Go Back   Team-BHP > Buckle Up > Travelogues


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 26th September 2010, 21:45   #1
BHPian
 
airguitar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 351
Thanked: 115 Times
Default Solo, yet so high

Greetings folks. Just back from first solo trip : 2.5 days ; ~1200 km. Target : places around Thirthahalli, Nagara, Kodachadri & Nittur.

Right through this writeup, I've a few questions : experts/locals please help answer.

Trip Summary :

Day 1 : Hoskote : Devanahalli : Dobaspet : Tumkur : Kadur : Shimoga : Thirthahalli ( 371 kms )

Day 2 : Thirthahalli : Agumbe : Thirthahalli : Nagara : Sampekatte : Nittur : Sampekatte : Kattinahole : Nagara : Hosanagara : Sagar : Ripponpet :Huncha : Thirthahalli ( 380 kms )

Day 3 : Thirthahalli : Shimoga : Hole Honnur : Channagiri : Holalkere : Chitradurga : Sira bypass : Tumkur bypass : Dobaspet : Devanahalli : Hoskote. ( 417 kms )


My trips are becoming too frequent for friends and family to be with on the trips : a proposal to do this trip was shot down. Then I thought : why not a solo ? My longest solo drive before this was only a paltry 70km. I'm not known to drive long without stops, I can easily get distracted, so even more resistance. This trip was not about checking my limit. The sole purpose was to cover the Hosanagar->Nagara->Nittur/Kattinahole stretch; and get a glimpse of Kodachadri peak and drive as close to it as possible.


While I continue with my monologue, I stop for a question : are any of your families frustrated with your frequent ( read every weekend ) long trips ? Help me handle this.

Thursday evening : inform about taking half of Friday off.

Thursday night : still contemplating if I should do this. Call in for accommodation at Thirthahalli for the next 2 nights, fortunate enough to get it that late.

Day 1 : 11 AM : Hoskote to Thirthahalli

All along since I started, I made it a point to read the regn numbers of oncoming vehicles. Helps me keep focussed and gives me a satisfaction that my focus is on, esp on long drives. Not sure if this is already patented, but it works for me.

Friday Morning : Start work at 6.30 AM and wrap up by 11 AM. All set to leave, I feel perfect for the drive ( there are days, when you wake up with a " oh no " ). Onto NH 207 from Hoskote ; 45 minute break for Lunch at Kamat ; Then onto NH 206. Man, this road had rapidly deteriorated. As luck would have it got to Shimoga as late as 6.15 PM. I expected the western ghats sun to fade slowly, but much to my dismay, it started vanishing much too soon ( In early August, it still was twilight time at around 6.45 PM IIRC ). Although I know the Shimoga->Thirthahalli stretch like the back of my palm ( have done this stretch atleast 8 times in 5 months ), I've never done it at night. The stretch until past Mandagadde scared the dung out of me nearly. The only sound I could hear was my heart pounding and the cicadas chirping.

Question : Is it safe to do this stretch at night ? The fact that I didn't know what to expect, was the source of the fear. And the fact that this road has a nasty reputation all the way from Shimoga till Karkala.

Driving slowly, nice job on the mid-road reflectors, folks! Else, it's hard to spot many of those sharp turns at night. Finally at Vihangama at 8 PM. Just plonk myself for the night. Need to start early, key : no long distances : but slow, soak-up drive.

Some pictures : more to follow. More information as well to follow

TO CONTINUE
Attached Thumbnails
Solo, yet so high-dsc_0399.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0529.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0437.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0521.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0390.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0402.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0410.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0412.jpg  

airguitar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th September 2010, 22:06   #2
BHPian
 
airguitar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 351
Thanked: 115 Times
Default

Saturday : Morning 8.00 AM : Thirthahalli has stirred. Students making a beeline to the Tunaga college is what I see : walkers, bicyclists, bikers. I've always felt that Thirthahalli is more Udupi than Shimoga. Does anyone agree ? Be it food, people etc. Am I mistaken ? Quick breakfast at Kamat cafe and drive on till Agumbe foot. No mood to reach Agumbe, have been there about 4 times in the last 5 moths I've been afflicted by the driving-bug. I see one or two kids selling "Pathrode", a leaf of some plant. ( That reminds of me of an old incident where a nice friend from Mangalore had brought in a Pathrode dish from home, I ate a bit and later, it left my mouth itching and haven't touched it since then? Anyone knows ? ). Turn back all the way to Thirthalli, and onto Sagar road. And take the diversion to Nagara. Good stretches of road with some bad stretches : vagaries of traveling on a village roads, but it bad; was enjoyable. Nagara is here. Think of driving till Kollur, but not really keen. Lot's of KL vehicles plying on the road : perhaps they're off to Kollur. Timely reminder that I was supposed to get close to Kodachadri. There were 2 routes I had in mind : either via Sampekatte -> Kattinahole or Via Gowrikere ( road bad; only limited distance on the road to Kodachadri can be done ). I reached Gowrikere, didn't get a thumbs-up from the locals ( one said yes, one said no ).

