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Thread: Bike Tour 4,000 KMS - Karachi - Naran - Astor (Gilgit Balistan) and Back to Karachi

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    Default Bike Tour 4,000 KMS - Karachi - Naran - Astor (Gilgit Balistan) and Back to Karachi

    My Travel Itinerary:

    Day 01: Wed - Aug 21st --> Karachi to Uch Sharif (Punjab)

    Day 02: Thur- Aug 22nd --> Uch Sharif to D.I. Khan (KPK)

    Day 03: Fri - Aug 23rd --> Stayed in D.I. Khan (KPK)

    Day 04: Sat - Aug 24th --> DI Khan to Islamabad

    Day 05: Sun - Aug 25th --> Stayed in Islamabad

    Day 06: Mon - Aug 26th --> Islamabad to Naran

    Day 07: Tue - Aug 27th --> Naran to Astor (Gilgit Balistan)

    Day 08: Wed - Aug 28th --> Astor to Rama Lake and Back to Naran

    Day 09: Thur - Aug 29th --> Naran to Islamabad

    Day 10: Fri - Aug 30th --> Islamabad to Karachi

    Day 11: Sat - Aug 31st --> Traveling to Karachi

    Day 12: Sun - Sep 01st --> Early Morning Arrived in Karachi



    I have lived abroad most of my life and only returned to Pakistan some three years back. I now live in Karachi and have driven to Islamabad many times by car and its been an exhilarating experience every time.

    My Bike Adventure plans began more than two years back when I was visiting Northern Areas (Naran) with Cousins from Islamabad. I drove my car alone from Karachi to Islamabad and got together with 9 others in two cars and explored the Northern areas for the very first time in my life and was struck by its shear beauty. Along the way I saw many people on motorcycles whom I thought were locals at first, or perhaps from Islamabad area. However, upon discovering Pakwheels I was amazed to see that so many people were driving their bikes in groups from various parts of Punjab as were as a few courageous souls who also traveled from other places and posted their step by step travel experiences, both on bikes and cars.

    So I began to think what it would be like to drive a bike across the country since I had already done that by car many times. I should point out that where I had lived my entire life one could not imagine driving a bike, at least not an entire year due to heavy snow during winters and many wet days of rain throughout summer. So to put it plainly, I had never driven a bike nor did I know how to drive one. Although I sad on a few bikes in Pakistan as a passenger but never really driven one.

    So now I was becoming more and more bold in researching bikes both on Pakwheels as well as on olx. I came to a realization that most long distance riders who posted on Pakwheels chose either a Honda 125 or a Suzuki GS 150. I took many months researching both the pros and cons of both bikes to see which was better for longer drives, fuel economy, accessible spare parts, durability and so on. And although I was leaning more towards purchasing a Honda, I was told that in Karachi it would not be wise to buy a new Honda and instead to go for a new Suzuki GS 150 due to the high demand of Hondas and the high likelihood of a new 125 being stolen.

    So a year back (Nov 2012) after doing plenty of research I finally purchased my first ever Bike, GS 150 and asked the seller to deliver it to my office since I didn't want anyone at home to know had I purchased a bike since I didn't know how to ride one just yet. At my office I used the help of my guard to teach me how to turn it on, how to put it in gear, how to break and all the basics which were totally a new experience for me. After some three weeks of learning to ride in our large office parking lot after hours when there was no traffic I finally gained the confidence of driving it home. I began to drive it from home to office daily after everyone came to know I had purchased a bike but due to the fact I could comfortably ride it not too many objected to me purchasing a bike as I had originally thought.


    A month later I took my first ever 'Long Distance Test Drive' experience to Hyderabad which took me close to 3 hours with a brief 5 min stop at two places to adjust my ever so aching bum. I had a relative in the Army who was posted in Hyd Cantt. After a two night stay and a professional Champi I returned back to Karachi and realized just how painful and exhausting a long drive can be. Nothing could be done I thought, to resolve the issue of an aching bum from such a long drive.

    Upon reading many of the threads on this site I finally realized I needed a cushion to sit on for a longer drive as well as some basic necessities I would need for a longer drive.

    So this year from Feb/March I began my plan to ride to Islamabad and then up to Naran if I can. I did post on here asking for people's advice as to whether it was safe to drive to Naran from Karachi in March-April and most responded that Naran will not be approachable till late May due to snow which has not yet melted. So the next possible time I had was holidays just after Eid in August.

