Journey to Hazaribagh forest(Jharkhand) by road

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#1 Dec 5th, 2011, 20:04
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#1
Before starting our journey with our maruti esteem we did a lot of study regarding the route to hazaribagh.After doing a lot of research on the internet, finally we started for our destination from Kolkata (salt lake) at 8 o'clock in the morning.My husband took the responsibility to drive. First we picked one of our friend, filled our fuel tank and started our journey for Hzaribagh. As per our information it's 434 kms from kolkata(via Asansol - Govindapur - Barhi).We took GT road through Ultadanga.As it was the morning of Ekadasi - the day just after Bijoya Dasami, we found the roads to be empty.Our esteeem speeded up.We took a turn towards Dakshineshwar and within a minute or two we were in front of Dakshineswar Kali temple.Very soon we were speeding up in NH-2(Delhi road.The Durgapur express way is awesome,it's so smooth that we'll love drive in such roads.On our way we witnessed a race between Yamaha R15 and Bullet Classic 500cc.Can you guess who was the winner????? Obviously the Bullet. It was a great experience. First we crossed the Yamaha R15 at a speed of 100 km/hr.It tried to race with us, but it was of no use. Our esteem crossed it easily and maintained a safe distance. Suddenly we were shocked to see a bullet(500cc) crossing us at a speed of 120km/hr .Bullet was indeed a shock for us. But it was looking like a KING of the roads. We were fond of this KING - as we also have one and we went on many trips with our bullet. But this one, in front of us with such great speed was ..........unbelievable....... . We gave a way to this KING. We slowed down. After few minutes the bullet also slowed down. We both were going in a moderate speed, until and unless the Yamaha R15 zoomed in, and started to challenge the Bullet.We couldn't miss this opportunity. We started racing up and just like a good cameraman we started following them. But alas! after few minutes lots of traffic came in our way, so a distance was created between us. We we found the road empty we speed-ed up and found the bullet was going with its usual speed and the Yamaha far behind.
#2 Dec 5th, 2011, 21:26
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We took our first break at "Shaktigarh" - The famous "Langcha hub" with numerous langcha shops.These shops have funny names like "Langcha ghar", "Lancha niloy", "Langcha ghar"........... and so on, where it starts with "Langcha" and ends with a synonym for house or shop . We took tea and "langcha". The bullet also took a hault here.We found he was going to Varanasi. From Varanasi he'll join his friends for a trip. After 1/2 hr of break we continued our journey with the sun scorching over us. We crossed Buedwan and drove towards Asansol. The road till "Panagarh" was great. We were enjoying our journey, until and unless we reached Panagarh .This is the cancer of this express way. Anyway we crossed it and headed for Durgapur. Finally, driving for fewhours we reached Asansol, where we stopped to pick a friend of us. Now including me, 4 of us went on with our journey. within few hours we crossed Dhanbad and at 2 o'clock we stopped for lunch at a dhaba. The food was good here. I don't know it's my hunger - that made the the food delicious, or the food itself was delicious . After the lunch we were again on the road., We reached a place after couple of hours of driving, where it showed the sign board "Hazaribagh" towards the left. This place is known as "Bagodra". The road after Dhanbad till this place was not good. I can't say bad because the road which we got after turning left was horrible . Be careful of the cattle on the road and people........they r just............ .........they think these roads to b the balcony of their own houses. The locals told we need to travel 50 kms more to reach Hazaribagh. Instead of turning left frm Bagodra....if we would travelled road then we had to take the road to "Barhi" on NH - 33. Hazaribagh is on NH - 33. But it's a long route. Anyway we continued to drive after taking the left turn frm Bagodra. It was a straight way...........but full of cattle, local vehicle and of course the people on the road. After a topsy - turvy ride through this road we reached the Hazaribagh city at around 5.45 p.m. It was dark by then so we didn't think it to be a brilliant idea to haed for the forest at night. We planned to hault in the city for that night. So it was the time to search for the hotels. According to the information on the internet we went to "Canary inn". It looked great from outside, but the price was toooooooo high............Rs 2000/night was their starting rate. Looking at the price we carried on our search for hotels. At last we found Hotel "Amrapalli" at the other end of the city. This was a good hotel and the price was within our budget . Finally we decided to end our journey for that day............next day we planned to go inside the forest which was 20kms away frm there and had 200kms motorable roads. thus, next we r going to begin an adventure in the forest.
#3 Dec 5th, 2011, 21:35
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Just bumped across this report, and enjoyed every bit of it. Nice start.... waiting for a few photos and the next instalment.
Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid Albert Einstein


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#4 Dec 5th, 2011, 23:58
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#4
Thank you Sagarneel.............

