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Old 20th July 2013, 14:42   #106
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Default Re: Civved : Wayanad

Day 05
26th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Meenmutty Falls - Kanthanpara Falls - Tea estates - Chembra - Karapuzha - Phantom Rock - Edakkal Caves - Sultan Battery

Our next destination was Edakkal Caves
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Edakkal Caves closes by 16:00 hours
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Be aware of the fact that Edakkal Caves closes by 16:00 hours. From the place you are allowed to park to the ticket counter it is over 1 Kilometer of walk, and the gradient is quite steep. Please plan the visit such that you reach the parking lot latest by 15:30 hours for a comfortable walk up till the ticket counter before closing time.

We reached the parking lot by 15:55 hours and it was quite a dilemma to try trek up the hill and see whether we still get the tickets. I asked my family to come up at their pace and I rushed through the crowd along the steep gradient to reach the ticket counter by 16:05 hours. They refused to issue the ticket unless they see all of us. I told the ticket gentleman that we did not know about this 1KM of steep trek which we needed to do and hence we reached the check post in time but not the ticket counter. I asked them to update the same in their brochures/web literature wherever to help others.

Anyways now you guys have the information.

Finally on seeing the tired Jr. PPG he issued me the tickets with a warning to exit before 16:45 hours as they close the gates by 17:00 hours latest, which gives the last entered team about an hour to finish the visit.

While waiting for the PPGs to reach the counter I clicked the following information

Information for you
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With the tickets we entered. It was little difficult to climb
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Entering the first cave

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There's nothing much in there
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Towards the main cave

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Old 20th July 2013, 14:50   #107
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Default Re: Civved : Wayanad

Day 05
26th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Meenmutty Falls - Kanthanpara Falls - Tea estates - Chembra - Karapuzha - Phantom Rock - Edakkal Caves - Sultan Battery

Main cave was having the last set of visitors for the day
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Quote:
These are not technically caves, but rather a cleft or rift approximately 96 feet (29 m) by 22 feet (6.7 m), a 30-foot-deep (9.1 m) fissure caused by a piece of rock splitting away from the main body. On one side of the cleft is a rock weighing several tons that covers the cleft to form the 'roof' of the cave.
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Quote:
Edakkal Caves (11°37′28.81″N 76°14′8.88″ECoordinates: 11°37′28.81″N 76°14′8.88″E) are two natural caves at a remote location at Edakkal, 25 km from Kalpetta in the Wayanad district of Kerala in India's Western Ghats. They lie 1,200 metres above sea level on Ambukutty Mala, beside an ancient trade route connecting the high mountains of Mysore to the ports of the Malabar coast. Inside the caves are pictorial writings believed to date to at least 6,000 BC, from the Neolithic man, indicating the presence of a prehistoric civilization or settlement in this region. The Stone Age carvings of Edakkal are rare and are the only known examples from south India.

Petroglyphs (Stone age writing) dating back to about 6000 BC

These are not technically caves, but rather a cleft or rift approximately 96 feet (29 m) by 22 feet (6.7 m), a 30-foot-deep (9.1 m) fissure caused by a piece of rock splitting away from the main body. On one side of the cleft is a rock weighing several tons that covers the cleft to form the 'roof' of the cave. The carvings are of human and animal figures, tools used by humans and of symbols yet to be deciphered, suggesting the presence of a prehistoric settlement.

The petroglyphs inside the cave are of at least three types. The oldest may date back to over 8,000 years. Evidences suggest that the Edakkal caves were inhabited several times at different points in history.

The caves were discovered by Fred Fawcett, a police official of the erstwhile Malabar state in 1890 who immediately recognised their anthropological and historical importance. He wrote an article about them, attracting the attention of scholars.


The caves contain drawings that range over periods from as early as 5000 BC to 1000 BC. The youngest group of paintings have been in the news for a possible connection to the Indus Valley Civilization.

Historian M.R. Raghava Varier of the Kerala state archaeology department identified a sign “a man with jar cup” that is the most distinct motif of the Indus valley civilization. The finding, made in September 2009, indicates that the Harappan civilization was active in the region. The “a man with jar cup” symbol from Edakkal seems to be more similar to the Indus motif than those already known from Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Mr. Varier said “The discovery of the symbols are akin to that of the Harappan civilisation having predominantly Dravidian culture and testimony to the fact that cultural diffusion could take place. It is wrong to presume that the Indus culture disappeared into thin air.” The scholar of Indus and the Tamil Brahmi scripts, Mr. Iravatham Mahadevan said the findings were very significant called it a "major discovery".
One for the album
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Old 20th July 2013, 14:54   #108
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Default Re: Civved : Wayanad

Day 05
26th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Meenmutty Falls - Kanthanpara Falls - Tea estates - Chembra - Karapuzha - Phantom Rock - Edakkal Caves - Sultan Battery

Some pictures of the petroglyphs

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Old 20th July 2013, 14:56   #109
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Default Re: Civved : Wayanad

Day 05
26th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Meenmutty Falls - Kanthanpara Falls - Tea estates - Chembra - Karapuzha - Phantom Rock - Edakkal Caves - Sultan Battery

Some more pictures of the petroglyphs

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Old 20th July 2013, 15:05   #110
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Default Re: Civved : Wayanad