    So on Aug 21st I began my road trip to Islamabad. But I had only 10 days since I had to be back to work on Monday Sept 2nd and that meant I would have to be back in Karachi by Sat Aug 30th or Sun Aug 31st and allow myself to rest for a day on Sunday.

    I did the following very basic modifications;
    - HID Headlight for high beam, low beam was regular headlight
    - Installed a Car Lighter Adapter in order to keep my mobile charged while I listened to music during my drive
    - Installed a new wider and larger Tire in rear
    - Purchased new tubes for the front and back
    - Wasn't sure of the tools so left that since I have never changed a tire but was certain I would find a puncture shop on the road
    - Purchased an extra Clutch Cable and a Break Cable
    - Installed saddle bags for each side for my Water Supply and other heavy items
    - Installed two Heavy Horns to sound like a Corolla which really really helped throughout the trip
    - After getting a Fresh Oil Change two days before leaving, Also purchased an extra liter of oil for the road

    What I forgot was to purchase a pump, someone might help me change a tube but how would we pump air into the tire? That was something I realized much later after returning back to Karachi.

    I guess these are all the items I got done to the Bike before leaving. Now I should point out once again that all these ideas I got on this website from reading many other postings except for the lighter adapter which was my idea since I could not go an entire day without being certain I had a mobile which was charged for security situations in case I needed to call someone.

    I had a Thermos with ice cubes and frozen cold water along with frozen water bottles for the road.

    I began my trip exactly at 3:30 AM on Wed Aug 21st in order to do most of my drive in cool temperatures and avoid the summer heat. My plan was to clear Sindh in Day time and enter Punjab before sun set and take a hotel in Rahim Yar Khan. Now I had no idea just how long it would take me to reach Rahim Yar Khan so I planned a stop at RY Khan for the first night. My relative who lived in Hyderabad the year before had been re-posted to Dera Ismail Khan so now the plan was to stop there on my way to Islamabad, which meant a new route I had never been on.

    So my second night stay would have to be DI Khan if I could reach it.

    I left Karachi with a half tank of Fuel (Rs 500) in order to keep the weight light so I could easily cope with the steep hills I had to climb on my way to Hyderabad knowing full well that I would find many petrol pumps along the way. The plan was to fill up just after crossing Hyderabad as it would be a more flatter and smoother ride. I cleared Hyd just after 6:30 AM and filled up to the top. I drove past many farming communities and realized that although I had driven this route many times over the past 3 years, I never saw this view from the car which I was enjoying now on my bike trip. I kept a steady speed of 80 and sometimes even touched 90 on clear roads but had to slow back down 70 near heavy traffic.

    I stopped somewhere at a Truck Stop (Charpai Hotel) for breakfast at around 9 AM, not sure if I can remember the place but it may be close to Moro. I am certain that the very first 3 pics should remind some of the readers as to the location if they have traveled this route.


    After a 45 Minute stop for nashta which I had on a Charpai I got back on my bike and head further into Sindh. Now I should also mention that I had my relatives believe I would go by Bus and book my Bike on top all the way to Islamabad and then do my road trip from Isb to Naran. No one would believe it was possible or even safe to travel by bike this long route. This is why you will notice I had most all of my pics with my bike in order to later convince people that I in fact drove my bike and did not just stop the bus to take pics along the way.

    Most of the readers will automatically recognize these areas of interior Sindh along Kherpur, Gotki and other areas where I stopped to take pics.
    As it got closer and closer to the afternoon, it got hotter and hotter. I would stop periodically to open the water bottle in my saddle bag on the side which was already warm, so I would take a cup which I carried and mix the ice cold water with the warm water so as to not to have a very cold drink and at the same time make the water cold enough to drink and keep myself hydrated in the heat of August.

    I was expecting to reach the border of Punjab and cross Sadiqqabad and catch a hotel in RY Khan sometime in the evening knowing full well that I would have to stop within Sindh to take rest under the shade of a tree during the afternoon, but to my surprise I kept riding without tiring and by 2:30 pm I was already at RY Khan. I wondered what I would do all day in RY Khan and rather than sleeping it off at the hotel all day I decided to keep on going and pushed further ahead and improvise on my night stay along the way.

