It had been a long time since my last ride. Hyderabad does not seem like a place which is conducive to biking - its hot and arid, and there are hardly any good places to see around. Moreover, most people dont seem to be in a mood to ride from here.
With project pressures in the office taking a drain on my mental capacity, it was time to recharge my batteries. Thought about going to sriselam again. Posted on BN about it, and got a couple of offline responses.
The day before talked to GR and he suggested Bidar as an alternative place. I jumped at the idea. Unfortunately GR was not able to join up. Also talked to Kamal, but told him no-go when he said he would also bring his 2yr old kid on the bike. Finally it was just me and my colleage from office , Swamy, who were to go. Told Swamy to meet me near my place at 7am as it was on the way out to Bidar.
The way to Bidar from Hyderabad is to get onto the Pune highway, go on till Zaherabad and then turn right to Bidar. Once you reach the place ask for directions to the Kila (fort). The distance is 120kms from Kondapur in hyderabad, and the distance is easily doable in 3 hrs with stops.
On with the journey then :)
7:15am. Waited for Swamy to show up. He had called at 6:50 that he was leaving his house, so i guestimated how much time he would need - had to wait for around 10 mins for him to show up. The early morning is quite beautiful, if it was not for the man-made clutter of wires all around. I dont know when we as a civilization will get aesthetic sense. From all my travels to sites of yesteryears, it seems that our forefathers did have the sense, but we seem to have lost it.
NFS installment will have auto ricks and kamakazi buses in it ?).
Finding the turning to Bidar is easy. You just cannot miss it. Just after Zahirabad, big boards proclaim the turn to Bidar. You could miss it if you were riding blind - but then i dont know if you would have survived so long. Bidar is in Karnataka and you know you have crossed the state boundary as there is a small hut (checkpost?) with 2 bored police chaps and a rope lying across the road meant to be the boundar between the 2 states (?) !
Reached the Bidar main town in 10 mins and then asked for directions to the fort, which we reached in another 10 mins. One interesting thing about this fort is that you can take your vehicles inside the fort - and riding through the arched gates is a great feeling ! Found a guide there who took us through the fort. Following pics can explain the place better than I can. The only thing I will add is that it has a 6km periphery wall, a couple of present day villages inside, and lots of local people playing cricket on a sunday. The ASI is doing some restoration work because of which some of the places are closed - but rather than restoring it seems to me they are distroying the structures by putting concrete in place of stones provided by the local contractors.
After spending about 2+ hrs going here and there in the fort, we headed to the Gurudwara. It is said that this is the southernmost site visited by Guru Nanak . The langar was going on there, and we decided to have lunch there. Simple fare, but we were happy.
Left bidar at 1:30 , and headed back to hyderabad. Again stopped at the A1 plaza for a couple of quick coffees and headed home. Reached back at 4:30. As you enter hyderabad, the traffic just looses any sense. Everyone wants to go everywhere, which means that there is often a deadlock on the roads. A bit of nifty offroading helped us !
Sweet, short ride. One more place to go around hyderabad if you just have a day to chill out.