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Old 15th August 2005, 23:59   #1
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Default The downside of Let's Go

Inspired by our previous Let's Go trip (I know my car is not an Alto but...), we thought of doing one more on this long weekend, but it kinda ended with a whimper :-( More about that later.

Actually we did have some idea about where we might be going, especially after seeing photos of gaganchukki falls by greatDrive. After gaganchukki we thought of moving on to Mysore, stay over in some Hotel, then do the Zoo next day and come back by evening.

So we took off on Saturday at around 11:30AM towards Shivanasamudra. Before leaving home, I pulled out my car battery driven inflator/compactor and checked the tyres and found one tyre to be low by nearly 4psi. That one appears to be losing 2-3psi per week, which means only one thing, it has a puncture. Well, I made a mental note to fix the puncture in the next service (which is next week), put 31 psi on all tyres and took off, don't you just love tubeless? Before some of you freakout on my gall to start a long drive on punctured tyre, I do know by experience that this kind of puncture (2-3psi leak/week) can be ignored for a while if you have an inflator on board. If you want to discuss this intensively, start a new thread and leave this thread alone.

Yes, this time we did carry the camera.

We entered the Kanakapura road at Family mart junction and I was expecting some 30 Kms of urban drive before hitting the scenic road. To my surprise, we hit the scenic route within 10Kms. The road was narrow, but very good, and the scene was splendid. I forgot all about fast driving, instead drove a leisurely pace so as to enjoy the views. Unfortunately, didn't take any photos. This stretch reminded us of the higways in the 80s, very serene, twisting yet with high visibility, open plains on both sides, sometimes green paddy fields and sometimes lakes. I don't know how many of you driven the highways in south Karnataka, these are extremely green compared to what I have seen briefly in Maharashtra (Pune-to-Shirdi).

Once we entered Kanakapura, the roads got bad, it was a nightmarish stretch from there onwards until Malavalli. The road was constantly peppered with pot holes, mud roads, construction, diversions, etc, etc. Once I was trudging along in 2nd gear and I see a brand new red Santro (no reg.plate)pass me by in high speed on the potholed/muddy road. If the driver of that Santro is reading this (you never know these days), I am sure you are a great driver, pity about the Santro though! After some time one more new silver Santro (no reg.plate) rips through the bad road same way and beats me, and I am still in 2nd gear. I started wondering whether Kanakapura taluk has some strange intiation ritual for new Santro cars...

By this time we were feeling real hungry, and we could hardly find any dhaba or restaurant worth dropping in for lunch. Finally we decided to eat at our destination. However, when we reached Shivansamudra, we were to find that they had no restaurants, no restrooms/toilets and absolutely no garbage bins. A very typical Indian tourist attraction, devoid of any facilities. However, they did have many shacks and push carts selling bhelpuri, cucumber, mineral water, junk food, tender coconut, etc. So we settled for bhelpuri, biscuits, cucumber and tender coconut for lunch. Once consuming the food, one has no choice but throw it all around, I looked quite long enough before giving up.

These are the Sivansamudra (Gaganachukki falls) snaps...

After getting out of Shivanasamudra, we saw directions to Mysore via Kollegala, which is the opposite side of malavalli, we figured why not try the new route. We took a U-turn and headed towards Kollegala. This road from Shivanasamudra to Kollegala was a pleasure to drive, we were often driving along river Kaveri. Couple of times we stopped to take some snaps...

Once we crossed Kollegala, roads got bad again, this time for construction reasons. BTW, this is a national highway...

Anyway, we managed to reach Mysore before dark and it was Hotel room hunting time. BTW, the Mysore locals are pretty lame when it comes giving directions. We asked for directions at least 5-6 times, each time we were sent on a wild goose chase. After nearly a hour of criss-crossing around the palace, we found JLB road on our own using the map. Unfortunately, every hotel we visited were fully occupied. It didn't take much time to realize that we chose the wrong weekend for a Let's Go, this one happened to be a long weekend and we could see mostly Bangalore registration cars in every Hotel. Every place when they said no room, my son used to understand it and would scream in agony, I want to stay in new house, wah! We finally gave up and decided to try a resort in Srirangapattana where we had stayed before. After 30 minutes drive we reached the resort, this is pretty nice place on bank of river Kaveri, this is a snap I took during our last visit.

For our luck, even this place was fully occupied thanks to the long weekend. Finally with a heavy heart we decided to just have our dinner there and make the long drive back to Bangalore. I hate to drive at night and this road was a long stretch mostly under construction. It is devious during day due to construction, would be really painful during night. This is how the car looked before we started, as tired as we were...

The returned drive was quiet, since we were tired both physically and mentally (due to disappointment). I latched on to practically anyone fast enough I could get for a pilot car. I mean who wants to constantly look out for diversions, speedhumps, villager crossing at night while being very tired. We started back at 9.45PM and reached home at Bangalore by 12:30AM.

