Harappanahalli to Bengaluru: Via Davanagere on KSRTC

July 11, 2019:
I hadn't booked any return ticket, since I wanted to return as early as possible after the examination. The fact that Davanagere was hardly 2 hours by road from Harappanahalli was a factor that drove me to this decision. There were plenty of options from Davanagere, and I didn't have to worry about reservations or seat availability.

The examination wound up quite early and I was done with everything including lunch and all the paperwork by 1400hrs. I managed to get back to my hotel by about 1415hrs, and quickly checked out of the hotel and rushed to the bus station, a few metres away. I saw a bus to Davanagere coming out as I neared the exit gate - the driver stopped for me. The bus was coming from a far away place - but wasn't packed to capacity. I managed to find a seat in the bus. The driver was quick, and drove really well. The road passed through farmlands and villages for most part of the journey. The bus took one stop at Harihar on the way. It took about an hour and a half to get to Davanagere from Harapanahalli.

Throughout my journey to Davanagere, I was in thoughts about which bus to take from Davanagere. I could take the 1600hrs bus to Bengaluru - which might cut too tight if the bus gets delayed (which wasn't the case) - I though the 1700hrs bus would be the best bet. I briefly tried reserving online, but poor network connectivity wouldn't let me do that. I decided to book a ticket at the reservation counter present in the bus station. My first stop after getting to the bus station was the reservation office - I got my ticket from there - the guy at the counter was very friendly and helpful as well.

I had a full hour to go before my bus would depart - I headed to a Benne Dosa joint outside the bus station for an early evening snack. Benne Dosa - or Butter Dosa - is typical and is served with mashed boiled potatoes and spicy coconut chutney. I returned to the bus station by around 1630hrs - and headed towards the depot gate to see which bus would take me to Bengaluru. I was expecting a newer bus, but an older Volvo B9R turned up - I haven't been on Davanagere depot's B9Rs earlier. I received an SMS confirming that this was indeed my bus a few minutes after the bus reached the platform.
The bus: KA-17-F-1579

The crew didn't start boarding for a while - a lot of walk-in passengers were waiting for boarding to commence, as well. I got into the bus only a few minutes before scheduled departure. The conductor managed to fill about half the bus (roughly), and we got moving from Davanagere at 1708hrs (8 minutes behind schedule). The driver was quite slow from the beginning - often lugging the bus as well. A movie was played - I opted to doze off for a while instead. I woke up just as the bus was turning off the highway towards Chitradurga town. We got stuck up at the railway crossing for a while. We reached the bus station by 1818hrs - the conductor started the process of getting more passengers. The bus was filled to capacity here, and we started off again at 1825hrs.

I dozed off for a while more, waking up only as the bus turned towards Hotel Parijatha, at Hiriyur (1910hrs). I had some light snack from here and waited for the bus to start - the break was quick, and we got moving by 1930hrs. I slept off again - waking up only as the bus stopped to drop a passenger at Tumkur bypass (2046hrs). I remained awake after Tumkur, as we got to a small race with the NWKRTC Volvo to Chennai - both the buses played hide-and-seek for most part of the journey afterwards. This small competition woke up the driver, and ensured I got to Nagasandra toll by 2143hrs - the bus was surely delayed, and wouldn't have made it to the Majestic bus station on time.

Remarks: The bus, KA-17-F-1579, homed at Davanagere depot had about 11.48 Lakh kilometres on the odo. The bus was fairly well kept - a few rattles here and there. The crew were great - well behaved and soft spoken. The driving style was terrible at the beginning - the driver lugged the bus badly at the beginning and kept crawling on the right lane on the road for most part. He woke up after the break and speeded up a bit, and things got better when we got into the competition! The ride time was about 4 hours and 35 minutes - good for the distance for a day service. 

Amenities:
Blanket: No
Water: Yes
Snacks: No
Charging Point: Available, worked.
Entertainment: Available, used.

Ratings:
Maintenance: 5/5
Cleanliness: 5/5
Driving: 5/5
Crew behaviour: 5/5
Punctuality: 4.5/5

Overall: 4.75/5

Pros: Great Crew, fairly punctual
Cons: Ageing bus

Will I take this service again? Best option on the route

Comments

Arun said…
KA17F1579 used to serve chennai bengaluru (split) shivamogga few years ago. Not sure when it was replaced. This used to be my prefered bus along with the chennai hubli bus for Sunday afternoon journeys from chennai.

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