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Old 17th February 2010, 13:08   #31
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I have done Sambalpur--->cuttack---->Balasore and back in Dec-09. No naxals/menacing cops. Even my in laws do frequent journey on that route. No news of any naxals. The road is good and very less trafic. In that route Redhakhol,Anugul,Dhenkanal,Chouduar(Near to Cuttack) are big town, You can get descent facility(Food/lodge) there. Overall its a peacefull route. No need to worry even in night drive on that road.
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Old 17th February 2010, 14:01   #32
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Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
No, I have never been on N H43 myself. But my friend took 5 hours from Sambalpur to Cuttack. AFAIK, there is no Naxal problem on this route although it is prone to bandhs, etc, thanks to the anti-mining activism in the region, from time to time.
That is nh42. As you mentioned earlier nh43 is from Vizag to Raipur.
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Old 17th February 2010, 14:11   #33
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That is nh42. As you mentioned earlier nh43 is from Vizag to Raipur.
Sorry, yes, that is right.
The NH43 to Jagdalpur and Raipur is a safe road too. Has some patchy sections at the OR-CG border but for most it is in good condition - update from last month's drive by a friend.
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Old 17th February 2010, 15:00   #34
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You got a good experience and you will be smiling after few days remembering those driving times. If you would have followed NH5->NH42 then that's smooth and not much thrilling in driving except you will get very nice tarmac.

Where are the rest of the pictures.
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Old 19th February 2010, 15:16   #35
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Breath taking travelogue. You really did the trip with lot of guts man, that with wife next to you.
Now you've become a certified driver.
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Old 21st February 2010, 16:24   #36
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This is certainly driving on the egde to Sukma. A gripping narative had me tensing up. Glad that the hdharam patni and yourself came through in one piece with only the loss of a rear view mirror.

I am sure you must have given a vehicle a through checkup after all this adventure - do let us know how it fared after this cross country raid. The wear and tear and if you had to change any other parts apart from the door view mirror assembly.

And do post some pics of your new car.

Thanks for the effort put in to bring this to us. Awaiting Part 2 .
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Old 25th February 2010, 15:39   #37
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That was terrifying and would say a risk not worth taking so late in the night. Don't think that is a safe or even a suggested option by any means.
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Old 26th February 2010, 21:18   #38
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First of all my congratulations to you for narrating the experience so nicely.

I still wonder whether the risk was worth taking putting life at risk? Some people might call it courage, but I will call it ignorance.

CLJ
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Old 26th February 2010, 23:14   #39
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First of all my congratulations to you for narrating the experience so nicely.

I still wonder whether the risk was worth taking putting life at risk? Some people might call it courage, but I will call it ignorance.

CLJ
Calling it ignorance was a bit harsh. Try that once and see the adrenaline rush. Be it Bungee jumping, sky diving, wild life safari, exploring the unknown, or even things like mountaineering, no guts, then no glory.

Ships are safe at the dock. But that's not what they are built for!
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Old 27th February 2010, 00:13   #40
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Ships are safe at the dock. But that's not what they are built for!
Yes - but what about ships heading towards a Bermuda Triangle.

And secondly, it wasn't planned - someone suggested them Sukma

Upper Andhra (towards Chattisgarh and Orissa after Bhadrachalam), lower Orissa and Chattisgarh are hard core Maoist areas.

Haven't heard of even a half-decent single lane road in that part of the world - photos pasted do the talking - I don't know what adrenaline rush that one would get by driving a new Punto into those roads - They are tailor made of 1952 Willys Jeeps.

Cheers
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Old 27th February 2010, 01:14   #41
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Yes - but what about ships heading towards a Bermuda Triangle.

And secondly, it wasn't planned - someone suggested them Sukma

Upper Andhra (towards Chattisgarh and Orissa after Bhadrachalam), lower Orissa and Chattisgarh are hard core Maoist areas.

Haven't heard of even a half-decent single lane road in that part of the world - photos pasted do the talking - I don't know what adrenaline rush that one would get by driving a new Punto into those roads - They are tailor made of 1952 Willys Jeeps.

Cheers
That's the beauty of it. When plans go awry, it's the survival skill that comes to the fore front. Not everyone are gifted enough to make the perfect plans and stick to them.
Reading this travelogue, I was very tempted to try out this route. It should be safer than driving in pune roads!
Adrenaline rush doesn't mean only 160+ on express ways.
The fear of the unknown gives one too!
Now he can reflect back on this trip and proudly say sometime later, been there, done that.
I was in Kashmir shortly before militancy grew to devastating proportions. People said it's crazy to be out there. 2 days before our scheduled departure, there was a huge bomb that went off in the road we were at.
We were quarantined in srinagar for 2 weeks.
What ever people say about our trip, I think back, only one thing comes to my mind. Been there, Done that. It's been almost 20 odd years since I'd been there. Looking at so many leh/ srinagar travelogues, I feel like doing it again.

