Advertisements

Roadtrip day 4: Karkala/Moodbidri n Ride to Madikeri

With the kudremukh ride completed, I decided to take today’s ride a little easy. Packed up and left for karkala at 8.30 in the morning. An hour of riding, took me karkala and to the base of chamukta basadi.
Karkala is another place which has a statue of bhabubali. It is not as high as the one present in sravanabelagola, however, this also makes for a nice tourist spot

Bahubali@ karkala

The place was closed, and with nothing to do there, I moved to moodbidri, which has the famous 1000 pillar temple.

Moodabidri – 1000 pillar temple

Photography is permitted inside the sanctum storum, however upon payment of 100 Rs one can take photos from outside. The money collected is used for the renovation of the temple.

I got the receipt which allowed me to take photos of the temple from the outside.  The temple is well maintained.

The 1000 pillar temple

Offering my prayers at the temple, i asked for directions to go to puttur. I was told to go to bantwal and ask for directions. Driving in the ghats was fun as usual. Once the ghat got over, the actual pain of driving began. With huge potholes present everywhere, it was a very tiresome effort to keep driving. Taking frequent breaks i kept moving forward. Finally at 11.30 I reached puttur.

The ghat from puttur to madikeri is in a even horrible condition. With heavy vechiles plying in those roads, huge potholes have appeared, throughout the ghat and riding was a real pain. It took almost 2 hrs to reach suliya and I immediately went to the nearest hotel for lunch.

The ride continued after madikeri, however the road condition had not improved. A sudden downpour saw me take shelter at a local store. The shower allowed me to cool my aching back and ass for a while, as driving on those pathetic roads were becoming a real problem. Fortunately the rain didnt last long and I continued my journey

I came across an unknown waterfall on the way and the scenary had also improved. I could consider this as a consolation for the bad roads

Unknown Waterfall

Landscape at puttur ghat

With 5 kms to go to madikeri town, it was time for another break and a cuppa. Finally at 6.30 in the evening I reached madikeri. After checking into the nearest available lodge, i took a long rest, before heading to a hotel for dinner and it was nap time to give rest to my battered body

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Snaps can be found here

Advertisements

Roadtrip Day 3: Raid De Kudremukh

After getting a good sleep the previous night, I got up early, as I was excited to be biking in kudremukh, which is considered to be a bikers paradise. I was initially thinking of seeing barkhana falls in agumbe and then going to kudremukh, however I had to drop the plan of visiting agumbe as I wouldnt be able to reach udupi by sundown. Agumbe had to be done separately.

Sirimane falls was just 16kms from sringeri and I went there first. Passing through kigga, I reached the falls. One needs to enter their name and phone no at the registration office.

Around Sirimane Falls

One can reach the falls, after climbing down a short flight of stairs. A few people were already there at the falls, and were having playing in the falls.

Sirimane Falls

Experimenting with various exposure levels, I spent my time at the falls. I noticed the camera’s battery was running very low, hence came back to the registration office and put the battery for charge, and relaxed for an hour. While speaking with the guy there I got to know that one can get permission to trek to narasimhaparvata just after nemmar. However, no camping is allowed on the keep. One has to return back to base before nightfall as the area is a hotspot for naxal activities.

Once the battery was charged, I began the ride to kudremukh. In order to go to kudremukh, one has to come back to kigga and then head to nemmar-> Eska border->Kudremukh

All vechiles entering kudreukh range has to be obtain a reciept at the entrance of the checkpost. Checkposts are located for vechiles coming from sringeri/karkala. One needs to go out of the park limits in 1 hr and fine for overstaying in the park limits is Rs 100 per hour.

Kudremukh Highway Pass

Having obtained the pass I continued on my journey to the junction which is 16kms from the checkpost. As uusal roads were pretty bad and had to drive slowly. Reaching the junction, after taking a small break at a shop I went to hanumangundi falls. The scenary and roads were simply amazing and I was enjoying the views as well as the ride. Stopping frequently for snaps i continued on my journey

Scenary near hanumangundi falls

Reaching hanumangundi falls, I took the entry ticket and dumping my luggage in the ticket counter i went down the steps to the falls. I had visited kudremukh a year back as an office trip and due to the crowd and time constraints, I had to miss out on a lot of snaps. With very few people present at the falls, I made the most of the oppurtunity,  by taking various snaps before the place became tooo crowded

Hanumangundi Falls

As expected a large crowd shortly afterwards, while I was heading back to the top. Taking my luggage, I procedeed to lakhya dam. The scenary got even better, and I couldnt resist stopping at every turn and taking smaps

Scenic Kudremukh

Reached Lakhya Dam in a couple of min. Met a couple of bikers there and had a chat with them. Photography is not allowed inside the dam and one can spend some time enjoying the scenic views

View From Lakhya Dam

Managing to click a few snaps, I returned and then headed to kudremukh forest office to inquire about how to get permissions to trek to kuremukh peak and to few other peaks in the kudremukh range. Upon getting the info, i headed back to the junction, another few kms of descent and I was out of kudremukh NP, thus fulfilling my desire to go biking on the route :).

