mathukathe

Archive for the ‘trek’ Category

KP

Good to know before (Approximate):

  • Distance from Bangalore: 295km.
  • Total elevation above sea-level: 8000ft
  • Elevation above ground(Kukke): 5000ft.
  • Distance from base to KP: 8km.
  • Nearby villages: Kukke, Somvarpet
  • Public transport available: Yes.

Important Contacts:

  • Mahalingeshwar Bhat / Mr. Bhat at Girigadde (For food & accomodation): 94486 47947 / 08257 281501
  • The Chief Wildlife Warden, Aranya Bhawan, 18th Cross, Malleswaram, Bangalore – 560003
    Tel.: 080-23341993/23345192 (For general reference, not essential for trek)
KP

Did you touch flying clouds in your own hands, witnessed lush green hills under your own pedes or ever experienced nirvana, then it is here and it is Kumaraparvatha. Kumaraparvatha (KP) is located near Kukke Subramanya and is also known as Pushpagiri. KP is around 295km from Bangalore and belongs to Dakshina Kannada district.

A trek to KP is not that easy, it has arduous paths, burning heat during summer and chilling cold during winter and blood sucking leeches during rainy season. It is suggested that one should have a prior trek experience before climbing into KP.

The trek to KP can be achieved in two directions, one from Somvarapet via Hegde Mane and from Kukke Subramanya via Bhatra Mane and we chose the latter one. Our trek comprised of two stages. First, Trek from Kukke to Bhattara Mane. Second, Trek from Bhattara mane to KP.

kp

Team:
Unfortunately there is no team, we are only two. It’s me and Ananda.

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Day – 1: Trek to Bhattara Mane (Bhat’s House) / Girigadde

6:45am: Reached Kukke from Bangalore. We had a hot water bath and a light breakfast (me having heavy, obviously!).

9:00am: Started from Kukke (base camp) towards Girigadde, a way leads just behind Subramanya temple. A little walk through village leads to narrow route towards Bhattara Mane/Girigadde. This is a medium steep route with a distance of about 3.5 kms. The first 3kms is a lush green patched way where even you couldn’t even see anything around other than trees. And latter 0.5 km is a dry land with no many trees.

12:30pm: At the end of 3.5 km we saw a small habitation with a farm and farmhouse and that’s Bhattara Mane. Soon reaching, we finished lunch and had little nap.

5:00pm: We went out for sightseeing of nearby mountains.

7:00pm: Upon coming back had little chit-chat with Bhattaru in Tulu. We had little painkiller juice with Orange juice (I hope you understood!) and Ananda called it as Mixing Technology.

9:00pm: Went early to bed followed by dinner.

Mr. Bhat and his brother are living in this isolated place from past 34 years. All necessary supplies have to be bought from Kukke itself. Bhattara Mane is a boon for every trekker where they can get descent meal of rice, sambar, curd and pickle. Clear water from creek running all season and space ‘n roof for resting. It’s good to see many trekkers from different part of the country get united there.

KP

Day-2: Trek to Kumaraparvatha

5:00am: We had wake up at this time and we did it. After morning duties we’re set to go. Packaged only necessary goods with us required for the journey and rest left at Bhattara Mane.

6:10am: We’re out to woods and it was still dark then. With the help of moonlight and torch in hand we started the climb.

Once you start from Bhat’s house towards KP you’ll find a checkpost of Department of Forests. Pay the entrant fee that would cost about Rs. 115 per person and collect receipt.

7:10am: Exactly after an hour we’re at Mantapa (Abandoned Temple). It’s a simple old hampi style stone temple. We also met many fellow trekkers camping out there. It was very serene to see morning sunlight falling on mountain giving different hues of green. En route saw more jungles, creek and rocks all along.

10:00am: We’re at atop of KP and totally exhausted. After quite relaxation we went for sightseeing around. KP is mountain that divides two cultures of Karnataka. On the west it is Dakshina Kannada and towards east Coorg (Kodagu). Upon reaching the peak we can see Somvarpet (Coorg) on east and Kukke Subramanya (DK) to the west.

11:00am: Soon after capturing catchy photos we started towards Bhattara Mane. While en route we got to see wildfire and approaching clouds just inches away.

2:00pm: Reached Bhattara Mane and finished lunch.

3:00pm: Started to move towards base (Kukke).

5:00pm: Reached base, having cold water bath gave better relaxation to body & mind. Visited sacred Subramanya temple and finished dinner.

10:30pm: Started our journey back to concrete jungle.

