Wayanad Trip

This was my first ever trip to Kerala,Β  first long road trip in my car, the first trekking trip after a long gap of 2 years and first sun burn experience. The picturesque mountain peaks, forests, tea estates were really mesmerizing and the fish curry in kerala was awesome πŸ™‚ . The drive through Bandipur and Nagarhole wild life sanctuaries was great. It was a 5 day trip and I will be writing a series of detailed posts about the trip later. Our itinerary was something like this – Started off from bangalore in the morning at 7 am. Reached Kalpetta (Wayanad) by 2.30 pm. Spent the evening at pookot lake and Lakkidi. The next day was trek to Chembra peak. On the 3rd day, we went to Banasura Sagar dam and Kuruva Island. On the 4th day, we went to Meenmutty and Soochipara falls. On the 5th day, we went to Tirunelli temple (supposed to be a very old temple and the drive is through Tholpetty wildlife sanctuary) in the morning on our way back and reached Bangalore by 6.30 pm via Kutta, Nagarhole wildlife sanctuary, Mysore.
In Kalpetta we stayed in a nice home stay surrounded by lots of greenery which appeared to be the normΒ  everywhere in Wayanad. On our first day when we went to our homestay in the night, we first thought it was in the middle of a jungle πŸ™‚ . The next day morning we realized that it was in a normal neighborhood but surrounded by lots and lots of trees giving a feel of staying in a jungle.
The only disappointment was the hot sun during the day and after our trek to Chembra I had a very bad sun burn. By the end of the trip when I reached Bangalore, I realized that I had real bad skin tanning and parts of the skin was peeling off from the face πŸ™ .

On the whole, it was a very nice trip and had a nice break after a long time. A good way to welcome the new year πŸ™‚ .

Of bumpy rides and sleepless journeys

Thanks to the economic downturn and the year end shutdown, got a loooong break for 11 days πŸ™‚ . Came to Hyderabad and then thought of going to my grandmother’s place for two days. That’s when the problems started. The two day trip supposed to be a pleasant one turned out to be a back breaking  nightmare πŸ™ .

When going from Hyderabad, we would have almost missed the bus. Though we were 30 minutes before the departure time, the bus had wrong service number on it and we thought the bus hasn’t come yet. Just at the time when the bus was about to start without us, we checked with the conductor standing over there and that’s how we came to know that the service number was wrong but the bus was already there waiting for us. Now the condition of the bus could not be described. It appeared as if few pieces of scrap metal were welded together and wheels attached to it. After an hour of journey when the bus stopped for a break, the driver was saying that the bus was actually removed from service and because of shortage of buses, it was taken out of garage and put on service 😯 . That’s the plight of our APSRTC. We pay for what is supposed to be the best service (Hi-Tech) and what we get to travel is on a bus that was removed from service πŸ™ . On top of that the driver was so rash and road’s condition so bad that we could not sleep for the whole night.

That’s one part of my story. The real problem started on our return journey back to Hyderabad. We got tickets in the last row of the bus and when we got into the bus that’s when we realized that the bus in which we came from Hyderabad was much much better than this one πŸ™ . This bus was full of dust, seats weren’t good and window glasses broken. This was another bus straight out of the garage. When we asked the conductor about this, he didn’t even care to reply πŸ™ . That’s the pathetic state of the buses and the employees. And after sometime in the journey, some creature was moving over my leg and I had no clue what it could have been. At one point of time, I was so vexed up that I felt like shouting at the driver and the conductor or go to a consumer court for such pathetic service. The whole night, I was not able to sleep and just wanted to get out of that hell asap πŸ™ . My cousin who was along with me was saying Indians are know for their tolerance but this is like testing it to its limits πŸ™‚ . The worst part is that we have no clue whom to complain or how to get this to the notice of concerned authorities. That reminds me of TIA (This Is Africa) which can now be safely modified to TII (This Is India) πŸ˜€ .

What a day it was!!!!

Continuing the previous posts related to my bangalore to hyderabad ticket woes, finally it was august 14th, the day on which we were supposed to leave from bangalore. And as expected before, it was a day full of suspense, tension and lot of drama πŸ™‚ . Nothing was clear till the last moment. Coming to how it all went through………..

