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Sharavathi Nature Trails – Basavana baayi,Belligundi,Goodadagundi Falls and Water Sports

With the long weekend looming, plans were in full swing to go on a trek/trip. My plan of covering hampi for 3 days had to be shelved due to the crowd factor.  Me and my friends, decide to go to sharavathi valley and cover dabbe falls and kanoor kote. We contacted sampath of sharavathi nature trails and he suggested, that we cover a few waterfalls on the first and second day and do some water sports on the third day as dabbe had become quite popular and there would be a large influx of tourists.

Since we wanted to go for a trek , no matter the place, we agreed to the suggestion made by him. Tickets were booked to sagar for 24th night.  I met my friends Srikanth, Subbu Krishna with whom I  had trekked to kudremukh over a year back and Sarvana

After negotiating the traffic in mysore road , we headed to sagar. The bus was quite old and we had less leg space. After an uncomfortable journey we reached sagar at 5.30 in the morning. Our guide gangadhar was already waiting for us at sagar

Day 1

The bus to kargal had not yet arrived. We made the most of the time, by finishing our morning abulations. As we were speaking with the guide and the bus to kargal arrived at 7.30 and we boarded it.  As the bus passed via jog, we saw there was hardly any water in the falls. After some more time we reached kargal.

Gangadhar had arranged for the jeep to come to kargal. The required groceries for cooking were purchased and we drove to the starting point of the trek. We got down at a house just before the starting point to finish our breakfast.

House

We started our trek at 9 in the morning. The initial part of the trek is a wide jeep track, which goes all the way to a temple located a few kms from the house

Jeep Track

The temple has a statue of nandi which has water coming from its mouth.

Nandi Statue

A waterfall is situated a close from the temple, hence its name basavana baayi falls. This would be the first falls we would visit. The falls is quite small, and makes a small pond, which is ideal for swimming and playing in water.

Basavana Baayi Falls

While we were taking snaps of the falls, gangadhar informed us, we would be having lunch at the falls, as this was the last place where we would find water. Srikanth , Subbu n Sarvana went to play in the falls, while I relaxed, while gangadhar began preparing lunch

Scenery near falls

Lunch was ready around 12 and after finishing it, we began our trek to a house, located around 13kms, which would be our camping spot.

Gangadhar led the way and we followed him. The terrain consisted of a mixture of ascents, flat surfaces and descents. With thick forest we had to be careful while walking as there were plenty thorny trees, present .It is quite easy to get lost in the forest as there is no clear trail present.  We had to follow the guide, as he was the only one who knew the trail

Upon reaching a grassland, gangadhar informed us we have to cross another peak to reach the other side. He also said, there would be two steep ascents before we make it to the top of the peak and from there, it would be a continous, downhill walk till we reach our camping spot

With the afternoon sun beating down on us, we began the first ascent.  Proceeding slowly, we reached the top in around half hour. There was plenty of shade and we took a short break. The second ascent was through the forest and this didnt tire us very much.

At 3.30 we reached the top of basavana baayi peak. The views from the top were simply amazing. A short photo session was conducted and we slept for an hour , before we began the descent.

View from Basavana Baayi Peak

The downhill descent began at 4.30 and we soon reached the base of the peak. The rest of the trek was across fields and flat terrain, we reached the house where we were supposed to stay for the night around 6 in the evening. After freshening up and having dinner we retired for the day

Day2

The previous day we planned on leaving to the belligundi and goodadagundi falls as early as 6 in the morning. This however wasn’t meant to be. By the time we left it was already 8 in the morning. Without wasting any more time we left to belligundi falls immediately with gangadhar leading the way as usual

Crossing the grassland, we entered a small forest. Coming out of the forest we were presented with a wonderful view of the valley and the mountains. A couple of snaps later we moved to belligundi falls

Valley

Belligundi falls could only be viewed from afar as we had not planned to go down to the base of the falls. Since we had enough time, we relaxed for a while at the viewpoint.It would take a day to go to the base of the falls and come up.  Gangadhar mentioned that on a clear day we could see the Arabian sea from the place where we were sitting.Another interesting fact mentioned by gangadhar is that belligundi is 20ft higher than jog , which is considered to be the highest fall in Asia

Goodadagundi was the final waterfall which we would visit for the day. From belligundi falls it took us very less time to get to the top of goodadagundi falls.  To get to the base we had to take another route since the rocks were too slippery to get down from the top. The route we took to get to the base of the falls was quite steep. With loose sand, we had to get down carefully.

Goodadagundi is a multi tiered falls which consists of multiple stages. Srikanth told that this falls is also called koosalli falls near the coast.

Time was spent taking snaps and playing beneath the falls. After a couple of hours we headed back to the house for lunch. We were informed a van was arranged to transport us to the water sports site.  Another group of 13 ppl from chennai had come for the trek.  The organizers had arranged for the van to accomdate the 17 of us.

After lunch, we relaxed for a long time. The van which was supposed to come at 2 didnt arrive till 4.30. We left the house at 5 and began our journey to the camp site which was 60 kms away. Travelling while standing on the back of the way, was a different experience which a few of us enjoyed a lot.

With a small break in kargal we proceeded to the island where the water sports would be held. We reached sharavathi backwaters at 8. We had to wait for the boats to come and transport us to the island. Wearing life jackets we began to row the boats towards the island. It took us a while to reach the island, as everyone were new to rowing. Having struggled a bit initially, we soon got used to rowing. We finally reached the island at 10.3o.

We were alloted tents and after dinner we slept immediately as everyone were tired

Day 3

With just water sports scheduled for the day, we woke up around 7. The island where the sports are held is located in sharavathi backwaters.

Sharavathi Backwaters


The backwaters comprises of a cluster of island which can be reached by boats.

Islands in sharavathi backwaters

As usual we were given life jackets and we were allowed to play in the water.  A few kayak’s were present along with coracles. Those interested in kayaking and coracle rides were free to pursue their interests.

These activities went on till afternoon. After a nice lunch and siesta we headed back to the mainland.  It was raining intermitently in the meantime, and we soon reached the bus stand.  A quick change of clothes and we were waiting for the bus to arrive.

We reached sagar at 7 in the evening. We had enough time left as we had booked the return tickets at 10. We spent the roaming the streets of sagar and munching on chats. We boarded the bus at 10.30 and returned to bangalore, thus concluding a eventful trek

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Snaps can be found here

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