Regarding Bermuda triangle, there's a lot of myth and mystery and further stories built up.
This is what Wiki has to say
The area is one of the most heavily traveled shipping lanes in the world, with ships crossing through it daily for ports in the Americas, Europe, and the Caribbean Islands. Cruise ships are also plentiful, and pleasure craft regularly go back and forth between Florida and the islands. It is also a heavily flown route for commercial and private aircraft heading towards Florida, the Caribbean, and South America from points north.
Not every ship or aircraft went down. I've seen enough cruise liners leaving Miami towards Nassau or other carrebean islands. I've seen them come back safe as well.

Sorry about the OT.
But I still feel CLJ's words calling it as ignorance is a bit harsh. I'd probably use the more milder UNAWARE term.
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Old 27th February 2010, 14:05   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MX6 View Post
That's the beauty of it. When plans go awry, it's the survival skill that comes to the fore front. Not everyone are gifted enough to make the perfect plans and stick to them.
Reading this travelogue, I was very tempted to try out this route. It should be safer than driving in pune roads!
Adrenaline rush doesn't mean only 160+ on express ways.
The fear of the unknown gives one too!
Now he can reflect back on this trip and proudly say sometime later, been there, done that.
I was in Kashmir shortly before militancy grew to devastating proportions. People said it's crazy to be out there. 2 days before our scheduled departure, there was a huge bomb that went off in the road we were at.
We were quarantined in srinagar for 2 weeks.
What ever people say about our trip, I think back, only one thing comes to my mind. Been there, Done that. It's been almost 20 odd years since I'd been there. Looking at so many leh/ srinagar travelogues, I feel like doing it again.

Regarding Bermuda triangle, there's a lot of myth and mystery and further stories built up.
This is what Wiki has to say
The area is one of the most heavily traveled shipping lanes in the world, with ships crossing through it daily for ports in the Americas, Europe, and the Caribbean Islands. Cruise ships are also plentiful, and pleasure craft regularly go back and forth between Florida and the islands. It is also a heavily flown route for commercial and private aircraft heading towards Florida, the Caribbean, and South America from points north.
Not every ship or aircraft went down. I've seen enough cruise liners leaving Miami towards Nassau or other carrebean islands. I've seen them come back safe as well.

Sorry about the OT.
But I still feel CLJ's words calling it as ignorance is a bit harsh. I'd probably use the more milder UNAWARE term.

There is always a first to every thing. One may not even know what to plan before a journey. To be honest for example, I have done quite a lot of distances, but still not changed my tyre on the way (touch wood). Once I have to I will learn. I do know how to do it, but the fact that I have not done it live, will put me in a spot.

But yes, awareness some how needs to be built into system before one can proceed.
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Old 1st March 2010, 17:04   #43
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My Goodness! Hat's off to your guts and courage. I felt like experiencing a horror movie. Nevertheless, all is well that ends well. You have won over the fear and i am sure you must be prepared for anything and everything worse that comes at you.

Having said that, it would be wiser to plan such long trip much before hand. I am from Balasore/Kolkata and many times i think of making it to Kol by road.
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Old 1st March 2010, 17:43   #44
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All I can say is, "Aaal is well". It is good to hear that you both came back safe. I guess your story serves as an eye-opener for all of us taking long routes. It is better to take a dip stick here on this forum to get the best route and then travel.
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Old 2nd March 2010, 11:55   #45
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My heartiest thanks to everyone who has contributed to this post & shared their concerns as well as their good wishes.

Well, I never planned for things to go out of control. They just happened & I would attribute all of it to lack of proper planning from my side. But yes, I fully agree with "MX6" - the kind of adrenalin rush that I experienced during this drive was unparalleled to anything else that I have done till date. I really feel like "Been there Done that" and have emerged a better driver. I feel bonded to my Punto (People who have seen Avatar can relate to this "bonding"). I know what it is capable of doing & what it is not meant to do.
Well, its not an SUV so it possibly can't take any road that it is challenged with. However, the worst roads on earth cannot deter a Punto given that the GC is kind of ok. This car is one solidly built car.

I shall try to complete the return journey soon with lot more pictures. Till then . . . Happy Driving
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