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Old 31st January 2011, 12:15   #1
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Default We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean

3200kms, 5 states, Salt flats and an ocean.... all over five days.
Yes we finally Ran the Rann.
The white elephant stretched her legs again.

It was a trip like no other.


A few teasers before I begin the log... ?
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172395196_ft96pxl.jpg

We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172876656_h9xrmxl.jpg

We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172367866_wmvwhxl.jpg

We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172914634_55hclxl.jpg

We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172937590_umpv4xl.jpg

I did manage to do something for the first time after 63000kms and 2.5 years - Get stuck
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172987461_z2m57xl.jpg

And whats a trip without a little Kollywood glamor?
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172985238_l6z4wxl.jpg

Ready for the ride?....
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Old 31st January 2011, 12:18   #2
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Default Re: We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean

Seems like the beginning of a great travel story. I m fastening my seat belts for the ride.
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Old 31st January 2011, 13:06   #3
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Default Re: We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean

Gladly glued into the thread... put up the log as early as possible.
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Old 31st January 2011, 13:29   #4
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Default Day 1 - Zainabad Ahoy

The aim was to get up early, and be on the road around 5:00am.
It was 26th Jan, and we expected to breeze through the maze of Construction on Delhi Jaipur highway.

Well, we did start at 5:30am on the clock.
After a quick fuel stop at Signature Towers to fill the cheapest diesel in the country(36.xx odd/liter), we were roaring on the expressway, all the way to have a nice breakfast at McDonalds.

We did not encounter any jams, and the sun was still young as we crossed the Jaipur bypass.
Till Krishangarh/Dadu area, it was still somewhat of a construction mess, but thankfully, early morning start and Republic day meant most shops were closed, and truck traffic was thin.

Around early afternoon we filled the tank at a HP pump near Nasirabad. Diesel was 39.xx a liter.
We also tanked up on a super lunch.

The empty highway was a joy to drive on, and I shifted to the passenger seat with the camera to shoot the best highway.

I am glad we did not even attempt to take the NH8, but took the chittoragarh NH79 highway to Udaipur

Some snaps of the highway!
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172391773_swavxxl.jpg

We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172388603_xfmpfxl.jpg

We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172396617_arbhnxl.jpg

No stops were done. Our destination was Ahmdabad, where we would have a quick pit stop with Ramky.

Only trouble stop was some single laning near Udaipur bypass, but some dirt driving made quick work of the Jam.

Soon we merged with NH8, and driving here was a pleasure again. No small thanks to the well mannered trucks always driving on the left lane, and even aborting overtaking attempts if they saw you come in the RVM!

I have never seen such well mannered driving from trucks! I wish the NH1 truckers had half the sense as these gentlemen from GJ and MH!

Only quirky element? The bikes. These guys were the worst I have ever seen! Luckily we did not meet many on the highways.
Though there were a lot of toll gates(approx 75p a km of toll I calculated), there were no jams.

With directions from Ramky we took the Ah'bad ring road, and around 7pm we were sipping hot south Indian coffee!

Thanks a ton Ramky for the lovely coffee you brought for us.
It was a life saver after 14 hours of driving.

After that there were all single lane highways to Zainabad, and thanks to Harsh marking the exact location of Desert coursers, we were there by 9:15pm

The guys there had kept the dinner open just for us.
We really needed to tank up, as the last food stop had been a long long while ago.

The owner was pretty amazed to learn we had driven straight from Delhi!
But he was not happy that we would not be taking the uber expensive Safari to the Rann, and driving to Bhuj straight.

As Harsh had warned me, I did not mention to him that I will be driving through the Rann, to Adesar as the crow flies.

Finally at 11pm, we hit the bed, and shut of the alarms. We will sleep for 8-9 hours atleast before starting the relatively short run through the Rann, and onward to bhuj

1100kms, 16 hours. We had done the longest non stop drive of our lives!

To BE CONt.......
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Old 31st January 2011, 13:31   #5
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Default Re: We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean

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Originally Posted by sam_boy View Post
Seems like the beginning of a great travel story. I m fastening my seat belts for the ride.
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Originally Posted by bajica View Post
Gladly glued into the thread... put up the log as early as possible.
I will make the updates as fast as possible "Promise!"
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Old 31st January 2011, 14:33   #6
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Default Re: Day 1 - Zainabad Ahoy

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
1100kms, 16 hours. We had done the longest non stop drive of our lives!

To BE CONt.......
That is some distance taking the time into account.

Waiting for rest...
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Old 31st January 2011, 15:03   #7
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Default Re: We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean

Nice beginning to the travelogue. I absolutely loved the 3rd pic in the OP
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Old 31st January 2011, 15:21   #8
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Default Day 2- To the Little Rann

The plan was simple, as plans should be.
Drive through the little Rann without getting stuck. I was not too worried frankly. Thanks to Harsh's GPS markers and tracks, I knew exactly where to enter and exit, and what paths to follow
Nevertheless, 8am I called him up, and woke him out of bed. A sleepy voice answered me, and I know I must have really irritated him!
Sorry for that buddy!

