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Thread: Visiting Neelum Valley, Taobutt, Shonter on Bikes August 2012

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    Default Visiting Neelum Valley, Taobutt, Shonter on Bikes August 2012

    Assalam u Alaikum,
    Ever since my first visit of Neelum valley back in July 2010 the beautiful Neelum valley has always been in my mind. This year I was lucky enough to travel to the most beautiful valley of Azad Kashmir twice. First from 29 June to 2nd July 2012 and then again in Eid holidays from 22 August to 26 August 2012.
    Most of the pictures uploaded will be from my Motorbike tour with the exception of Jagran valley and Arang Kel which I visited in my June/July tour and skipped on my bike tour.

    Our Rides:
    Suzuki GS150 2011 Model
    Honda CG125 2011 Model
    Honda CG125 2004 Model
    Honda CD70 2011 Model
    Route Info:

    Islamabad-Danna (Roughly 55 KM) (1 Hour)
    We took the Murree Expressway and rather then turning towards Murree from Musiyari we went straight and reached Danna.
    Lower Topa - Kohala (Roughly 40 KM) (1-1.5 Hour)
    The road condition is good. We took the Phagwari route rather than taking the Bhurban-Deval route. Although the Bhurban-Kohala route is shorter but it is more steep and more dangerous.
    Kohala - Muzaffarabad (Roughly 34 KM) (1 Hour)
    Good road with a few areas affected by landsliding.
    Muzaffarabad - Nusehri (Roughly 42 KM) (1.5 Hours)
    Very good and newly built road with the exception of a 2km Patch about 10km from Muzaffarabad. Due to heavy rainfall this area had frequent landslides and got closed and cleared throughout the day.
    Nusehri -Kundal Shahi- Athmuqam - Keran - Dowarian (Roughly 68 KM) (At least 4-5 Hours)
    Very good and newly built road from about 2km past Nusehri to a few KM shy of Dowarian. Absolutely joy to ride and drive.
    Kundal Shahi - Kutton (Roughly 6KM)
    Not metaled but any car can go to Kutton.
    Kutton - Jagran (Roughly 10KM)
    Absolutely 4WD track. Recommended is to take a jeep from Kutton.
    Dowarian - Sharda (Roughly 32 KM) (1 -1.5 Hour)
    It is an old metaled road with a few bad patches but overall a good road. The main problem area is a couple of KM before Sharda the bridge of a Nala is broken and vehicles have to cross the Nala. Not to much dangerous and we crossed it on Mehran as well as bikes and we saw many vehicles like coure, alto, cultus etc. crossing it.
    Sharda - Kel (19 KM) (1 -1.5 Hour)
    Again the metaled road will disappear and you will be moving over stones/dirt/mud and many water springs. But still any vehicle can make it with careful driving.
    Kel - Shounter valley (20 KM) (2.5 - 3 Hours)
    Absolutely hardcore 4WD Jeep track. Just after Kel there is a Nala crossing. The original bridge has been destroyed by water but the locals have made a makeshift bridge which requires quite a lot of skills to cross.
    Kel - Taobut (43 KM) (2.5- 3 Hours)
    Mild jeep track. Any vehicle with high clearance can reach here. We saw many Mehran's and Alto's and one coure reaching Taobutt.

    Route Distance Chart:
    These distances are very important as there are absolutely no milestones on the Neelum valley road. So for the first comers it can be very difficult to know how much distance is left. With these you can always check your mileage meters for an approximate of distance to next place.
    Muzaffarabad - Kel Distances

    Muzaffarabad - Nusehri 42KM
    Nusehri - Kundal Shahi 32KM
    Kundal Shahi - Athmuqam 10KM
    Athmuqam - Keran 9KM
    Keran - Dowarian 13KM
    Dowarian - Sharda 30KM
    Sharda - Kel 20KM
    -----------
    Total Distance 157KM

    Kel - Taobutt Distances

    Kel - Jamgar Waterfall 12KM
    Jamgar Waterfall - Janawai 10KM
    Janawai - Sardari 10KM
    Sardari - Hilmat 4KM
    Hilmat - Taoubutt 7KM
    -----------
    Total Distance 43KM

    Kel - Shonter Distances

    Kel - Nala Crossing 1.5KM
    Nala - Nichli(Payeen) Domail 10KM
    Payeen Domail - Domail Bala 9KM
    Domail Bala - Shonter Lake 5KM
    Shonter Lake - Shonter waterfall 3KM
    -----------
    Total Distance 29KM
    Attached Images Attached Images    

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    nice reading your post but as soon as i finished reading,thread has finished
    https://www.facebook.com/skillgrafik

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skill View Post
    nice reading your post but as soon as i finished reading,thread has finished
    Yaar abhi to thread Shuru hi kiya hai aur aap abhi se hi Gile Shikwe karne lage....

    BTW I am busy in uploading my videos on youtube so might not be able to post much today....

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    really nice and informatic.good going bro.

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    Default

    zabardsat latest info that was needed urgently great trip and pics also

    waiting for more
    LEGENDS OF THE NORTH

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    Woh. Everyone need this kind of informtion. Zabardast. Keep it up.

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    Sorry for not updating earlier..... My home internet connection was not working yesterday so I couldn't update..... InSha'Allah I will try to update tonight.....

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    Waiting for more capture...