I was checking our ticket status from office and till 3.50 pm i.e, 2 hours 20 minutes before the departure time, the charts were not yet prepared. I thought it was time for me to leave office so that if by any chance the tickets would get confirmed, I should be able to make it to the station in time. And being a long weekend traffic at marathahalli was hopeless. Somehow I managed to reach home by 4.20 pm and still the charts were not prepared. I asked the other two of my friends who were supposed to travel along with me to start. I was checking till 4.45 pm and still no sign of charts being prepared πŸ™ . So, finally I left home at 4.45 pm and took an auto to the railway station. And I told 3 people to keep checking my pnr status. I was getting continuous updates from them that still the charts were not prepared and on top of that the traffic was too much. It was 5.30 pm now, 50 minutes before departure and it still says charts not prepared πŸ™ . And when I had covered more than half of the distance, I get a call from my friend that the tickets were not confirmed and he is not coming to station. Immediately I asked the auto driver to go to kalasipalyam so that I can try for some bus tickets. Then the third friend almost reached the railway station and then I informed her that tickets were not confirmed. So, she asked the driver to go back to her place and I reached kalasipalyam. There I was trying for bus tickets and the situation was so bad that even the place in driver’s cabin was sold out and then they were selling tickets for sitting on a stool in the bus 😯 . Then I got hold of some agent and he said he will try for tickets and that’s when I get a call from the first friend that two of our tickets have been confirmed. It was 5.45 pm then and train was at 6.20 pm.

This is where the real fun started πŸ™‚ . I was at kalasipalyam and had to reach majestic. Another one had to start from his guest house in koramangala and the third one was still in auto going towards koramangala from majestic. I just told them to somehow make it to cantonment station atleast (as the train would reach cantonment by 6.40 pm, they would have another 20 mins) and by that time I can talk to the TC if he would allow 3 of us to travel as we already had 2 confirmed tickets. I took an auto and just told him to somehow take me to the station in the fastest way he can. The station wasn’t too far from that place but there was too much of traffic on the way. Finally I reached the station just 5 minutes before the departure time. By then it started to rain also and I was literally running to catch the train. Finally reached the platform and there was a TC standing over there surrounded by some 12-15 people trying to get a confirmed berth πŸ™‚ . I told him our status and he asked me to get in and we can see what can be done later. So, I told my friends that we can get in and they just need to reach cantonment station in time. Finally, both of them reached cantonment just in time to catch the train. Both of them had their own adventures in the auto πŸ™‚ . Somehow, three of us made it.

Now the tension was about what would the TC say πŸ™ . We were eagerly waiting for him and that guy turned up after some 2 hours. He didn’t even care to see if the third passenger was there or not. He just saw that two tickets were confirmed and that’s it. He says if you people can adjust, you can continue. That was some relief to us. He was too busy to say or do anything more. Actually this third person’s ticket is supposed to be cancelled automatically once the charts have been prepared. All the tickets that are booked online and in waiting list after the charts are prepared, will be cancelled automatically and the money would be refunded back to the account. Its almost ticketless travel and on normal occasions the fine would be around 500 or 600 rupees πŸ™‚ . But this day the situation being too bad, the TC didn’t even care about all this. Now, we don’t know if that money would be refunded back or not as two of the tickets were confirmed. Whatever be it we were ready to pay the fine also and were happy that we are going to hyderabad somehow πŸ˜€ .

Now comes the worst part of the journey. Two of us sharing the same upper berth πŸ™ . I was sleeping in the same posture for almost 7 hours πŸ™ and by 5 am in the morning I felt as if my back is going to break. That’s when I woke up the other guy and got down. I couldn’t sleep properly for the whole night and on top of that my back was paining like hell πŸ™ . And then the news is that train is late by more than one hour. This was the only thing pending πŸ™ . Whenever I travelled by this train, it reached on time always and this was the first time it got delayed. Looks like whatever can go wrong will go wrong, and at the worst possible time, in the worst possible way (perfect scenario of murphy’s law).

And finally I reached hyderabad. Never felt so happy coming here. I feel like I had achieved something this time and that’s true infact. Managing to reach hyderabad in such bad conditions is a real achievement for me πŸ˜€ .

