Thursday, 20 August 2015

Day 13 Pathankot to Nurpur.

Day 13  Pathankot to Dalhousie and Nurpur   (143kms)
I’m going up to the hill stations alone, so have a slow breakfast and get the mechanic to do his final oil check. He pours in nearly a litre. This engine is really bad and is drinking oil, so I buy a litre pack for the following day
Now after coming down to the plains and the heat at Pathankot, I have headed for some moderate altitude and am now travelling on my own, the others in the bike group having returned to Delhi. I am going to several of the hill towns that were the refuge of the British  civil service (1840’to 1947) , people esp. the wives and children when the heat down on the plains made life unbearable.
I have this fascination with the hill towns, probably because I read Ruth Jahablava's "Heat and Dust"
years go. David Lean made a film in the 1980's and it is worth seeing.

The lush Indian Hill Country

Road is crap to Dalhousie for a good portion of the way and I had thought things would now improve.
Car drivers constantly charge up behind you, horn going and attempt to pass even on the corners, Having done this, you often find that they’ll then stop a kilometer up the road at a dhabba or have a leak. Just a different mindset, and one that you’ll never understand. If I pass something, then there’s a furious round of horn tooting. What’s this all about – injured national pride ?

When I find the hotel (confirmed resvn) the guy says that there is no room and that they were shut. HULLO – there are 2 lackeys at the front desk (of sorts) so it’s just BS and he's just sold the room to someone else. I will check my card and see if they took the money. No point in arguing, you'll never win in India.
There seems to be little else visible of the British colonial presence, just a very Anglican church near the central square.

It starts to rain and I go to 10 hotels in an effort to get a room but being the tourist season, there’s nothing available. Rain gets heavier and I see that there’s a building labeled as a library so I get in there. It’s filled with locked cases of books, all in English and they’ve been there for a very long time, probably rarely read. “The problems of Leninism” by J S Stalin is one I see.

After an hour I bite the bullet, because there’s no way I can sleep in the bus shelter without a sleeping bag, and decide to head down the mountain to Nurpur where I’m told there are hotels. Now 5.30 and I need to get there before dark.
I get there at 7.30. It seems to be Nurpur although I can find only one hotel called Royal Dreams. – IN YOUR DREAMS !!!!!! but it is getting dark so I just have to take it but look at the room first. Moderately nauseating smell in foyer and sheet on the bed looks as if it had not been changed since last person (and probably wouldn't be changed for next.) Sleep with all my clothes on but the logic of this as a bedbug anti dote is questionable. Can't clean my teeth - the water is too bad and don't use the shower.
This is depressing and for the first time in 3 weeks, I wish I was home.

A pleasant streetscape view from the “In your dreams hotel” 


  1. Dreamt anything while sleeping?? Haahaha..

  2. I had a bad room too at Govindghat, a place where you have to stay and park your vehicle and start to hike up the mountains (14km) the next day, to reach Bangaria, which is a place where you stay and hike further to go to either Valley of Flowers (7km) or the Hemkhund Sahib (6km), the Sikh Holy Temple by a lake. The room at Govindghat was as bad as you described it. It was cheap though, Rps200 (if recall rightly), with a guard that look after the parking.