A small break and it was time to head to karkala and to the udupi. Few more hours of driving took me to manipal, where I had another break in CCD, and then it was all way to udupi. After checking into a hotel, I went to kapu beach to see the sunset, however I managed to reach the beach just after the sun had set. With people leaving the beach, I managed to get a few shots of the lighthouse, before I went back to the hotel

Lighthouse @ kapu

It was again time to hit the sack , thus concluding an exciting day of riding

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Snaps can be foundhere

Makalidurga

After a amazing ride to somwarpet and madikeri last weekend,I was thinking of a trek this weekend. Makkalidurga a small hill 50 kms from bangalore and 10 kms from doddaballapur was choosen for this weekend’s trek. Kiran agreed to join, and we headed out to doddaballapur on sun.

With roads being empty on sun morning we reached doddaballapur in an hour. Asking for directions we proceeded towards makkalidurga.

Makkalidurga

Makkalidurga is a small railway station, which has a temple nearby. The peak which stands at 1350 mts can be scaled in an hour. There is an old ruined fort at the top of the hill and a shiva temple which locals visit.The railway track running next to the temple, makes it an ideal spot for photography and also for bird watching

Railway Lines

We started the trek after reaching the base of the temple. The trail starts from behind the temple and goes all the way to the top. There are marking on the stones, indicating the path. By following the markers one can reach the top.  The climb is gradual and it becomes steep as we go higher. We can also get to see a huge lake and other mountains.

Rivers and vast mountains

As the climb gets steeper, we had to climb on the boulders to get to the top. After an hour of climbing, we reached the top of the hill from where we could see the peak. Taking rest for sometime, we headed to the fort.  There is godown, which was once used, and a small shiva temple on top. After spending some time on the top, we headed back.

Inside the fort

Shiva Temple

Another hour of climbing down and we were back to the base of the temple.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Snaps can be found here

Coorg-Gaalibeedu Tour

I would firstly like to apologize to everyone for posting this post so late :).

Though I had been to coorg either on trips or treks , the place always seems to invite me again and again. This time I went with my friend as he hadnt seen golden temple and we were keen on visiting some less visited places in coorg. After  some research my friend came up with a place called gaalibeedu. This place was near to the talathmane circuit which was used by YHAI for their coorg national treks.

With the usual bookings done we left for madikeri for a 1 day visit on 5th sept. The rainy season was not yet over and it was still raining intermitently. We reached coorg at 6 in the morning, only to find ourselves caught in the rain. We hired a auto to a nearby lodge where we could freshen up before heading out.

Our first stop was the golden temple. The rain had just stopped and left to kushalnagar by bus. After reaching kushalnagar we hired a auto to reach the golden temple.

Golden Temple Complex

MG_2725.sized_resize

This place has one of the largest buddhist temples in south india and also home for large number of tibetian refugees. The temple contains status of buddha along with his disciples. Once we entered the complex we found the people sitting for prayer. After clicking a few snaps and spending time there, we went back to madikeri.

Buddha N Disciples

MG_2709.sized_resize

Post lunch we headed to gaalibeedu. A small village with pristine scenary. We got down there and took a stroll in the streets. There was a heritage resorts which we payed a visit. Upon inquiring the rates we found they charge 8000 per couple. Though the resort is well maintained , we left the rates were too high.

Greenary in Gaalibeedu

MG_2774.sized_resize

We continued our walk through the greenary. After sometime we decided to head back to the city. Hiring an auto we reached our lodge. Evening was spent strolling in the streets of coorg before heading back to bangalore

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Snaps can be found here

Green Route — A farewell trek

Just before embarking on my kodachadri trek my friend send me a mail regarding a trek in sakleshpur. Upon enquiry i came to know it was the famed green route trek. I immediately said i am in as I wanted to do this stretch ever since it was opened last year.

With my manager asking me later in the week to go onsite to malaysia for a month , i thought what a better way to say adieous to india for a month than to do a trek with some of my good friends.

Everything was set and 6 of us gathered at majestic bus stand on fri(22nd) night @ 9.30. After distributing food rations we got into the bus which left for kukke at 10.30. We had told the conductor to inform us when donigal arrived as we were suppposed to get down there, which he promptly did.