Another day dedicated to IRCTC

Looks like my bangalore to hyderabad ticket woes are not going to end soon πŸ™ . As mentioned by me in the previous post, I was trying to get tickets from bangalore to hyderabad and finally my friend assured me that we will be getting 3 bus tickets but it was at double the price. We were happy that atleast we are able to go to hyderabad. And today afternoon I get a message from him saying that the agent had ditched us and we don’t have any ticket to go to hyderabad. Getting a ticket for bangalore to hyderabad has never been so tough during the last one year of my stay in bangalore.

Already I had wasted one day trying for tatkal quota and then bus tickets. Today it was another attempt to get a ticket to get it confirmed in emergency quota (EQ). I had happily cancelled all other train tickets that I booked earlier and now I will have to book again for 3 of us to get it confirmed in EQ. And thanks to the IRCTC site, it wasn’t even allowing me to login. And after several attempts, finally I could book three 3rd A.C. tickets and gave the pnr number to my friend. Just then I realized that I had given one of the passenger details wrongly πŸ™ . Immediately I called up the IRCTC call centre in Delhi. After a few attempts, I could talk to the executive over there and she says there is no other way except to cancel this ticket and book another one. So, back to IRCTC site again to book another ticket for 3 of us and by then the W/L reached regret status. So, I finally booked in sleeper class for us and gave the pnr number to my friend and the W/L was 298, 299 and 300.

Before all this happened, earlier during the day I had to book a ticket for october 12th from hyderabad to bangalore. And as always, our IRCTC site wasn’t responding and it took me almost 45 minutes to book that single ticket and lucklily my ticket was the last confirmed ticket πŸ˜€ . After this exercise, a friend of mine wanted a ticket for august 15th and very few were available and the site wasn’t responding. So, he asked me to try for him as well. That was for some 20 minutes but it was of no use. Ultimately he got a waitlisted ticket.

So, my day started with IRCTC and ended with IRCTC. I would have made atleast 50 attempts today for all the tickets that I was trying to book πŸ™ . And the final status is that till the day of journey, we won’t be knowing if the tickets would get confirmed. The status will be known just some 3 hours before the scheduled departure of the train πŸ™ .

Will update the status here again……

All for a ticket from bangalore to hyderabad

It all started because of the long weekend of August 15th. Last time when I was in hyderabad sometime during last week of june, I was just checking tickets availability for bangalore to hyderabad for august 15th and by then only it was going in wait list. I booked in two different trains and the status on august 9th was still in wait list. Finally, I had decided to book in tatkal quota.

So, a guy who does not get up early in the morning (early here implies before 8 AM πŸ™‚ ) to go to office only decides to get up by 7.45 AM on a saturday πŸ˜€ . And finally I got up at 7.44 AM by a wake-up sms (yeah you read it right…..a wake-up sms) from a friend πŸ˜€ . Now without wasting any more time, I opened my laptop, opened irctc site and was ready to book the tickets. And just as the clock struck 8.00 AM, I started trying, but it says not yet opened. By then I came to know that another friend was able to open and was entering the passenger details also……it was from US. So, the next thing I did was to connect on my vpn πŸ’‘ and then tried again. In the mean time, I started to try from my second laptop with another user id that I created the previous night. But it was of no use. And just a few minutes later, I get a status update from my friend that only 11 tickets are available and then the next update is W/L 13 πŸ™ and that’s the end. After that I tried in other trains and other classes but of no use πŸ™ . Just within a few minutes after tatkal quota started, everything was in waitlist again.

Then, I checked for buses and ksrtc was full. Then tried redbus to check for private operators and even that was full. Had no other options and booked a ticket for august 15th as a backup. Then decided to go to Kalasipalyam (for those of you who don’t know what that place is……….its sort of Mecca for private bus operators in bangalore….. one can find atleast 100 travel offices at a single point). And as always as a backup plan asked a friend of mine to check in apsrtc and another one for any other private operators near his place. And finally after sometime I get a call that one of my friends could get tickets but for double the price 😯 . We had no other option and atlast we decided to go for it πŸ™ .

Now when I started back from kalasipalyam, I didn’t knew the way back. I just knew how to reach the place πŸ™‚ . I was almost lost in bangalore city in broad daylight and this is not the first time it happened to me. The first time I went to Kalasipalyam to book tickets to Pondicherry, me and my friend lost our way and it was around 11 PM. Finally, with the help of some auto drivers and other people on the road, I just reached home πŸ™‚ .

