Siliserh Lake… Time wasted at Lake is time well spent.
This was my third visit to the Siliserh Lake.
Same place, a different company, varied shades of weather. The only thing common each time was fun. Unlimited. Siliserh lake is close to my heart. I dont know the reason though. Perhaps, the tranquility of the place attracts me to it. Just 150 km south of Gurgaon lies this hidden jewel of Siliserh Lake near Alwar.
Since my wife was out of country and my son busy with school, on an off-Friday, this trip was planned with my office friends – Pramanshu and Nisha. We all started this journey from Huda City Center at 8.30 am. Nothing was precisely planned up to the hilt, neither the exact venue, nor the eating places, the only fixed plan was that we’d return by the evening, and not before. And that we’d have fun.
Amidst office rush hour, we drove our cheetah on NH-8 towards Jaipur. As we neared Hero Honda Chowk, the speed reduced from 70 kmph to 10 kmph and finally to stop-and-go traffic. Wasted 10 precious mins there. Damn. Start is slow. Slowly and gradually, we reached Manesar toll. Time read 9.10 am. Once we crossed toll, XUV picked up speed in triple digits and in a jiffy, we crossed IMT chowk and reached Dharuhera and took the road to Bhiwadi. Time read 9.30 am.
We thought of having breakfast at Bhiwadi but later discarded the idea as having hot parathas on the highway was our way of spending the day at leisure and as we crossed the first toll on Bhiwadi-Alway highway, we retired for our first munching. The parathas and tea were hot, and so was the weather. How much I wished it had rained…instead we were all sweating in sweltering heat. Anyway, by 10.00 am we were done and back in AC comfort. Next one hour was uneventful. We zipped past all villages and reached the Alwar bypass gol chakkar. Soon, we were at Hanuman chowk next to Agarwal sweets. Time to relish desi samosas with tea. The total bill at these joints is so less that it makes me wonder what special ingredients do they add in Gurgaon shops? Why is the bill so inflated there? By the time we left the place it was 11.15 am.
By 11.45 am, we entered the Siliserh Lake road after paying entry fee. Being a weekday for others, there were hardly a few people around. The lake was placid and I could see it had more water than last time, though only speed boat was operational. Being a hot sunny day, we decided to avoid the boat ride and instead focus on harnessing our photography skills. In next half an hour or so, we clicked around 150 pics and most of them were stunning. After this marathon spell of photo shoot, our mortal emotion of hunger returned and we ordered ubiquitous bread-omelette and sandwich from the Rajasthan Tourism restaurant, along with coke to flush it down our throat. Shall we have another round of photos, said Pramanshu? Yes, came the unanimous call. Spent another 15-20 mins clicking pics overlooking the lake and next to XUV. With nothing much to do, we decided to go to Alwar city and explore if it has anything to offer. Time read 13.45 hrs.
Just before hitting the main Alwar-Sariska road, on the left side we saw an empty plot with a beautiful back drop of mountains. What else one needs, we had the time, energy, beautiful surroundings and camera. We climbed the wall, posed with Aravalis and tried our hands again with camera. For next 30 mins we ate up both battery and memory space of camera… beautiful memories. Captured. By the time we left it was 14.15 hrs.
I wonder why we have boring office parties for so called team building. Such short excursions to nearby destinations provide ample opportunities to bond with friends and colleagues and spend a full day together discovering the wild side of each other. I believe such trips develop stronger bonds which are difficult to snap.
While driving back to Alwar city, we saw a board “Jaisamand Lake”. Since we weren’t hungry then, we decided to explore this as well. Broken narrow roads, village surroundings, barren land, almost no traffic… as they say “difficult roads lead to beautiful surroundings”. We actually explored a gem. Jaisamand Lake was way better than Siliserh Lake. It looked bigger, cleaner and had an amazing backdrop of Aravalis. Moreover, there was no entry fees. The warm weather did not deter us from parking the car on the road and climbing the dome structure for pics. All three of us tried our hands on photography and most of the pics turned out to be amazing. No matter how much we pride ourselves and showcase our mastery with camera, truth remains that with such a beautiful backdrop and DSLR prowess, usually nothing will go wrong. With photographer inside us satiated, we left the lake with a heavy heart by 15.30 hrs for Gurgaon.
We took the same route and sooner than we expected, we reached the same Hanuman Chowk but didn’t stop for another round of samosas. We kept driving till we encountered a huge traffic jam, yes, jam in Alwar…with every car rushing to break the queue, I had to be extra careful to avoid any scratch on my beloved Cheetah. Took us good 15 mins but eventually, we made an scratch-free exit from the jam. Once we hit the main Alwar-Bhiwadi toll road, traffic got sparse and sooner we were cruising in triple digit speed. Looks, we’d reach Gurgaon sooner than expected… haha, laughed God.
The moment we hit NH-8 (towards Jaipur looking for a U-turn), it was a huge traffic jam again with trucks and trailers running amok and smaller vehicles taking U-turn. Perhaps, I couldn’t decide at that moment of what to do and eventually got stuck in the jam. Took us about 30 mins to reach a wrong side U-turn, and with a truck ahead of us leading way on this wrong side, I took my chances. Soon, we were on the other side of highway towards Gurgaon. We had been driving for close to 2 hrs straight and were hungry souls already. Just 5-10 mins before Manesar toll, we could not hold our hunger pangs any longer. Rushed into a dhaba and ordered lunch…surprisingly, the food was delicious and total bill was close to Rs 320/-. So, finally, we were out of jam, had a sumptuous meal and were almost at toll plaza. Now, nothing can go wrong! Somewhere, God smiled yet again! Time showed 18.45 hrs.
There was a fresh and huge traffic jam at Hero Honda chowk and believe me everyone was going crazy including myself. Friday jam! Slowly and gradually we crawled, honking and dodging other cars to get in the moving lane of cars. Eventually, we reached Huda City center by 19.45 hrs. No more jams bhagwaan! Never had I imagined that it would take us almost 5 hrs to reach Gurgaon from Siliserh Lake.
In spite of these teething traffic issues, the day was well spent with friends. Siliserh Lake was always close to my heart, but a new name has added in the list… Jaisamand Lake. Just a little push to tourism in Alwar, and this place could be well developed for tourists. Till it happens, lets keep this place unexplored from outside world.
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