It was 4 in the morning when we got down in donigal. After having a cuppa at the roadside stall, we headed to the railway station which was 5 kms away. After waking for 2 hrs we reached the railway station.

Note: Take the small mud road which goes up when walking from the tea stall. Take right once u go up the mud path to reach the dongial railway station.

The railway station was covered in mist and since it was only 6 in the morning, i decided to  sleep for some time as we werent going to start trekking immediately. Slept for two hours and woke up to find the mist still hadnt cleared. Since the sun hadnt come out the weather will chilly and I was shivering.

Early morning in donigal

MG_4077.sized_resize_resize

Once our morning duties were completed we settled down to have breakfast. Another round of cuppa was followed after the breakfast. By this time the sun had come out and we started our journey along the track to edukumeri which was 18 kms away. We had decided to halt in edukumeri that day before proceeding to sribaligu and then to kukke the following day

The track was filled with jelly stones and the spacing of the bars on the track were not even. We took a little while to get used to this and we were making good progress while enjoying the natural beauty present around us.

We had just finished crossing the first bridge which was one of the several that we would encounter in the next 2 days, we ran into the first goods train. We all made away for the train which was chugging along merrily.

Train

MG_4086.sized_resize_resize

Our journey continued and as we went further the scenary began to improve. No wonder why this stretch is called as “Green Route”. We could see only greenary everywhere.My camera was paritcularly happy being in this surrounding as I was clicking quite a few pics.

Enroute to edukumeri we met the first tunnel. This was one of the 30 odd tunnels which we would be walking under. Torches came out instantly and we crossed the tunnel. It was 1 in the afternoon when we broke for lunch at a lone station. We were walking slowly until then enjoying the scenic beauty until then. After lunch we decided to pick up the pace as we had to reach edukumeri by sundown.

Pristine Scenary

MG_4104.sized_resize_resize

Just as we were about to enter one of the tunnels we got a scare when a goods train arrived out of no where and 3 of my friends who were at on the bridge had to run for their lives. In the meele one guy lost his torch :(. This incident made us more careful and we decided to pay more attention to our surroundings

One of the 30 odd tunnels

MG_4103.sized_resize_resize

Walking continously on the jelly stones was taking a toll , as our feet were starting to pain. We pushed along, coz if we slowed down the pain would increse. Edukumeri beconed us at 5 in the evening. The moment i entered the station I took off the shoes to relieve the pain.

Soon i was fast asleep to relieve myself of the tiredness that I had felt walking the whole day. I slept for an hour and woke up to find the pain had not still subsided. We then got down to preparing dinner,using the ready to eat packets which we had bought.

With dinner out of the way we hit our sleeping bags as we had a to get up early as we had cover a lot of distance.

Morning arrived and we got up early at 6 and left edukumeri at 6.30. Within 2 hrs me and 2 others were at an abandoned station waiting for others to join. While we were at the station we decided to make the most of the time by looking around to see what the station  had so that we could start the fire to boil water for the noodles we had bought.

Early morning in edukumeri

MG_4183.sized_resize_resize

The others joined us 2 hrs late. Once everyone were at the station we set about boiling the water and finished breakfast. Since we were already running late we decided not to waste any more time and immediately headed to sribaligu station

Things were going smoothly when my friend who was a walking a little slowly told us that he had heard a sound of an elephant. This was confirmed by a track repairman who confirmed that elephants inhabit these parts. We neverthless kept moving at a brisk pace.

Sribaligu station welcomed us at 1 in the afternoon. Since others were quite far behind, me and 2 others who arrived early decided to take a well deserved nap. Just when I was dozing peacefully I heard some commotion. My friend and the night duty guard were having a heated argument. Things were really heating up, when both the warring parties decided to back off at the last moment.Upon enquiring with my friend we got to know that the gaurd hadnt slept and he seemed to be annoyed as we happened to be talking loudly

With others joining us, another hour was spent in the station before starting the downhill trek to anila village.

We reached the village at 5 in the evening. The bus to kukke arrived at 5.30. After spending some time in kukke we boarded the 8.45 bus which we had booked back to bangalore. Reached home at 5 in the morning

