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First Road Trip in My Red Beauty - Bangalore -Karwar-Gokarna-JogFalls-Bangalore

Discussion in 'Travelogues & Experiences' started by chandu525, Sep 18, 2012.

  1. chandu525

    chandu525 Amatore

    First Road Trip in My Red Beauty - Bangalore -Karwar-Gokarna-JogFalls-Bangalore

    This is one hell of a drive to remember , I thought it would great to share my experience which may help people planning similar trip

    Tanked up the diesel on previous day before price hike saved few bucks!, Also Upgraded the headlamps to OSRAM night breaker Plus, Didn't get a chance to test it that day,

    My plan was to take NH4 all the way till ranibennur take a left after the toll, then reach kalghatgi where we hit the NH63 (hubli-karwar road) and take right after we reach Ankola on to NH-17 , reach karwar

    Day 1

    4AM : Started from Home, Roads were almost empty!, Got stuck for about 15 mins at Hebbal-Gorgunte level crossing (cursed myself for not taking Hebbal - BEL -Jalhalli Cross Road - Tumkur Road)
    could hit the highway around 4.30 AM, First Surprise, I was on secnond lane , An Indica cab guy to save toll fee coming from wrong side on service road entered the highway from Exit and took a wrong turn madly which dragged
    the car all the way to middle lane I did not even anticipate if someone on earth have thoughts like this!!, I managed to steer on to first lane , things would have been ugly if I was not alert or If I was on last lane, a Reached Tumkur
    around 5.15AM, Then took right after the HMT watch factory which continues as NH4, The sign boards are proper, NH4 is the best road to reach North Karnataka or Coastal Karnataka, Six lane work is going on from Tumkur to Sira
    and even some stretch from Sira to Chitradurga , I was driving at speeds 100-110, A beautiful view of Windmills greet you once you approach Chitradurga, There was a KSRTC bus strike going on in Bangalore for last two days, But
    I started to see KSRTC buses on highway, Then felt bad as these buses will add to traffic and How many of those I will have to deal with on road

    8.00 AM : First Pit stop, My wifey started hungry so as me, So I had to find out some suitable restaurant to have Breakfast, luckily nearing RaniBennur, I could spot Kamath , We halted there for 30 Mins, Breakfast was standard,
    but coffee was good much needed fuel for Me :)

    8.30 AM : I had to reach Karwar by max 12, So I tried to drive little fast, then we reached Ranibennur toll,Till this point everything went like I planned, after I paid the toll I could not spot the exact road which leads to Kalghatagi
    (I did see a signboard leading to Bankapur, But I did not take that fearing that I have to go to Mungod in order to hit Hubli-Karwar Road, I drove about 5Kms forward, I realised that I missed the correct deviation,
    luckily Google maps came to my rescue, I took a deviation from highway and hit the sirsi-Hubli road ,it was around 25KM single lane journey till kalghatgi passing through mostly village roads, Lots of cattle, for the first time
    My Punto got the taste to ugly road filled with decent potholes and rough patches, Surprisingly it handled them well, I could able to drive at 50-60KMPH in those roads as well,

    10 AM : Finally reached Kalghatgi the NH63, The Road is really beautiful to drive , with lots of twists and turns, For the first time I got the feel of Punto's Handling on ghat roads, I must say It was simply brilliant, The steering responded
    to even the slightest of moves, I could negotiate curve roads around 80KMPH without any fuss , When I used to drive spark I had to slow down to 50-60 at each and every turn, But Punto is made to handle such roads with breeze,

    12.30 PM: Reached the Jungle Lodges office on karwar Road, It was drizzling we have to cross the sea in a boat for about 15mins to reach the resort

    Jungle Lodges Resort Karwar - The first thing anybody likes about this resort is its location, It is away from the main road, completely insulated from people and traffic, we had taken the Loghut accommodation, The Log hut quality was good,
    Took a 30 min rest and went for lunch, The lunch was simple with some chapattis, and rice Stuff, After lunch slept for an hour or so as I was tired driving all the way, after which we hit the beach, We could not go inside beach as it was around 4.30 the JLR care taker told us that it was time for high tides and we could walk only on the shore , I rested again on the Joolas they provide on every log hut, there were less guests on that day, The whole place was silent with fresh air breeze ,I just enjoyed resting on joola breathing fresh air and listening to the beach Roar, Evening they were supposed to serve the snacks on the shore with campfire but rain spoiled the party, They served the snacks in GolGhar(Common covered Dining area),Snacks were bad just some Bhajjis in veg The dinner was OK-OK also they have a built in bar of people who want to enjoy drinking

    Day 2

    Got up around 7.30AM, had Morning Tea, there was a Nature walk scheduled by JLR care taker where they will take us through some woods and en route we can spot some birds and plants , But I had already taken this activity in my earlier trips in other JLR resorts Hence we decided skip this instead hit beach, from 8AM till 9.30 AM we spent nice time in beach, Jumping Up and Down during high waves, swimming , We used to do it hours when we went to Goa last year, The difference is, here we did not have life jacket, with it you can just float , We used to go as much distance from shore wearing life jacket and float there, The waves will take us to the shore, we walk again, It was such a wonderful activity to just float in sea

    so my next purchase would be to buy life jackets whenever I plan to visit sea again

    The plan was leave Karwar by 11 AM, Reach Gokarna by 12.30 PM, Visit Gokarna Temple and head towards Jog falls , Reach the falls by 4.30 PM, start from Jog falls around 5 PM, Should Reach Bangalore Max by 11PM

    According to their itinerary they should arrange for Dolphin ride around 9.30AM, But due to rains and high tides they just arranged a boat ride , we had a breakfast Which was again OK-OK, But the JLR care taker advised us that Gokarna temple darshanam will close by 12 PM,

    Hence we decided to skip the Boat Ride, I came back to the JLR office, in front of the office my car was parked, previous day I had asked them that I would park inside but the security guard told me that inside there were lot of coconut trees and coconut may fall on car which may cause dent, Moreover the car will be watched by watchman thought night hence I decided to leave the car in front of the JLR office gate

    I saw my car almost a day after, To my shock the car central lock had a problem for the second time, Doors can be opened without lock :( :( Previous day when I left the car I did not check whether it was really locked by opening the door, The car was parked unlocked whole night!!!, I thought of looking for a TASS in Karwar to get it repaired but I did not go for it as my whole plan would be spoiled

    We left the JLR office by 10.15 AM, I thought I can cover 60KMs roughly in 1 hour, But The road condition was not good, There were about 10-15 very patches with deep potholes, Sadly my Punto has to bear all that, every time she hit a pothole I felt really sad, The roads were really narrow mostly single every time I see a vehicle in opposite direction, I had to get off from road to allow another vehicle to pass, I could reach Gokarna by 11.45 AM, Since we had only 15 mins left for the Darshanam , We hurried towards temple, around 12.15 PM we finished the Darshanam as we took a special pooja so we got straight entry without having to wait in queue

    The Temple also serves prasadam, initially I was skeptical how the quality of food would be, But anyways we went for it as we used to eat only in Temples during our childhood trips, The Temple Prasadam was very very good, I must say I would not have got such a tasty and Hygienic food even in the best of South Indian Restaurant en route, I would strongly advice for anyone visiting temple in Karnataka where they serve food, They maintain hygiene and food will also be tasty
    Some major temples in karnataka where they serve prasadam are : Dharmastala, Udupi, Kukke , Sringeri, Hornadu, Gokarna, Kollur, Sivaganga and many other

    Many people suggested us to visit OM beach of Gokarna we have to drive around 5Kms from Main Road, We first thought why visit beach again as we already spent lot of time in beach, but I must say our decision would be wrong if we had missed it, Driving the Uphill road to OM Beach is most scenic, we Climb up lots of greenery all over, Once we reach the beach, We were mesmerized by the view this beach offer, I would rate this as THE BEST beach I have visited till date, I have seen beaches in Goa, Chennai, Pondicherry, Mangalore None of them offers such a spectacular view like the OM beach provides, I felt let me take a one full day break here but the other things prevented us from doing so :(

    We just took some snaps on the rocks of the beach, We spent around 30 Mins there , Left the beach by 1.30 PM, Since it was a beach shore, the humidity was high we profusely sweating, but thanks to Punt Auto AC which kept us cool as long as we were inside the car

    Now comes the horror road, The road condition from Gokarna till Honavar 50 KMS was the worst I encountered in the whole trip there were very deep potholes, the car was mostly in second-third gear It took around 1.45 hours to cover this stretch, I took a left towards Shimoga from Honavar

    For the Next 60KMs till Jog falls The roads are awesome except for about 5KM ghat Stretch, The drive was very pleasant, Switched off the AC rolled down the windows, We could spot many birds on the way including peacocks
    The drive also covers a 20KM ghat stretch

    One encounter to remember( Mods can delete this if this should not be shared): I trailed a Indica Vista housed 4 guys, The vista guy saw me from behind he started to tease me, before seeing me he was driving around 50-60KMPH all along,
    He suddenly reduced speed to 20-25KM although we could traverse at around 50KMPH, I first tried not to overtake him just follow him till we finish the ghat, I knew Vista is no match to Punto in Handling ghat roads, As he was going slow neither allowing me to move forward nor he drives faster, I honked twice asking him to give way he did not show even courtesy to respond me , He simply continued his teasing activity I told myself enough is enough, I will not going to eat his dust, I trailed him for around 15 KMs in ghat road, Now it’s the time to move on , Finally I downshifted to third geared reved her all the way to 3K-3.5K RPM, shoot my car ahead of him at one junction where there was some space for me to sneak past him, he could no way match my car speed and handling, This pissed him to the core, He suddenly started honking for no reason switching as many lights he can, two guys sitting behind started showing hand signs to me, I did not care to any of their acts , Meanwhile My wife who was sleeping and unaware of all these almost got angry on me, I apologized her that I had to do something to get out from his way
    After which the vista could never catch my Punto, Punto is a monster on Ghat Roads!!! (Thanked my decision for choosing Punto over i20)

    After all this drama we reached Jog falls by 3.45 PM just took a look at the beautiful view of the falls, Since we had already seen this falls last to last year, We did not decide to see the falls from different views, We just saw the front view and left Jog falls around 4 PM,

    The roads all the way to Shimoga(110 KMS from Jog falls) is excellent, I could drive comfortably at 90KPH in those curvy roads , Took a 10 min break to eat some fresh grown pineapples, they were really delicious

    Reached Shimoga by 6 PM, Next part of the joureny till bangalore (270KM) would be my first Night driving in Punto, The traffic was dense, overtook lots of swifts, Dezires (stickered with Got BhP? ( Live to drive.... Blah Blah Blah ) stickers, None of them except innova/Foruners/BMWs come even close to match Punto speed handling, The BMW/Fortuner/Innova guys were driving insane

    Upgrading to OSRAM Night breaker plus was indeed wise decision as I could see good part of the roads, With a break of around 1Hr(dinner) in my Home town(Tumkur) we reached Bangalore Home by 11.55 PM.

    Toll fees

    1st toll after nice road INR 20
    2nd Nelamangala Toll - INR 31
    Toll after SIra - INR 50
    Toll after Davanagere - INR 50
    Toll after Ranibennur - INR 50

    Total Trip distance 1180 KM
    Total diesel - Around 68 ltrs
    Mileage - 16.5KMPL

    Pics will follow

    4 people like this.
  2. Good writeup...post pics soon...what is the wattage of the osram headlights????
  3. chandu525

    chandu525 Amatore

    Additional Pics, 2012-09-15-036.jpg 2012-09-15-037.jpg 2012-09-15-047.jpg 2012-09-15-050.jpg 2012-09-15-053.jpg 2012-09-15-068.jpg 2012-09-15-069.jpg 2012-09-16-089.jpg 2012-09-16-091.jpg 2012-09-16-092.jpg 2012-09-16-093.jpg P1090732.jpg P1090758.jpg P1090760.jpg P1090799.jpg P1090802.jpg P1090803.jpg P1090804.jpg P1090805.jpg P1090806.jpg P1090807.jpg P1090844.jpg P1090846.jpg P1090848.jpg
    1 person likes this.
  4. sungoa2010


    Nice pictures. Please clarify the following. Have you taken Hubli-Yellapur-Ankola road for reaching karwar?
    I want to know how was the road condition of NH17. You might have traveled some portion of it to reach Om beach and Jog falls?
  5. chandu525

    chandu525 Amatore

    Yes I did took the Hubli-Yellapur-Ankola route to reach karwar, Road Condition is excellent, I would rate this route as The best for reaching karwar/goa from bangalore,
    But road condition from Ankola-Gokarna-Honavar is bad, There are ugly potholes for every 3-5 Kms, But Road from Honavar all the way up to Bangalore is also very good except for some 20KM single lane stretch, before Jog falls

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