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Old 21st November 2020, 17:51   #46
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Default Re: Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackPearl View Post
Thread moved from the Assembly Line to Travelogues.
I see that lot more stunning pictures and further account of the trip being posted later on by sayata and arindam_xeta. May I suggest, if possible, their individual accounts of this trip be also linked to the Home Page for having more views?
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Old 21st November 2020, 21:16   #47
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Default Re: Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata

First of all, thanks for your review of Ecosport diesel. As I am also a satisfied user of the car. Secondly, fascinating photographs, especially the tiger, is incredible. As I still planning to travel to this region, your and Samba's travelogues will help me to do my planning.
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Old 21st November 2020, 21:25   #48
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Default Re: Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata

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Originally Posted by BlackPearl View Post
The pictures are stunning as usual! Back to back travelogues from two Duster AWD owners from Kolkata on Kanha and Bandhavgarh! It seems that Kolkata Bhpians have shifted their focus from the Himalayas to Madhya Pradesh.
Thanks. After, 4 trips to the Himalaya in 2019, this year my focus was on jungle. Hope to hit the Himalaya again in 2021.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gmhossain View Post
Being an early riser helps. Like today, I started reading this beautiful travelogue of yours, little after 5 am and finished it reading by 6 am.
Thanks dada, by reading your travelogue on Patratu, I was hell bent to come via Ranchi, but the road from Ambikapur to Ranchi was in bad shape. So had to skip Ranchi this time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nihilultra View Post
One more inspiring travelogue Samba. Beautifully written.
Thanks a ton.

Quote:
Originally Posted by earthian View Post
Great travelogue and beautiful pictures too. Madhya Pradesh has beautiful forests and the drive from Jabalpur to Bandhavgarh is a treat. Flame of the forest trees on both sides.
Thanks a lot, I am a big fan of your photography, specially your night photography.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AKSen2015 View Post
Beautiful photos and an equally exhilarating write up.
Thanks a ton.

Quote:
Originally Posted by indrasis_gun View Post
As usual, a wonderful travelogue and mesmerising photographs Samba da. One of my friends is also going to Bandhavgarh from Siliguri in the first week of December.

The road decided is via Araria - Gopalganj - Ayodhya - Allahabad - Rewa - Bandhavgarh.

Is the the hotel mentioned by you in Bandhavgarh maintaining Covid safety norms? Also any other pointers you wish to add on covid related aspect?

Thanks in advance.
Thanks.

I have heard of traffic jams between Aurangabad to Varanashi, that's why to avoid that we took the Aurangabad - Ambikapur - MP route. The route was relatively smooth with just 30 km of bad roads.

Yes the guys were sanitizing the rooms, doing routine temperature checks during entry and using masks.
But still ones own safety is in his own hand. I still carried and used my own surface disinfectant, maintained social distancing, used sanitizers and masks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by saikarthik View Post

But it was hurtful to see the picture in which the front legs of elephant was bound by chains. Hope it changes when we start by not taking elephant rides (though forest rangers might still continue to do so).
Thanks. Elephant rides for tourists have been stopped. They are mainly used by forest officials & to carry logs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sarkar.malay78 View Post
Beautiful pictures with wonderful words. Full of information about the routes to be taken from south of Bengal and stay options en route & also near the jungles. These travelogues are making the present suffocating life a little bit easier with the promise of brighter future travel plans & programs.
Thanks a lot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jerrindanny View Post
So happy that we are coming out of the gloomy period and venturing out to trips. truly a inspiration for all of us who are recovering from the lockdown and your pictures make me want to plan a trip as soon as possible.
Awaiting more posts from you
Thanks, I must say the jungles in MP are beautiful and very well organised. It's definitely worth visiting.

