Raising The Bar for Frame the Star: The Finals in Naldehra in Himachal Pradesh

Photograph/ Prasad Np

Photograph/ Prasad Np

As we begin the finals for the Frame the Star face off in the picturesque hamlet of Naldehra our three contestants are all geared up to raise the bar for the contest.  Prasad Np aka desi Traveler takes you to some exciting behind the scenes on the winding hill roads to Naldhera, in Himachal.

Our three finalists are excited to join us on the drive from Chandigarh to Naldhehra, last evening we did a draw of lots and this time it was not just for the cars to be chosen but also for the drivers.

We had two red, and two white Mercedes Benz CLAs in our last rounds, but this time a metallic grey car has also joined.  But this time there were draw of lots not just for car colors but also for drivers, because for the finals we have automotive journalists and car review experts from Overdrive magazine to take our contestants around. Like I said the bar has been raised a notch above the ordinary for the finals of Frame The Star contest.

In the draw of lots Raju again got a red car and Kevin got a white one, though he was hoping for the steel grey and if he wins the contest he would like a steel grey Mercedes as his prize for the year.  Altaf on the other hand was totally cool about any car color and was happy to get the steel grey car.

As we started from Chandigarh, leaving the Park Plaza behind towards The Chalets, Naldehra we had planned to have lunch at the Giani Da Dhaba in Dharampur, but none of the photographers liked the scenery around and after a quick stop at the Dhaba we all decided to split and take different routes to the Chalets Naldehra, a  unique resort surrounded by majestic Deodar trees that lead to paths inside the jungle.

As Altaf and Kevin continued on the Simla Highway from Dharamshala, we on the other hand decided to take the road less traveled and took a detour towards rarely used but very scenic route via Subathu.   This road is neither taken by tourists traveling towards Simla and further nor by locals unless they have work in one of the villages there. So, for most of the journey we had the road to ourselves, except when some of the big trucks  honked passed us, while belching ugly smoke.

It rained intermittently for most of the journey and Raju took full advantage of the filtering light and the mist in the mountains to frame his shots.  Let us see what the other two finalists were up to on their journey towards Naldehra, it remains to be seen who will impress the judges most in the finals as this time they need to submit 35 images of the Mercedes Benz CLA 200. Watch this space for more.


Prasad Np is a passionate photographer who enjoys photographing people, wildlife, and travel. He is the author of the travel and photography blog called desi Traveler.  You can connect with him on his Facebook page called desi Traveler and on twitter @desiTraveler


Tags: chandigarh, Frame the star face-off, July 2015, Mercedes-Benz CLA, Shimla