bit selfish there, I know)
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Old 26th September 2008, 13:32   #87
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5 Stars - that is all i can do right now. 2.5 hours lost going through this travelogue
Beautiful pics. i wish i was a Passenger in your car
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Old 26th September 2008, 13:34   #88
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shakensoul View Post
Did the need arise to use the fuel in the jerry cans ?
well if you tank up at Tandi then you should reach Leh without refuelling (about 400km).

but sometimes there may not be any fuel at Tandi. Then you are in for trouble.

while retuning we did not start with a full tank in Leh. so we did use the jerry cans in Sarchu. Also we helped out a pair of foolhardy tourists whose Santro would have never made it to Leh with the fuel they had.

Another word of caution, those of you who plan to do this trip in a hatchback ensure that you have really watertight jerry cans (probably the metal ones available in Delhi). if there is any petrol vapour leakage it will drive you crazy. Ours were watertight but they were actually heavy duty cans used to store some chemicals. They did not leak at all but the vapours did leak. inspite of being placed in the boot my car was smelling of petrol throughout the Manali-leh highway!!!
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Old 26th September 2008, 13:36   #89
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Hey loco i guess you had a mindblowing trip ,this is certainly like a dream come true for you mancheers:
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Old 26th September 2008, 13:50   #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by planet_rocker View Post
5 Stars - that is all i can do right now. 2.5 hours lost going through this travelogue
Beautiful pics. i wish i was a Passenger in your car
believe me you would rather be the driver
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