Date/Day – Wednesday , 22nd June
Journey – Udhampur- Srinagar
Distance – 230 kms
Riding Time – 10.5 Hrs
Gradient- Climb/Descend till Jawahar Tunnel (about 150 kms). Single Lane Highway till Srinagar
I was super excited, we were finally climbing Himalayas on our Motorbikes. We reached Patnitop in less than 2 hours. To be very honest we didn’t even realize that we had corssed Patni Top. We had roasted corn/water and moved on. We reached near a Hydroelectric Power project on Chenab River, clicked some pictures of the Dam releasing water. We decided to have lunch at the same place and it was again Veggy Dhabha, as obvious Farzin was pissed. Moving up further there were mega mountains and rushing rivers, green trees and smell of pine trees. Everything was going as planned and our mood was all set, Tripping, Thumping – this is all we wanted. At 3 PM we halted at about 10 kms before Jawahar Tunnel. We had a quick tea before moving further and as my habit is to ask about the route and weather ahead, we were told that after Jahawar tunnel the approach to SriNagar is flat out roads and no mountains climbs. We were told that this tunnel was British vision. A mega project which re-routed the big mountain pass into tunnel below the mountain to reach Srinagar. This tunnel was more than 60 years old, Water was dripping from the tunnel roof which was nothing but glacial melt seeping in through soil and concrete and it was super cold. These were 2 one way tunnels and no overtaking was allowed. Crossing Jahawar tunnel 2.8 kms was experience of lifetime. Infact later on someone told that this tunnel was suppose to be decomissioned but is still in use (oops). We descended from the last mountain of the day and reached flat land. I was again in search to re-fuel my bike. Have to say Electra 4s wasnt giving more than 25 kmpl, which is not great milage at all. I had to refuel near Anantnag. (View near Anantnag)
By 6 PM we reached Sri-nagar the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir. We checked-in in a hotel near All India Radio office for 600 Rupees a night. It was bit expensive but very decent to stay in for 2 nights. Our Dinner was planned one of my dad’s colleague who had come to see us and slept very well. I was very happy and satisfied with our planning, coordination, teamwork.