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Old 28th September 2012, 10:36   #16
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Default Re: Exploring Mahabaleshwar again!

MTDC restaurant and reception areas are lined up with quite a few informative posters, nicely framed and hung on the walls. Good to see such initiative from Govt organization in providing information and aiding tourism, quite an improvement from the past. Just hope they also get their act together on better maintenance, mainly painting, of the rooms as well.

Bear with the quality of the pics with too much of reflections, it was just inevitable, so just clicked as we could.

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Old 28th September 2012, 12:34   #17
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Mahaby is generally termed as a hill station with lots of viewpoints of surrounding valleys to enjoy the enchanting views of Sahyadri mountain ranges of Western Ghats from various directions.

However, what is forgotten is that it is primarily a jungle and that too with extremely diverse flora and fauna. So while we get to see many perspectives to various points, the flora and fauna get lost in the whole hill station thingy. Only Kaas this side of the world is reckoned as the valley of flowers and now recognized as an heritage site too. But the whole Mahaby jungle too is home to such diverse flora and fauna, it will leave one spellbound if explored in that perspective. It is a true paradise to trekkers and nature lovers.

My endeavor will be to bring out some of those aspects herewith through pics while we also visit the various points and that too leisurely. Never have I enjoyed Mahaby like this before to its fullest and it still leaves much to be covered. But these perspectives would not have been possible had it not been for my better half's huge help and herself capturing quite a few snaps in framing the beauties and also managing our brats. Bear with not so good photo quality at some places.

The Polo Ground presents a fantastic view in the midst of the jungle at that dead end and is laid with intricate green and yellow velvet

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The inviting jungle roads

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Sunset or Bombay point may be good during completely open days but is marred by the overgrown foliage there. Not too exciting this time. But also to note, morning time is not the time to visit such a point, is it? But this is just behind the MTDC resort and the weather was making sure that there will not be better view of the Sunset point at sunset. So we got it covered first following the Polo Ground.

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Old 28th September 2012, 13:44   #18
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Brothers in arms, oops, roots, lending support in the erosive times

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STUMPED!

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Old 28th September 2012, 16:14   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by parsh View Post
Thanks Sid. No, we gave it a skip this time, did not want to mix the pleasures of driving thru the landscapes and heavy eating with each other, else we would have been delayed even further with the lethargy we had afterwards
Okies. Forgot to ask this in case you are a non-vegetarian
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Old 28th September 2012, 17:02   #20
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Lodwick and Elephant Head Points

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Old 28th September 2012, 19:00   #21
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It's a Squirrel's Life

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Magician on the way, hung with an invisible thread right in the middle of the path

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Walk the Walk

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Lodwick Point monument of Lodwick approaches

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Elephant Head Point view from Lodwick Point

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Last edited by parsh : 28th September 2012 at 19:02.
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Old 28th September 2012, 20:13   #22
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The lone White Ranger on the vertical cliff, had rare sightings of this one at other places too

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Got out of focus this violet one, but still just to give an idea of the colorful world out there

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Old 28th September 2012, 21:12   #23
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Default Re: Exploring Mahabaleshwar again!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sidd25 View Post
Okies. Forgot to ask this in case you are a non-vegetarian
Ha! We devour both V/NV kinds equally well, just didn't want to get lethargic this time and keep to small fills just enough to keep charged up.

But these are pure Veg and do not mind having it on the edge of the valley

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A baby Red Crab

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I am bit confused here...did we see pit viper or it is a Naag sapling? For better view, you can zoom into the snap, see the head having Naag 'U' mark. That makes me think it is a Naag sapling with the spiral stripe band on the body. It was too quick to move immediately sensing our movement and we had to be superbly quick too get this much not getting chance to zoom and shoot. Any expert here who can confirm?

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Old 28th September 2012, 22:27   #24
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Default Re: Exploring Mahabaleshwar again!

parsh, wanted to wait for the entire story to unfold before commenting, but couldn't hold myself back any longer.

I have been to Mahabaleshwar a few times. Have experienced it in different seasons as well. BUT, the way YOU have captured it is absolutely amazing! Just love your perspective and eye for detail.

Enjoying it thoroughly. Please carry on.

Last edited by SDP : 28th September 2012 at 22:30.
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Old 28th September 2012, 23:04   #25
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Even the wildest of flowers present amazingly beautifully in this weather.

