Tuesday, 24 October 2017

My First Bike Trip Experience: Hyderabad-Amrabad Tiger Reserve-Nagarjuna Sagar Dam-Hyderabad - Day 1

One fine evening, my friend Subhra asked me if I am interested in a bike trip to Srisailam. We were not sure about anything of the place and how to go, where to halt etc. etc. This happened three days before our journey. So, you can understand it was a completely unplanned trip. I readily accepted the proposal and headed to Google to get some information about the place. We also discussed that two of his colleagues also may be interested in joining the trip. Next day he went to office and confirmed me that his colleagues are also ready for this adventure.

Friday night, after office hours, we all gathered in my home to get things sorted. We checked Google Map, estimated our budget and went to bed to get some rest for the upcoming journey on the following day.

Saturday, October 21, 2017
Morning 5'o clock we woke up to get ready for the trip. We took bath, packed our bags, had tea with biscuits and started our journey. On our way, we prayed in a Hanuman Temple and started our journey from Narsingi on a Honda Hornet (160cc) and Bajaj Avenger (220cc) with two Moto G 3rd Generation and one iPhone 6S and our bags which contained night wears, spare clothes and first aid kit.

First we went to a nearby petrol pump and had the bike tanks filled up. It was 9581 km on the odometer and the time was 7:30 am when we started from the Petrol Pump. Then we had tea in a stall on the road.

Let me introduce with everyone, Starting from Left - Me, Romeo, Shamik and Subhra. We resumed our journey towards Srisailam, we followed Outer Ring Road. First we halted in front of Himayath Sagar for 5 minutes.

As Bike is not allowed on Outer Ring Road, we had to go through the Service Road. Now we realize, we should have followed another route which avoids Outer Ring Road and directly connects to Srisailam Road. It took us longer time to reach Srisailam Road and it was confusing as well. Almost at 9:30 am we reached Srisailam Road.

Srisailam Road was smooth and well maintained -

After riding for almost half an hour we halted for a break. Then again started our journey. The roads were real smooth and very less vehicles passing by. Mostly we crossed through agricultural lands. The top speed noted on the speedometer was 115 kmph when I was riding the bike, the ultimate craziness.

At odometer reading 9725, we reached Dindi Reservoir by 10:45 am. Subhra and Romeo went ahead of us and missed the reservoir; me and Shamik stopped there to visit.

After this, we stopped at a tea stall roadside. There we asked for a Dhaba, where we can fill ourselves. After riding for another 7 kilometres, we reached a Dhaba at 11:20

By the time we were done with our lunch, the watch was showing 12:15, we resumed our journey. This time we were crossing through agricultural lands. We saw hills nearby. It was a beautiful view. We stopped there and had a small photo session there -

After this, we resumed our journey and started entering Nallamalla Forest.

By 1:10 we reached Amrabad Tiger Reserve at odometer reading 9766.

We came to know that, we have to avail Safari Ride and for that, we have to wait for some time. I heard from one of my colleagues that all the floodgates were open at Srisailam Dam. Hence, we decided to visit Srisailam Dam by that time, which is located some 45 kilometres ahead of us. We started from there at 1:35. The road was awesome, we were passing through the forest. Many monkeys were there by the road side, the temperature was comparatively low and both the sides were filled with green as long as you can see. It was very much rejuvenating. After some time, we reached a spot where we could see the opposite hills. We stopped there. The scenic beauty was mesmarizing.

After some 15/20 minutes, we resumed journey towards Srisailam Dam and after sometime, we reached Domalapenta at 2:30, we halted there to know the route to Srisailam Dam, a local fisherman informed us that all the floodgates were closed just that day. That was somewhat discouraging for us but we thought, we already have come across 33 kilometres what it will differ for another 4 kilometres. In the road, it was really awesome view of Srisailam City which was located just opposite to the hill we were. We stopped there to have some snaps of the city, Krishna River and the Dam. We spent some 30 minutes there. All gates were close, the breeze was nice there, we relished it.

We started our journey back to Amrabad Tiger Reserve at 3:05. By 4:10 at 9840 odometer reading, we reached to the Tiger Reserve. We had to wait for almost one hour for the Safari Ride to start. at 5:15 the Safari Ride started. While travelling in the Jeep, we saw a Nilgai at roadside, it was too quick to be captured in camera. We then came to the view point from where tigers can be seen. Nothing special was there, it was the edge of the hill, from where you can see the dense forest located beneath and in distance a lake was there, which is the source of the water for the animals. We went to the furthest corner of the viewpoint and had our seat on a rock. We could not see anything there but it was breezing perfectly which helped us to forget the tiredness of the day long journey. We stopped there for half an hour and many photos were shot -
Nizam's Guest House

While returning from the view point, we saw some deer. But in another Safari Jeep, there was a man who was taking snaps while activating the flash, for that, the deer got scared and we could not take snaps.
It was almost the end of the Safari Ride, believe me I was very much reluctant to get out of the forest, every moment I was nearer the gate of the forest, the more I was longing to go back to the edge of the hill to wait for the tigers to come and drink water from the lake. But it didn't happen that way, the trip ended at 6:40 pm and I had to get out of the forest. While writing this, I can still remember every moment of it, Amrabad Tiger Reserve, the largest Tiger Reserve of India.

We again started riding at 7 pm. I was driving through the forest and my hands were almost frozen due to cold wind while driving. Just at the end of the forest, I could not slow down and hit a speed breaker in high speed. Subhra was about to fall from bike. Somehow nothing happened to both of us and we were safe. By 7:50 we reached Mannaur, where we had our tea break. There we decided we will head towards Nagarjuna Sagar Dam. I opposed the opinion but majority won and I had to follow.
With 9857 in odometer, we started for Nagarjuna Sagar Dam at 8:15 in the night. We crossed Dindi, had our bikes filled again there. Then happened a great confusion which led us to a place where we could see no lights, no man, no passer by. It was damn scary for us, anything could happen, snake bite, thieves, dacoits, anything you can imagine. We tried to avail Google Maps but it was offline. We were sure that we were lost, all we could feel is agricultural lands, where paddy is grown and all we could hear is the hissing sound of High Tension Electric Lines over our head. Once, we stopped there. As soon as the bike head lights shut, we were in complete darkness and ultimate silence. I hardly can remember the last time I was in such a soothing darkness. We realized a completely dark night sky is really beautiful, we forgot everything and took the opportunity to recognize some constellations in the clear dark starry sky. After 5/10 minutes we started riding to escape the place.

Almost after 10 minutes, we reached a village. There I checked Google Map, I found that we are again connected and it is showing us some route to Nagarjuna Sagar Dam. We immediately followed that route and after riding for almost 30 kilometres, we reached Devorakonda at 10:45 while the odometer was indicating 9938. We found a hotel where we had our dinner. Then there we found a lodge to stay over night. We got a two-bed room where we had to adjust 4 members. After a long day ride session, that was more than enough for us. I can say, it is a drawback of unplanned trip. If we had planned earlier, we could have booked a hotel where we could spend our night. But, it was a bliss as well, as we had the opportunity to get lost and find the beauty of a completely dark starry night.

We happily stayed there, had long conversation on the whole day, we checked the trip photos and videos. Then we headed to bed at 2:30 am.

Thus ends our first day in the trip. Day 2 continues here.


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