Learnt a lesson now and I got my ticket to hyderabad for October 8th booked already πŸ˜€ . And I am going to book the return ticket also on the first day it opens up.

Ultimaltely, after all the pains, I am going to hyderabad πŸ™‚ on august 14th night in a bus (which I always try to avoid) by paying double the normal price πŸ™ .

Kodachadri Trek experiences contd……

This post is going to be the last one in this series πŸ™‚ . I will be writing here the general things you need to take care of, the lessons I had learnt and about the places in general.

The Leeches:
The most scaring part of the trek and the driving force to get to the peak as soon as possible πŸ™‚ . Better carry some salt, tobacco and coconut oil with you. Tobacco and coconut oil mixture is definitely going to be of great help. What we noticed was that though the leeches might get on to you, because of the tobacco effect, they would not have enough strength to start sucking your blood and ultimately after sometime they are going to die. And salt would kill them instantaneously but you cannot apply salt on you feet and then wear shoes. That would cause blisters. So, use salt whenever a leech is stuck to the body tightly. Just a pinch of salt would do the trick. Also better to carry some clotting agent. It took quite a while and lot of efforts for the bleeding to stop.

The conclusion is that you need not worry much about the leeches…….they are not going to be too dangerous. Its only that you would be short of a few ml of blood πŸ™‚ . And its absolutely painless when they are sucking the blood. Its just the size of them after sucking the blood that makes you paranoid.

Food during Kodachadri Trek:
The food at Santosh tea stall is good. You can get idli, upma and tea over there. Also you can get some salt here to save yourself from leeches and you can buy some orange candies as well. Food at the kodachadri peak is good. Its a nice home made food and tastes good. You can get tea/coffee, rice, sambar, rasam and curry. All this at reasonable prices. They even provide accomodation at a very nominal price. You can book a jeep to Kollur from here. Only Airtel has got network coverage at this place and that too you won’t get it all over the place. You will have to go and talk at a particular point to get decent signal quality.

Food at Kollur:
We were expecting to get some good food over here. But food at Santosh tea stall and the peak was much much better than food at this place. The strange thing is that you don’t get idly thoroughout the day. Generally whenever I go out, I prefer idlis as nothing can go wrong with it πŸ™‚ . But at this place I was surprised to see that they don’t have idlis……. they have them only for breakfast. And then this being a temple area, we don’t even get non-veg. One of the guys was very desperate to have non-veg. So, after asking some people we came to know that there is one place some 1 – 1.5 km away from our hotel and we went there and it turned out to be a small bar πŸ™ . So, atlast no non-veg…… later when we were about to catch our bus, we found someone making omlettes and that’s where we had our dinner for the day πŸ™‚ …….two omlettes each.

Arasinagundi falls:
If at all you plan to go to Arasinagundi falls, better take a guide. That’s one thing I had learnt after our experience.

Finally, this trek had everything in it………lot of adventure, leeches, mutiny, scenic beauty of the mountains, the streams in the forest and especially the view of the mountains in the midst of clouds was awesome. On the whole it was an amazing weekend.

Kodachadri Trek experiences contd……

Day 2:
I thought of getting up by 8 AM but ultimately the guys who had been to the temple came back and woke us up at around 9 AM πŸ™‚ . We quickly got ready and then back to the same tobacco business πŸ˜€ as on the trek to Arasinagundi falls also there would be many leeches. Once we were done with applying tobacco, we had our breakfast and started walking towards the falls. What we heard from the locals was that it would be 8 kms on the main road and then 2 kms in the jungle, making it a total of 10 kms one way. We were happy to know that it was just 2 kms through the jungle unlike the previous day’s trek.