Thus concluded a wonderful trek

Route:
After getting down either at Donigal (near to Manzarabad fort) or near to the railway track, look for the milestone marked 234. There is a tea shop and opposite to it is a mud path going up. Take that and you will see a bridge and a mud path going to the right. Take the right which leads to Donigal railway station. The marking on the milestone at the Donigal railway station is 49/400. After that:
Km 52 – bridge (50 mts) –> Km 55 – bridge –> Km 58 – Tunnel No. 5 (254 mts) –> Km 60 – Tunnel No. 6 (383 mts) –> Km 61 – bridge (200 mts), immediately after Tunnel (575 mts) –> Km 62 bridge (150 mts) –> Km 64 – Tunnel (410 mts) –> Km 67 – Yedakumeri station –> Km 72 – Tunnel (366 mts) –> Km 75 – Arebetta station –> Tunnel 25 (553 mts) –> Km 80 – Tunnel (488 mts) –> Just before Km 85 – long bridge –> Just after Km 85 – Shiribagilu station –> Cross the tunnel just after the station, look for a mud path to the right just before the point where the railway tracks diverge –> this path (about 5-6 kms) through the forest leads to Anila village à Buses to Kukke Subramanya (15 Kms) can be boarded here.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Snaps can be found at here

(Subbu+Quacks)* On the Rocks==Kodachadri +bountiful wilderness

After last weekend’s drive to bluff and mekedatu , me and my friend after a short discussion finalized on kodachadri and arshinagundi falls trek for the 3 day diwali weeeknd. Since we had monday off we thought of either covering jog or head to udupi and cover a few places before heading back to bangalore.

When I went to book the tickets to shimoga , i got a rude shock when the guy at the ticket counter told me there was no return tickets back to bangalore on monday night as everything was booked. This prompted a change in plans as I didnt want to get stuck in sagar/udupi.

Since only me and my friend were goin for the trek we decided to first climb kodachadri and then decide later on what has to be done. With this in mind I booked the last available bus to shimoga.

I reached majestic bus stand at 10.30 after walking from corporation as the bus had broke down at corporation signal Smiling. I was amazed the line of buses and chaos that was present there and I decided to walk as it would have been a better option rather than getting stuck at in the bus. Managed to reached the bus stand and by the time me and my friend could search our bus it took us another 15 min as all buses in majestic seemed to be heading towards shimoga Smiling. By the time we left bangalore it was 11.30.

Further misery was in store for us as we were caught in yet another traffic jam near jallahalli cross. By the time we were out of all this traffic it was around 1.30 in the morning. From there on it was smooth sailing till shimoga.

We reached shimoga at 7.30 and after finishing our morning duties we headed to the private bus stand to catch a bus to kollur. The bus was however packed to the brim and with our heavy luggage we decided not to take it. The conductor of another bus told us to take the bus to samipgekatte which would arrive in a few min. Since we were already late we decided to do what the conductor said. The bus soon arrived and we headed out to samipgekatte

The drive which we thought would be a short one turned out to be a 3 hour drive and by the time we reached samipgekatte it was 12.30. After redistributing the food items which consisted of buns we started the trek.

We happened to see some magnificent scenary just as we started the trek, and we knew we would get better ones as we ascended the peak

Scenary enroute to kodachadri

scenary

With scenic views unfolding at every corner which were captured duly, we made good progress as we didnt want to miss the sunset. With the sun beating down mercilessly the progress was slow considering the fact that i hadnt done any treks since ettinabuja in june.

With small breaks in between we reached the peak at 5.30. The views got better as we gained altitiude and frequent stops were made to capture the scenic beauty.

Lush green forests

forests

We reached the IB around 6 and we were just in time for the sunset and immediately rushed to sunset point to capture the sunset in all its glory. With the clouds playing hide n seek we were treated with a surreal sunset. After a photoshoot we headed back to the IB.

Sunset @ Kodachadri

set

Sky after sunset

sunset

The next morning we woke up at 5 and rushed to sanjeevai peetha to see the sunrise. With the sun coming out from behind the clouds was simply amazing. An hour or so was spent taking snaps.

Sunrise

sunrise

Now that plan of scaling kodachadri was done. We were wondering what to do next. Since there were no guides available we werent intent on doing arshinagundi falls by ourselves as the route is quite risky without a guy. We decided to head down via karikatte route and catch a bus to kollur and then to udupi.

Descent was swift and we were at the santosh malliu hotel by 10.30. A quick stop there for a couple of lime soda’s we headed to karikatte gate. The bus to kollur arrived at 11.30. After reaching kollur we took a connecting bus to kundapur and hopped to another bus to reach udupi by 2 in the afternoon.

Evening was spent in kapu beach photographing the sunset. Lazing around for some more time and having ice creams in diana’s ice cream parlour we caught the 10pm bus to bangalore which we had booked upon arriving in udupi.

Kapu Sunset

kapu

The journey was spent hanging on to ur lives as the driver drove like a man possesed on the crater ridden roads in the charmadi ghats. We spent the night being thrown out of our seats as we had booked the last row Smiling.

Reached home at 8.30 on monday morning

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Snaps can be found here

%d bloggers like this: