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Horagina Betta

Horagina Betta Aka Nandi One, is a hillock adjacent to nandi hills is an unexplored hillock was the destination of this weekends trek. A chat with my friend regarding a trek around nandi saw me searching the net for this hill when I got the link to BMC site. Searching further for the route, one of the blogs had  mentioned about stopping at karahalli cross and trekking from there.

With the details in hand me and Mohan decide to explore the unexplored hill. Instead of taking the normal route to nandi we headed the long way via chikballapur. One of the blogs had mentioned the trek starting at nandi cross but we took the route to karahalli cross and reached there at 9 in the morning. Parking the bike at the hotel we inquired about the route, we were told to take the road going next to the hotel and go straight which we did. We found there was no direct route hence we decided to make our own. The climb to the top was just beginning.

Crossing the trench we headed slowly to the top. There was enough throny shrubs and rocks to keep us on our toes. With couple of big boulders along the way, we could practice some rock climbing along the way. A short stop along the way for couple of photos and we continued the climb

View from top

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As we were climbing next to nandi the top was always visible to us. We found the hill to be at a lesser height when compared to Nandi.

Nandi Top

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As the climb progressed the shola became more dense and we had a tough time crawling through the shrubs and the foilage. Finally after an hour and 10 min of climbing we were at the top. I had read about a shaneshwara temple, but couldnt find any when we reached the top. We spent some time looking around but couldnt find it. Taking some photos at the scenic view from the top, we relaxed for a while

Panaromic view from horagina betta

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The descent was much faster as we found there was a direct route to the top which starts from half way through on the road to nandi, however we found the route we had taken to be more adventurous. Since our bike was at karahalli cross, we took an auto to the base. From the short conversion with the driver , we came to know there are other small hillocks which could be climbed easily. He had also mentioned, the temple is present and is not visible easily. One has to go around the big boulder which we found and climb little more to get to the temple and a kalyani which is also present there.

It was another long walk from the base to the bike and back home thus ending an eventful trek

Snaps can be found here

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Avani

The area around kolar and mulbagal is steeped in history going back to the Ramayana. One such place is Avani located two kms from mulbagal on the Kolar highway. The place has deep links to Ramyana as the story of Uttara Ramayana (The story of Ravana’s defeat and Rama and Sita movig back to Ayodhya and sita being sent to the forest) starts here. It is said that Sita gave birth to her twin sons lava  and Kusha on top of the hill also known as Lava-Kusha Betta and witnessed the war between Rama and his sons ending in huge defeat for Rama’s army.

Hillock

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Each place mentioned in Uttara Ramayana, a comparable place is present in Avani. The place where the horse Ashwamedha was tied to the place where Sita gave birth to her sons and where she sat and witnessed the war between her husband and her sons after the completion of ashwamedha yagna. All the places can be found here. The place has ramayana lore written all over it as Avani means earth and Sita was also called Avanisuta. The place also has historical signficance as the first anglo mysore war between Hyder Ali and the british was fought in Mulbagal and finds reference in Battle of Mulwagal.

Apart from the hillock Avani also has the Ramalinga temple dating back to the days of Ramayana and is thought to be built by the Nolambas. Rama here is worshipped as an aspect of Shiva.

Ramalinga Temple

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Considering the mythological and historical significance of the place I decided to pay a visit to Avani on Friday. A planned early morning ride was not to happen due to the drizzle and it was delayed start for the ride. As usual it was jam packed till hoodi after which the traffic thinned out and the ride became smooth.

Cruising for an hour I stopped at Adigas outside of kolar for breakfast and then headed off to Avani. There are signboards everywhere and it is difficult to miss the place. Soon I was at the place and headed to ramalingeshwara temple which is situated in the middle of the village.

The place was empty and I could spend some quality time taking photos of the temple. The temple has inscriptions written on the walls. There was however no one to explain what it was. Spending some time there taking photos I headed to the hill also called lava kusha hill.

Inscriptions @temple wall

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Sita and Valmiki Caves

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The hill has various caves including the one where sita gave birth to her sons and the rocks where she saw the war. The area around kolar is devoid of any greenary however I could find a lush green surrounding around avani. Couple of photos of the surrounding and I headed back to bangalore.

Scenary around Avani

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Snaps can be found here

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