After walking for some 2 kms I think, we found a bridge and we were asked to take right near the bridge. But we were confused whether we had to take right before the bridge or after crossing it. After a while, one of the guys saw a sign board over there and could recollect that he had seen the same one in some blogs before coming and we were supposed to go that way only. And you know what that board was saying “TRAKKING IS STOPPED” . You can see my friend pointing to it in the below picture πŸ™‚ . That blog said that we have to take that particular way only. The gates were all closed but there was a opening on one side through which we went inside. First wrong information we had was that it was 8 km on main road and then just 2 km in jungle. But here the jungle started immediately and also the leeches. In fact this place was much more damp than yesterday’s and the leeches were also more. We just continued to walk without any doubts in our minds. We found some small streams also on our way and this jungle was much more dense. The ascent was also quite steep. After walking for some half an hour I guess, we saw a small sign board and something was written in kannada. It was mentioning about some place 25.0 kms away. But we did not give much attention to it. Then after a further 0.5 kms, we saw a similar board and it pointed to the same place 24.5 kms. This is when we thought there must be some famous place ahead and when we looked at it closely, we realized that it said the lake was 24.5 kms away from that point 😯 . We started off thinking that it would be just 10 kms one way and two way it would be 20 kms and we would be on time to catch our bus back to bangalore. But this is where the problems started. Some of us said it might be something else and the others started worrying. In fact, looking at the dense jungle and the number of leeches on our way only, few of the guys were already scared πŸ™‚ . But me and two other guys were determined to go ahead and we didn’t even stop. The others were following us and still trying to argue and convince that we have to go back now. That’s when we finally announced that we are going ahead and if anyone wants to go back then may do so. So, at last there was a mutiny over there and two of the eight guys went back. Now we were six of us and just a few minutes later we realized that two others also left. So, the head count is just four now.

Determined to go ahead we didn’t even care about them. After going a little distance further we realized that the food bag was with those who had left and we were left with very little food and just 2 litres of water I guess. Even that didn’t stop us and this time I was the one leading….so, I had to take care of clearing the path from spiders and cob webs (remember me mentioning about it in the previous post). So, we were happily going forward enjoying the surroundings….the path we were going on looked to be not used for a long time. It was not the case with the kodachadri peak’s path……there we could clearly see the path. When I was just at my peak pace and going ahead, I got the shock of my life after seeing what was in front of my face. I was barely a feet away from it and about to move forward and realized that the whole path was covered by a huge cob web with a king size, multi-coloured spider at the centre. I was so scared at the first sight of it that I just screamed and the people behind me thought that I had seen some wild animal πŸ˜€ . Then the second guy who came saw it and just ran away a few feet πŸ™‚ . This is the point where we were also doubtful. Looking at the way the whole path was blocked by the web and no clear path on the other side of it, it appeared as if its been a long time since anyone had used that path. If you can see the picture above, there are just dense trees all over and no proper way ahead. So, atlast after this point we had to call-off our trek as none of us dared to clear the web and go ahead as we were not sure of what other surprises might be awaiting us πŸ˜€ . So, finally we could not see the falls πŸ™ .

On our way back as we had enough time, we could spend a lot of time in the stream on the way back. After coming back to the main road, we found two other guys who left later under the bridge, near the stream. Here the flow was more and we had spent some one hour over there. Then had food by the side of the road itself πŸ™‚ .

Finally, I had no leech bites. There were 3 – 4 leeches that crawled upto my legs but even before they had sucked my blood, I had noticed them and removed. So, escaped without any leech bites πŸ˜€ .

After going back to room, four of us who missed going to the temple thought of visiting it once. One strange thing in this temple is that once we are inside the actual core part of the temple, we have to take off our shirts……that was quite surprising for me. As I said before, there is lot of influence of Kerala culture over here and this tradition also looks to be a Kerala one. After having darshan over there (luckily as the chief minister had left by the time we went, there was no queue at all πŸ™‚ ), came back to our hotel to get ready to catch our bus. The bus dropped us in bangalore by 6.15 AM and we were back home by 7.00 AM. That was the end of our weekend trek.

This was the overall big picture of our Kodachadri trek. In the next post of mine, I would be writing about some other minute details and some lessons that I had learnt in this trek.