Quote:
Originally Posted by turboNath View Post
Wonderful travelogue Samba da ! Loved the pictures of the big cat. I had planned my return journey from Sanjay Dubri National Park via Amarkantak last year but that was left unfulfilled. Looks like I have to head back to the tiger heartland of India real soon ! Thanks for sharing!
Thanks. The beauty of Kanha is comparable to the beauty of Dhikala, minus the view of the Himalayan foothills!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cessna182 View Post
Wonderful travelogue and pictures. The tigers appear to be comfortable in the presence of humans. Maybe they are used to the presence because of the safaris.
Thanks. Tigers know they are the king of the jungle. They just roam around in their own attitude. They do not even care if there are tourists around or not. If too many tourist vehicles come up, they go inside.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ARAY View Post
Stunning pictures.
To bad I missed the trip even though I was in WB with Duster awd.
This thread will be a reference for future plans.
Thanks for sharing.
Thanks mate. Missed you during the trip too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by saket77 View Post
Marathon drive! Nice choice of places. Some of the pictures, especially those tigers, are spectacular. Though you didn’t write much about the Hirakud, but from the pictures I could feel how this gigantic dam would have looked in real!

Great thread! Thanks for sharing with us!

Regards.
Thanks.

Actually we were in hurry to return back to Kolkata. We just got 15-20 mins to spend at Hirakud. This place demands more time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sukanta73 View Post

Just one question, did you feel any unsafe conditions while driving from Aurangabad to Jabalpur (assuming if you are driving alone)?
Thanks. During our day drive, we felt these places to be absolutely safe. Without any hesitation, you can plan a solo trip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DriveTrain View Post
This one is an epic and an absolute stunner , with an abundance of stripes !! Loved the gorgeous photographs and narration.

You probably succeeded in stressing out "Lalmohan" a bit , albeit in the "roof department"
Thanks. Your travelogue was an inspiration.

Regarding climbing on the roof of my Duster, I was pretty careful and used the points where they can take weight and happy to say no damage has been done!

Quote:
Originally Posted by tp_dominator View Post

MP is close to my heart as most of my childhood was spent there. Baghel Dhaba where you stopped used to be a very small dhaba where only truckers stopped but now it has grown to a family restaurant. Also, happy to see roads are also good now. Earlier the road between Shahdol and Umaria used to be a nightmare.
Thanks. Baghel Dhaba was a nice place to stop. Road between Shahdol to Umaria is still not good. Road construction is under progress and its full of diversions and rough stretches.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lovecars21 View Post
Well Samba this time you seem to be showered with Luck of sighting Tigers!
Thanks, yes this time tiger luck was with us!

Quote:
Originally Posted by haisaikat View Post
I am amazed to see such clear star constellation pictures can be viewed from MP. My idea was they are easier to spot from hills with low light pollution, although I failed to spot this time due to lack of knowledge on their whereabouts.

Also you were in Jabalpur / Marble Rock around 31st Oct / 1st Nov only. If I recall Purnima was around that time only, did you not get a chance to visit the Marble Rocks in the full moon?
Thanks dada.

Actually there are practically no light pollution in forests. Plus the air is also relatively pollution free. So night sky can be seen very well from forests. My first star trail pic was from Hollong!

At Marble rocks, due to Covid, boat ride during night is not open. This will again start from next year.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Travelmania View Post
Smooth walkthrough of an exiting trip. Very informative for fellow travellers.
Thanks a ton.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ABHI_1512 View Post
First things first- Superlative pictures of a well planned and well executed trip. I was myself excited for the trip ever since I first heard of it from you !! Wonderful sightings of the big cat and equally wonderful pictures will be a memory of the life time.
Thanks a lot. Yes these sightings will be remembered for a long time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sudhirbharadwaj View Post
Superb Travelogue ! I lived my own experience to Kanha and Bhandavgarh 12 years ago just reading your experience. Superbly narrated and thanks so much for transporting us to another world altogether.
Thanks a ton.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vnabhi View Post
Lovely TL Samba! Brought nostalgic memories to me of my trips to Bilaspur, Sambalpur, Hirakud and Rourkela. The tiger resorts you visited are also great--you are awfully lucky to spot so many in your first safari at either resort!

I had visited Tadoba a few years ago, and we could get sightings like you only on the 2nd day.
Thanks a lot. We visited Tadoba in 2017. On our 2nd Safari we spotted a couple of tigers from a distance. You can checkout my travelogue - https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/trave...ue-tadoba.html (A photologue on Tadoba)

Quote:
Originally Posted by arindam_xeta View Post
Samba recreates every trip once he is back home. This is unique of him apart from his driving and photography skills. It's been a long while since I wrote actively in team-bhp, but this trip surely warrants an account of it.
Thanks. The photographs you shared are beautiful. Specially the jump of tigress Spotty was just WOW!

Quote:
Originally Posted by GhostRider28 View Post
What a nice travelogue - perfect balance of the right narration and complementary videos and photos! The route was insightful,. We had taken a different route to Jabalpur via Allahabad and Khajuraho, back in 2013. My tiger sighting luck has not been good at all!
Thanks a ton. Looks like people born on 7th May has poor luck in tiger sightings! At last I was lucky, so I guess you should give a try too!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sayata View Post
Coming back to our trip, I will not go in details about the trip as Samba & Arindam da have already written a lot for the same, rather I would like to share the pictures taken by me.
Awesome pictures, specially the male tiger (Umarpani) of Jamuntola.

Last edited by Samba : 21st November 2020 at 21:31.
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Old 23rd November 2020, 14:26   #49
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Default Re: Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata

Awesome, who says you have a bad tiger spotting luck ?

the pictures are lovely as usual, and very neatly written well explained travelogue.
Loved each and every picture. this will be really helpful to plan for this side of the country.

Thanks a lot for sharing.
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Old 24th November 2020, 17:30   #50
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Woah!! Such intricate details with lovely pictures of cars! It is difficult not to love the log! Hats off to you for sharing your travel stories with us. I wish i stayed at Kolkata and join you guys.

Will read again and again for sure just like your "sailed through" series . Well deserved 5 star.

This may be emotional, among the free souls those snaps of chained elephant & dog is hard to accept.

And man!! What a close call it was, and your driving skill just saved her. My god! After watching the clip i was

Last edited by BlackPearl : 25th November 2020 at 17:15. Reason: Merged the two posts. Thanks.
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Old 26th November 2020, 15:35   #51
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Default Re: Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata

Back to back Kanha/Bandhavgarh travelogues
Its great to see Samba back once again with a blockbuster. Your hallmark narration and photography - crisp yet detailed. Its keeps inspiring folks like us to get out of our homes (haven't stayed in a hotel room this year yet).

Cheers!
Sayak
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Old 26th November 2020, 20:10   #52
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Into the jungle: road trip amidst light and shadow



It was another Saturday evening; I was chilling out with my friends when fellow Bhpian Sayata (my elder brother as well) informed me about a road trip into the wild with two other Bhpians Samba and Arindam_nexon. The name of the place, Kanha and Bandhavgarh, instantly gave me an adrenaline rush since this is the first time, I will get to experience forest. I started counting days till I reach the penultimate day when I decided to pack my stuffs, it is needless to say that I am quite particular in deciding what to wear when. Finally, on October 30th we started our trip without knowing what is about to unfold in the upcoming days. And the story goes chronologically,

Oct30,2020

After having a subdued dinner at Azad hind Dhaba (Dankuni), thinking about the long journey ahead, we bid adieu to our homes and started towards our first destination.
Bhpian Samba charging through the highway..
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Oct31,2020
Morning greeted us with chills and a colorful sky.
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The picturesque nexon..
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We reached Ambikapur, Chattisgarh which was our first halt destination to boost our energy. We were more than tired due to the pathetic road condition on the last stretch before Ambikapur city and the overnight drive.

Some sumptuous food was waiting for us.
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Rest of the day we celebrated the idea of a bengali terms called 'lyadh' and 'addas'.

Nov1,2020
A good breakfast and few cups of coffee made us ready to take our journey forward. We made our way through the twisty roads among the hills and reached Jabalpur, a city in Madhya Pradesh. A posh hotel welcomed us to enjoy their comfort and hospitality though the food was not up to the mark.

Nov2,2020
Jabalpur is famous amongst tourists for two sightseeing places, Dhuandhar falls and Marble Rock. We started around 10 in the morning and went to visit these two places.

We reached Dhuandhar falls first and all the cameras were out of our bags.
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As we approached marble rock and hired a boat with a meagre amount, we started to feel the thrill of the boat ride and suddenly was awestruck with the beauty of the place.
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The day was well spent and a burger joint along with Swiggy tamed our hunger as we decided to do without the hotel food.

Nov3,2020
Sorting the luggage again into the respective boot space we were ready to resume our journey towards the jungle., Within 3 hours we reached our resting place, Chandan motel (popular among the Bhpians) near Kisli gate, Kanha . This time our exuberance grew by leaps and bounds because we were now very close to see some majestic creatures that the nature has in its offer.
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At 2:30pm sharp we were ready to board our designated safari vehicle, an old and faithful 4×4 Mmaruti Gypsy and headed towards Kisli region.
Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata-20201104_081458.jpg

Though we saw some wild animals, but the sight of that yellow and black stripped creature lured our sight despite of hearing a poor animal's cry which fell to its prey.
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Tired of the day's journey and of our luck we went back to our den to replenish our energy.

Nov 4,2020
It was holding your horse’s kind of a day and what was about to unfold was unimaginable. We all woke up and got ready to board our safari ride which was about to start at 6 am. As we entered the forest gate and move towards the Mukki region we could only see pug marks and hear alert calls which was making us more impatient. At a time when we lost all hope and our gypsy was running after alert calls, we noticed few spotted deer in an alert position. This is when our guide sensed the presence of the king of the jungle and took us to a spot where he predicted that the tiger will cross our path. I was in the front row of that natural theatre when that majestic animal came out of the woods walking straight towards the 5-6 standing Gypsies. At that very moment I realized that i was hypnotized by the beauty of that creature and was unable to move from my place as it crossed the road nonchalantly and moved away from us only to vanish again into the woods. Only few of the gypsies were lucky enough to get a full sight of king of Kanha, Umarpani.
Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata-20201104_10233301.jpeg

Though we were happy to see the beast on our very first morning safari, at the same time we mourned for a second :-p for our fellow travelers who missed the sighting that day.

The day ended by visiting the sunset point at Kanha as we cherished the last rays of the sun that day and captured few of those moments.
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Nov5,2020
Having lucky enough to spot a tiger on our very first morning safari we were hopeful of seeing the animal again on our second morning safari at Kanha region this time. Luck was on our side again when we spotted a female tiger this time, she is known as Neelam. She was probably looking for a prey to feed herself and her cubs which made her run stealthily among the bushes and in turn we had to move back and forth to get a glimpse of her.
Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata-20201105_11284101.jpeg

We were heading towards our breakfast point when our fellow traveler friends in the other gypsy gave us the news of seeing another tigress with cubs at other part of the zone apart from seeing Neelam.


As we reached towards the end of our second morning safari ride, we had to hurry up and pack our bags again to get ourselves ready to travel to Bandhavgarh. By 1PM we were again ready and started our journey towards our penultimate destination.

Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata-20201105_151706.jpg

We reached Bandhavgarh at around 6PM in the evening and checked into a beautiful resort, Nature Heritage

Nov 6,2020
Our morning safari luck was intact that day too in tala region of Bandhavgarh. I would rather thank our driver for being knowledgeable and exuberant enough to find the exact spot of our next sighting. This is when we got to realize a sense of unity among the safari drivers at Bandhavgarh who informed most of their other fellow drivers to rush into the sighting spot.
As we were discussing among ourselves in our gypsy, out came Spotty, a famous tigress of Bandhavgarh and she was sporty enough to give us some camera time.

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Her sportiness continued as she jumped a fenced area to go out of the restricted forest grounds into the locality in search of food. This gave us the food for discussion during our breakfast as we prayed for that poor cattle which was about to be eaten.
As the day progressed, we were blessed by a committee of vultures probably drying
their wings.
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Old 26th November 2020, 20:22   #53
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We progressed through the jungle to visit a portion of Bandhavgarh fort.
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The day ended with myself learning the art to capture night sky using the manual mode of mobile camera. Lucky enough to capture a shooting star!
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Nov7,2020

We were hoping to be fourth time lucky, but luck was not on our side that day as we could only see pug marks from last night. But this gave us an ample time to reflect about the beauty of flora as well. Forest is all about light and shadow, pray and being prayed and its deepest secrets.
My mind was reflecting upon these
thoughts as I was approaching towards the end of my first encounter with wildlife.
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Nov8,2020
Our return trip began with a halt at Amarkantak in another beautiful resort arranged by Bhpian Arindam_xeta. As we reached Amarkantak , Sayata and myself decided to spend that day indulging ourselves into munching foods and watching movie while the other Bhpians were away visiting the source of Narmada river and many adjoining phases.
Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata-img20201108wa0004.jpg

Nov9,2020
As we were leaving Amarkantak, we got the taste of twisty roads of the mountain with hairpin turns. The day went by driving through the city and we covered a distance of about 397kms to reach Sambalpur, Odisha- our last halt stays.
Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata-fb_img_1604971662565.jpg

Nov10,2020
Brownie, as we call Bhpian Sayata's Ecosport, started early that day the fellow passengers inside had to join office early the next day . We skipped the plan to visit Hirakund Dam just to reach home early and get ample rest before we were back to our daily chores. As we hit the road, we covered distance swiftly as traffic was less in the early hours and reach Rourkela , where we had our breakfast . By 7 30pm we were able to cross the Saranda jungle and reached Kolaghat to take a short break before we reached our home at around 10 pm. An odometer trip reading of 3021km marked the end of the journey into the wilderness.

I would like to thank Bhpian Samba, Bhpian Arindam_xeta and Bhpian Sayata to make me a part of this trip and experience this nice journey .
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Old 27th November 2020, 00:15   #54
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Default Re: Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata

In the typical Samba da style, another flawless trip and brilliant photography and writeup. Rated 5 stars. Also, glad to see the duster didn't create any issue during the trip, considering it had become a drunkard couple of months before the trip happened. I was apprehensive that you may not be able to take the Duster, but you could finally and the vehicle gave it's best to you is heartening to see. A noob question though. How did the Duster cope with you climbing onto it's roof. Didn't throw a tantrum I hope. Also, the tiger spotting is sheer luck and it amazed me that you got to see quite a good number of them. Ofcourse Sayata da takes the cake with spotting on the very first days of the Safari. Still better late than never I guess. Keep us entertained and posted with such awesome travelogues in future.

Regards,
Subhra Mallick
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Old 27th November 2020, 19:24   #55
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Default Re: Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata

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Originally Posted by SVK Rider View Post
Awesome, who says you have a bad tiger spotting luck ?
Thanks, this was the first time, tiger luck was with me!

Quote:
Originally Posted by cp171185 View Post
This may be emotional, among the free souls those snaps of chained elephant & dog is hard to accept.

And man!! What a close call it was, and your driving skill just saved her. My god! After watching the clip i was
Thanks, yes the chained elephant was a sad sight.

Thank god I was able to save the girl. After 11 days of continuous driving, & even on that day by then I have driven non stop 7 hours and nearly 400 km, I was quite fatigued out, yet had to reach Chaibasa before sundown.
Learnt from my mistake, next time, I will start early in such occasions and be more slower in crowded places.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sayakc View Post
Back to back Kanha/Bandhavgarh travelogues
Its great to see Samba back once again with a blockbuster. Your hallmark narration and photography - crisp yet detailed. Its keeps inspiring folks like us to get out of our homes (haven't stayed in a hotel room this year yet).

Cheers!
Sayak
Thanks dada. Waiting for you to start exploring again and share your awesome travelogues with us.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AviC93 View Post
I would like to thank Bhpian Samba, Bhpian Arindam_xeta and Bhpian Sayata to make me a part of this trip and experience this nice journey .
Thanks brother.

You have a great narration skill and the photographs you shared are also superb.
Hope to see individual travelogue's from you very soon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tacho9000 View Post
In the typical Samba da style, another flawless trip and brilliant photography and writeup. Rated 5 stars. Also, glad to see the duster didn't create any issue during the trip, considering it had become a drunkard couple of months before the trip happened.
Thanks Tacho.

Thankfully the coolant consumption issue came out to be a minor fault and it's solved.
Still there were some minor niggles with the car. I have shared the details here -

https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/test-...ml#post4931135 (Renault Duster AWD : An owner's point of view)

I hope, after the next trip, I can write, what I used to write after a trip with my Etios- The car performed flawlessly for the trip!

Last edited by Samba : 27th November 2020 at 19:27.
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Old 28th November 2020, 02:00   #56
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Default Re: Forests, hills & more! Our road-trip to Madhya Pradesh from Kolkata

Very nicely written. This travelogue gave me a wonderful walk down memory lane as I spent three years growing up in Jabalpur, in the mid 90s. Dhuandhaar and Bheda ghaat used to be lovely places to visit and I have fairly clear memory of visiting the Kanha National Park in 1994 and the safari in a petrol Jeep. No luck spotting a tiger then. Hope to make a trip again some day.
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