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Old 18th April 2010, 22:04   #91
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Hi Lalu

are you now fully hands on with your new DSLR ?
i would need some help to understand the DSLR v/s a regular point and shoot DSC. Did you attend any tutorial lessons or just simply self tutoring/trial-error-trial cycle ?
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Old 18th April 2010, 22:10   #92
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StarVegabond View Post
Hi Lalu

are you now fully hands on with your new DSLR ?
i would need some help to understand the DSLR v/s a regular point and shoot DSC. Did you attend any tutorial lessons or just simply self tutoring/trial-error-trial cycle ?
Not really. It's mostly reading and trial - error cycles.
Still a long long way to go.
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Old 18th April 2010, 22:19   #93
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Originally Posted by laluks View Post
Not really. It's mostly reading and trial - error cycles.
Still a long long way to go.
I have seen several times on my travels within India that group of people with DSLRs (+lens+tripod+ lighting etc) on shooting trip. Generally these are known people (to each other) with one or two leaders who are masters of the photography and these masters teach the newbies.

i have often seen these groups camp at a location and shoot images with different settings, angles, cameras, lens etc, keeping the subject same.
sometimes they return to the same location in the evening. Last time i saw such a group was in Hampi. this group had come from Pune. i had a good conversation with couple of them in Marathi, that is how i know what they do and how they learn.

this could be a more organized, efficient and effective way to learn, practice and share the know how.

Bangalore is blessed with somany off site locations within few hours drive.
is there any such groups / trainers available in Bangalore ?

Sorry for the offtopic

Last edited by StarVegabond : 18th April 2010 at 22:23.
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Old 18th April 2010, 22:50   #94
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StarVegabond View Post
Bangalore is blessed with somany off site locations within few hours drive.
is there any such groups / trainers available in Bangalore ?

Sorry for the offtopic
Yes. Bangalore Phoptography Club does similar activities I guess.
Welcome to the Bangalore Photography Club!

Last edited by laluks : 18th April 2010 at 22:54.
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Old 18th April 2010, 23:05   #95
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Originally Posted by laluks View Post
Yes. Bangalore Phoptography Club does similar activities I guess.
Welcome to the Bangalore Photography Club!
Thanks, i see that there is a workshop for newbies some time next month (8-9 May) costing RS 4000/- For me it is too shot time to decide.
I need some still premitive info, will call you some time tomorrow.

thanks,
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Old 18th April 2010, 23:49   #96
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Default Nice one...

Lalu - nice narration and great pics. Most importantly, kudos to the enthusiasm of Power Puff girls I have always been sceptical about the existance of Parambikulam - Chalakudy route and have heard various versions from various people. Thanks for clarifying this out for me. Would certainly help me plan my Kerala trip in Sept. Keep it coming...
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Old 19th April 2010, 08:07   #97
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cool_dube View Post
Lalu - nice narration and great pics. Most importantly, kudos to the enthusiasm of Power Puff girls I have always been sceptical about the existance of Parambikulam - Chalakudy route and have heard various versions from various people. Thanks for clarifying this out for me. Would certainly help me plan my Kerala trip in Sept. Keep it coming...
Thanks cool_dude.

I can understand that predicament. I was also under the same impression and was asking questions to almost everyone who took this route. Finally decided to check it out myself
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Old 19th April 2010, 08:50   #98
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Day 1, April 2nd 2010 continued

Vazhachal CP - NH47 (Chalakudi) (36Kms)

With the question of Where to - echoing loud in my ears I drove on. Thought in mind we will decide once we hit Chalakudi, which should be reached in an hour.

A little later got the rubberised beautiful curvy roads that lead all the way to NH47. Amazing roads. On the way we passed the Athirampally waterfalls, and some theme parks. We have been on this route before, in Feb 2009, and hence was not disappointed about being here in the night and missing both the falls. Any how this will be covered in the Valparai after rain trip - some day again . I'll put up some pictures of the falls from my trip in February 2009 by evening.


Time --- KM ----- Place
19:10 -- 692.0 -- Vazhachal CP, Forest limit ends.
20:00 -- 728.0 -- NH47, Right turn to Palghat, Left turn to Cochin


Finally at 20:00 PM we hit the NH47, and was thinking what next ?? Anyway we are headed to Nelliyampathy. How about staying in Palghat and driving early morning to Nelliyampathy? Any ways it is NH47, we know the roads, let's do it. We drove on to Palghat.


Did we really stay for the night in Palghat?


Continued...

Last edited by laluks : 19th April 2010 at 08:51.
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Old 19th April 2010, 10:08   #99
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Athirapally and Vazhachal photos from our trip on 10th February 2009. We had a marriage in the family and was in Kerala for that. This detour was done on our way back to Bangalore.

Athirapally Falls

Entry to Athirapally Falls
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The calm water before the falls. The guards won't allow you to enter the water.
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The roaring falls just after the calm water
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The climb back from the calm waters
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The way to the foot of the waterfalls
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The majestic Athirappally Falls. Some call it the Niagra of India and on..
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The walk back to the exit. We were too tired of the trekk
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A signboard at Athirappally
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Vazhachaal Falls
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Civic resting near Oil palms. There seems to be a research center for Oil palms on that route after the bridge.
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Old 19th April 2010, 12:35   #100
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Strangely, we missed the "entry" of the Athirapally waterfalls (that tarred road leading to the calm waters). We somehow started our visit to Athirapally falls from the foot of the waterfalls.

How on earth did you manage to take pic no. 10 & 12, directly facing the waterfall? It is impossible to do it, unless you standing in the middle of the river! All the shots we've got of the waterfalls is from an angle.
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Old 19th April 2010, 18:51   #101
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How on earth did you manage to take pic no. 10 & 12, directly facing the waterfall? It is impossible to do it, unless you standing in the middle of the river! All the shots we've got of the waterfalls is from an angle.

. A little bit on to the water on the left side.
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Old 19th April 2010, 19:00   #102
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Lauks

Another memory for Me ! The day we visited Athirapally falls, India won the Perth Test match !
(me and some friends on the occasion of a colleague's marriage)

We were having lunch at one of the resorts on the road to NH47 and saw the last wicket fall but only in the news, as the resort was not playing any
sports channel !
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Old 19th April 2010, 23:15   #103
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Day 1, April 2nd 2010 continued

NH47 (Chalakudi) - Nenmara (71Kms)

We were happily driving to Palghat for the night stay. NH47 had a lot of diversions due to the 4 laning, and was a boring affair. Already 700+ Km done for the day and this stretch was testing.

Almost after an hour I saw a board Palghat 22Km and Nelliyampathy 46Km! What!!

I stopped the car for a refill, the second refill for the day. Overall mileage of 13.38 kmpl till now. Checked with the pump guys about Nenmara, and he says that's nearby and take the immediate right on the NH to Nenmara.

I looked at the watch, its 21:00PM. 50kms more you can be in Nelliyampathy for the night. Don't know if you will be allowed after the checkpost. Anyways you'll know that in another 20Kms and if you had to come back to Palghat, you still can. So I was ready to take the risk.

So called up the resort, and declared I'm coming over in another 1 hour. Resort owner was like what!!! But his next question was would you like Dinner, and I said very much. I asked him about the checkpost and he said, tell them you are booked with him, and mostly they'll let you pass. Deal done we drove towards Nemmara.

Time --- KM ----- Place
20:00 -- 728.0 -- NH47, Right turn to Palghat, Left turn to Cochin
21:00 -- 784.6 -- Right turn to Nemmara
21:30 -- 799.7 -- Nemmara.

But another surprise was awaiting us at Nenmara. All roads leading into Nenmara was blocked. Forget Nelliyampathy road!!

It was the Nenmara Vallangi Vela of the Nellikkulangara Bhagavathy Temple, Nenmara. The entire village people were on the streets, colourful, and I was like man what have you just stumbled into. This festival celebrations is considerd to be as pompous as the Thrissur pooram, and you are bang there in the middle of festivities.

What a day!! Forgot all the confusion about the stay, just parked the car and became a part of the celebrations, and spoke to a nice localite about the festival and its importance. It was a little later that we noticed we were there almost for an hour and the time was already around 23:00PM.