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    Here is our day by day itinerary for this tour.....(Details will be added later)

    Day1: Left Islamabad at about 1PM and reached Muzaffarabad at about 6:30 PM.
    Day2: Left Muzaffarabad at about 6AM and reached Kel at 6PM.
    Day3: Left Kel at about 7AM and reached Taobutt at about 11AM. Left Taobutt at 3PM and reached Kel 5:30PM.
    Day4: Left Kel at about 6AM and reached Shonter at about 10AM. Left Shonter at 12PM and reached Kel at 2:30PM. Left Kel at 3:30PM and reached Athmuqam at 7:30PM.
    Day5: Left Athmuqam at 6AM and reached Islamabad at 4PM.

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    very nice and informative thread started. details about route and distances is very very helpful for new comers as I am. thanx for sharing your experience and detailed information. keep rolling up the pix for virtual tour as it is the main item of tour.

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    pics please .
    https://www.facebook.com/skillgrafik

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    nice place

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    Sorry for not posting earlier.... But my DSL connection at home is not working properly and I had a very busy couple of days at office.... I will try to upload some pics tonight and tomorrow.....

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    Some Background Info:
    I am not a biker at all... In fact the most I had ever driven a bike in a single stretch was 15KM and that too within Islamabad. It all started when my brother got a Suzuki GS-150 bike and I read about the wonderful travels of a fellow Pakwheeler lovebikes who traveled to almost the whole KKH and Skardu etc. on his GS150. So when some of my office colleagues asked me to venture on a trip to Northern areas/Kashmir on bikes I agreed. We had three options....
    1) Islamabad - Naran - Babusar Top - Noori Top and then hike to Doodipatsar lake.... (But of course it was not feasible because of the deadly incident near Lulusar Lake as well as other robbery incidents near Doodipatsar )
    2) Islamabad - Muzaffarabad - Chikar - Sudhan Gali - Hike to Ganga Choti - Bagh - Lasdanna - Toli Pir - Banjosa - Rawlakot -Islamabad.
    3) Neelum valley.

    Since I was the senior as well as experienced member of the group so I had the veto power. All other members left the decision to me. So I decided to visit Neelum valley even though I had been to Neelum valley just 45 days ago. The main reason was the 5 free days we had so I thought we could easily visit all the main places of Neelum valley....
    All the necessary equipment was purchased like Puncture kit. A toe-chain and other equipment was also obtained like Gas Stove, Masala Jaats and other things required for cooking.

    We were 5 members on 4 bikes. The only reason for having an extra member was so that if one gets sick/injured the other one can drive the bike.

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    Very Nice Dear
    I Love My Pakistan

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    Did you cross shounter temperoary bridge on bikes? Is it possible to cross it on a jeep?

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    So, Imran Bhai u did it and did very well.
    Hope u enjoy a lot!
    NATURAL LOVERS are NATURE LOVERS. Review Your Role To SAVE NATURE.

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    Quote Originally Posted by taimur76 View Post
    Did you cross shounter temperoary bridge on bikes? Is it possible to cross it on a jeep?
    Yes we crossed it on bikes.... But boy it was a scary crossing.... There were three logs tied together and you have to keep the bike on the centre one. I had intended to take pictures/videos of us crossing the bridge but it was so scary that I forgot to take my camera out to take pictures....
    Jeeps are crossing this Nala on the same bridge. They have three logs on one side then there is gap and then 2 logs on the other side. One tyre has to be on three log tied together and other on the 2 logs tied together....
    Also note that this bridge is not on the Shonter Nala but another Nala. We never cross the Shonter Nala until we reach Shonter waterfall which is the last jeepable portion of the Shonter. Crossing Shonter on such a bridge is definitely suicidal....

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    Quote Originally Posted by emmaar View Post
    So, Imran Bhai u did it and did very well.
    Hope u enjoy a lot!
    Thanks emmaar... Yes we enjoyed a lot on this tour....

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    Default Day 1

    Day 1: Wednesday 22nd August 2012 (3rd Day of EID)
    We had planned to leave on third day of Eid. Our main concern was weather. I was continuously checking the weather websites and following is what I got on Pakistan Meteorological Department website....


    Weather Advisory for Kashmir
    Widespread heavy showers predicted in Kashmir and adjoining areas on Tuesday/ Wednesday.

    Met Office predicted widespread rain-thundershower with isolated heavy falls in Kashmir and adjoining areas in next 48 hours (Tuesday/Wednesday).
    Met Office informed that strong monsoon currents are continuously penetrating over northeastern parts of the country that would produce heavy to very heavy rainfalls over Kashmir and adjoining areas during next couple of days.
    Due to heavy falls, there is a risk of flash flood in local riverine of Kashmir during the period. The people traveling in Kashmir are advised to remain careful on Tuesday/Wednesday.
    --Sd--
    (Dr. Muhammad Hanif)
    DIRECTOR
    Also there was 266mm rain in Muzaffarabad in the last 24 hours which was by far the most rain in any part of Paksitan/Kashmir. Also when I woke up for Morning prayers at 04:30 AM it was raining cats and dogs in Islamabad. So I talked to my friends and told them to delay our departure till rain stops.... Finally rain stopped at about 10AM and we were ready to leave at 12:30PM.
    Initially I had planned our first stay at Kutton but we could only reach by Maghrib till Muzaffarabad only. So we were forced to spend our first night at Muzaffarabad. Weather till Muzaffarabad was very pleasant and we dodged rain all the way. Due to heavy rainfall before our departure all the streams in or near Murree were running full.

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