Has someone done the Gowrikere->Kodachadri stretch ? Trekkers ? Bikers ? Car-ers ? Is it doable by car ?

Last edited by .anshuman : 26th September 2010 at 22:18. Reason: Removed tags
airguitar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th September 2010, 22:25   #3
BHPian
 
airguitar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 351
Thanked: 115 Times
Default

PART 3 ( last text part ; more photos coming )

Drive on till Nittur, to get a view of the Kodachadri hills. Good view. Turn back towards Sampekatte. On the way I see a board that says " Sagar : 33 kms " : Completely flabbergasted, I asked the locals how that could be. I find out that from Adugodi near there ( which was a place I remember passing through that morning ; and for Folks from BLR : this is pronounced "Adu-godi" and not "aadu-godi", the one we all know), there is a "launch" that one can get his car onto to cross the river. I was excited.


But first things first, decided to continue till Sampekatte and get to Kattinahole the closest point you can drive to Kodachadri in my SWIFT. The drive from Sampekatte to Kattinahole ( as all trekkers would know ) is about 7 kms. The road is brilliant ( with proper signboards and smooth texture of the road ), school kids walking back home from Sampekatte to villages uphill gave me goosebumps.

Questions : Does anyone offer lifts to locals when driving through stretches, esp kids? I don't if they're older folks : I'm wary of them. But school kids ? Well I didn't, for you never know what you might get into for offering to drop them off. Felt guilty to let them walk, but that's what most would do.

Nice views on the drive uphill. I see a flow inspection bungalow on the way ( Anyone knows what dam/infrastructure this is ? It says " Chakra Vimukha Yojane in Kannada) Stop at Kattinahole. You can go further in a jeep till Hidlumane I was told, but not on a swift. The guys offer a jeep drive for Rs.1000 ( Heck, I'm on a solo drive! I worry about my car as much as I do for myself. ), just take his number with a "later buddy" and from there you can drive down to Nittur (11 Kms, without having to go through Sampekatte again ). The road was "OK" and doable, but potholes nevertheless I was told ( I don't know if it gets to Gowrikere from there ).

Turn back, get to Sampekatte and check with the locals as to what time the "launch" to Sagar from Adugodi was. 2.15 PM said one, 2.45 PM said the other. It was 1.30 PM. For a moment I considered taking the launch to Sagar, what an experience it would be. But suddenly, chickened out because of my "solo-traveler" status. I decided to drive on through Nagara, Hosanagara and Sagar. And so, it was. Past Nagara, nice views of the Nagara fort and the Sharavathy river. Again a good amount of bad stretches, but none too concerning considering what you're getting in bargain. The same good-road-bad-road pattern continues till Sagar. 4 PM Sagar.

Question : What are the best places to a) Eat b) Stay overnight at Sagar ? I've never seemed to have found the right place.

No stopover at Sagar and I drive onwards on NH-206. The idea was to go till Anandapuram and take the SH 1 through Riponpet and Huncha. At Anandapuram, I ask someone sitting on a concrete bench to confirm if that was the way to Riponpet : he nodded and asked he be dropped till Riponpet. Sorry buddy. Towards Riponpet : again cratery stretches, but not disappointing. Riponpet turns out to be a much bigger town than I expected, a very busy town, it appeared.

I drive on towards Huncha, the stretches of roads were very lonely. There was just one thought : The fuel gauge reading is in your favour, the air pressure is in your favour, the time of the day is in your favour, you speak the local language, that's in your favour, you're not old, age is in your favour. Nothing to worry : drive on!

Alas, I failed to notice the thick clouds that had built up, the weather was not in my favour. If you see that sort of clouds in Bangalore, you know for sure that it'll flatter to deceive. Not in Malenadu. In the recent few months I've been a dozen times to Chikkamagalur, Shimoga, DK/UK districts, including as recently as 2 weeks back and 2/3 weekends last month : rains were always restricted to a drizzle/mild showers, and I was pleased on each of those occasions the way the weather held up. But not on this occasion. It suddenly started pouring after I left Huncha aka Hombuja Kshetra.

This was the first time I wish the w/s wipers had a step 4 or a step 5. Step 3 : not useful. I continue to drive for about 5 kms and decide it's foolish in the face of blowing winds and 2-a-minute lightnings. I look for a clearing and park it while I listen to the unsettling clanking of rainwater on the car roof. Ah the famous Malnad rains. Unlike anything I've seen before in my life. In minutes as much water collected as would in Bangalore if it rained the regular way for hours. I'm sure you know what I mean, if you've seen - FIERCE RAIN.

It abates only a little bit, but I think it's good enough to drive on. Pass the board that says " Ambuthirtha : 8 km " Not keen to visit. Drive on, reach Theerthahalli, Idlis and Hot Goli Bhajji ( First time : I've always wanted to try this, but hadn't had a chance. A bit sweet, but looks like the Bonda we know; I tried the Kotte Idli the last time and liked it ) . With these many trips the guys at the hotel have started recognising me ( "Oh you'd been here before" sorta comments ). I'm particularly thankful for these guys at the Kamat Cafe as they chased after me to hand over my Nikon in April during my maiden trip to these parts ( or let's say maiden trip outside Bangalore ) after I'd absentmindedly left at the hotel.

Plonk myself at my accommodation. Satisfied with the coverage! Plan next day was to start early by 8 PM and reach home atleast by 4 PM so I can complete my travelogue and get some rest before the grind of the weekdays. Mungaru Male movie on Suvarna. Guess which scene ? The shot from the top of Jog falls. Oh man! I can watch it any number of times. And it came to haunt me that it was half a dozen times I'd been to Sagar without having made it to Jog.

Start at 8 AM, breakfast at same place ( Question : What are the other good places to eat at Thirthahalli ? I've eaten before at the Durga Paradise near the bus stand ). Being a Sunday, the town has not stirred fully yet. I drive on, in my elements on the road to Shimoga. 60 kms in 60 mins on that same stretch that had scared the wits out of me the other day. Nice views, refreshing drive.

These are the times when I feel like moving to these parts and settling down just when there is a sharp rebuke from the critique in my mind : "You appreciate all this because you do it once in a while". Really ? BTW, I've never ever seen a KSRTC bus plying between Shimoga and Thirthahalli on NH 13, only private buses. Is that the case, if so why ?

At Shimoga, staring at the disappointing prospect of the hackneyed NH-206. So course change. Let's check out NH-13 thought. It was 9.30 Am before my car passed the Rly level crossing ( Train from Birur ). Another river, it's the Bhadra this time. I move on. The few kms leading to Holehonnur are bad. After Holehonnur till Channagiri, Amazing road, any day, better than the NH-206 in it's current state.

After Channagiri, again the bit-of-bad-road-but-largely-good-road pattern. But I vote for this road over NH206. All you speed merchants, you would be really happy with a majority of the stretches.

Finally, passing through Chitradurga city ( busy as you'd expect, glimpses of the fort on the right side, join the bypass onto Tumkur and Dobaspet ). Lunch at Kamat and back home at Hoskote at 4.30 PM. I do the Shimoga : Dobaspet stretch usually in 5 hours when doing NH 206 , but did it 4.5 hours this time. I think it's about 40 kms more via Chitradurga, but worked faster for me).

Has been exhilarating 2.5 days.

Not many trips planned for the rest of the year, not until atleast my wedding in December. Till then perhaps, just one trip : Bandipur/Nagarhole/Coorg/Kushalnagar areas ( And only if I get my 300mm lens by then for wildlife photography ) and possibly two more to smaller places around Sakleshpur( Kaginahare etc ) and smaller places around Kalasa ( Sunkasaale/Ballalarayana durga, till whatever are the drivable points that is ) .

Stopped my vehicle past Devanahalli, leaned on my car parked on the wayside and watched the vehicles zip by : that's an amazing feeling watch them zoom past you. The worst part about each of these trips though is the amount of cattle-dung that Iíve to wash off my car.

Was I stupid doing some of those stretches Solo ? I don't know. Perhaps yes. Perhaps not, may be I was bit more worried than I should have been. What do you guys think ?
airguitar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th September 2010, 14:23   #4
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 2,535
Thanked: 985 Times
Default

Good write up AirGuitar.. The initial set of pics are inviting. You should have peppered the other 2 posts with pics as well rather than leaving them as text only

Your drive in the rain reminded me of the drive me and my wife did from B'lore to Udupi in early June with fierce rains just after Gundya cross
abhinav.s is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 27th September 2010, 14:44   #5
Senior - BHPian
 
addyhemmige's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Bangalore/Hassan
Posts: 1,549
Thanked: 465 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by airguitar View Post
While I continue with my monologue, I stop for a question : are any of your families frustrated with your frequent ( read every weekend ) long trips ? Help me handle this.
Yes yes yes . I guess it is the same thing in every household. Haven't found a way to handle this yet and am making do with some grumblings

Btw, which is that road in the pic?

Last edited by addyhemmige : 27th September 2010 at 14:47.
addyhemmige is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th September 2010, 14:49   #6
Senior - BHPian
 
coolclouds's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Garden City
Posts: 1,790
Thanked: 513 Times
Default

Good write up and nice quality pics.. keep them coming...
coolclouds is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th September 2010, 22:12   #7
BHPian
 
airguitar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 351
Thanked: 115 Times
Default

Thanks Addy, I feel normal now. At my place : it's a bit more than grumblings though The road in the pic is after Sampekatte towards Kodachadri.

@Abhinav & @coolclouds : here are more pics and more to come! All the pics in this post are from the Sampekatte - Kattinahole stretch. The hills are the Kodachadri mountains.
Attached Thumbnails
Solo, yet so high-dsc_0432.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0435.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0438.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0443.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0445.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0446.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0449.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0451.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0452.jpg  


Last edited by airguitar : 27th September 2010 at 22:14.
airguitar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th September 2010, 22:20   #8
BHPian
 
buntydey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Toronto, Canada
Posts: 155
Thanked: 3 Times
Default

Good travelogue, and cool pics.
buntydey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th September 2010, 22:21   #9
Team-BHP Support
 
ampere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 15,611
Thanked: 8,607 Times
Default

Very nice! As Addy said, the road does seem awesome!
ampere is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th September 2010, 22:23   #10
BHPian
 
airguitar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 351
Thanked: 115 Times
Default

These are pics from the Nagara -> Hosanagara stretch. The fort shown is the Nagara fort and the river : Sharavathy.

The last picture in this post is the stretch after Huncha : last picture of that day before rains started pelting.
Attached Thumbnails
Solo, yet so high-dsc_0462.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0463.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0464.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0465.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0468.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0471.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0473.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0484.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0493.jpg  

airguitar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th September 2010, 22:33   #11
BHPian
 
airguitar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 351
Thanked: 115 Times
Default

These pictures are from the Thirthalli->Shimoga->Holalkere stretch. The last one is the spot on NH207 where kept looking at the vehicles whizzing past.

Some more pictures on their way.

Please, some answers from folks around Shimoga/Udupi to the questions I have in the writeup. This is my best bet to get them answered
Attached Thumbnails
Solo, yet so high-dsc_0509.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0515.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0523.jpg  

Solo, yet so high-dsc_0539.jpg  

airguitar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th September 2010, 22:39   #12
Senior - BHPian
 
lohithrao's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Kudla/Mangaluru
Posts: 3,125
Thanked: 163 Times
Default

ag a good travelogue, i dont get bored of going through logues on the western ghats

btw fort at hosanagara is "Shivapanayak's fort" and "pathrode" well many has the issue that includes me it depends on how its cooked.

its fun to travel alone at times! have fun

to answer one of our question:Good hotel in Sagara

Just after the sagara town to the right you will find a hotel. to the left you have a government bunlow forgot th name something like videhi international or something....

Last edited by lohithrao : 27th September 2010 at 22:45.
lohithrao is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28th September 2010, 15:15   #13
BHPian
 
sami316's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 469
Thanked: 33 Times
Default

Hi Airguitar,

Really well written travelogue and the pics are awesome to say the least. Really liked the way you have narrated this whole TL. I haven't been to these places, hence, can't be much help with your questions. Hope someone do answer your queries. Thanks again.
sami316 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29th September 2010, 00:04   #14
BHPian
 
airguitar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 351
Thanked: 115 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by lohithrao View Post
Just after the sagara town to the right you will find a hotel. to the left you have a government bunlow forgot th name something like videhi international or something....
Thank you : that was helpful.

@coolclouds,bunty,sami thanks.

@Addy, all

Pick of village names from this time :

1. Batte Mallappa ( Trans : Mallappa the clothseller )
2. Sunnadabasti ( Trans : Limestone colony )


Is there a thread that documents "nice" names such as those ? If not I'd like to start a running thread
airguitar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29th September 2010, 06:31   #15
Team-BHP Support
 
ampere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 15,611
Thanked: 8,607 Times
Default

@AG only question after your so called "ramblings", which by the way was very nice!

I am some how not comfortable with a solo travel. You need at least one more for company. I agree you can stop anywhere and take snaps, but you still one more to talk to. Else I feel like a castaway talking to Mr Wilson!

How you manage that?
ampere is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
High-end head phones VS High-end Speakers low_bass_makker In-Car Entertainment 43 30th July 2012 20:39
Morel vs DLS {High End Tweeters - High levels of confusion} Mi10 In-Car Entertainment 5 8th September 2010 18:03
Are High Octanes really high OCTANE pratheesh Technical Stuff 9 20th September 2006 22:48


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 18:47.

Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks