Monday, December 22, 2008

Kumara Parvatha

Kumara Parvata, popularly known among trekkers as KP is the Third tallest peak in Karnataka (based on the height from sea level). Mullayyanagiri and Kuduremukha both in Chikmagalur District take the first 2 spots. About 5 years back I had trekked to Kumara Parvata. It is an imposing peak with thick shola forest cover from all sides.

Kukke Subramanya is a famous pilgrimage place known for the temple of Lord Subramanya. The majestic structure of KP looms large behind the temple at a very far distance. The trek actually starts from a by-lane near the temple itself. After about a kilometer of treading on mud road the path deviates and takes off into forest. From here on its nearly 4 hours uphill walk to a place called Girigadde. This stretch is quite boring, with absolutely no open view. The forest is monotonous and offers no excitement.

About a kilometer before Girigadde, the path breaks free from the forest and makes way into open land. Now with the boring forest behind me, I really started to enjoy the trek from this point onwards. Though rest of my fellow trekkers were already at Girigadde House (One Mr.Bhat lives in this single house at Girigadde), I really slowed down a lot after the forest cover was over. It was great view all around.

It was about 6pm when I reached Girigadde House. 5 hours of looong and winding trek path! Our plan was to stay at this house for the night and continue towards the peak early next morning.

Mr.Bhat offers food and shelter to the trekkers. Some call it as a great service. But I plainly saw it as a business. He does charge a lot for food and hence it can not be called as service. Fair enough, trekkers get a place to rest and quench the thirst and hunger; but at a good price! Nothing wrong in it. I somehow just could not think beyond seeing it as a 'Business'.

Early in the morning at about 6, we were off towards the peak. On the way there are 2 main sub-peaks to be crossed known as 'Bhattada Raashi' and 'Shesha Parvata'. The walk along the side of Bhattada Raashi was exciting. Atop Shesha Parvata it is a fabulous view.

From Shesha Parvata the path leads down into rain forest and then comes up at the far end in what is known as the peak of Kumara Parvata. It was 10 am when I reached there. The trek is worth. Except for the initial route till a kilometer before Girigadde, rest of the trek path is awesome.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Tillari - Where Nature Rules

Tillari is a fabulous place. Isolated and surrounded by scenic mountains this place is a heaven for nature lovers. Waterfalls, lush green landscape, mountains and most importantly no people, makes one feel like his own king in Tillari. Nature rules here.

There are some lovely waterfalls around Tillari. Friends had been busy scouting these waterfalls and invited me to join. There is a small yet beautiful waterfall which is hidden in canopy with mesmerizing surroundings. Then we were off to the viewpoint to view 2 more waterfalls which are about 100 ft in height and lay side by side. The magnificent Tillari valley presents a great sight from here.

Though friends had definite information of couple of more waterfalls nearby, it was decided to go in search of them next time and we headed to starting point of Tillari ghat road. The sight here is one to behold. Long range of majestic mountains dotted the landscape and small yellow flowers bedded the earth to quite a good distance.

The Tillari ghat road is one to be explored as it is risk filled road with not many vehicles plying. The fact that insurance claim is not applicable to any mishap that may occur on this road explains the danger involved.

Next Tillari mission is coming up soon and the task involves searching the remaining waterfalls and may be a drive down Tillari ghat.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Doodhsagar Delight

Doodhsagar is one of the major waterfalls of India. The Khandepar river plummets to a depth of over 650 ft to present an awesome spectacle. Though perennial in nature, doodhsagar is to be watched in monsoon to get a feel of the might of nature. Khandepar river takes birth in Karnataka and after covering a short distance enters Goa to form this waterfall before joining Mandovi river.

Doodhsagar literally means 'Sea of Milk', as thats how this waterfall looks during monsoon. The fury of gushing milky waters makes one feel for sure that there could not be a better name to christen this waterfalls with. The raliway line passes right infront of this waterfall and is the mode of travel to most visitors to this waterfall. Mostly freight trains rumble along these tracks and the bridge constructed by British does shake while a train passes on it.

Watch out for the naughty monkeys around. The place is strewn with plastic and other wastes indicating a high traffic of visitors. A heavvy price to pay if a fantastic nature spot becomes easily accessible.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Waterfalls of Karnataka 1 - Chelavara Falls

This Waterfall is seasonal and is quite famous with tourists and nature lovers. Though known as Chelavara falls to outside world, locally people know it by the name Emepaare, which means tortoise in local Kodava dialect. The rock over which the water cascades is shaped like a tortoise and hence the name Emepaare. The width of the waterfall makes a sensational viewing during good rains. This is one of the best waterfalls in Kodagu district of Karnataka.