    Although I would stop from time to time to drink plenty of water along the way I noticed now that I was not perspiring, I was not passing urine, and so I was wondering where all that water was going. I mean I had possible drank almost 3 liters of water, two full Nestle bottles which are at least a liter and a half each. But soon I came head on with my worst fears. I began to feel a light headache which got worst as I drove, I was feeling the heat radiating from the asphalt on the road below me and I felt hotter and hotter with my forehead beginning to sweat.

    I was come down with a heat stroke. I quickly started searching for any shade I could find but to my surprise, after passing RY Khan I really didn't see any tree but rather just fields and fields of vegetation. Soon I began to see trees in a distance and now I began to wish for a tree I could just drive my bike across the field and park under the tree to rest it off and cool down.

    There was a small dirt road cutting of the highway into some village in a distance but that road was enough for me to have access to the tree line and I just drove into the field of grass and parked my bike under the rich green trees. I pulled out a plastic sheet which I had carried with me for such occasions and laid it on the uneven dried mud field and then took out the plain which sheet to lay on top of the plastic sheet and then used the cushion I was carrying to sit on as a pillow and just laid down to sleep. I don?t know when I dosed off to sleep but could hear people walking in the distance on that dirt road hardly 50 feet from where I was sleeping. From time to time I would open my eyes and see the people walk by or on bikes who were locals and they would look at me but carried on without stopping.

    When I finally woke it was past 5:30 pm and I slowly got up, took out some much needed cold water and mixed it with the water from the bottle and drank a good three glasses down. I sat simply lay for another 10 mins or so and then folded the bed sheet and the plastic sheet and put them back in place.
    I got back on the road and although I could still feel the heat readiating from the road beneath me, it was nothing as before and I also knew it would cool down now that the sun was at an angle and would set in another two to three hours.

    From my map I knew I had to get off the main N5 highway and go towards Uch Sharif and then onward towards DI Khan and stop for night stay somewhere at a Hotel. When I reached Uch it was almost Maghrib time so I stopped at the most beautiful Charpai Hotel that I had ever seen. It was beautifully built with paved parking lot, a nice small mosque next to it which was glittering in marble and glass designs and kalima written all around it in colorful tiles. It was so well lit with dozens of bulbs. So I stopped for Maghrib and then decided to have dinner. As usual I asked the waiter for a nice meal and then they asked where I was coming from and where I was heading upon seeing the luggage on my bike. I told them and they were shocked, that I had driven all the far from Karachi. I asked how far Ali Pur was since that was on route, they said it would be another 2 hours so I asked if there were any hotels to stay at in Ali Pur. They one by one along with other customers who heard of my trip and where I planned on going came to me and requested I not drive further due to bad security conditions during the night as well as there are no services along the way until Ali Pur in case I got a tire puncture or other problems. They all recommended I stay the night at the charpai hotel.

    So after dinner and isha I asked where I could sleep since my bike had luggage which was difficult for me to undo and then again it took a while for me to tie it and didn't want to waste time in the morning putting it on once again. So they suggested they would set up a charpai for me in the veranda (baranda) where I could park my bike next to me and they too had armed guards who would also watch out for my luggage and bike so not to worry. And the best part was the stay overnight was absolutely FREE. So I did just that and was fast asleep by 9:30 pm and had set my mobile alarm for 4 am in order to be on the road early to beat the summer heat and not face another day of heat stroke on my way to DI Khan.

    When I woke up in the morning at 4 am I shut the alarm and went back to sleep since it was such a restful sleep with a cool breeze thinking I would just rest for another 10 mins before getting up. It was the morning azan which I woke up to at around 5: 00 AM. I quickly told the waiter to prepare nashta for me (Chai Paratha) while I go to offer namaz. After nashta at 5:30 I was about to leave but was requested to wait till the sun came out for safety and so I did just that. There are a few pics of my morning nashta in that charpai hotel at Uch.

    I filled up at their pump and by 6 AM I was on the road again passing through many rivers along the road which were so pretty seeing the reflection in the water early in the morning.

    I drove to DG Khan, and then to DI Khan where I reached at 1:30 PM and stayed with my relative Major Hasan for two days. Enjoyed his family?s hospitality and wonderful food. And on Sat Aug, 24th at 6 Am after breakfast Major Hasan arranged for his Driver and Guard to escort me for a safe passage to the city limits and they put me on the road leading to Chashma.



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  2. #201
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    I am confused a little.
    You were getting bike fueled from Naran and getting little concerned whether it'll make it to Chillas in one tank or not, but then suddenly you continued to Saiful Malook instead??
    Did i miss something there??

    Lovely spot
    Bike Tour 4000 KMS  Karachi  Naran  Astor Gilgit Balistan and Back to Karachi -1314994

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    Default

    what an amazing solo bike trip you have taken Salutes to your endurance
    - www.crackwheels.com - A skilled Dictator is much more beneficial to Country......than a Democracy of Ignorant people

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    Quote Originally Posted by gull_s_777 View Post
    I am confused a little.
    You were getting bike fueled from Naran and getting little concerned whether it'll make it to Chillas in one tank or not, but then suddenly you continued to Saiful Malook instead??
    Did i miss something there??

    Lovely spot
    Bike Tour 4000 KMS  Karachi  Naran  Astor Gilgit Balistan and Back to Karachi -1314994

    As I was new to the region ahead I had no idea whether I would find petrol pumps on the way to Gilgit or in Chillas. I knew nothing of the locations in between Naran and Gilgit but knew Gilgit would have petrol.

    When I was fueling up I spoke to the attendant at the pump and asked where I would find another pump on the other side as I was heading to Gilgit. He said on the way to Gilgit there are no pumps but if you get to Chillas you will find pumps but not sure if they will have petrol.

    So he suggested its best to take two extra Water Bottles full of Petrol. Although I took the water bottles along I decided not to load up extra weight with petrol at that time.

    When I went up and came down from Saiful-Ul-Maluk I did the math and it was only a few kms I had traveled and figured it was very little petrol I may have used and no need to head back to Naran to fill up again. Although that crossed my mind I decided against that and carried on ahead.

  5. #204
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    Default Winding Road Through Cut Out Mountains

    I carried on enjoying the peaceful and lonely ride through the dry winding roads that seemed to have been literally cut out of the mountains.

    I eventually reached what seemed to have been a recently contstructed bridge a few yards from an older bridge that people used in the past but the old one was still operational and you could choose either one to cross over the river below. I naturally chose the newer one.
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    Default Crossing the New Bridge

    I took my trip towards the end of August while this bridge was opened and inaugurated exactly two months before I took my Pakistan Tour.

    What I failed to understand however, was what in the world was the foreign Gov't thinking by investing or donating a bridge in such a remote location. Of all the things that could have been done this really did not add up for some reason.

    In any case, it was most certainly a beautiful bridge to cross from one side of the mountain to the other and then back on the winding roads cut out of the other side of the mountain. A beautiful ride nonetheless.
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    Default Back on the Winding Roads

    You know when I was driving these secluded roads in the mountains the thought did cross my mind that this place is so isolated that some people traveling here alone would have a heart attack in fear of what 'might' happen.

    I thought the only thing that may happen would happen due to one's own carelessness if traveling at high speed. However, in case of a tire puncture there is no worry, just have patience and someone will pass on by soon enough.

    In any case, I enjoyed driving through this region to the fullest and couldn't get enough of the surroundings.
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    Default Police Check Post

    This was the same check post I drove through the day before where they instructed me to register at the Astor Police Station and they also checked my bike documents.

    Well, once again they checked my bike documents and checked me out as leaving the region.
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    Default And the Rocky Road Went On and On and On

    I could see in a distance the winding road I still had to travel on and at times I would wonder when will it ever end? And then I would remember that I past it just last night and it should be ending soon.

    But in all honesty, I would look at my odometer from time to time and know exactly how much more I had to go before I hit the KK Highway.
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    Default Now This Did Begin to Worry Me !!!

    It couldn't been moe than approximately 3 PM in the afternoon, and while it should have been sunny I was beginning to see dark patches of clouds move in.

    Now that did worry me somewhat because although I had packed a rain coat, I knew very well it would slow me down substantially. And considering I had a great big mountain to climb which was most gravel and stones, this would be cause for mud and slippery situations.

    I then decided I needed to cut down on my photography and aim at getting out of here as quickly as possible.

