Departure-Grand Trunk Road

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May 2nd 2009
Published: May 2nd 2009
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On a cool morning in July, we boarded a coaster bus for Chilas meandering on Grand Trunk Road and Karakoram High way. The GT road is full of decorated trucks, with varied articulate drawings showing their creativity on the move, like an advertising chain. On roads, there are no rules, except that the bigger has right of way. Some of the smaller pick-up trucks held up to 10 passengers in the rear with as many again on a rickety roof rack; I lost count of the passengers in the similarly overloaded trucks and buses. Another thing they all seemed to have in common is that the horns seemed to be wired directly to the ignition on a regular, intermittent setting as there was the continual sound of horns tooting for no apparent reason other than to prove they work. The drivers operate their vehicles to within very fine tolerances, coming within inches of a rock face on one side and a sometimes vertical drop of 1000ft to a river gorge below, certainly not recommended for those of a nervous disposition.
We pass through Taxilla, Haripur, Abbotabad , Mansera, Patan, Battgram Thakot and Besham. The gradual scenic beauty with freshness and aroma in the atmosphere was quiet alluring from Mansehra to Thakot.


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