Of GPS and fighting Pheasants!

Travelling on unknown roads and reaching new destinations always means that you have to seek directions. Interestingly, these days the GPS is an invention that has in someways made us independent about finding our way. Dependent on itself but independent from asking people, however, from time to time GPS takes you on a short cut that suddenly appears to be not such a good idea. So instead of taking the popular route to Swarghat via Chandigarh, we managed to bypass Chandigarh and went to Swarghat via Baddi & Nalagarh. Well it did save us 5 kms, but the last 25 kms took 2.5 hours as there was no trace of road and I had to drive in the rain, muck, uphill in 1st and 2nd gear for most of those 2.5 hours with almost no vehicles behind or in front of me!

Scary, yet it was adventurous and in the end calmed my nerves about driving in the Himalaya’s, I did not encounter as tough a road throughout the next 10 days in the Himalaya’s.

I remember quite clearly how last year when we went to Kufri for the bloggers meet and it rained all the time we were there. That told me one thing to never plan a 2-3 day trip to Himachal, as unless you go for more than a week, you might have to come across a period when it just rains and hence have no outdoor time. As much as I love the rains, the rains in Himachal whilst they make things look beautiful can make the weather freezing and being wet in that terrain is not always wise for people like us from the plains. As we entered Himachal, this is how the sky started turning at the entrance in Baddi. It was a sense of dejavu almost to see the rain building up.

The weather builds up and this Kapok tree starts spraying pollen like crazy just as we enter the state... to invite us with really cold, windy weather!

The weather builds up and this Kapok tree starts spraying pollen like crazy just as we enter the state… to invite us with really cold, windy weather!

The rains ensured the muddy road was slushy and more difficult to drive on!

The rains ensured the muddy road was slushy and more difficult to drive on!

Whilst it turned the weather cold, the road kept me on the edge!

Whilst it turned the weather cold, the road kept me on the edge!

The one advantage of going on a road less travelled means birds, since so less traffic went through that road, we spotted quite a few Himalayan’s bulbul’s, Asian Pied Starling, White browed fantail and the best of all two male Kalij Pheasant fighting on the road! 😀

An Asian Pied Starling or Pied Myna sits oblivious to me on the cable! This is a first time spotting for me!

An Asian Pied Starling or Pied Myna sits oblivious to me on the cable! This is a first time spotting for me!

A pair of himalayan bulbul's seemed to be pretty grim in the rain and hinted at the danger on the road! :P

A pair of himalayan bulbul’s seemed to be pretty grim in the rain and hinted at the danger on the road! 😛

I wonder how the birds find the rain in the hills, it probably thinks okay about it just that it spoils its spiked up hairdo I guess! This himalayan bulbul seems not too happy about it!

I wonder how the birds find the rain in the hills, it probably thinks okay about it just that it spoils its spiked up hairdo I guess! This himalayan bulbul seems not too happy about it!

And then we saw two male Kalij Pheasant’s fighting with each other on the road!!! Again a first time sighting for me 😀 😀 😀 😀

Like any two boxer's they came and greeted each other, probably sizing up each other's strength and weakness.

Like any two boxer’s they came and greeted each other, probably sizing up each other’s strength and weakness.

and then they rumbled like they would in the WWF! Ferocious and angry at each other!

and then they rumbled like they would in the WWF! Ferocious and angry at each other!

Again at the end they both posed at each other, one has its tail up and the other has it lower before I ran out of patience in trying to get a closer shot I got off the car and went a lil further only to scare them away into the bushes :(

Again at the end they both posed at each other, one has its tail up and the other has it lower before I ran out of patience in trying to get a closer shot I got off the car and went a lil further only to scare them away into the bushes 😦

All in all it was a tiring yet enthralling ride to enter Dev Bhoomi Himachal. A lot of adventures stay ahead still and this was just the start of the holiday! In the next post, the ride to The Great Himalayan National Park in Tirthan Valley! 😀

So until then hang on! 😀

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3 thoughts on “Of GPS and fighting Pheasants!

  1. Bikramjit says:

    beautiful pics sir..

    shortcuts are not always goood.. and you should have gone to chandigarh and Told me you would be there .. its MY CITY.. could have rested at my place ..

    and nalagarh on a good day is beautiful actually .. really the river bed and all .. baddi is very polluted ..

  2. Sandhya Kumar says:

    Interesting trip. The photos are toooo beautiful! We had stayed in a hotel in Chandigarh a couple of months back. My husband knows the city very well. He says the old charm is gone. We had visited Kulu Manali from there.

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