    But when I looked to the sky I noticed the clouds were moving ever so quickly and I realized they would not be overhead for very long, and if they were going to pour there was absolutely Nothing I could do about it since there was no shade or shelter anywhere and so I just carried on and prepared to improvise with whatever came my way.
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    Default Approaching the Bridge to Cross Over to reach KK Highway

    A few turns to the right and some to the left and then again some to the right and a few to the left, I finally saw the bridge down the hill I had to take in order to reach the KK Highway which was another 2 to 3 Kms at most.
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    Default zabardast trip

    Sir hats off to you. This is indeed a remarkable trip. It shows the courage you have for such a long and nerve shaking drive. This sets an example for persons like me that nothing is impossible. Setting this trip as an example, I am planning to give it a try too. Any one having the same plan is welcome to join me. The preferable time for me to go would be around mar-apr. And most importantly, we have Sulaiman bhai here for their expert opinions/advises.

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    Default KK Highway and Two Talvar at the Junction of KK Highway and the road leading to AStor

    I was relieved to reach the KK Highway at last where I could now kick it and speed through the remaining distance to the base of the mountain.

    The highways was beautiful and no doubt a Biker's Heaven. Absolutely wonderful.
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    Quote Originally Posted by atifkh74 View Post
    Sir hats off to you. This is indeed a remarkable trip. It shows the courage you have for such a long and nerve shaking drive. This sets an example for persons like me that nothing is impossible. Setting this trip as an example, I am planning to give it a try too. Any one having the same plan is welcome to join me. The preferable time for me to go would be around mar-apr. And most importantly, we have Sulaiman bhai here for their expert opinions/advises.
    Hahaha ... I got a kick out of that "we have Sulaiman Bhai for their expert opinions" .... I wish I could take that credit.

    In all honesty, after viewing any and all trips made on Bike which had been posted on PW had given me all the ideas and encouragement. it was really the passion to see my own country as I had seen others but not my own, so that is why even now I seek any opportunity to make a memorable trip if I can.

    But plan plan and plan, you will really enjoy it. But if you have plans of visiting the Northern areas such as Naran and onward, I too had a similar plan in Jan of this year but from my post on PW for advise I was told by many that snow only melts towards the end of April or early May so the best time to plan such a tour would be at the end of May or early July as far as I remember. So I figured if I have to wait that long then wait just a month or two more and go during or just after Eid rush so I planned for Aug 21st, one week after Eid.

  15. #214
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    A legendary trip
    My dear sir you have become a legend and a role model
    May Allah bless you

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    Default Drive to Ferry Meadows - Nanga Parbath

    From that junction of the Two Talvar of the North at the KK Highway it was Smooth Sailing on isolated and secluded roads that were a blessing compared to the one I had just come off in many ways.

    It was a Major Highway of the North, recently constructed by the Chinese Army. Actually, this is a historic highway that had existed for decades, perhaps even centuries since I believe this is part of the Historic "Silk Road". But now that the Chinese Army had reconstructed the road it was truly a Silk like feeling to drive on it.

    I came across one bend where there were a three Chinese engineers doing some survey along with their security provided to them by the Government. It took me a little while to realize what they were still doing as the road had been beautifully constructed so what else could have remained that needed still to be done on this highway. As I was winding through the turns on relatively high speeds of 70 to 80 kms and at one time on a straight long road I approached just over 90 but did not go up to 100 kms. Well I realized suddenly that they might have still to do was perhaps charting out the lines they still had to lay on the road. The white solid and dotted lines that separate direction of traffic still had to be added.

    Eventually, I came to the end of that stretch of highway and reached a long bridge I had to cross (Last Pic) which had Pak Army Check Post on the other end of the bridge once I crossed it. On the other side as you cross the bridge is the base of where you begin your journey if you want to go to Ferry Meadows or to Nanga Parbath.
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    Default Ferry Meadows

    As soon as I sat back on my bike after Checking in at the Army Check Post on the other side of the Bridge I took the very first pic of the entry towards Ferry Meadows where you have to take jeeps up the mountain where the journey to Ferry Meadows begins.

    This "Shangri Law Restaurant" is at the base of the entry to the Jeep boarding area.

    The KK Highway as I crossed this bridge is now the responsibility of the Pakistani Government to restore and complete. It was quite a difference between the level of professionalism the Chinese Army demonstrated in completing their part of the KK Highway on the first part whereas this part of the KK Highway was not nearly as good as that which the Chinese completed.

    The remaining part of the drive was a very peaceful and isolated drive without any traffic, only the odd car or truck passed me by from the opposite side otherwise it was very pleasant.

