My journey started from Jaipur @ 4.30am.. We (my wife) choose this time to avoid heavy traffic along the Jaipur- Delhi Route (NH8) – As I am new to North India and not sure of Delhi Road’s we thought we will need all the extra time getting out of Delhi and hit the Ghazibad Highway. Although we tried to google and find maps it wasnt as easy as we thought (Whilst in UK it was easy as Maps.co.uk would give exhaustive info)- It was not a planned trip- so couldnt make any reservations nor spent much time planning the trip !! However Help is always availble for those who seek it (remembering the lines from Harry Potter !!)
Somehow we rolledup our sleeves and started as planned @ 4.30am **(Always go to bed early the night before t you plan to travel early hours)- with less luggage (Only one air bag of clothes and 1 backpack with cameras-Prepared our Maruti Swift for the journey and Said a loud Jai Ganesh !! and ignited the engine.
With Fuel showing half tank, I was confident that I would reach delhi without having to refill – (Petrol is Rs.4 cheaper / Ltr in Delhi as against Jaipur) – As we were about to leave Jaipur and hit Delhi Highway(NH8) we saw an Auto topple… As usual we thought this might be a bad omen (i hardly believe such things, but somehow the company you are with make you believe ;))
Rest of the journey to Gurgaon to Delhi was uneventful – Took a break at McDonalds Before the Gurgaon Toll Gate.
Somehow followed my gut feeling to take the road towards Udyog Vihar etc as we entered Delhi and asked few people and they said I turn back and take the ring road- As the petrol tank was almost empty didnt want to risk running dry on ring road- So sought an autodriver’s assistance for locating the nearest petrol station- Filled the Tank- 36ltrs and turned back to hit the ring road- Someone directed us to keep straight we will hit Kale Khan- Dont know wat this was (its a bus stand) and Nizamuddin Rly Station is nearby.
Took a wrong turn and missed Ghaziabad road- Immediate U Turn and back on track !! – As we entered Ghaziabad Traffic increased (road is 2 lane) – Hit Hapur and read somewhere to take bypass to Moradabad.
Few Streaches of the road in UP is really bad (NHAI is working to make it a 6 lane highway, works are in progress)- Reached Moradabad nearing 2pm took Rampur bypass and reached Kasipur, Ramnagar and Corbett.
Before we started was checking on Hotel Package Deals and came by a message about a person who can assist.. called his mobile without much expectations ! but to my surprise he (Kostubh Pandey) gave a good deal and was very helpful
After reaching Ramnagar called Kostubh and he gave directions to reach his office.. not much trouble to find the place as its a small town.. Kostubh joined us and directed towards the cottage -Wild Trail. He had booked a Swiss Tent and we were really happy as it was in the midst of lush green valley and overlooking a river (RamGanga).
We rested for rest of the day and Kostubh had arranged for a early morning Game visit.
Didnt find the Boss of the Jungle, but were able to spot few mamals (sambar, Deer, Monkey)
We tried for Elephant safari and jeep safari for the afternoon annd next morning- But we werent lucky..
To make up for this Kostubh suggested that if I pickhim up next morning he would take me for Bird Watching- its a 15-20 kms away from Corbett on Nanital road- Was lucky to spot few birds..
In the noon drove to Hanging Bridge- and watched school girls playing merrily in the river and thier accompaning teachers blowing whistles to get them out of water.. and few families enjoying thier time in Corbett.
The Road in Corbett is very well done – The place still retains its natural beauty and we had a very pleasant time… it resembled Scotland in many ways.. Next day hit the road back to Jaipur (and got lost in Delhi !!)