Anyways, with GPS markers in place, it was time for breakfast. I also took a few pics

The dining area of the Desert Coursers Resort
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172403972_45xggxl.jpg

The Resort Dogs. I believe the breed is called "collie". Frankly speaking I never expected to find collies in Kutch!
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172403893_ktyhuxl.jpg

We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172862034_7zzyuxl.jpg

Our Mud Hut
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172871350_qdbgsxl.jpg

We were ready to go, and, it would be a smooth sailing, right?

Errr.. Wait a minute. Nothing is every smooth, and I discovered a problem. The RHS front tire was very low on air.
A puncture??

I touched the valve needle with a stick, and realized that the valve was leaking air. Thankfully the resort had an air compressor. We filled up, and then took a small 1km detour to the local Puncture shop, which was quite well equipped.

I asked him repeatedly whether he had a tubless tire valve. He told me not to worry. All cars now have tubeless tires, and it would not be an issue.

20rs and 5 minutes later, the tire is as good as new, and we are ready to rock.

the approach road to the Rann was through Jhunjunwada, and thanks to the tracks we had, it was easy for us. We did not have to look for bushes and all or scour the horizons.
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172872037_bpw63xl.jpg

A salt farm
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172880492_2zur3xl.jpg
The track was marked, and soon we were on the edge of Rann.
And what do you see on the edge of Rann?

The Khurs!
Shy creatures they were for sure, much shier than their ladakhi cousins.
Here is a shot of them scurrying away
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172876656_h9xrmxl.jpg

The Vast little Rann (Nothing little about it) lay ahead of us.
It was finally time.... To Run the Rann!
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Old 31st January 2011, 15:23   #9
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Default Re: We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean

I absolutely loved the teaser pics, especially the one during the sunset and... of course the kollywood star .

Waiting to read how you "un-stuck" yourself!
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Old 31st January 2011, 15:27   #10
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Default Re: We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean

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Originally Posted by Sheel View Post
That is some distance taking the time into account.

Waiting for rest...
Thanks Sheel. ITs the lovely highways which made it possible. If you can escape Jaipur early, you can maintain 90-100kmph continuously without needing to slow down.
Quote:
Originally Posted by StarrySky View Post
Nice beginning to the travelogue. I absolutely loved the 3rd pic in the OP
Thanks!
Quote:
Originally Posted by vasanthn21 View Post
I absolutely loved the teaser pics, especially the one during the sunset and... of course the kollywood star .

Waiting to read how you "un-stuck" yourself!
Well, that was an experience too. I will put up a video of that
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Old 31st January 2011, 15:39   #11
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Default Re: We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean

Who was the actress Never seen her before in Kollywood....
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Old 31st January 2011, 16:13   #12
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Default Re: We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean

You spoke my mind SVS
TSK, Great start with nice pics. waiting for the complete logue !!
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Old 31st January 2011, 16:15   #13
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Default Re: We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean

Xcellent Pics Tanveer..aab aage badaye travelogue ko
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Old 31st January 2011, 17:29   #14
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Default Re: We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean

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Originally Posted by svsantosh View Post
Who was the actress Never seen her before in Kollywood....
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Originally Posted by BulZire View Post
You spoke my mind SVS
TSK, Great start with nice pics. waiting for the complete logue !!
Thanks Guys,
I have no idea about the actress. The support staff said it was a Kannada movie shooting
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Xcellent Pics Tanveer..aab aage badaye travelogue ko
Thanks Rahul
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Old 31st January 2011, 17:38   #15
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Default Little Rann

At the edge of the Little Rann lies a marshy grassland. Sway away from the tire tracks, and you can get stuck. Royally stuck.
So we stayed on the tracks, and headed towards the vast open area
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172885184_j6xvsxl.jpg

We passed a couple of salt farms, and some brisk driving saw us in the middle of nowhere. Actually nowhere

23.375957N 71.496073E - 10:34AM
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172280920_gxvawxl.jpg

This is the Rann Expressway.
Speed Limit - Whats that?
Surface - Unpaved smooth
Time to rock and roll!
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172283159_pzp8sxl.jpg

A few shots of the White elephant.
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172283983_lmydexl.jpg

We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172270423_pwnazxl.jpg

Live to Drive - Says it all
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172274441_uwohgxl.jpg

I decide to get low, close to the ground.
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172278865_rcx7nxl.jpg

Stone Markers. Here and there they are scattered, but do not bother to use them for navigation. They dissapear sooner than they appear. If you venture there, use a GPS, or atleast a compass. Its easy to get lost. If you have neither look around for tire tracks. Look hard enough and you will find some
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172313371_xli9uxl.jpg

An "Ariel shot". Thats as tall as I can go
We Ran the Rann, and Kissed the Ocean-1172304699_w8ubtxl.jpg

TO BE CONT..........
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