The 2nd day's journey started at 11.00 a.m. as all the boys slept off till 9.00 in the morning . After filling the fuel we took NH 33 towards Barhi. The petrol pumps are located just outside the city on the highway. Together there are 3 filling stations. It's a single way but the road was great . One would love to drive on such roads.After crossing the Ichhak more we reached the gate of the national park at about 11.45 a.m. If we travel from the city towards Barhi the gate will be on your left.
One can come down to Hazaribagh through 2 routes - take the way through Bagodra to Hazaribagh (it'll be a roller coaster drive)and another way one can reach is - don't take a left turn from Bagodra............go straight on NH2.........till Barhi......from here take a left turn on NH33 (this road is awesome and picturesque . The former is a short cut and the later is a long route, but if u love your car take the later.
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#5 Dec 6th, 2011, 08:38
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#5
Some photos .................
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#6 Dec 6th, 2011, 13:02
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Nice photos. The langchas are so very tempting . Waiting for the next set.
#7 Dec 6th, 2011, 14:33
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@mmonami and sagarneel

Please define, what is langcha ?
#8 Dec 6th, 2011, 14:48
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Originally Posted by Prakaant View Post @mmonami and sagarneel

Please define, what is langcha ?
Ummm...I am not very sure about the definition, but to get an idea about how a langcha looks like, please see the last photo of post # 5.

Its a Bengali sweet that is made of cottage cheese (chhena), flour etc. A dough akin to a pygmy's side pillow is made and fried in oil. The fried lump is then sokaed in concentrated sugar syrup to render its sweet taste. I am sorry....I am too lame to define the taste of a langcha. . You must eat an langcha to know what a delight it is.

Now since the question was directed both to me and Monami, I hope she comes up with a better definition.
#9 Dec 6th, 2011, 15:26
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#9
Thanks sagarneel, for such a nice explanation!
Meanwhile, I also googled and found a nice picture of Langcha at "www.gourmetrecipe.com" and understood how it looks, I would be trying it while in the region!
Once again, thank you!!
#10 Dec 6th, 2011, 16:17
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Mmonami, very interesting post and pics. Where is the next installment?
#11 Dec 6th, 2011, 22:19
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Thankyou Sarbani and special thanks to Sagarneel............for such a nice definition of "Langcha".........."pygmy' s side pillow"...........even I couldn't have thought of it. As for Praakant.... by now he understood it....I coudn't have explained it better..One has to eat it to understand it's sweetness................

When we reached the gate of the National park, we heard , that, we have to carry all our rations, if one wants to stay inside the forest. Now,staying outside doesn't make any sense. Thus, we turned our car towards the city to get the required rations from a nereby market, which is about 20kms away from the gate towards Hazaribagh city. We bought every small things like salt, pepper,cumin powder, chilly powder, sugar, tea, milk powder, biscuits, bread, fruits, rice, flour,............and chicken (if one prefers to stay for 2-3 days, then it is better to take live chickens, as there is no electricity or any sort of electrical equipments inside the forest). After our shopping we headed towards the gate of the forest. I was excited like anything...........this was the first time I'm visiting a forest. Within few minutes we reached the entry gate. Here we had to pay a nominal fee of Rs.80 per day to enter the forest with our car. Finally the gate was open and we drove into the forest .
slowly we drove into the forest.....there were only trees and trees ....the highway vanished somewhere beyond these trees.... the green colour became more and more prominent as we drove inside........it was so soothing to the eyes. Living in a forest of concrete, the first glance of this greenery was awesome. I can't explain it in words or words are just not enough to explain this beauty of our mother nature. I started clicking pictures. As it was our first venture in a forest, we thought we could see animals just like that.........as if they were waiting for us. We drove slowly through the rough dusty roads until we reached the lake. Beside this lake were the cottages of the forest rest house. This was about 20 - 25kms drive from the main gate. It was very hot at this time of the year (October)and we were sweating like anything.We found the rest house to be totally empty, there was not a single tourist. We started to look for the caretaker. After a lot of screaming he came out.There is big bunglow - this is for the forest officer. Apart from this at right side of the "jheel", a bit uphill there were 5 cottages.On the left side of the lake, there is a dormitory, just opposite to this is a park and a dining hall. Above the dining hall there is a room for 4. During the season (November - February), one has to book the rooms from the city office situated at Hazaribagh city. As it was already 1 o'clock in the afternoon, I took the rations to the dining hall. I gave them to the cooks there and explained them what to cook. While I was busy with the kitchen and the cook, the boys drove uphill to our cottage.
I was hungry like anything.........moreover there was no gas oven in the kitchen..........primitive method of cooking is used here.........the "chullhas". Thus, I was informed they'll need much time to cook .
Anyway, I controlled my hunger by taking some fruits and slowly I walked uphill to our cottage. From outside it was looking good, but..............as I stepped inside, I, found it to be in the horrible and terrible condition specially the toilets . I was not expecting a palace inside the forest but at least a clean room was enough. This was just due to the lack of maintenance. The cottages, the location of the cottages were really good. We were given Bhavan No. 48 which had two sperate rooms attached to one another (Bhavan No. 47 was better than Bhavan No. 48, but none of toilets can be locked from inside). To top it up there was no water and no lights of course (don't forget to buy the candels). There were water tanks on top of the cottages but there was no electricity to run the pumps to fill the tanks . There were people to carry buckets of water for you and as for lights- If you carry diesel with you.......then they'll switch on the generator for you at night but they charge an extra Rs20/hr for the Mobil. One important information for those who plan to stay in these rest houses, it's about the caretaker.......according to the rule every room will be supplied with a solar light....but the caretaker won't give you, he'll ask you to use candles, as it happened with us. He was using the lights which were kept for the guests.So, we had to spend 1 whole night with candles until a sudden inspection came on the next morning, when we came to know the truth. Moreover they will also try to fool the guests with the room rates and charge for each buckets of water they'll bring for the guests.The room rates are Rs.290/day (as enquired frm the city office)and it's totally upto the satisfaction of the guests to give tips to the people those who are fetching water for the guests. We are thankful to the sudden inspection.
But all these things did not bother us much,we enjoyed the darkness and the silence of the forest like anything...........It was something new and different
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#12 Dec 6th, 2011, 22:21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmonami View Post This place is known as "Bagodra".

Anyway we continued to drive after taking the left turn frm Bagodra.
Interesting report but I should like to make a correction:
The place where one turns off the Grand Trunk Road towards Hazaribagh is called Bagodar. This is the road connecting the railway station called "Hazaribagh Road" to Hazaribagh proper.
The road from Hazaribagh to Barhi (NH33 - nice to know it is still called that) goes past the Padma Palace built by the Rajas of Ramgarh. It is modelled after the Grand Trianon in Versailles and served as a hunting lodge. The National Park used to be their game preserve.
#13 Dec 7th, 2011, 07:53
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#13
Thankyou for the correction...I often get confused with this word..........I would also like thank you for this nice piece of information
#14 Dec 7th, 2011, 08:12
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Some more photos........................ .
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#15 Dec 7th, 2011, 22:26
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#15

Red face

Now lets start with our forest adventure……after lunch, we started our adventure at around 4p.m. This is a big place with 200kms motor able roads. There is only one major road which connects the main gate with the forest rest house. Forest rest house is the central point from here the roads enter into the forest. We were not sure whether we’ll be able to see any animals or not, as when we asked the cooks and the people over there about animals – they said they hardly saw any carnivores other than foxes, jackals, big wild cats and hyenas. Sometimes, though very rare, there were incidences with bear. Moreover we could see cows with big bells tied, are roaming here and there. We moved on with our finger crossed and abiding all the rules of the forest. As this is the home of the animals and we are the invaders, so, in order to see them we have to follow their rules. We started driving following the main route, after few minutes we took a turn to the left which was a bypass inside the forest. This was not a paved road but a road that was made from the tyre - marks of cars. Few years before jeep safaris were conducted inside the forest but these safaris have stopped, may be due to the decrease in the number of tigers . “Hazaribag” got its name from “hazar” “bag” meaning 1000 tigers but as tigers can’t be seen here it has been changed into “hazar” bagh” i.e; 1000 gardens. We did not hope for tigers but atleast a bear.
After traveling to the left we drove for 20mins through this road and then we stopped. We came out of the car and enjoyed the green around us. It was not the right time to see the animals as there was light still now and we could see some villagers going back to their village with their cattle. When we enquired them about tigers – they also said the same thing except that, if one is lucky enough then he/she might get to see a bear. No matter we were able to see the animals or not, but nature around us was just mesmerizing. We didn’t feel like moving away from this place. I felt like grabbing every bit of pleasure, I can get from it. I took some clicks and strolled through the path. This place was not looking like a forest; it looked like an entrance to the village. Slowly it started becoming dark. When it was completely dark….it looked amazing. The beautiful forest became a mysterious place. There was complete silence all around; even we can hear our breath sounds. After enjoying this place for few hours we drove to the main path and from there we came back to the rest house. Here we could see a couple of lights here and there. After taking tea we again began to explore the forest. It was 7p.m. and it was completely dark and silence prevailed everywhere. Sometime tingling of the cowbells can be heard.
This time we chose a path which went uphill from our cottage. The drive through this path was not less than a roller coaster ride. The stones beneath the tyre slipped. This route seemed like a dried waterfall. Thank God our car did not go upside down…….The balance of esteem is great……..it’s proved. Then I realized, the road from Bagodar to Hazaribagh was much better……..anyways we continued to climb slowly. It was pitch dark outside. Only the area in front of our car can be seen. Here the jungle seemed to be dense enough. As we were climbing we found two small birds were standing in the mid of the way. It seemed as if they were unable to see in such bright light. After taking some shots we switched off the light. Again as we switched on the light they flew to a nereby tree.Leaving them behind we continued to climb………we had no idea of the road. After some time we stopped, switched off the lights and sat quietly in the car. We climbed up a great distance……so hoped to see something. It was pitch dark outside, and after waiting for few minutes our eyes was set for vision in the dark. In the moon light we can see the road in front of us, the trees around us. It was so thrilling……..and the forest around us was playing it’s own music (different sounds made by the insects). I looked up at the sky……….it was so clear and it was studded with stars…………..It’s a wonderful creation. We kept on waiting….waiting…….waiting…….. but couldn’t see anything. So we moved forward, as we were driving, suddenly we saw something crossed the road, from one bush to another. Immediately we stopped and looked out for the animal without getting down from the car. After few minutes of waiting we found it to cross again. It seemed to be a fox or to the most a hyena . After all we saw something…..it may not be a bear but at least a hyena (may be). Waiting for few more minutes, we decided to return…….we turned our car and came down to the rest house and straight a way we went to the canteen for our dinner at 11p.m. The cooks as well as the caretaker were displeased with us as they had to wait for us. Any way after finishing our dinner, somehow my husband managed to get hold of the caretaker go inside the forest. At around 12.30 a.m together with the caretaker we again climbed uphill. Everything went well and we traveled for an hour so, suddenly when the caretaker got scared of something and didn’t want to go deeper inside. Thus, we had to turn our car and return back ………turning the car from that particular point was very difficult……..as there was a steep fall on one side and a steep cliff was rising on the other side……….but somehow my husband managed to turn car and we came down to our rest house by 2.15 a.m. By then it became cold enough to use the blankets supplied to us in the morning. When they gave us blankets in the morning………I was surprised……..but then it became clear to me. There is a drastic change in the weather in the morning and in the night.
It was a long and thrilling day for all of us…………….so we changed and quickly went off to sleep…………zzzzzzzzzzzzzz zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz zzzzzzz
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