Category Archives: Trips

Rann Roadies – Part 3 – Bhuj and the White Rann

Bhuj is a small city in the Kutch district of Gujarat. It has great historical importance and is famous among tourists going to Dhordo for ‘Rann Utsav’. Besides the Aina Mahal and Prag Mahal, there is not much to see in Bhuj city. So, after spending some time there, we left for Mandvi in the evening.

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Black-Winged Kite hovering

Rann Roadies – Part 2 – Jodhpur to Dholavira

We entered Jodhpur at around 8pm which wasn’t very late but according to the Covid Regulations, all restaurants had to be closed by 7pm. After a lot of looking, we found a decent hotel which was still serving food. As usual, by that time we didn’t know where we were going to spend the night. We found a hotel to spend the night, checked in, had a good night’s rest, checked out early in the morning and left for Mehrangarh Fort.

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Indian Peafowl male

Rann Roadies – Part 1 – Phillaur to Khichan

Every New Year, I go on road trips to wonderful destinations across India with my family. This New Year 2021, that wonderful destination was Great Rann of Kutch, Gujarat! The initial plan was a 14-day road trip covering Bikaner, Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, Udaipur, Dholavira and Bhuj. But, since we had to be back by 13th for Lohri, we left Jaisalmer for another trip.

Our planning was rather spontaneous throughout the trip. Most of the days we didn’t know which city we were going to spend the night in until about 8 pm. Then at 9 we began the search for a hotel. In almost all the hotels we had late night check-in and early morning checkout.

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Birding at Chakki Mod

Chakki Mod is a small village not far from Chandigarh situated on the Chandigarh-Solan Highway. It was on my bucket list for quite a while and so I planned a 1 day trip there on 15 November, 2020.

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Yellow-Bellied Prinia

Prinia Mania- Birding at Phillaur (#9)

Prinia Mania- Birding at Phillaur (#9)

Date: 18 March, 2020

After yet another birding-break and with the winter slowly drawing to a close and the birds reverse migrating to Europe, Russia etc. to their breeding grounds, I went to Sutlej again.

Just like before, I left before sunrise, but, this time it was intentional because I wanted to shoot some pre-sunrise and sunrise photos.

On reaching the bank, there was no one there, no people, no wildlife, just me, which was perfect for what I had in mind then – Pre-Sunrise Blue Hour photographs. The road there always fascinated me and every time went to the river, I had at least 50 shots of just the road. Now, with Blue Hour slowly ending, and orangey clouds shining above the blue sky and with some low hanging fog, the landscape seemed twice as pretty.

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Black-Breasted Weaver

Weavers and Plovers – Birding at Phillaur (#8)

Weavers and Plovers – Birding at Phillaur (#8)

After taking a long break from birding, on 24 January, 2020, it was time for me to go out and shoot some birds. So, I packed my stuff and left for the Sutlej River. This time I didn’t go to Mao Sahib though. Instead, I went to a different location on the Sutlej River which I had visited once last year. I didn’t get anything exciting there last year, so, I just wanted to try my luck once more.

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Birder’s Day Out – Birding at Pong Lake

Birder’s Day Out – Birding at Pong Lake

It was on 29th December, 2019 that I, finally, got the chance to spend a Day Out Birding at one of my Favourite Birding Locations – Pong Lake. I first visited this place in 2015 and till then it has remained in my ‘Favourites List’.

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Wade in the Water – Birding at Phillaur – Part 7

Wade in the Water – Birding at Phillaur – Part 7

My next Birding Day Out in Phillaur was on 15 December, 2019

The first place I visited was our Local Forest. While exploring the area I noticed a Dead Tree Trunk which was overgrown with Mushrooms. The Sun was just coming out and the light was pretty diffused so I decided to try some artistic frames of the mushrooms.

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Wade in the Water – Birding at Phillaur – Part 6

Wade in the Water – Birding at Phillaur – Part 6

Local birding is much more exciting to me compared to going to far off places to witness a complete new set of wildlife. So, I began this season’s birding adventures by visiting the place that I consider as ‘One of the Finest Spots for Birding around Phillaur’ – Sutlej.

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Spiti Sojourn – Spiti Valley – Part 4 – The Moon Lake – Chandra Taal

Spiti Sojourn – Spiti Valley – Part 4 – The Moon Lake – Chandra Taal

On 28 June, 2019, a beautiful day dawned with a promised chill and some overhanging clouds over Kaza.

House Sparrow nestling

At around 1 in the afternoon, we packed up and began on an amazing journey towards Chandra Taal!! The day was jampacked with a lot excitement and surprises.

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Spiti Sojourn – Spiti Valley – Part 3 – Local Sightseeing

Spiti Sojourn – Spiti Valley – Part 3 – Local Sightseeing

After a tiring journey from Kalpa to Kaza, we were all too tired, so, we woke up quite late at around 8-9 am. As it was quite late to go anywhere far off, the plan for the day was to visit the beautiful villages around Kaza.

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Spiti Sojourn – Spiti Valley – Part 2 – Entering Spiti

Spiti Sojourn – Spiti Valley – Part 2 – Entering Spiti

The next and the most important and thrilling stage of the trip was entering Spiti Valley…!!!

There were NO bird sightings and ONLY Landscape Photography till we were somewhere near Nako.

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