The news is WE, Somarigalu(lazy bones :P) have completed another trip successfully. Here’s a ‘short’ travelogue of the trip, narrated through pictures. Lets go through the planning and the preparation quickly. Our first choice was Brahmagiri (we didn’t get permission);Second choice Sakleshpur(not sure about trains plying on the trek track). Couple of other choices and a 100+ mail chain later, we zeroed in on Kudremukha and Manju spared no time to make sure there is no further debate by swiftly booking the tickets :P. Praveen’s uncle and aunt stay in Kalasa (20 kms from Kudremukh). So we even had vehicle arrangements ready once we reach there.
Jan 23rd: We got on the Sugama Travels bus.Manju almost manhandled and got slapped by some gals sitting in front (thinking it was one of us) but for Praveen’s ‘timely’ last second intervention. I was meeting Sharath after a long time. So he narrated to me his Germany experiences (beer kudi-pizza tinnu -movies nodu-malgu-office hogu).
Jan 24th: We reached Karkala at 7:00 AM.Checked into a nearby hotel for 2 hours,freshened up. The vehicle was already waiting. Finished breakfast, and ready for the trip!!!Our first destination was Hanumanagundi falls.We reached the place pretty soon only stopping at a viewpoint on the way.Hanumanagundi falls is splendid! The falls were not gushing with water. This allowed me to get some real cool ‘silky effect’ pics and we could actually go very near to the falls.
The water was icy cold.After spending some time there and clicking some SO-LOW pics, we started for our next point:Lakya Dam.This dam was previously used to collect waste materials from mining operations when KIOCL(Kudremukh Iron Ore Company Limited) was still under operation.
We reached Kudremukha next. There was a park nearby. And while I was clicking the usual flowers and birds pics, Manju posed for the most infamous pic of the trip! I shall decide whether to post the pic here based on public demand :D
It was time for lunch.The driver suggested a place on the way where we can get home food. The food was actually good there and we had a sumptuous lunch. This was the place from where our breakfast and lunch for the next day also will be coming. (Pic on the right below. Yes yes, don’t be too surprised ;))After the lunch, the plan was to go to the tea factory nearby via the tea estates en route. One generous employee in the factory explained us all the stages of tea preparation while showing us the equipment. Next we reached Kalasa and directly went to Praveen’s uncle and aunt place.We can’t say enough about the royal treatment we got from them for the next one and half days or so. Very warm and caring people. Praveen’s uncle has some contacts so we always had a vehicle when needed (the two days) . Uncle himself came with us the next day to see us off at the trek starting point and wish us good luck :D. Back to the present,we spent sometime at their home conversing on various topics. It was around 4 pm when we left for Horanadu temple.
A visit to the temple and we were off for the last spot of the day.A viewpoint from the tea estate. Sadly by the time we reached there,the sun had raced down on the west already.(To the right is a pic here in fading light).Next we reached Kudremukh again,this time for our night stay at the guest house.After the dinner, we went around the Kudremukh township. The place conjures up an eerie and deserted look with houses,shops everywhere but no people to be seen (Most of them have moved out after KIOCL closed down its operations due to protests from environmentalists). Soon it was time to sleep. We had to wake up early for the big day tomorrow. I was slightly shocked when Praveen & Girisha insisted on setting their alarms to 5:30 in the morning!!! I blankly told them to wake me up only when both of them are ready and pulled the blankets on…
Seems like this post has gone pretty long already. I am wary of the attention span of my readers. So the remaining part will appear in the next post. I shall leave you guys with these amazing pics ;) (And before Karthik screams injustice, a special mention to my dear friend for suggesting this pic :D)