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Having leisurely finished the morning points, we head back to MTDC for late lunch. We decide to make way towards Venna Lake and Panchgani and try exploring it post lunch. Just slowly drive on around Venna lake without stop and drive on towards Panchgani. But mid-way decide against it seeing the declning day and stop at Bhillar Waterfall. The fog in the valley just does not allow to focus on the Bhillar waterfall and have to do with the unfocused foggy pic for now.

Bhillar waterfall

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We have already passed the Lingmala Waterfall directions. So once again ask for the directions and come to know about other routes at the Surya Hotel and decide to explore them. What follows is a lovely explorative outing to riverside and mountains and views of Lingmala Waterfall stages from various points which we did not know before.

Lingmala Waterfall Route 1

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On the route the beautiful twisties present in all sorts of different fragrant colors each in different manner

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The route is laid with concrete steps most of the way and concrete slope at places leading upto the beautiful riverside

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Old 28th September 2012, 23:14   #26
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Default Re: Exploring Mahabaleshwar again!

Parsh - Beautifully written travelogue and amazing photography. I have never been to Mahabaleshwar, but after seeing your pics, i really want to go there (atleast for the drive along the Ghat section; It looks simply fantastic) and i guess you went at the right time as well - Just after the rains; the Greenish landscape and the odd waterfall in between, just looks divine
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Old 28th September 2012, 23:52   #27
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The 2 streams start becoming visible now. These two merge and and create the Lingmala Waterfall stages. First, they fall a small height of about 10' to create the Small Lingmala Waterfall and then the grand one. But, wait, you still have to take efforts to see them, they are not so easily visible yet. But for now we can enjoy the beautiful riverside. One can just spend an entire day here.

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This is only one stream, the other one is beyond the middle hillock. It is difficult to cross over to there even with receding monsoon, the rocks are slippery and don't go on the calm waters, they are full of energy, and if one slips here, the journey is atleast guaranteed upto the Small Lingmala Waterfall ahead. But the green meadows offer a spectacular site with the lovely breeze brushing you. Not many people venture here but it is worth a place visiting and spending time.

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Old 29th September 2012, 11:14   #28
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The (kinetic ) energy in water

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The river stream this side of hillock running down to its destiny. One can keep walking besides the river stream upwards towards the upper valley of the river and enjoy the adventure and the riverside to fullest, but to certain extent, as it is difficult to venture after certain distance with the stream posing various challenges, not that it cannot be done, but with the family in tow, one has certain restrictions.

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The first stage of the Lingmala Waterfall approaches where it falls to create the Small Lingmala Waterfall

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It was a risky proposition going further so had to be content with view up to this point only. You will see these same trees from below and the 5 streams running around the trees and rocks to create the Small Lingmala Waterfall later on from the (Main) Route 3.

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The Fisherman cometh...alas no strings attached and no bait although fishes aplenty

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Beautiful wild flowers, though did not get right exposure to get its real beauty

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Arra-Root - a very useful medicinal plant, there are also farms at some places in the Mahaby region. It occurs in various colors as well and makes for a nice decorative flower as well.

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Old 29th September 2012, 12:22   #29
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Lingmala Waterfall Route 2

The slippery muddy path (not so slippery when we went there but would be a nightmare in peak monsoon) leads down to a edge of the valley where the Grand Lingmala Waterfall is seen just taking a plunge into its gorge down below.

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Arra-Root in different shade

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The valley of the river...just stupendous, impossible to capture the feeling and beauty in the camera.

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The view of the Main Route 3 having railings on the other side of the valley. That is only a very near point of the path visible from this side, the actual vantage point for the Grand View is far ahead of it on the other side.

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The Grand Lingmala Waterfall taking a plunge into its gorge. The view atop a huge rock up above just near the fall. Any adventure beyond that would mean a misadventure unless you have all the rapling supports. There is a kachcha narrow path that goes around a huge rock and supposedly meets the Main Route 3 over an iron bridge midway, that will be visible on the way Main Route 3. But for now, we take our adventure only upto this point especially with the kids in tow.

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The Sun reminds its setting time for the day and we have to head back.

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Hotel Surya for Route 1 and 2. The Route 1 is at the Right end of the hotel where our car is parked on road and the Route 2 is on this side of Hotel Surya where the board and gate is seen.

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The locations of the Lingmala Waterfall Routes 1, 2 and 3. The Route 3 has to be left for the next day for further explorations.

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Old 29th September 2012, 13:07   #30
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The evening cloudy shades and craving stomachs call for a stop at Mapro Garden further towards Panchgani. What follows is one after another exploration of the amazing orchids on way, in Mapro Garden and in orchid gallery of their Green House. It is just a riot of orchids out there, quite a few never encountered before.

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