Thursday, January 20, 2005

Shivanasamudram, Talkad, Mekedatu and, Kemmengundi...

In the past couple ofweeks, I had been to quite a few places, with friends from office (Piyush garyali, Kalpana, Piyush Sarode, Asif, Sridhar, Harish and Mohan), with Rohit and Vishal, and with my drama group. Heres a quick recollection of my first impression about these places.

Shivanasamudram:

Over 130 km of bumpy, curvy, and sometimes non-existing stretch of road towards south of Bangalore leads you to Shivanasamudram. There is an alternative route via the Mysore road. This one in-contrast to the kanakpura road is four-lane well-tarred road. For a day-long outing, Shivanasamudram is ideal location from Bangalore. The river Caverysplits here and creates stunning display of gaganchukki and barachukki falls. Gaganchukki fall lays adjacent to a dargah. It is quite risky to climb down and reach waters because of un-predictable depth and slippery rocks. A short trip from the dargah leads you to the barachukki falls. A steep staircase is carved out of rocks here, and unlike gaganchukki falls, the waterfall here has created a deep pool. A coracle ride, for a nominal fee of Rs10 per person, across the pool is the amazing experience. While returning, the coracle rides man spins coracle near a small sub-branch of the fall, leaving you thrilled, dazzled and filled with joy.

Click here to view snaps.


Talkad:

Few kms from Shivanasamudram, through patches of barren land, farm and small hills, 45km east of Mysore lie the village Talkad. It is an ancient temple town on the banks of river Cavery. The main attraction at this place is the 4th century temple of Lord Kirti Narayana, also known as the vaideshwara temple. The temple was sunken in the riverbed of Cavery. The excavation and restoration lead it to the present state. Sand dunes can be found everywhere. The place is deserted, and according to locals, the place comes to life once every 12 years during the panchalinga darshan.

Few snaps taken during the excavation work can be found here.

Few snaps that we took during our trip can be found here.


Sangam/Mekedatu:

The place is roughly 90 km away from Bangalore in the south direction. After traveling for approximately 55 km, in the south of Bangalore, you reach a small village called kanakpura, from here take a right turn for Sangam. Though the route is not much wide, it is well tarred and occasional sight of small-lakes, coconut plantations, road-side small villages, farming and bridges greets you. The air is much cooler, and fresh. Sangam is the place where river Arkavathi merges into river Cavery. The river Cavery then goes on to flow through narrow gorge at Mekedatuand then further down plunges into a deep chasm to create a stunning display of Hogenekkal Falls in TamilNadu. The best time to visit is indeed rainy season. In summer the rivers are mostly dry.

From Sangam, if you cross the river, and travel around 4 km, you reach Mekedatu. After their (Cavery and Arkavathi) confluence at Sangam, river Cavery flows through the rocks along the way. At Mekedatu, it has created narrow gorge from the rock formations created by centuries of water erosion. According to locales, in the initial days the gorge was so narrow that a goat can leap across the banks. The chasm is quite deep. And I guess Rohit knows it better than Vishal and me. Fortunately the place is much cleaner, plastic and litter, paintings and engraving of names by reckless tourists are not here.

Some of the snaps taken can be seen here.


Chunchi Falls:

For Description of Chunchi Falls, I rely on the description given by Deccan Herald, as I had been there in the wrong season hence the fall was dry.

Chunchi Falls drops in two distinct cascades. The first one seen from the distance as you approach the valley is smaller and wider and the stream picks up the momentum here. The second cascade is more captivating. To reach the view point one has to descend down the rocky patch. The rock surface is very smooth and requires cautious steps. Soon you will be greeted with a close view of this beautiful waterfall that comes through a cleft in the rock and drops down gracefully into a pool. The river flows down further to join the Cavery at Sangam 6 km away. The gorge is very narrow and deep but the views are fantastic. It is however dangerous to reach or swim in the waters. With a cool breeze around carrying flying droplets of water you can virtually steal a cat nap. f you have the adventure in you, try climbing one or two of the numerous rocky outcrops around or venture out on a planned trek to Sangam, of course, with a guide. As there are no shops, hotels or places to stay at the spot, Chunchi Falls is ideal for a day long outing.

Source: Deccan Herald.


Kemmengundi:

Kemmengundi is actually a silent hill station. Lack of amenities, available food, and government resort will bring you back fond memories of your hostel life. In spite of all these, the lush greens,think flower beds, scenic beauty, and surrounding mountains will compensate for all the pains caused on the way and at the guest house and at restaurant. The rock garden, raj bhavan garden and the flower-beds of Govt. Horticulture department guest house is amazingly well maintained. You will not find any littering or garbage anywhere in the premise.

The most famous attraction of this place apart from trekking is the Hebbe falls. The 8-km non-existent road, in fact the rocky and dirt track from Kemmengundi to Hebbe falls, is enough to shatter your bones. Unless you decide not to walk 8kms, Jeeps are available to take you near Hebbe falls; But be prepared to the bone-shattering experience, enough for you to believe you have lost the track, enough for you to believe you have chosen a wrong mode of transport or a wrong place altogether. The riding of jeep drivers is very rash. Sometimes sudden bursts of red soil peek at you and leave its mark on your cloths and make you wonder why youhad taken bath in the morning, and on the next moment a lush-green deep valley makes appearance and you unknowingly exclaim with the horror of jeeps speed at the blind turns. Once you cover the distance up to the foot of the hills you feel exhausted. From here, the last 1-km or so you have to cover on your foot. But on the next moment, Green expanses, lush coffee plantations, cardamom, black-pepper farms and sudden peek of waters make you believe you have been close to heaven. It is the most enjoyable and relaxing walk. The Hebbe falls, with the water falling down in two-stages over 500 feets (to be precise feet-168 meters) creates the most spectacular view. A trip well made. It will remain in your memories for a very long time, and make you long to be back here sometime again.

Another place on the way is kalhatti falls. It is not a big fall as compared to Hebbe falls. There is a temple near kalhatti falls. You have to cross water-flow in order to reach temple. The rocks from where water falls are carved in shapes of elephants.
Places to visit: Rock Garden, Raj-Bhavan garden, Hebbe Falls, Kalhatti Falls.

Some of the snaps that I took during the trip can be found here.


1 comment:

m I m said...

Thanks for the info :)

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