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Toranmal - Beautiful yet hidden

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  • Toranmal - Beautiful yet hidden

    Toranmal - Beautiful yet hidden

    The idea of visiting Toranmal started off with a simple chat on Facebook between Puneet & me.
    Which place is left unexplored which can be done in 2 days? We wanted to ride more than the usual <300 kms which anyone would prefer for a weekender. A little work around on options which we had in Maharahtra tourism website led us to Toranmal Hill Station which is in Nandurbar district. It is a hill station located in Satpura range.
    Alright close 1000 kms round trip in 2 days is it possible, should it be done even if it is possible and how to plan riding to a place which has limited information even on the famed google.

    After working out on few options and putting the details on our famous Mumbai XBhp Offline thread it was finally 6 of us who made for this ride viz., Sachin, Puneet, Kartik, Aryan, Hasan & Pranav

    From Mumbai there are 2 ways of reaching to Toranmal -
    1) Either you can go via NH3 & MSH1 and return (900 kms trip) [OR]
    2) Go Via NH8 - NH6 - SH5 - SH2 and return via MSH1 - NH3 (950 kms trip)
    *Note above kms are counted from Thane as the start point

    We took the 2nd option and completed a round trip as I wanted to see both routes rather than the usual same route for going and coming back. None of us had ever been on NH6 and hence, it was decided that we will do a round trip although the route to this unexplored hill station is long.

    Day 1 - 10th Dec'11
    500 kms > Thane to Toranmal
    Route - NH8 (270kms) - NH6 (145kms) - SH5 (50kms) - SH2 (39kms)


    The beauty of a road trip is not on reaching the destination so that you can start enjoying the place rather it's riding, riding and only riding sometimes as it was in this case. We rode not to reach Toranmal but we rode to enjoy the ride.

    As planned we all met at Fountain hotel on NH8 at 4:30 am and we were also accompanied by Viraj who came in his cage (SX4) till Fountain hotel. After little chit chat session we started our ride at around 5am. We started our ride in a cool morning with nice cold breeze making our ride so special. Darn, it was good to be back on a road trip almost after a month. We kept riding at around 70's to start off with and finally after completing 100 kms we took our first stop at around 7am. It was still dark and as everytime it happens we started discussing how was the ride so far.

    Nothing different, but more importantly I checked on Kartik who was riding Unicorn and first time with Xbhpians. Luckily Kartik rode well and was able to keep up with the faster bikes around him. Oh by the way, by faster bikes I only mean Karizma's & R15. We moved on after a short break and finally stopped for breakfast when we saw McDonalds somewhere close to Vapi if I remember correct. Mcdonalds if you visit early morning as anyone would expect to eat Breakfast menu was not unfortunately not available. Nevertheless, We ate whatever was available and ate well enough to keep ourselves content till afternoon.


    First Break at McD somewhere little ahead of Vapi




    Final stretch of NH8 for us before we turned for NH6. This is somewhere close to Kadodra


    NH8





    Finally we reached Kadodra Chowkdi from where we had to take right turn for NH6. It was around 270 kms of superb riding we experienced on NH8 which has improved over the years now. Now they have become beautiful 3 lane highways to ride on without any issues what so ever. As soon as we left NH8 and started on NH6 the roads initially scared the hell out of
    us. Single lane which was full of trucks and difficult to overtake but this situation was a burden for us only for sometime as later on the roads started getting better and we finally found well constructed 2 lane highways.






    Packet full of Water

    Now suddenly after covering good 300 kms in around 6 hours our breaks started increasing, blame it on smokers. Even if we stopped just to check the route the cigarette was lit, Darn it started annoying after a point of time but who can stop a lightening from striking or a group of people looking for stress buster in the name of smoke. We moved on with our ride which was so far very pleasant as roads were in top condition and riding on butter smooth roads is always a bliss. NH6 also turned out to be a nice ride and by now my mind already started thinking will SH5 also be nice. Puneet & I were frequently checking on Google maps after we crossed Navapur followed Gangapur as there is a diversion or a left turn which will finally lead us to SH5.


    Cotton plantation can be seen on SH5 while going to Toranmal




    Some tp in nice shady places


    Pranav's natural spike







    I am glad we did the right thing by checking on Gmaps which helped us quite a bit in reaching Toranmal there are a few diversions once you leave NH6. It was around 3pm when we were riding on SH5 passing one village after the other and by now the hungry lions just became more hungry to eat and thus started a search for a good hotel. Was it a difficult task finding a good hotel on SH5, No it was n't as we found a nice Hotel which had an ambiance, look and feel of being a quality restaurant. We washed our faces with nice cold water and started ordering food. Food we ordered included some nice chicken starters and Chicken Biryani. As for veggies, they enjoyed palak and paneer if I recollect correctly. Enjoyed eating quality food and whiling our time in the Hotel for a good hour or so while the bikes also got a breather from the long distance covered so far.


