I drove from dakpathar to Delhi yesterday with my family while returning from Paonta Sahib.It was a beautiful drive as you drive past vikas nagar on yamunotri delhi road through the scenic hills with excellent road.But as you are nearing saharanpur,the road starts getting bumpy making you wonder whether to continue on the same highway or take an alternative route.I called a friend who strongly advised me to take a detour via rourkee,as it was not safe to drive at night the shamli to delhi road via baghpat due to security concerns.That meant going offtrack to rourkee,which didnt appeal to me.So I decided to go ahead to shamli and turn to panipat instead,on way to Delhi.
Well,that was the biggest blunder of my trip.The road from saharanpur to shamli is a history.It might have existed once upon a time,but its extinct now.Its not just about potholes but,its actually deep craters all along,putting your car and driving skills to ultimate tests,which was not the right time to practise late in the evening with family onboard.Well,I was lucky to traverse the stretch without any mishap,but a distance of merely 58 kms from Saharanpur to Shamli took good 2 hours and 45 minutes of pain and anxiety.
Me and my wife were cursing the politicians for robbing taxpayers hard earned money including ours,without returning any value for it,and only reaffirming our support to Anna hazare’s movement. After crossing shamli I thought the stretch to panipat would be smooth,but although it was better and motorable, but not as smooth as I was expecting it to be. Just when I thought the worst was over,I got caught in the long jam between trucks on the bridge over Yamuna due to toll barrier ahead while crossing from UP to Haryana.We kept asking ourselves,why cant there be separate lanes for trucks and cars and do away with this everyday ritual at most border points,which is totally avoidable and sadistically man made harassment zones? Do we call it toll barriers coz it takes it toll on us for displaying utter patience and keeping our cool.
And while waiting at the bridge for over an hour I realised the bridge has either outlived its life,or was born with congenital defects,as it kept shaking while the trucks moved on the opposite lane,not just the vibrations which could be felt like during an earthquake,but visibly so as you can see yours and other vehicles shaking up and down,while waiting for the traffic to move. Pathetic!
As you finally touch the National highway at Panipat towards Delhi,its a big,feel at home kind of relief,even before you have reached home.I finally took a break at 2 am in the morning at much heard about Sukhdev Dhaba (must try for those who have not done it yet),a real happening joint on the highway at Murthal.Its like daytime even at night and made us come alive again after the harrowing journey behind us.
Finally,I covered the distance from dakpathar to delhi in good 12 hours,which was otherwise targetted within 7 to 8 hrs max.
I have shared some pictures which are not directly linked to the text but taken during the day journey.
Moral of the story:
Specific:Dont ever take saharanput shamli route in the near future,till you are sure its redone.
General: Dont ever take any offtrack routes (other than main highways) unless you have prior information on the road conditions….more so in UP,where road condition,crime prone belt and night travel makes a deadly cocktail….
Paonta Sahib is one of my favorite spot near by Dehradun.
Assan Barrage conduct water sports too.
Thanks for your comment.We had been wanting to go to Paonta Sahib for quite a long time but finally could make it last month only.The drive from here to dakpathar is beautiful and so is the view at Asan Barrage.But water sports is not as developed as its claimed to be.Except for boating,nothing was happening even though the spot has potential to offer much more to tourists.
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@ Ravi ,
Last year I had plannned to drive to Dehradun via Shamli- Bagpat route. But due to Super monsoon of 2010 , I changed my plan just a day in advance and followed the same old NH-58 and NH-72 to Dehradun. Earlier this route was drivable but after 2010 , it seems the government has forgot to rebuild the road.
One advice – Please donot drive on UP highways during night with your family. It is not at all safe. It is better to avoid these routes at night.
Thanx for the advice.Infact,I end up doing this mistake each time while returning to Delhi,in order to maximise my time at the place I have visited.But when you run into a challenging situation with family around,you really start taking resolutions for future trips.Hope I will try to have mind over heart and not vice versa,when I venture out next time with family.
Welcome to Ghumakkar. The post is beautifully written supported with nice pictures. Please provide some information about you in “Know the author” column.
Ravi – Welcome to Ghumakkar.
I would have the same advice as Sahil. Please avoid night driving unless absolutely necessary.
we are planning to drive down to dakpatthar via dehradoon towards middle of august.
Which one is preferable via dehradoon or via saharanpur? Tx.
As shared in my story,the 48 out of 58 km stretch of road between saharanpur and shamli is pathetic and certainly not even worth attempting,unless ofcourse you are really adventurous.Pls dont even think about taking that route.
I have not been to Dehradoon in the recent past,so dont really know the road conditions via Roorkee,Muzzaffarnagar and Modi Nagar,but being the main highway to Hardwar,I think it should be much better( although right now, it should be more of a trek rather than a highway as,you would sharing the space with kavarias…).The situation would return to normal by mid Aug,when you plan to travel.So go ahead and take this route.
Alternatively,if you do not mind travelling longer distance,for the sheer experience of an enjoyable drive,I can suggest you a route which is going to be far better.You may take Delhi-Panipat-Karnal-Ambala.Then on pls turn right towards Naraingarh-Kala Amb-Paonta Sahib-Herbertpur-Dak Pathar.Infact,there would be several points where you can turn right to reach Naraingarh like Karnal,Pipli or Shahbad but I am not sure about the road conditions.The best bet would be from Panchkula towards Naraingarh as you are totally avoiding UP roads.Also,the drive from Kala Amb to Paonta Sahib is quite scenic,and even more so from Paonta Sahib to Dakpathar,which is along the Yamuna canal,where you can also pause at Asan barrage for a lovely view over a chai and snacks.While at Dakpathar,you can stay at Garhwal Vikas Mandal Nigam rest house,which is an ok kind of place,where an ac room should cost you only a thousand bucks,but you can enjoy the big swimming pool here.This route may seem to be longer,but you will cover it in much lesser time and you would certainly enjoy it.
Have a nice trip!
This is one of the coolest place around DehraDun. It gained more popularity because of Gurudwara. Feels terrific, to be there.
I must say very nice brief coverage of poanta sahib,assan baragge and dakpathar as i m a resident of vikasnagar near dakpathar
there is direct road to Yamuna nagar from poanta sahib once you reach jagAdhri u can take route towards indri karnal then to Nh1