    This drive leading to Chillas which was still quite a ways from here was a warmer drive and it was to get ever so hot as I approached Chillas, so the cloud cover certainly helped in minimizing the heat for the moment and at times it was even a chilly breeze passing through.
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    Default Caravan

    I kept driving and driving and driving through the vast and long valley surrounded by mountains on both sides. But since it was so vast the highway was although winding from time to time, most of the highway was in pretty straight lines so I was able to keep a decent speed all the while taking pics as I drove without stopping.

    I was faced with cloud cover throughout and at times they became very dense and dark. I did see a few drops on my helmet visor at one time but nothing substantial to be concerned about. I knew very well that the most dangerous time of rain is usually the very initial part of rainfall. The road is filled with tire residue as well as diesel and oil leakage from cars and trucks that has dried into the road and with a fresh rainfall it gets dangerously slippery. So had it rained, I would have pulled over for a good half hour in order to allow the sleet and slippery oil/tire residue to wash off the road before getting back on the road. But it did not rain.

    I came around one bend and out came a heavily armed Army double cabin with an armed guard standing on the top behind a heavy machine gun. I was driving and was unable to stop and take a pic as it drove past me so I just kept on driving ahead.

    As I came around the other side of that turn I saw in a distance a long caravan of buses, wagons, mini coaches coming in my direction down a hill crossing over a dirt patch of road which allowed for only one way traffic. I was able to take a pic or two of that scene.

    When I reached that patch of dirt road which was very narrow the buses had already reached there and were beginning to cross. So I had to wait on this side all the while taking pics of the long caravan. I soon realized that there more and more buses and coaches coming around the mounting down that hill in front of me and so I had to look for an opening in between the buses and quickly cross over this patch of narrow road or I may be stopped here for some time.

    Eventually I saw a gap where the next bus behind a coaster was a bit of a distance I just revved up the engine and blasted through that narrow road and came on the other side leaving a long trail of dust cloud behind me.

    When I went up the hill and around the bend I was shocked to see even more buses and vans. They all had the sign Gilgit on them but they were coming from different locations since the Signs would to Chillas- Gilgit, or Mansehra - Gilgit, Rawalpindi - Gilgit, Peshawar - Gilgit, and so on.

    I realized then that this was an escorted caravan which all got together in Chillas coming from different areas and were under the protection of the army all the way to Gilgit. As this thought crossed my mind I soon saw the last vehicle in a distance, which again was a heavily armed Army double cabin. This must have been the end of the caravan. I tried counting the vehicles from the beginning when I was waiting at the narrow dirt road for a crossing and I think I counted up to 33 just before I found and opening and rushed through. By the end of the entire lengthy caravan I think the count of buses and coasters would have been well over 60 though I lost track of the count but it went on for quite some time.

    Only then did it dawn on me that perhaps there is also a security risk of some sort for transport in this area although aside from myself, there were also a few trucks I passed and a corolla which I took a pic of at Ferry Meadows. So perhaps there wasn't any danger at present but the buses requested extra security to be on the safe side.
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    Default

    Thanks a lot sulaiman bhai. Actually I will get the off time from my office during Apr may only. I might not plan for such deep in northern areas. I am just waiting for a partner. So wish me best of luck. :-). BTW from ur experience I m also planning for Suzuki 150. Need your advise on that.

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    Default Approaching the Petrol Pump and Restaunt I stopped at the Day Before

    I soon arrived at a very small village which I quickly zipped through and after a bit more of a drive through secluded mountain range on the KK Highway I arrived back at the Restaurant where I had lunch the day before right across from the Petrol Pump where I filled Petrol yesterday.

    I first drove right into the petrol pump to fill up and the attendant walked up and filled it up for me. Inside the glass window of their office three other men sat of which two recognized me from yesterday and came out by the time I had filled up and walked my bike to their office wall for shade and parking.

    They asked how the trip was and where I had gone to since I hadn't told them the day before where I was headed, they simply never asked. I then told them I just went to Astor for a night and now heading back to Naran. One said that I had better get going soon since it was now 4:30 pm and it would be night by the time I crossed the mountain. I said I just have to take a 15 minute break at the restaurant across the street. They said sure take your time and as I was about to walk away from the bike one of them brought a steel glass with ever so cold water in it. I could tell it was very cold water from the fuzzy condensation on the outside of the steel glass as he handed it to me.