KP

Tips for trekkers:

  • Be aware of season you’re going. Avoid trekking during rainy season. Best time is February, April, and May. And carry gadgets that are required for that season.
  • Have an experienced member in your team, who already visited the place at least twice.
  • Don’t try to climb in hurry, it may lead to slip-down.
  • Carry sufficient water.
  • Never forget to carry a electric torch with you.
  • If possible carry a stick while coming down.
  • While climbing down try move in side-wise or zig-zag manner, this will not only give additional grip to your foot and also reduce body weight over your knees.
  • Carry your own garbage bag to collect waste like excess food, plastic bag etc & dispose it in any garbage dump in city. This will help keep the place clean.
  • Call Mr. Bhat before starting trek.
  • Make reservations for travel and lodging before starting. Kukke Subramanya is a sacred place with devotees aplenty.
  • Knowing Tulu would be a little helpful. You can expect personal attention.
  • And don’t forget camera, to Click!!!

Last word:
Our heartfelt thanks to Ananda H.M. for organising such marvelous expedition.

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Things to know before you start:
Distance from Bangalore: around 95 kms
Nearby town/village: Koratagere, Madhugiri, Dobbspet
Public transport available?: Yes
Elevation (above sea level): 5000fts
Elevation (above ground): 1700fts
Distance from base to hilltop: 3 – 4kms

Introduction:

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Never thought of trekking before, because you think it’s too painstaking to climb on your own. Fear that you get tan on your skin and lose that extra plump. If this is your concern then need not to worry, a trek to Siddara Betta doesn’t demand all these. Siddara Betta is about 95kms from Bangalore and belongs to Tumkur district. Way to Siddara Betta starts from Tumkur Road(NH-4) take a deviation to the right towards Dobbspet which is about 45 kms from Bangalore, another 32kms from there takes you to Koratagere and 12kms from Koratagere will lead you to Siddara Betta.

Siddara Betta has historic significance to it. As name defines in Kannada, Siddara Betta entails Hill of Saints. For decades this unique hill was home for numerous Hindu Saints for their sacred meditation and to obtain Nirvana. As time passed by, this practice got into an extinction. One can find very few saints chanting in distances. And it too has a old styled “Aashrama” at the base.

Team:

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Our team consisted of 22 people, most from my company, 6 from Symphony Services and 2 from State Education Department. Trekking was never this easy before, since whole trekking consisted of only two checkpoints commemorated by a cave temple of Siddeshwara found in middle of the way.

Checkpoint – 1: Trekking

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Trek to Siddeshwara temple consists of man-made stone stairs stretches for a distance of 3kms. This simple stretch takes you through lush greenery coming on the way. On route, one can also find huge boulders to pass through, even this has been eased by etching stairs on them and by providing support rod right through. In middle, you can also find a petty shop selling juice, snacks and cigarettes. After this you’ll find similar way of almost equal distance towards temple.

Checkpoint – 1: Cave Crawling

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Here comes the most interesting part of this whole trek, crawling inside caves. This starts from a visit to Siddeshwara temple inside the cave, and just from there starts cave crawling. Before starting hire a guide from temple, since it’s highly difficult to determine route inside caves.

Cave formation in Siddara Betta is nothing but crevices formed between rock & boulders. It’s advised to carry only necessary stuff inside, leave unnecessary outside and lighten your backpack. Inside cave, one can see places where saints were meditating before. A torch in-hand can be a good companion. While crawling I discovered a distinct, slightly dark & isolated place in middle of the cave and graded it as “Honeymoon” spot, Yes I mean it! After a few crawling, jumping, slipping and falling we saw some light coming from a gap that lead towards a huge hollow place inside boulders and a had a creepy tree similar to one shown in Harry Potter’s movies. It’s a view that one would’ve never imagined beyond. Finishing packed lunch there, we headed back to temple through some other way that god knows better and reached temple on time.

Checkpoint – 2: Trek to hilltop

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After spending a little time at temple space and with resident monkeys, we started towards hilltop which is another 1km from there. Here this doesn’t have any man-made stairs, but has easily walkable natural narrow ways. The hilltop is a plain huge boulder that exposes you to unstoppable 360° view of regions, plains and small mountains around. It’s a panorama no words can define it. Just after sipping refreshing hot lemon tea prepared by Ananda & Venkatesh, we started from there with a heavy heart. And it hardly took an hour to reach base.