Some information of the vela from the web.
Nenmara Vallangi Vela is an annual festival of Kerala celebrated at Nellikulangara Bhagavathy temple in Palakkad village. Nenmara and Vallangi are two neighbouring villages in the district. In fact, this festival is a competition between these two villages. The festival begins with the traditional flag hoisting ceremony, called as Kodiyettam. Various art forms like Karivela, Kummatti and Andivelaare are staged during Nenmara Vallangi Vela. During the celebration, 30 caparisoned elephants line up in ritual magnificence under a decorated canopy. The Nenmara Vallangi Vela is the second important festival similar to Thrissur Pooram.
The Nenmara Vallangi Vela is considered second only to the famous Thrissur Pooram. The festival is a joint invocation to the Nellikkulangara Bhagavathy by the people of the Nenmara and Vallangi villages. Performances of various folk arts like Kummatti, Karivela, Andivela and so on are on show during the festival. On the concluding day of the Vela, 30 caparisoned tuskers stand together in ceremonial splendour under a heavily decorated canopy.
They also have spectacular fireworks which runs through the night.
Some pictures from the web. Copy right belongs to the respective owners.

Nellikulangara Bhagavathy temple
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The elephants and the pandhal
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The big "pandhal" bang on the Nelliyampathy route. This is why roads are blocked.
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Finally did we reach Nelliyampathy for the night??

continued...
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Old 19th April 2010, 23:44   #104
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Day 1, April 2nd 2010 continued

Nenmara - Nelliyampathy (28Kms)

The localite while explaining the details of the vela to me saw the Car registration - What KA?? Where did you land here from, where are you off to?? I explained to him my predicament. He says he'll let me pass through!! We spoke to certain police guys, and they said they'll make way for us through the crowd.

With a few police guys escorting us in the front, we drove through the crowd and under the big "Illuminated Pandhal" on to the road to Nelliyampathy. It was hardly 200 - 300 metres, and we are on to open roads again. Thanked the localite and the Police guys, and they were like any issues at the CP, call me I'll let you pass. Thanked them profusely again and off we are driving again.

We reached the Checkpost by 23:10Pm and said we were at the vela, and hence delayed and we have to go to the resort. The officer smiles and says - Man you are too much!

He advices drive carefully, roads are good but narrow, and some hairpins are steep and sharp turns, and he says he'll call up resort to see we have arrived safely. Made friendship all through the day at all CP, they respect you, if you respect them.

Drove carefully on the roads to Nelliyampathy. The officer was right, some hairpins were too steep and sharp turns and I could only see the sky while taking the turn , such was the angle. It was almost like turning blind!!

An hour later we reached the main junction of Nelliyampathy. ITL resort is immediately after this junction. Looked OK from outside - a lot of youngsters were on the road in front of the resort enjoying their friday night party. I got a royal salute here from one of them!! I guess he decided to give one after seeing the registration of the car and the time!!

A little later the roads became non existant, and the tea estate started. The roads to the resort was almost a 4x4 type, but Swift managed it quite well.

I was carefully negotiating the road, when my wifey says sh... look to the front! I look around and saw a herd of big deer, as big as sambars, dark coloured in the roads. Waited for a while for them to clear, only to be greeted by small deers. Again waiting only to be greeted by wild hares, and again only to be greeted by Owls, and again to be greeted by mongoose. I was like where is the resort, am I into the forest already??

I almost screeched halt the car when I heard an exciting cry from my wifey. Now what? She says switch of your head lights - and I am like what??? She insists I switch off the lights and look up to the trees. I did - That was the most wonderful thing I have ever seen - The Fireflies. I cannot explain it in words -You have to see it to believe it.


Well its already past midnight and slowly we drove another 3 more kilometers to see the gate to the resort. It was 00:45AM when we parked the car. 833kilometers for the day.

We were quickly greeted by the resort cook, and showed us the room. He says by the time you freshen up he'll make the chapathis that we orderd for. I was floored, at 1:00AM we are being given our food and that too hot hot. That's hospitality - amazing.

Time --- KM ----- Place
21:30 -- 799.7 -- Nemmara.
23:10 -- 807.6 -- Nelliyampathy CP
00:15 -- 828.0 -- Nelliyampathy main junction
00:45 -- 833.1 -- Resort

By 1:30Am we were having our hot dinner and talking about our adventures. By around 2:30, exactly 24 hours after we started our day we decided to call it quits!!

What a day it has been.
833KM, 24hours of trip, uncertainties, amazing places, a big festival and the most wonderful moments of our life with the fireflies.


Well this is one wonderful day etched in our memories for ever.

Last edited by laluks : 19th April 2010 at 23:49.
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Old 20th April 2010, 00:28   #105
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That last post made some good tense moments while reading. Great show laluks.
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