What is interesting is that I didn't cross 100KMPH or 2500rpm during the whole trip except during some passing maneuvers. During day it was because of beautiful scenery in some stretches, and terrible roads rest of the time. While coming back it was road construction, bad visibility, and frequent diversions. Can't say I enjoyed the return drive.

By sticking to Let's Go concept, we didn't reserve any Hotel rooms, there by having to cut short the trip and come back. Now we know better, if the Let's Go trip exceeds a day and it is a major holiday, better make reservations.

Last edited by Samurai : 25th April 2007 at 21:44. Reason: Fixed image links
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Old 16th August 2005, 00:39   #2
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Well samurai, u seem to have had quite an experience there.
I was thinking of taking the same route, but could not make it.
Yes kanakapura road is beautifull. It has some occational traffic and smooth twisty roads.
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Old 16th August 2005, 10:40   #3
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nice report there samurai.
Totally agree about the locals of Mysore being bad guides! I have done the runarounds myself a few times there.
By the way, to my utter surprise, the roads of bangalore were pretty smooth n devoid of jams when i ventured out over the weekend.... maybe thanks to all the bangaloreans heading out of bangalore for the long weekend.
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Old 16th August 2005, 17:43   #4
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That was a nice report Samurai.
Sorry that I couldnot write the full report. Any way the place ( Gaganchukki Fall ) is nice place to visit provided you go with packed lunch. I didnt face this problem as I had my lunch with me .... had nice time because there was not much rush.

Since my Sister visited us on this long weekend, so we decided to go to the same place because of the wonderful experience we had last time..
This was the worst experience I had, there was 2 kms Traffic Jam around 110kms from Bangalore (Sunday around 12.30pm) and it was getting wosre by every minute. It seemed that whole Bangalore was heading towards SivaSamundra.
We some how managed to reached SivaSamundra via some other route( drove thru some villages).. and were teriffied to see that Police was stopping people from taking there cars to the Gaganchukki sight point. All of us were asked to park our cars about 2 kms Before the destination.

I have never seen this kind of traffic and rush in my whole life.. that too at a place which is 130 kms from a populated city.

And the worst part of the trip was while coming back I met an accident . At kanakpura Junction, the lights turned red and I had to take a sudden stop from a speed of 10kph, but it seems that person who was driving a Tata207 was in a hurry and he rammed into my petra from behind .. and I came back home with dented bumper........... :(
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Old 16th August 2005, 20:03   #5
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Holy cow, thank god I went a day earlier. There were at the most 100 cars there. We Bangaloreans have become like locust, attacking near by tourist spots like a swarm during weekends and holidays. I guess we all can't resist any chance to get away from Bangalore...

Sorry to hear about your accident...
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Old 16th August 2005, 21:24   #6
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Hey dude, that would have been a fantastic drive...The scenary and landscape looks reallt pleasent, good u drove slowly and enjoyed it
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Old 17th August 2005, 13:23   #7
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those weekend trips are becoming quite a curse - the crowds are increasing - on one of our trips - just at the first rains in mumbai - we were stuck on the NH17 for 3 hours on a 10 km stretch - crawling towards the alibaug turnoff - the whole of mumbai decided to be there as well - luckily, we were going further. i am sure no hotels / lodges would have been available anywhere.

then coming back is bad as well - everbody comes home on sunday evening - so the drive into mumbai - from any of the entry points is equally bad - so except for a few high points - most of these trips are getting to be a major bother.

since both me and my wife have flexible schedules - we try to head out of mumbai on saturday afternoon or evening and get back to mumbai on monday morning/afternoon to avoid the rush hour!

great scenery though along your route - and i guess worth the trouble...

Originally Posted by Samurai
Once consuming the food, one has no choice but throw it all around, I looked quite long enough before giving up.
it's better to take a plastic bag from your vendor, stuff everything in it and store it in the car - you can dispose it then when you get home.

it's sad, not 1 tourist spot has dustbins - but i think we really, really mustn't mess up the surroundings - a little trouble is what we must take to keep things clean - after all, that's why we go there.
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Old 4th March 2006, 01:31   #8
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really nice writeup samurai.
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Old 18th April 2006, 21:22   #9
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Default Info Reqd : Inflator Onboard

Hi Samurai,

Nice Pics and description. I would go there someday, after the rainy season.

Sorry for OT !! I am interested to know more details about the inflator that you have for your car. Can you please share (Please PM me) the informations - price, place where purchased and features ?

Originally Posted by Samurai
I do know by experience that this kind of puncture (2-3psi leak/week) can be ignored for a while if you have an inflator on board. If you want to discuss this intensively, start a new thread and leave this thread alone.

Last edited by souravbasu : 18th April 2006 at 21:33.
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