Kodachadri Trek experiences contd……

Continuing from the previous post………Once we started back to Kollur on the jeep I thought it might be just another ghat road with lots of curves, etc. But once we started going down, that’s when we realized that its not at all a proper road. That was just a jeep track and all over the path there were so many twists and turns with uneven suface and rocks that none of us inside could sit properly. I was sitting on the back side of the jeep and the guy beside me was almost crushing me and on the other side was the seat with some nuts projecting out. My knees were continuously hitting those nuts. The drive was too scary and sometimes we felt as if this time the jeep is going to topple for sure and the next moment we see that we are still safe and sound πŸ™‚ . On this particular track, its only those experienced drivers who can drive. And once we hit the main road, just after a few kilometres, the gear box became loose πŸ™ . Luckily this guy knew someone who was just one or two kilometres away and somehow they fixed it. Thats when we started back towards Kollur. By the time we reached Kollur it was around 8.45 PM (don’t remember exactly).

We started our search for accomodation. After searching for some 15-20 mins, we could find a proper accomodation suitable for us. Then had our dinner and back to rooms. Dinner was a major issue. These people don’t have anything except dosas and this being a temple area, there are no non-veg restaurants also. I thought idlis would be the safest bet but surprisingly they don’t have that also πŸ™ . Finally had a dosa for dinner. The place appeared to be predominantly inhabited by Kerala people. Though it was in Karnataka, one would feel as if you have entered Kerala.

Next day we were supposed to get up by 5 AM to visit the temple. Unfortunately the chief minister of Karnataka was also visiting the temple the next day and lot of rush was expected πŸ™ . So, I decided that I won’t be going to the temple and would directly go to Arasinagundi falls πŸ™‚ . At that point of time, for me getting proper sleep looked to be the top priority πŸ™‚ . Finally I think only half of the 8 people decided to get up by 5 AM the next day to visit the temple. I was not the only lazy guy πŸ˜€ .

Kodachadri Trek experiences

You would find a series of posts about my kodachadri trek experiences as it can’t be covered in a single post (it would become too long)…..and here comes the first one among them πŸ™‚ .

Day 1:
As mentioned in my previous post, we started from bangalore on friday night. We had taken a bus to Kollur . We were supposed to get down at kodachadri cross or also called Karakatte by the locals over there. This point was some 30 km before Kollur. The bus was already late by 1 hour 45 mins. We should have reached by 5 AM but it was already 6.45 AM. Wasting no more time, we started walking towards our first halt…..the tea stall. Just after a few minutes of walk we realized that leeches had already started their work πŸ™‚ . This was my first encounter with leeches….I had never seen them before. Somehow we managed to reach the tea stall within an hour…..its just bcoz of the leeches that we did not even stop anywhere….the moment we would stop you would find more leeches attacking you πŸ™ . After reaching the tea stall ( Santosh tea stall), we were all busy checking our legs and I was shocked to see so many of them on my friends’ legs. After sucking the blood they had become so fat and anyone would definitely be paranoid. Luckily till this point I had no leech bites and I just found a few on my socks and shoes. After a thorough checking, we had gone down to a stream to brush our teeth and by this time only half of the people were so frightened of the leeches that they preferred staying back at the tea stall itself. I got down to the stream along with three others and after coming back again two of them had leech bites. And till now I had none of them.

After having hot idlis with hot chutney (yeah hot chutney…….till now I never heard of hot chutney for idlis….this was the first time πŸ™‚ ) and two cups of tea, we started our actual work…..the tobacco and coconut stuff. By this time, we realized how is the trek going to be with the leeches. So, we started making a paste of the tobacco and coconut oil. We could not make a paste but applied the mixture on our feet and legs. By the time we were done with all this it was 10.45 AM. We carried some salt also with us. We could not apply salt on the feet as that would cause blisters after wearing shoes. The salt would help to kill the leeches. Just a pinch of salt is sufficient to kill any leech. Finally, declaring a war against the leeches, we started off to our next destination at around 10.50 AM.

Inspite of toabcco and the cocount oil, all of us still had the fear of leeches and everyone was frequently checking their legs….and we then hear someone or the other screaming to help take out a leech πŸ™‚ . This would go on till the end of the trek. The way to the peak was through proper jungle. The weather, surroundings, streams…..everything over there was perfect except for the leeches. But we should actually be thankful to them because its just because of the fear of leeches that we took very few breaks in between and we were continuously walking. The previous day being my birthday, I had nice birthday bumps πŸ™ and then whenever there was a steep ascent, I could feel the pain πŸ™ . After some 30 to 40 mins of trek, I was so tired that the leeches didn’t appear to be a problem at all. We were not in a position to check our legs also for leeches and just kept on walking further. Even for eating or drinking water, we were not standing still because of the leeches πŸ™ .