    Red chillies Somewhere enroute Nandurbar - Shahada







    After a nice meal, we continued our ride riding in formation one after the other covering good distance and also getting the usual stares on the roads from villagers who looked at us anxiously. It was around 3:30pm when we finally saw the board for Toranmal for the first time in the entire trip after covering around 400 + kms. Last 50 kms was mainly narrow
    village roads with lots of bullock carts and usual jeeps full of villagers blocking one side of the road.

    The last 30 kms to Toranmal is where the actual fun begins with a beautiful lake view just ahead of Ranipur Village. We stopped here for sometime as it was around 4:30 pm already and we still had some 30 odd kms before we reached Toranmal. The last 25 kms to Toranmal is complete Ghat section narrow roads which goes through jungle on both sides of the roads. It was a completely different experience riding here as there was gravel and loose stones in middle of the road and ghat was not a normal ghat it was more like the riding on high mountain passes in Ladakh minus the cold weather you get there.






    This marks the beginning of sightseeing in Toranmal. This spot is just ahead of Ranipur village


    Curious happy village boys enjoying every bit of sightseeing the bikes in front of their eyes

    The ghat sections had lot of steep climbs and really steep drops and some really twisted hair pins. We stopped in between to enjoy the forest experience, it was so quiet and so peaceful I wished I could have camped there.
    After clicking some snaps in jungle and enjoying the scenic views we moved on as it was almost dawn. After almost riding in ghat for an hour we
    stopped for a brief moment at 'Seven Steps point' which is at an impressive height of 1143 meters. From here one can actually see the loops which has a series of 7 loops visible from this point.


    Final 25 kms to Toranmal is complete ghat roads where both sides are complete sight seeing and breathtaking views




    Which Animal could have done this? Leopard


    Jungle jungle baat chali hai pata chala






    This last stretch to Toranmal is so quiet you can feel you are riding through a jungle.. Awesome experience


    Gata Loops of Maharashtra :P








    Seven Steps Point - 1143 feet high




    Night shot of Yashwant Lake

    We moved on and finally reached our destination which was 1400 meters above sea level, Toranmal Hill Station. We checked in Hotel Sheetal which is MTDC Approved, along side is the very beautiful view of Yashwant Lake which is right next to the hotel. We paid Rs.600 for the room which big enough for 6 people to accomodate and sleep well, So it came to Rs.100 per head Not bad at all Next thing we discovered is Toranmal has no cellphone networkand you are completely disconnected from the world. We had to rely on STD to call back home.


    Total Lunar Eclipse - Enjoyed at Toranmal












    Gandhijee.. Ha ha

    Night was spend well gazing at stars and we also enjoyed the best Lunar Eclipse one can watch in the next 7 years. Wish anyone of us had a better zoom lens camera to capture a better view of Lunar eclipse. Food was supplied by the hotel itself, we were served with hot Chicken Handi and roti's followed by nicely cooked jeera rice. Latter part of the night was spent doing campfire in the hotel area and followed by a walking in forest which was very scary for me at least. I remember challenging aryan to go to one certain place and come back if had guts and damn the defense navy guy could not go. All Aryan could pull off was scaring the shit out of me on a couple instances by shouting very close to my ears. Alright I admit I got scared as the place looks haunted at night with no one around. Finally with lot of fun we had in reaching to Toranmal clubbed with some nice food and nice friends along we went to sleep at around 1AM.
    Last edited by Sachinnair; 01-03-2012, 02:42 PM. Reason: Correction
    My Ninja 650 Thread:
    A Green Affair! Starring Kawasaki Ninja 650

    My Travelogues:
    LOST in Sikkim
    Ride to Mt. Abu - An oasis in the desert

    Ladakh & Lahaul Valley 2011 - A journey to heaven & back
    Toranmal - Beautiful yet hidden
    Khushboo Gujarat Ki
    Sands of Time - Rajasthan

  • #2
    Red Hot chillies approved.
    (Been There Done That) x 3.25

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by sunilg View Post
      Red Hot chillies approved.
      What An Approval ..Thanks
      Leh,Ladakh & Lahaul Ride to Heaven & Back - http://www.xbhp.com/talkies/tourer/1...aven-back.html
      Ride to Mt.Abu Rajasthan - http://www.xbhp.com/talkies/tourer/1...is-desert.html
      Toranmal(Jungle)- http://www.xbhp.com/talkies/tourer/2...et-hidden.html

      Comment


      • #4
        @sachin Nair - You havent completed your Leh trip log and you have started a new one. Hope you complete any one of them atleast.

