Tadoba - Part 4

Read earlier parts here - Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

Almost 6 hours from the time we had eaten something substantial, I was desperately looking for some place to have food. Since the time we hit the Wani - Chandrapur road, one common thing was "bar and restaurent" and all with shady appearance. Finally found a restaurant in Chandrapur which appeared okay and claimed to have family seatout. When enquired, the person behind the desk was completely clueless about "family seatout". We were almost deciding to skip the stop, and we crossed a restaurant, named Tristar. It was a good relief to have some basic amenities and some good food too ;) The staff was good and also helped us with the directions for the remaining road to Tadoba.

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By the time we left the restaurant, it was close to 5:15 PM and it still looked like around an hours journey - close to 40 km. I was getting worried about the fading light. I usually find it difficult to drive on unknown road after dark. And this time were getting into some rural area and jungle area. The road condition, the traffic - make driving difficult. 

We crossed the Padmapur and got scared to look at the surrounding area and the road condition. It was looking exactly same as the one before Ghugus. Looked like there was Super Thermal Power station on the way and that had made the road bad. Thankfully it was just about 2 kilometers patch and we were relieved. 

After a bad junction, we took a right turn, and to our surprise, the road was beautiful. It looked like a brand new road with no pits and rough patches. What was more welcoming was a signboard stating Moharli just about 16 km!! Hurray!! Another 20 mins and we'd be at our destination. 

Few kilometers passed and we reached a gate, which looked like entrance gate to the Tadoba reservoir. The gate was closed, but the notice board on it read something like "The gate will be closed from 7 PM to 6 AM". Anxiously, I looked at the watch and to my relief it was just about 6:15 PM. After honking couple of times, the guard came out, opened the door and let us in. I was required to make entry for the vehicle and number of pax. As I was leaving the spot, the guard came from behind and started asking for some "chai-pani". Usually reluctant, I gave up pretty quickly and handed over a few bucks to him and told myself it wasn't bribe, it was just a "tip"... The increasing darkness was worrying me and I saw no point in wasting time there.

Hopped into the car and started driving again. It was all jungle around. No signs of any human habitation. Thankfully there were no crossroads or T/Y junctions. Even after 10/15 mins, no sign of MTDC. I was sure I hadn't missed any turning, but to be on the safer side, we asked a cyclist coming from opposite direction and he confirmed that it's just 5 km to reach MTDC. Continued in the same direction and finally saw some lights, looked like village and also noticed the MTDC signboard. A big sigh of relief!!

The road was straightforward and within 5 minutes we were inside the MTDC. The tour guide - Ashish - was present and he helped with the checkin and other formalities. After almost 12 and half hours since we left Akola, we had reached the MTDC.

Total distance travelled: 390 Km.
Total Driving time: 11 hours.
Total Travel time: 12.5 hours.


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