Once we were like one hour into the trek, we reached a point where in we were actually in the clouds πŸ™‚ and the view from there was awesome. I really can’t describe that in words. It made us forget about the blood that the leeches had suck and the pains we had taken to reach there πŸ™‚ . And by this time I had stopped worrying about the leeches and we were just enjoying every moment of the trek from this point. Took quite a few snaps near the streams that came on our way. The way to the peak was not that easy……..at some points it was so dense jungle that we had to bend and walk through the trees. And the guy ahead was saying that we might find some cob webs and spiders on the way…..so he was using a stick or umbrella to clear our way first and then only move ahead ( remember this spiders stuff…. I would be mentioning about it later as well). Somehow after some 2 hours of trek, we reached our next halt. This is the point where we can get food and accomodation. Its just a small house and a few temples over there. From here the peak is supposed to be some 30 mins trek.

We had some hot tea and went to the temple. By then our food was ready. It was rice and sambar with some pickle and a curry. Food tasted great. Then we started off to the peak. It was good to hear that we won’t be finding any more leeches from here till the top πŸ™‚ . That was a great relief to us. Ohhhh!!! I forgot to mention, the tobacco and coconut oil mixture worked perfectly πŸ™‚ …. none of us had any leech bites this time πŸ˜€ . The final part wasn’t that tiring and within 30 mins we were on the top. There was a small cave enroute to the peak. It was called Ganeshaguha……..there was an idol of Lord Ganesha over there. Even at the top, there was another temple. Looks like this place is full of temples πŸ™‚ . By the time we reached the peak, the cloud cover had become dense…..the visibility was very less. We had spent some 15-20 mins there and started walking back.

Our plan was to take a jeep now to reach Kollur by night and then go to the famous Kollur Mookambika temple the next day morning. After that we planned to go to Arasinagundi falls. We got the jeep by 5.30 PM. They charged Rs. 1500 for eight of us. The distance from here to kollur was 40 km but the first 10 km was through a ghat road. We didn’t knew that this jeep experience is going to be another unforgettable one……….more about this and kollur in the next post πŸ™‚ .

Going to Kodachadri Trek

This is the first time I am writing about the place that I will be going to. Generally you would see my posts only after I go somewhere. But this time the trek looks to be interesting and there are so many things to write about πŸ™‚ that I thought of writing about it even before starting πŸ˜€ . I had been on treks before also but this time its going to be a full 2 day one.

It all started when my friend Karthik was going to Kodachadri along with a few of his colleagues and asked me and Jayant if we are interested in joining. And the answer would obviously be yes πŸ˜€ . All the planning for the trip was done by them only. And here’s our plan…. start from bangalore on friday night….reach a place called Karakatte the next day morning….then after completing our morning activities, we would start our trek and reach our breakfast point. From here we might go to Arasinagundi falls and then come back to the same point and continue with the trek. Or we might just go towards the peak after going to Hadlumane falls. Finally after reaching our destination we plan to see the sunset/sunrise from the peak. Heard a lot about the view…lets see how its going to be. Then start climbing down after breakfast and reach a place called Kollur and then finally bangalore by monday morning. That’s our tentative plan for now.

Coming to the special attractions in the trek, I just came to know today that we would be welcomed by leeches 😯 (thts scary). We are carrying tobacco with us and it seems applying tobacco with oil on our feet πŸ’‘ would put away the leeches. For me as of now this leeches business is the only thing to worry πŸ˜€ about. The other friends of mine had faced the same on their other treks and say its not at all a problem. They don’t even see this to be an issue πŸ™ . Lets see how am I going to manage πŸ™‚ or am I worrying too much???

And coming to the supplies that we are taking, we are going to carry food, torch lights, jackets, first aid kit, water and tobacco of course πŸ™‚ . Sounds like a professional trek 😎

Will write about my experiences once I am back on monday………happy weekend πŸ™‚

Just to add, few of my friends are suggesting to take salt instead of tobaccco & oil combination to avoid leeches. I think I might carry salt as well πŸ™‚