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Old 27th February 2009, 17:34   #1
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Default Delhi-Gangotri-Badrinath-Delhi in an M-800 - September 2000

The most adventurous trip of all for me was our Delhi-Gangotri-Badrinath-Delhi yatra in September 2000. Many of you would turn around and say, what's so great in that. The only interesting part of the trip was our ride - a 1996 M-800 - and since that was the only car I had then, it had to do. Members on the trip - my wife, daughter (2yrs. 3 mo. old), mother-in-law and me, the only one who could drive (today my wife drives too).

After an overnight stop at Rishikesh, we were on our way to Gangotri, with our lunch stop at Uttarkashi. Folks at the restaurant ominously warned us that there had been a landslide on the way up, and the 800 wouldn't make it. We decided to go ahead anyway.

The photographs of the trip were on print film, and I've scanned them. Some pics are not traceable (of the Badrinath leg of the trip).

Enjoy the road in the first 3 pics...

How the car went through the mudslide and over the rocks in the 4th pic was hair-raising. The rocky patch was the toughest to go over, and was done after offloading everyone and luggage. A few helpful hands as the gangmen shoved the car up the slope made it go through - but then, helpful shoves are useful for 800's, not trucks! Many of them had a tough time, wheelspin being a big problem...

The puff of smoke in the distance in pic #5 is the blasting of rocks that came down due to the landslide. The 6th pic shows the road after blasting was done.

And finally we were at Gangotri (last pic).
The previous pic was from a scenic stop enroute, at Chinyalisaur. There's my car...
Attached Thumbnails
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Old 27th February 2009, 19:53   #2
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Lovely pics, SS!
That roads looks dreadful there!
Very well captured pics of the road!
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Old 27th February 2009, 20:02   #3
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Lovelies.

as expected, anupji is here too

Who can resist those wonderful himalayan pics. I just see them and wannnaaaa riiide!!!
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Old 27th February 2009, 20:08   #4
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Great snaps SS ! Reminded me of the trips I had in the late eighties and early nineties. That whole stretch is truly mesmerizing.

Just off the record - we did those trips in a 1989 Model Maruti 800 / Fiat 1100 D all the way from J&K to Badrinath etc
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Old 27th February 2009, 20:21   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragonov View Post
Just off the record - we did those trips in a 1989 Model Maruti 800 / Fiat 1100 D all the way from J&K to Badrinath etc
Actually those of us that travelled in the 80s and 90s didn't have too much of a choice in vehicles. It was Amby/Fiat for most, with a few daredevils driving Mahindra CJs. Then came the 800. Front drive and small wheels were never a great combination on these kinds of roads. If I had an Amby here, I'd never have blinked. With the 800... well, it was an adventure. Hats off to you for doing J&K to Badrinath in an 800.

In any case, I'm still in love with these roads. My avatar pic alongside will give you an idea.

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Old 27th February 2009, 20:40   #6
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Well SS, you better find those Badrinath pics soon!

...else there'll be trouble!!
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Old 27th February 2009, 20:50   #7
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Hats off to you. Mindblowing. Its takes a lot of courage to drive a 800 on that road. The landslide stretch sure looks very dangerous.

Please get the rest of the pics flowing.
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Old 27th February 2009, 20:55   #8
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Who can resist those wonderful himalayan pics. I just see them and wannnaaaa riiide!!!
sush!! You should DRIIIVE now! After all, there is an age for everything!

Do mobike enthusiasts always stay young?!
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Old 27th February 2009, 21:05   #9
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Great pictures bro.

Indeed it is a tough terrain to drive. Glad that you had safe journey.
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Old 27th February 2009, 22:03   #10
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Just remembered that a few days after coming home, both the rear leaf springs broke within a week of each other. The Gods looked after us well on the trip.
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Old 27th February 2009, 22:12   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anupmathur View Post
sush!! You should DRIIIVE now! After all, there is an age for everything!

Do mobike enthusiasts always stay young?!
a. 60kph Message Board :: View topic - Solu Khumbu - Big 50 - Age is just a number. I'll definitely do one better on my 50th budday

b. That terrain can be abusive for a hatch, but is fair game for a pulsar 180 that didn't blink in ladakh! Repair ka paisa toh jeb se jayega na?

@SS - Where are the rest of da pics?
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Old 27th February 2009, 22:13   #12
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Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
Just remembered that a few days after coming home, both the rear leaf springs broke within a week of each other. The Gods looked after us well on the trip.
SS, the wonderful thing is that even if they had broken en route, you would have had no problem having them renewed at the next biggish town! And they never break as a bunch anyway, so they never really strand you! Skewed stance, but you get there!
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Old 27th February 2009, 22:49   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anupmathur View Post
...even if they had broken en route, you would have had no problem having them renewed at the next biggish town!
Yes, I'd known that. That's the beauty of the 800. Which is why, I firmly believe I'll never take a CR-V into the terrain I love travelling in... But even a break at, for example, Gangotri would have meant a ride back to Uttarkashi to find the leaf - and that road on a broken spring would not have been feasible. Else I'd have needed to waste a lot of time procuring the part, bringing it back, fixing the issue and then getting under way.
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Old 28th February 2009, 20:50   #14
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SS Travaller,

Your account is therapy for my bald head; pretty Hair-raising

To do this stretch on a 800 is a real adventure, any timme, JAI HO to your indominable human spirit. I had one 800, with the A/C off, it could climb the toughest hills, we have taken it thro the many small tacks on hill stations; it can wriggle through pretty tight spots; its a mean little car if you're willing to give it a go.

I always felt, a lighter vehicle on this track has better chance when you come to mudslides and landslides, it can be pushed and if it has decent power, can skim over most bogs. A heavier SUV tends to get stuck deep. I remember when 5 of us, family members, travelled way back in the 70's from Madurai to Kanyakumari on a Fiat, we got stuck deep on sand blown in somewhere near Thirunelveli, we got about 10 local people and practically lifted the car off sandy section and put in back on road, imagine doing that with a Scorpio or some such SUV !!!!!

I did Ahmedabad-Rishikesh-Kedar-Kausauni-Nainital on a Ford Fusion a few years back. There were bad sections with one major landslide section; the Fusion practically skimmed through the section because of lower weight and 100bhp+ to help, whereas we saw Scorpios, Innovas, Thevaras and SUV's having very difficult time on the mud.

--Ramky
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Last edited by ramkya1 : 28th February 2009 at 21:02.
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Old 28th February 2009, 21:28   #15
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...we got stuck deep on sand blown in somewhere near Thirunelveli, we got about 10 local people and practically lifted the car off sandy section and put in back on road, imagine doing that with a Scorpio or some such SUV !!!!!
Exactly!
Therein lies the strength of the Gypsy too - treads LIGHTLY.
4WD or 8-LEG-DRIVE! All you need with an M 800 or an Alto are four able bodied seamen to lift them out of any situation!
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