        Regards,
        Deepan

        Comment


        • #5
          Hey man nice log man... perfect, not too detailed not too concise either... . And oye! seven steps pint is 1143 Metres Not feet
          RIDE IT LIKE YOU STOLE IT!!!


          Comment


          • #6
            Wonderfully different!
            Join xBhp On

            Comment


            • #7
              why am I not getting any thanks in this log
              sigpic

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by darkknight View Post
                why am I not getting any thanks in this log
                All mumbai threads should by default have a thank you to the (M)MTDC :P


                This is good stuff! I missed this! was exploring delhi in a stupid metro then!
                Super CommuTOURer� - Talk less, Ride more

                .: FB :.|.: TW :.|*IG*| Ex
                PowerDrift:.

                #Give thy opinion, write em, dont throw em
                #Everyone errs, accept it, defending/cribbing about it only makes it worse
                #Dont defend a manufacturer as if you work for them
                #Write. Think. If relevant hit submit. If not hit yourself
                #Be kind in your choice of words, you never know who would make you gulp em
                � Satyen Poojary

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                • #9
                  Beautiful pix there..!!!
                  .... I will rather ride my Bike thinking about God, then sitting in a Temple thinking about my Bike.. ..

                  Blog : Mumbai - Leh - Mumbai : 21 Days, 6500kms. Journey to Heaven..June'09
                  GreatIndianRide - West India on a 110cc for over a month
                  Mumbai-Leh-Mumbai - A Sequel : July'11 (Blog coming soon)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Aah loved the pictures there...especially the RED ones

                    Good to know that you all had fun there...we did miss you all at the Slope of hell,Kamshet...and that also reminds me of the pictures i took there of the Lunar eclipse..
                    A very good and safe biker not only because he can pop up either of the wheels,scrape his knees on a corner or go fast and make it look stylish but because he very well knows his limits and capabilities and has the patience to learn about others and ride safe ! :)

                    sigpic

                    My Saddlesore Log : The 1st Saddlesore in India on a 135cc

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by xstunter View Post
                      @sachin Nair - You havent completed your Leh trip log and you have started a new one. Hope you complete any one of them atleast.

                      Regards,
                      Deepan
                      Deepan, Dont say that. I have updated our Leh log last week. We finally reached Leh in my last edition updated

                      Originally posted by PRANAV D View Post
                      Hey man nice log man... perfect, not too detailed not too concise either... . And oye! seven steps pint is 1143 Metres Not feet
                      Corrected. Nice to ride again after a long time.

                      Originally posted by Sunny View Post
                      Wonderfully different!
                      Thanks Sunny!
                      My Ninja 650 Thread:
                      A Green Affair! Starring Kawasaki Ninja 650

                      My Travelogues:
                      LOST in Sikkim
                      Ride to Mt. Abu - An oasis in the desert

                      Ladakh & Lahaul Valley 2011 - A journey to heaven & back
                      Toranmal - Beautiful yet hidden
                      Khushboo Gujarat Ki
                      Sands of Time - Rajasthan

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hey Sachin ! Wonderful log and awesome pics there mate. Do you have more pics to be uploaded ?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Nagesh Patankar View Post
                          Hey Sachin ! Wonderful log and awesome pics there mate. Do you have more pics to be uploaded ?
                          Yes More Pics are coming and also Day 2 Log..
                          Leh,Ladakh & Lahaul Ride to Heaven & Back - http://www.xbhp.com/talkies/tourer/1...aven-back.html
                          Ride to Mt.Abu Rajasthan - http://www.xbhp.com/talkies/tourer/1...is-desert.html
                          Toranmal(Jungle)- http://www.xbhp.com/talkies/tourer/2...et-hidden.html

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Day 2 - Exploring Toranmal and return journey

                            Day 2 - 11th Dec'11 > Exploring Toranmal and return journey
                            450 kms > Toranmal to Thane
                            Route - MSH1 & NH3

                            How do I wake up? I can hear people shouting outside the hotel, "Tey bagh tey bagh Kolaa" I did not know what is a Kolaa? So I went outside still not out of my sleep mode completely wrapping myself in a blanket. I realized Fox is called Kolaa in Marathi and in all excitement I asked the tourist, Kuthe? Kuthe? He pointed his finger on the other side of Yashwant lake where I could see a Fox drinking water. Wow, what a sight I wish I had a camera handy or at least a Binocular to get a better view. Others woke up one after the other and we ordered for Tea/Coffee and breakfast. A nice cup of tea close to the Yashwant lake was enjoyed by all of us as we discussed on today's plan.

                            Last night I had inquired with a localite that how much time would it take to view all the points and places in Toranmal to which the guy had said, it will take 2 hours max. I said That's It!!! Wow, so there are few must visit points in Toranmal like Yashwant lake, Khadki Point, Sita Khai, Lotus Lake & Machindranath cave.
                            Since, this place is so quiet and unknown to many there were very few tourists who came. We met a group of toursits who had come by car and wanted to know which group we belong to and how do they join as well? So we explained them about the Xbhp group which is home to many bikers in India. How we ride and importance of riding gear?


                            Beautiful natural lake of Toranmal, Yashwant Lake


                            Another view of Yashwant Lake

                            It was around 9AM when we left hotel for sight seeing the nearby places in Toranmal. We visited the 'Khadki Point' first which was a trekking area where there was lot of picturesque views of the valleys below. It was good to see many seating and shade arrangements created for tourists to relax and enjoy the cold breeze and brilliant views of the valleys.
                            Roads to visit points in Toranmal are not in the best condition however all the places are within 5 - 10 kms radius so it is pretty much manageable with no rain. In Monsoon it would be a totally different story.






                            Toranmal Hill Station - one of the various sight seeing pointsAnother view of Yashwant Lake


                            Wonder what is she trying to remove from there?













                            After Yashwant Lake we went back to our hotel rooms, collected our luggage and checked out. Post which we visited Lotus lake, The Lotus Lake is so named because there are Lotus flowers which cover the entire lake. Hundreds of these beautiful Pink colored lotuses cover the entire length of the lake making it a memorable sight for any tourist passing by. As soon as we approached the lake there were small children holding these beautiful flowers to sell to the tourists who pass by. All I could do is give them some money as they really where in real need I think they way they were desperately trying to sell those flowers. After clicking a few pictures of the lake and enjoying the view we moved on and saw the Sita Khai.Just like any other view point, they offered a panoramic view of the valley below.













                            Last but not the least was Machindranath Caves which we had decided we will view on the way while going back. Alright I must say admit that reaching Machindranath Caves was a difficult task as it was complete offroading with sharp stones lying randomly everywhere. Climb followed by equally difficult drop from the road was very challenging indeed as if we braked our tires skidded and if we did n't we would have certainly fallen. Very carefully we completed this few kms which would lead us to Machindranath cave. I had stopped in between to click everyone pass by this dreadful stretch and we reached at point where it was mentioned 'No Vehicles here onwards' Hmmm Hot sun above warning us not too walk too much :P, road looking empty ahead with no Vehicles allowed mentioned, strange enough we decided to move on with Puneet all the way in the front of the group. Riding pass this board you would find yourself riding along the edge of the cliff and if you slip nothing to save you what so ever. Puneet while riding suddenly within a matter of few 100 metres suddenly found the road dissappearing which was followed by steps which lead to Machindranath cave. Puneet might have got the worst nightmare trying to brake and save himself from going any further down. Luckily there was one guy standing there who managed to pull him back, no he was not a guy he was an angel for Puneet :P Lucky you bugger, Be careful next time!!

                            We all parked the bikes and with others already tired and soaked in sun decided to gave up the idea of watching the cave and stood their place. So it was Puneet & Me who finally trekked a few meters to reach the cave. Walking distance to cave was again very narrow and it is said that this cave becomes hidden in Monsoon due the waterfall flowing right over it. I would suggest no one to visit this cave in monsoon as it would be asking for trouble and very easily can turn into a mishap. One has to literally crawl all the way inside if you have to reach to the end on the dark side of the cave where there is a statue which was hardly visible in dark. Legend has it that Sage Machindranath used to meditate here.


                            Way to Machindranath Cave


                            The offroading begins....




                            Not for the faint heart... Difficult terrain..


                            Oops.. Riders riding very cautiously


                            Freaking awesome experience and difficult too




                            Babuji zara dheere chalo :P




                            Puneet taking his final steps to reach Machindranath cave - This cave becomes hidden in monsoon due to waterfalls right from the top of the cave.





                            Outside Machindranath cave


                            Machindranath Cave


                            Going all the way inside the cave was like training session in army base camp :P


                            End of Cave - Deepest part


                            Inside the cave clicking Puneet standing outside.
                            My Ninja 650 Thread:
                            A Green Affair! Starring Kawasaki Ninja 650

                            My Travelogues:
                            LOST in Sikkim
                            Ride to Mt. Abu - An oasis in the desert

                            Ladakh & Lahaul Valley 2011 - A journey to heaven & back
                            Toranmal - Beautiful yet hidden
                            Khushboo Gujarat Ki
                            Sands of Time - Rajasthan

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              ek number sachin

                              somehow i missed this log. amazing write up and even better pics.
                              Suzuki Samurai (2003-2004)
                              Hero Honda Passion (2004-2010)
                              Bajaj Pulsar 220 F (2010-2013)
                              Bajaj Pulsar 200NS (2013-????)

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