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Old 15th February 2010, 18:38   #1
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Default 100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights

This is not a travelogue, because I don't know how to write one. Plus the distance was covered over a period of 6 years - so I would have forgotten most of the finer details.

We covered the distance mostly in my Optra (70%), friend's Palio 1.2 (20%), Wagon R/Santro/Getz (remaining 10%). Over the years, we have visited 17 states - Karnataka, AP, TN, Kerala, Goa, Maharashtra, MP, Chattisgarh, Orissa, Diu, Gujarat, Rajasthan, UP, Haryana, Chandigarh, New Delhi and HP.

Interested tidbits:

- Had one major accident. The definition of major accident is -> No Injuries, but the car has to be towed.

- Got fined Rs. 700 by cops when we tried to drive in straight into Taj Mahal (didn't know only electric cars were allowed)

- Got mobbed by a rowdy crowd in Rajathan when a biker with 3 people on board slammed into us from the side. We had to go to the police station where we had to shell out Rs. 5,000 to extricate oursleves from the situation.

- Slept in the car twice (bachelor life, baby) because we couldn't find hotels.

- Usually started the day at 10:00 AM and drove still 12:00 AM midnight, with lots of places to see in the middle.

- Oddly, never had a tire puncture in any car.

- Almost fell into a river flowing 100 ft down below, almost ran into an old woman trying to cross the Golden Quadrilateral, almost got taken out by tractors that appear out of nowhere (esp. in haryana), almost...

- Truck drivers can be incredibly courteous.


For now, I am uploading photos & videos of our trip to Vizag & Araku Valley in AP and Chitrakoot Falls in Chattisgarh. Will upload the other pics later.

Pic 1: Fishing Boat in Vizag - photo taken by my amateur photographer friend with his Rs. 1.5 Lac camera!

Pic 2: Some Bird near the Vizag beach

Pic 3: Old submarine near the Vizag beach

Pic 4: This guy was performing some kind of puja to the car, going round the car twice and throwing some flowers on it - Vizag beach road again.
Attached Thumbnails
100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-_mg_1453.jpg  

100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-_mg_1469.jpg  

100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-_mg_1527.jpg  

100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-img_1565.jpg  

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Old 15th February 2010, 18:41   #2
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I am hooked onto this Thread. This promises to be interesting.

Do share your experiences wherever you can.
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Old 15th February 2010, 19:00   #3
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Pic 1: Araku valley is around 100 kms from Vizag. Nobody told us it would be packed. No hotels - slept in the car.

Pic 2: We are in Orissa now. And my friend has had enough of this cruel world. But he eventually chickened out.

Pic 3: Chitrakote Falls in Chattisgarh

Pic 4: Bats near Chitrakote Falls. Yes, photo taken on that big Rs. 1.5 Lac camera.

Pic 5: Standing "over" the Chitrakote Falls

Pic 6: Borra Caves, in Araku Valley. The coloured effect in the photo is because of lights inside the cave.
Attached Thumbnails
100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-_mg_1620.jpg  

100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-_mg_1679.jpg  

100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-_mg_1699.jpg  

100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-_mg_1820.jpg  

100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-_mg_1768.jpg  

100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-_mg_1868.jpg  

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Old 15th February 2010, 19:20   #4
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Oh Boy!!! Fantastic pictures; superb clarity
Don't tell me you're working for NatGeo
Waiting eagerly for your travelogue; keep them coming
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Old 15th February 2010, 19:29   #5
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The caves are amazing. Do you have more photos on the caves?
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Old 15th February 2010, 19:42   #6
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It is a very good idea to retrospect ones entire driving life
i liked the photos shared by you. thanks for sharing
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Old 15th February 2010, 19:59   #7
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Next obvious question - what was your camera gear ?
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Old 15th February 2010, 20:43   #8
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beautiful stuff, man!

Please keep uploading pics!

your optra looks as good as ever!

Last edited by anekho : 15th February 2010 at 20:44.
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Old 15th February 2010, 21:04   #9
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Very nice thread indeed. And absolutely fantastic photos.
Can I suggest that you also mention where these places are. Maybe a one liner like the state and the closest large city / town should do the trick.
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Old 15th February 2010, 21:30   #10
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Wonderful pictures indeed. Keep them coming, I'm glued.
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Old 15th February 2010, 21:54   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smartcat View Post
Pic 6: Borra Caves, in Araku Valley. The coloured effect in the photo is because of lights inside the cave.
The colored effect is not because of the lights in the cave. The lights just highlight the caves. The rocks are rich in minerals. The minerals give the color to those portions. Copper makes it green, Iron red, to name a few.
These rich minerals show those natural colour which is accentuated by the strategic positioning of the lights.

Here's a photo I took of Shenandoah Caverns.

Under ground river in the caverns
Name:  Shenandoah 1.jpg
Views: 10153
Size:  76.4 KB

Just a point and shoot. So pardon the shake. Missed my SLR.
Name:  Shenandoah 2.jpg
Views: 10041
Size:  75.6 KB
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Old 16th February 2010, 00:27   #12
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Quote:
Don't tell me you're working for NatGeo
I like driving, not taking photographs of birds and bees!

Quote:
Next obvious question - what was your camera gear ?
Hey, the photos were taken by my software engineer friend who tagged along with us to the trip. He is also an amateur photographer. He is a half-nut who drove all the way to Arunachal Pradesh from Bangalore on a Pulsar 150! No idea about the camera gear - I just call it the 1.5 Lac camera. The lens looks a lot similar to a Bazooka.

This is his website -
Flickr: Alemaari's Photostream


Quote:
your optra looks as good as ever!
Thanks! Even now, I childishly look back at the car sometimes after I lock it and walk way.

Quote:
The colored effect is not because of the lights in the cave. The lights just highlight the caves
Coming to think of it, yeah, this makes more sense. We were always wondering why they "ruined" the natural beauty of the caves by putting different coloured lights on the walls.

Quote:
Can I suggest that you also mention where these places are. Maybe a one liner like the state and the closest large city / town should do the trick
Will do. If my info is not enough, you can also a do quick Google search.

Chitrakoot Falls is apparently called the Niagara Falls of India - best seen during the heavy water flow season. It's about 50 km from Jagdalpur (2nd largest city in Chattisgarh). We went to this place from Bangalore via Vizag & Araku Valley.

The road from Bangalore to Vizag is on Golden Quad, and hence is quite boring. But sparse traffic makes the drive easy. Borra Caves is on the way to Araku Valley.

Quote:
The caves are amazing. Do you have more photos on the caves?
Here you go -
Attached Thumbnails
100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-_mg_1865.jpg  

100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-_mg_1878.jpg  

100,000 kms on Indian Highways, 6 treks & a Couple of Flights-_mg_1909.jpg  

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Old 16th February 2010, 00:33   #13
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Oh boy!! What a lovely thread!! Got some lovely pics as well.
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Old 16th February 2010, 00:55   #14
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Aha, the bacon! I meant the formation in the photo 1878.jpg. It's a very interesting cave formation. Too bad that they didn't have a light positioned there. It's towards the right of the photo.
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Old 16th February 2010, 07:16   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smartcat View Post
Pic 1: Fishing Boat in Vizag - photo taken by my amateur photographer friend with his Rs. 1.5 Lac camera!

Pic 2: Some Bird near the Vizag beach
Great Picture of the Boat. The bird is an Indian Roller aka Nilkanth
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