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Old 12th November 2013, 11:28   #256
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Default Re: Allahabad to Benaras

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Originally Posted by joybhowmik View Post
I am still planning the December end DEL-CCU trip on an excel (what else - )
This post is not directed at you, Joy, but is a general rant.

I think the charm of a long drive is gradually and clinically being exorcised from our lives by over-planning, over-anticipating and over-discussing things with people who've been there and done that before. The Excel sheet with its km-by-km description does not really happen to be what you experience when driving long distances. Those vaguely strange-sounding names of villages and little towns pass you by even before you can remember how they're spelt, or if there was a petrol pump or dhaba located there or not.

Enjoy the scenery, enjoy the feel of driving a car (I consider driving a kind of wide-awake meditation - no worldly thoughts, just concentrated focus on the road and the sounds of the car), and don't bother about exactly where you want to stop and eat - Indian highways, especially the NH2, have enough decent eateries, that serve excellent daal-roti-sabzi. Fuel quality is perhaps the only thing that ought to worry you, but that too, only if you are driving a petrol. Carry a can as reserve if you are that worried.

For diesel, ask the long distance truck drivers. In fact, once in a while, just stop at a dhaba or petrol pump and chat with one of those truck drivers. They're honest, kind-hearted, and are glad to get an opportunity to talk to you about the only things they know - the road condition up ahead, and where to get good fuel and food.

Set your own pace. Just because someone did Delhi-Kolkata in 18 hours doesn't mean your life's mission is to set a new record of 17.5 hours. If you are in such a rush, take a flight. If you are setting out on that drive, your primary purpose is to enjoy what you're doing. If the family (or a friend) is accompanying you, this is a great time for uninterrupted conversations - you don't really devote that many hours to your family per month, tired and irritated as you are when you're back from office after the boss' tongue-lashing. Delhi-Benaras can be done in 10 hours, I say. Don't believe it - take 15 hours to cover the distance. You can safely come back and claim on the forum that you did it in 8 hours. No one would be the wiser, and you don't have to prove what you did by putting up that GPS log file.

You know the road in and out of Delhi and Kolkata anyway. Most of those that drive this stretch are non-resident Bongs, who know their way around either city pretty well. If you don't, use that GPS app on your smartphone. There's very, very little chance of your straying off the NH2 and heading towards Timbuktu. Relax - it's one looong straight road, pretty well mile-posted, and your navigation skills won't be tested.

If you are setting out on a 1500-km drive for the first time, underestimate your limitations. If you think you have the stamina to drive non-stop for 5 hours, don't believe yourself! If you think you can cover ground safely at an average speed of 80 km/h for 10 hours continuously, don't trust that thought. With an open mind and no prejudices, you'll find out what you can do, without risking life, limb, car or family. That discovery is more important than trying to match or better what someone else did.

And finally, I've sometimes extolled on the advantages of driving all night long. You don't have to do what I do. Overnight driving marathons are not exactly child's play - one can't just hop into a car at the end of the workday, and drive 500-1000 km all through the night. A great deal of preparation, both physical and mental, need to go into the exercise. This might be second nature for some after years of experience (and research about how the human body behaves when asked to stay awake through a 24- to 48-hour cycle), but looking at them, a lot of others consider night driving to be super-easy. Consider this thread (4 people from Pune missing: UPDATE: RIP. Car and bodies found. :() to be a warning about the perils of driving through the night on a highway without adequate preparation (ARTICLE: Guidelines & Tips for Safe NIGHT Driving).
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Old 13th November 2013, 08:07   #257
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Default Re: Allahabad to Benaras

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Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
Enjoy the scenery, enjoy the feel of driving a car (I consider driving a kind of wide-awake meditation - no worldly thoughts, just concentrated focus on the road and the sounds of the car), and don't bother about exactly where you want to stop and eat
I kneel to you, dear Baap of long drives, for describing the basic essence of highway driving so fluidly.

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This post itself should be made a sticker, considering it comes with so many useful tips for the first-timer as well. I myself planned & planned my first Kol-Delhi drive for 3 years (you know that). Yet when I actually did it, turned out oh-so enjoyable and really nothing to worry about. A car in good condition and a heart for the drive is all it takes, really.
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Old 23rd November 2013, 19:37   #258
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Default Re: Delhi-Kolkata by Road | NH2 in Full Detail

Feels like sacrilege to follow up on the stellar post of SS-Traveller. But here goes.
Did a second Gurgaon - Santiniketan - Gurgaon run in two weeks, this time on my Duke 390. Needless to say, the experience was entirely different from a car.
Itinerary followed
Saturday evening - Saturday Night GGN to KNP
Overnight at Kanpur Tourist Rest House. The best part for a biker is that they keep the bike in a room so one can sleep in peace.
Next day 6AM to 6.30PM from Kanpur to Santiniketan. Only change in road conditions is that the panagarh santiniketan stretch is now slightly better.

While coming back
Stuffed on marriage festivities food from the night before (major mistake as my stomach realized later on), 6AM - Santiniketan to 10.30 PM - Gunjan Resort, Sirsaganj.
The receptionist at gunjan resorts pissed me off. I asked for safe parking for a bike and he said "why". I know the look and the tone since when one travels on a bike one is automatically classified as 'poor'. So, had to take out my rather big phone and speak to someone in 'propah english' to get them to take me seriously. My trick for getting my way without shouting. Colonialism rocks!
Finally got a gated parking for the bike.
An early morning high speed dash (5.30 AM to 9.30 AM in gurgaon) and then to office - sleep deprived and distracted. Boss was just glad that I was done with my 'stunt'.
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Old 23rd November 2013, 20:37   #259
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Default Re: Delhi-Kolkata by Road | NH2 in Full Detail

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...from Kanpur to Santiniketan. Only change in road conditions is that the panagarh santiniketan stretch is now slightly better.
I am told that this route (http://goo.gl/maps/79wKw) is better, with smooth roads and very little traffic, compared to going up to Panagarh and then turning left to Shantiniketan. Someone took this road last month and came back all praises.
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Colonialism rocks!
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Old 25th November 2013, 21:47   #260
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Default Re: Delhi-Kolkata by Road | NH2 in Full Detail

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Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
I am told that this route (http://goo.gl/maps/79wKw) is better, with smooth roads and very little traffic, compared to going up to Panagarh and then turning left to Shantiniketan. Someone took this road last month and came back all praises.
This would be great news.

Ranigunj to Durajpur (designated NH60) used to be a narrow horrible road used by mining vehicles. These would also nonchalantly crowd you off the road.

Dubrajpur to Ilam Bazar was in pretty poor shape till recently.

So could some other people verify these?

Regards
Sutripta
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Old 28th November 2013, 20:22   #261
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Default Re: Delhi-Kolkata by Road | NH2 in Full Detail

Quote:
Originally Posted by joybhowmik View Post
I am still planning the December end DEL-CCU trip on an excel
Sir,

Went through your excel in detail.

Ref to the section of Gobindpur to Shaktigarh, I feel can be done by you in one less hour, unless of course you have kept driving speed knowingly slow on the second day of your travel.

My personal experience of this stretch over the last 3 years is:

Govindpur to JH-WB border (start of Barakar bridge) = 30 mins
Border to Asansol toll gate = 20 mins
Toll gate to Raniganj Punjabi More = 20 mins
RNJ to Durgapur Muchipara = 30-35 mins
Muchipara to Darj More = 10-15 mins
Crossing 6kms of Panagarh town = 10-25 mins (depending on traffic)
Railway flyover to Shaktigarh (row of shops) = 50 mins
Total = 2 hrs 50 mins (assuming you don't find deadlock traffic jam in Panagarh)

I have maintained these timings consistently driving between 90-95 kmph on free zones and slowing down wherever necessary according to traffic. Stoppage timings - extra.

Regards,
Saurav
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Old 29th November 2013, 11:29   #262
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Default Re: Allahabad to Benaras

Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
I think the charm of a long drive is gradually and clinically being exorcised from our lives by over-planning, over-anticipating and over-discussing things with people who've been there and done that before.

Enjoy the scenery, enjoy the feel of driving a car (I consider driving a kind of wide-awake meditation - no worldly thoughts, just concentrated focus on the road and the sounds of the car)

Once in a while, just stop at a dhaba or petrol pump and chat with one of those truck drivers. They're honest, kind-hearted, and are glad to get an opportunity to talk to you about the only things they know - the road condition up ahead, and where to get good fuel and food.

Set your own pace. If you are setting out on that drive, your primary purpose is to enjoy what you're doing. If the family (or a friend) is accompanying you, this is a great time for uninterrupted conversations - you don't really devote that many hours to your family per month, tired and irritated as you are when you're back from office
Takes me back to the good old days of travelling with my parents and siblings (and sometimes my grandmothers too) through winding roads shaded by trees on both sides, occassional stops to top up the radiator, unscheduled stops for changing hoses, the fan belt or perhaps the dynamo armature. Eating delicious food sitting on a charpoy in Dhabas. No prior hotel reservations - finding rooms in Dak Bungalows with the 'you may have to vacate the rooms in case an officer turns up' threat looming midly over our heads. Going to the local bazaar to buy provisions and handing it over to the Chowkidar who served up heavenly piping hot meals. Oh well, memories and only memories!

Quote:
You know the road in and out of Delhi and Kolkata anyway. There's very, very little chance of your straying off the NH2 and heading towards Timbuktu. Relax - it's one looong straight road, pretty well mile-posted, and your navigation skills won't be tested.


Quote:
If you are setting out on a 1500-km drive for the first time, underestimate your limitations. With an open mind and no prejudices, you'll find out what you can do, without risking life, limb, car or family. That discovery is more important than trying to match or better what someone else did.


Quote:
And finally, I've sometimes extolled on the advantages of driving all night long. You don't have to do what I do. Overnight driving marathons are not exactly child's play. A great deal of preparation, both physical and mental, need to go into the exercise.
Very, very true. I gave up night driving a few years ago when my eyes started playing up. We have absolutely no right to risk the lives of our family or friends who might be travelling along with us.
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Old 30th November 2013, 16:22   #263
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Default Re: Delhi-Kolkata by Road | NH2 in Full Detail

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Originally Posted by Mik View Post
Overnight at Kanpur Tourist Rest House.
Planning my second road trip on this stretch. Would you by any chance have the number and address of Kanpur TRH? Thanks.

And is it advisable to drive all night through with family from Delhi till Varanasi?

Last edited by anandjha : 30th November 2013 at 16:27.
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Old 30th November 2013, 18:13   #264
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
This would be great news.

Ranigunj to Durajpur (designated NH60) used to be a narrow horrible road used by mining vehicles. These would also nonchalantly crowd you off the road.

Dubrajpur to Ilam Bazar was in pretty poor shape till recently.

So could some other people verify these?

Regards
Sutripta
It would be great if someone has information regarding this stretch, if possible till siuri and beyond. This can provide easier access to a number of places.
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Old 1st December 2013, 08:19   #265
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Default Re: Delhi-Kolkata by Road | NH2 in Full Detail

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Originally Posted by anandjha View Post
Planning my second road trip on this stretch. Would you by any chance have the number and address of Kanpur TRH? Thanks.

And is it advisable to drive all night through with family from Delhi till Varanasi?
The location: 9 km after passing the Kanpur toll, just after Sengars entertainment - on the service lane (left hand side when coming from Delhi). They have a lighted but faded board. From the service lane you can see the gate.
Contact # of Mr Anoop: 0739 889 4757

Delhi to Varanasi all through the night, I would personally not be comfortable. The Yamuna Expressway will be pretty lonely (though help is at hand) and the NH2 has some 6 laning going on at some stretches between Sirsaganj and Kanpur which has resulted in many diversions. Apart from that I don't see any other problems. Maybe be a pit stop at Gunjan Resorts or the Kanpur TRH will make sense after taking an evening exit from Delhi.
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Old 1st December 2013, 13:56   #266
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Default Re: Delhi-Kolkata by Road | NH2 in Full Detail

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Originally Posted by black_panther View Post
It would be great if someone has information regarding this stretch, if possible till siuri and beyond. This can provide easier access to a number of places.
I asked my cousin who lives in Asansol about this road since he travels frequently to Siuri. He prefers the Raniganj (Andal More) - Pandaveshwar - Bakreshwar - Siuri route (I hope I've got it right) over Raniganj - Dubrajpur - Ilambazar - Siuri since as per him the roads are much better.
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Old 3rd December 2013, 16:16   #267
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Default Re: Delhi-Kolkata by Road | NH2 in Full Detail

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Originally Posted by Mik View Post
The location: 9 km after passing the Kanpur toll, just after Sengars entertainment - on the service lane (left hand side when coming from Delhi). They have a lighted but faded board. From the service lane you can see the gate.
Contact # of Mr Anoop: 0739 889 4757

Delhi to Varanasi all through the night, I would personally not be comfortable. The Yamuna Expressway will be pretty lonely (though help is at hand) and the NH2 has some 6 laning going on at some stretches between Sirsaganj and Kanpur which has resulted in many diversions. Apart from that I don't see any other problems. Maybe be a pit stop at Gunjan Resorts or the Kanpur TRH will make sense after taking an evening exit from Delhi.
Totally agree with you on this Mik. One more factor that needs to be considered is that this is already the first week of December and the fog situation on YEW could be bad. Driving on the Noida-Gr Noida expressway tends to get hazardous after 11.
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Old 24th December 2013, 21:55   #268
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Default Re: Delhi-Kolkata by Road | NH2 in Full Detail

Starting early morning Dec 25 ex Delhi for Chinsurah (Hooghly). Will update my experiences as soon as I am able.
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Old 26th December 2013, 06:08   #269
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The first leg to Varanasi exceeded expectations.
We started exactly at 6 am from our residence in Delhi. And exactly at 7:45 pm we had checked into a hotel in the Cantt area. We managed to do darshan at Vishwanath ji at 10:30 pm and got a good night's rest.
Now looking forward to the final leg of our journey today. Hope roads and experiences continue to be great!
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Old 26th December 2013, 08:19   #270
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Default Re: Delhi-Kolkata by Road | NH2 in Full Detail

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Originally Posted by joybhowmik View Post
The first leg to Varanasi exceeded expectations.
We started exactly at 6 am from our residence in Delhi. And exactly at 7:45 pm we had checked into a hotel in the Cantt area. We managed to do darshan at Vishwanath ji at 10:30 pm and got a good night's rest.
Now looking forward to the final leg of our journey today. Hope roads and experiences continue to be great!
Hmm. In June this year, we did the Delhi-Varanasi stretch in 9 hrs flat. We drove non-stop (all meals carried and consumed in the car) and had 2 drivers driving in-turn. The roads are seriously good, and upping the speed doesn't matter much. Here's the link to my post:

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...ml#post3178412 (Predator conquers NH2 - Kolkata to Delhi EDIT: Now once again!)

Best of luck for your final leg. Jharkhand has some wonderful, scenic roads to look forward to.
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