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Aimless Wanderings – Ride to chitradurga

With a 3 day long weekend, the usual  “where to go” discussions cropped up. With no bus/train tickets available to any place, I was yet to decide on where to go. My friend had to go to kukke, however lack to availability of return tickets forced me to think of other plans.

With no destination in mind, I left home on fri morning, hoping to cover what places come enroute and possibly halt for the day and return back to bangalore. Took the usual tumkur road, which was pretty empty and driving for an hour i reached kamat upachar on the outskirts of tumkur.

After breakfast, I was considering where to go, and I found chitradurga was 180 kms from kamat and was very much doable.  My first destination was vani vilas sagar dam which is also called marikanive dam. Reached tumkur and asked for directions. I was told to go to hiryur and then take a left at the arch and go further 20-25kms to reach the dam.

Driving for another hour or two with breaks in between and taking a couple of snaps, i reached sira and another hour of driving took me to hiryur where i asked for directions again. I found a guy who was going to the dam, and he asked me to follow him. Driving through a couple of small villages we reached the dam.

Highway

A brief history about the dam

Manrikanvie dam(Vani vilas sagar dam) was built by Maharaja of Mysore Sri Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV on the river vedavati.  The reservoir has two mantapa which is built in the saracenic style and is considered an engineering marvel. This is also one of the few dams where public is allowed entry.

View near the dam

There were quite a few people on the dam, and I spent an hour experimenting with various exposures and taking photos. I left the dam by 2 as I still had around 40kms to go before I reached chitradurga.  Chitradurga is around 40kms from the dam and it can be reached in under an hour

Vani Vilas Sagar Dam

Reaching chitradurga, I made my way to fort while asking for directions.  After reaching the fort, i hired a guide who explained about the history of the fort along with all the other details. In addition to listening to the history i was busy taking snaps of the fort and its surroundings.

Chitradurga Fort

Hidamebeshwara Temple

It took us around 2-2 and 1/2 hours to cover all parts of the fort and by the time i came out of the fort it was 3 in the afternoon. The guide told me to visit chandravalli caves which is also very popular.  Chandravalli caves is of historic significance as the caves were inhabited by saints of ankali matt in belgaum. One can go 80 ft into the caves . The pungent smell coming from the caves prevented people from entering the cave even though there were many ppl present near the cave.  Jogimatti a hill station was the last place which could be covered. Apart from the forest there is not much exicting there so I decided to head back home

Lake near Chandravalli Caves

Chandravalli Caves

Having started my ride back from chandravalli at 4 i was making good time. Took a short break for a late lunch enroute and began to push. As i reached sira, the heavens opened up. With reduced speeds i managed to reach a bus shelter where i took a break for a while. The rain had stopped temporarily which allowed me to continue my ride. However after a short while, it began to rain very heavily. With no shelter in sight i had to continue my ride. The next 120kms was really challenging as the visibility was very less. Once darkness fell, I was literally driving blind.

The rain continued to pound and i managed to reach the nelamangala toll booth where I had to take a mandatory break. After a cuppa and a couple of snacks , I was on my final leg of the reach home. Luckily tumkur road was free of track and I would drive more freely. Finally at 9.30 , I managed to reach home fully drenched thus ending an adventurous trip, where I managed to cover 500kms and also get to see some great scenary and drive 100+kms blind in pouring rain on a NH.

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Snaps  can be found here

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About Subbu
Name: Subbu Interests : Trekking,travelling Hobbies: Photography

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