Useful tips that help:

  1. Have an experienced member in your team, who already visited the place at least twice.
  2. Don’t try to climb in hurry, it may lead to slip-down.
  3. Carry sufficient water.
  4. Never forget to carry a electric torch with you
  5. Seek assistance from a guide at temple to guide you along Caves.
  6. Wear shoe that has a demonstrated ability of holding over rocks & grasses.
  7. While climbing down try move in side-wise or zig-zag manner, this will not only give additional grip to your foot and also reduce body weight over your knees.
  8. Carry your own garbage bag to collect waste like excess food, plastic bag etc & dispose it in any garbage dump in city. This will help keep the place clean.
  9. Don’t carry any food stuffs or any plastic bags in hand, since terrorist turned monkeys can snatch it from you and leaving a shock in your mind.
  10. And don’t forget camera, to Click!!!

Last word:
Our heartfelt thanks to Ananda H.M. for organising such marvelous expedition.

Trek to Ranganatha Swamy Hill - A Marvelous Expedition

Click here for photos from my camera

Click here for photos from Ananda’s camera

Introduction:
If you are a die hard trekker, game for arduous paths and adventure runs through your veins, then Ranganatha Swamy Hill is the place for you. Ranganatha Swamy Hill is also called as Bilikal Hill. This beautiful hill is located at Konavaradoddi village, Maralavadi post, Kanakapura taluk and belongs to Bangalore Rural District.

Ranganatha Swamy Hill doesn’t pose any ancient significance. Villagers say it’s named after a stone that emerged from ground atop of mountain, later named as God Ranganatha Swamy. Ranganatha Swamy Temple is one of the oldest temples found in nearby villages. Ranganatha Swamy temple is looked after by a committee of villagers. The temple is open only on Saturdays and there will be a special ritual offered to god on that day.

Useful Figures(Approximate):
Distance (from Bangalore): about 45kms
Elevation (above ground): 1500fts
Elevation (above sea level): 4200 – 4800fts
Distance from base to hilltop: 3 – 4kms

Expedition:
It was partially cloudy on Saturday the 29th September 2007, 10:30am. The team of 9 namely Ananda H.M.(Organizer), Sutapa Pal, Kotresh, Jagadish, Sameer, Abhishek, Roshan, Venkatesh and myself all geared for adventure. We started with a walk for about 10 minutes towards base camp. This walk exposed us to a scenic beauty of farmland, tall trees, sunflower plantations and hills all around, I then called it as Heaven.

The Trek consisted of 3 checkpoints separated by three boulders, where way to first to second checkpoint is characterised by tough, narrow, steep and muddy path. Second to third is easy, less slant and shadowed. Second to third is again dense with trees, narrow and steep path. We heightened the enjoyment by taking photographs, sharing Sardarji jokes and here Jagadish got a new pet name “Pintu”, that’s because it’s his pet dog’s name.

After 2.5 hours of climbing at about 1:00pm we are at hilltop, visited Ranganatha Swamy Temple followed by lunch and little nap. At 3:00pm we started for sightseeing around the hill. It’s a wowing panoramic view of surrounding hills, lakes, farmland and countryside while facing to a strong current of wind at the rock tip. Maybe these words are not sufficient to describe the beauty, it can only be experienced. I pity those members who purposely missed it to watch cricket or any other reason.

At 4:00pm Ananda & Venkatesh prepared hot lemon-tea. Soon after sipping tea with snacks, at 4:30pm we left hilltop and started towards base. After 1.5 hours of descending with bum-smashing drops, at 6:00pm we are base. Upon reaching base Sutapa unable to believe that she had climbed this magnificent hill with her own strength. And surprisingly Sameer, Roshan, Abhishek & Venkatesh reached base 30 minutes earlier to us.

After reaching base, Ananda distributed sweets among village children and we finally said good-bye with a sheer bliss of achievement.

Some Useful Tips:

  1. Have an experienced member in your team, who already visited the place at least twice.
  2. Don’t try to climb in hurry, it may lead to slip-down.
  3. Have a strong bamboo stick along with you that will serve as an extra limb while climbing up and down.
  4. Carry sufficient water.
  5. Wear shoe that has a demonstrated ability of holding over rocks & grasses.
  6. While climbing down try move in side-wise or zig-zag manner, this will not only give additional grip to your foot but, also reduce body weight over your knees.
  7. Carry your own garbage bag to collect waste like excess food, plastic bag etc & dispose it in any garbage dump in city. This will help keep the place clean.
  8. And don’t forget camera, to Click!!!

Last Word:
Our hearty thanks to Ananda H.M. for organising such marvelous expedition. And I wish best-of-luck for your next expedition to this place.