    I drank every drop and then without asking just walked over to the large orange water cooler / large thermos and poured out another glass of the same cold water and also drank that down. I was kind of tired now so I needed that blessing of cold water.

    I thanked them and in my heart prayed for them for being thoughtful enough to offer me water when although I never asked, but they just felt that I needed it.

    I walked across the street and right into the "New Shinvari Hotel" as you can read from the sign board. As soon as I approached the charpai the waiter and owner both recognized me. This time I walked straight to the continuous running tap which was connected to a plastic pipe and I washed my hands and face. The hose was resting on the grass below so I had to hold it with one hand and as I poured water in one palm to wash my face the owner, or was it the waiter who walked up and held the water hose/pipe for me. I thanked him and washed my face with the bitterly cold but pleasant water a few times and rinsed my neck and and then when I was done I came to sit down on a vacant Charpai.

    There were other locals sitting on two charpais ahead of me just chit chatting and resting.

    The owner asked how my trip was and I told him it was beyond my expectations, very good indeed. So he asked whether I visited anywhere in Astor and I said I visited Rama but missed Deosai and he said I should have stayed another day as its one of the most beautiful and vast national parks in the world. Well I don't know about the world but I have seen pics of it on the net now and have heard and read about it and feel that was worth extending my trip for but since it was not in the plans and I had no way of contacting my relatives in Isbd because I had no reception on my mobile after leaving Naran the day before that it was best to just stay with the program and return to Islamabad for my return to Karachi.

    I then asked him to quickly get me some food and he ordered the waiter for chicken qorma and naan.

    I had my meal and towards the end realized I need a pic so gave the camera to the waiter to take two pics of me. I was now thinking I had taken so many pics along the way I am not sure how much longer the battery would last so save it till I get to the top of the mountain and definitely take pics of Babusar Top where the Army Check Post was and then some pics of the beautiful towns and villages I crossed yesterday on my way here.

    As I finished dinner I asked for tea. The owner said if you want to get to Naran I suggest you stop here for the night and leave early morning because it will be dark soon. I asked whether traffic is on the mountain in the dark and he sure trucks do go in the dark but not too many and you are on a bike so just rest now for the day and leave tomorrow.

    I gave it a thought and then realized that it is another four hours to Naran, and then the road ahead to Isalamabad all in the same day tomorrow will be risky though I am sure I will make it even if its too late, but I decided against it and told him I must get to Naran today.

    He then said to forget drinking chai and get going as soon as possible because you will crossing the mountain in the dark. I thought to myself, "NO PROBLEM, I have HID headlights and they are Bright and Brilliant".

    BUT BOY .... WAS I SO SO WRONG !!!

    I HAD ANOTHER THING WAITING FOR ME ON THE MOUNTAIN.

    It was now 5 pm and I figured it would be 9 pm by the time I reached Naran so I best get going now. I paid the bill, but he wouldn't accept it saying ... "Ap hamare mehman ho, ham ap se paise kese le sakte han?" And said everyone going past your hotel is a mehman and you have to make a living so please accept it. With a little hesitation he accepted the payment.

    I walked back to the bike, said my salams to the pump attendants and hit the road towards Chillas.
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by atifkh74 View Post
    Thanks a lot sulaiman bhai. Actually I will get the off time from my office during Apr may only. I might not plan for such deep in northern areas. I am just waiting for a partner. So wish me best of luck. :-). BTW from ur experience I m also planning for Suzuki 150. Need your advise on that.
    You don't need any advice on Suzuki 150 because its not only the long drive you have to think of because its extremely comfortable and smooth on a long drive on highways, but more importantly you will also be driving it here in Karachi. And in Karachi we all know that Honda is the one that is highly sought after or stolen. So Suzuki is the best option in the heavier bikes specially due to the Auto-Start option which is the best part.

    But any advice you need you are more than welcome and I am certain you will get a lot more people on this thread also giving you some wonderful tips and advice since I am very new to the bike scene and only have this trip and another one I took recently which I will start a threat on in the coming days once this is completed.

    So feel free to ask anything that you like, I will also advise you on things I could have done but realized after returning that could have been useful but we learn from experience, and you have all my experience you can learn from as well many other bloggers on PW.

    Sulaiman

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