Day 05
26th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Meenmutty Falls - Kanthanpara Falls - Tea estates - Chembra - Karapuzha - Phantom Rock - Edakkal Caves - Sultan Battery

Some views from the main cave entrance
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Can you spot Phantom Rock?
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There were steps for the descend
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We exited by 16:45 hours as asked by the ticket counter guy
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Going down the slope was also tiring
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There is a resort nearby, Edakkal Hermitage. In February we stayed there, more of that coming up as log progresses. But a short feedback for now - not worth it, don't bother.
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There was some congregation of faiths here
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Old 20th July 2013, 15:20   #111
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Default Re: Civved : Wayanad

Day 05
26th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Meenmutty Falls - Kanthanpara Falls - Tea estates - Chembra - Karapuzha - Phantom Rock - Edakkal Caves - Sultan Battery

We reached the parking lot back by 17:30 hours. Some equations were wrong as we could infer. A pickup full of guys with rods were seen going up the steep slope to the counter. A little later I found the ticket counter guy walking with a bleeding hand. I inquired with him what happened. Some visitor team did not take tickets for camera and on inquiring the same, they man handled the counter chap. He called up his contacts and the entire shop gang and local gang went up with all possible things to bash up the visiting team. It was like hell broke loose.

PPGs saw first hand action live, and was shocked. They were hiding behind me clinging to my hands. It was bad, really bad.

Why cant these guys just take a Rs25 ticket for a camera

Police guys came and the action somehow was under control
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We started back and reached our hotel by 18:30 hours. Ordered dinner early and asked the receptionist chap to get us tickets for the other film which was running in their theater. Had some hot water bath, a nice dinner and we all walked to the theater by 20:30.

It was Bavuttiyude Namathil of Mammootty for today.
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By 23:30 we were back at our rooms and we retired for the day. The next day we have to get up early and reach Chembra peak before 07:00AM to start the trek, which meant a start from Hotel at least by 06:00AM.
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Old 20th July 2013, 19:20   #112
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Day 06
27th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Chembra - Kalpetta - Sultan Battery

The idea for today is to do a trek to Chembra Peak and to be back before 18:00 hours to the hotel. The plan was to leave early in the morning and reach Chembra office by 07:00AM and start the trek on a relaxed pace as we had the full day.

The drive plan for Day 06
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Sultan Battery -Vaduvanchal - Chembra around 40KMs
Chembra - Kalpetta - Sultan Battery around 40Kms

A total of 80KMs, again a loop drive , and 80KMs for the day with 7KM of steep trek!

The deviation from Meppadi towards Chembra, also the GPS trail on the green is the actual trail to the top of Chembra Peak
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Old 20th July 2013, 20:19   #113
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Day 06
27th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Chembra - Kalpetta - Sultan Battery


We reached Chembra Peak VSS office by 06:45AM
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The office will open only by 07:00AM
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We had some tea from the shop nearby
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Chembra Peak at the background
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By 07:00AM the office was opened and we got the permits. We had to pay Rs500 and fees for the camera. We were assigned a guide too.

The rate card

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We could drive another 3 to 4 Kilometers where we get the parking lot.

Some views en route
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We reached the parking lot and parked our Civvy.

Information for you
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I checked my GPS unit for the altitude, it was 1072m

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I checked the time it was 07:45AM. So for the record we started the trek at 07:45AM from an altitude of 1072m from the Car park area to Chembra Peak.

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Old 20th July 2013, 20:23   #114
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Default Re: Civved : Wayanad

Day 06
27th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Chembra - Kalpetta - Sultan Battery

The trek started. Some pictures of the initial phase
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Old 20th July 2013, 20:30   #115
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Default Re: Civved : Wayanad

Day 06
27th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Chembra - Kalpetta - Sultan Battery

We got out from the tree shadows and to the open
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We could see Chembra peak already far away
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Sr. PPG was thrilled

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We continued on
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Jr. PPG seems to be pointing at something

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Old 20th July 2013, 20:50   #116
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Default Re: Civved : Wayanad

Day 06
27th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Chembra - Kalpetta - Sultan Battery

We got the first glimpse of Hrudaya Saras, the heart shaped lake
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Hrudaya Saras, the heart shaped lake
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Jr. PPG was quite happy to see the lake

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PPGs relaxed at the heart shaped lake
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Chembra Peak behind the heart shaped lake
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I was overwhelmed with the beauty of the place

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One for the family album
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Father Daughter moments
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Heart shaped lake is at an altitude of 1381m
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We reached the heart shaped lake by 09:00AM. For the record the heart shaped lake is at an altitude of 1381m, and that makes it a climb of around 300m and we took 1 hour 15 minutes with ample breaks to reach till here.

Trek from Parking lot to Heart Shaped Lake
Start Altitude : 1072m
Current Altitude : 1381m
Climb : 300m
Distance : 1.5 KMs
Duration : 1hr 15 minutes with ample breaks
Difficulty : Moderate climb



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Old 20th July 2013, 21:07   #117
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Great pictures and great presentation, as always.

Quote:
Originally Posted by laluks View Post
The rate card
Attachment 1113932
Isn't that a disaster. I had to look up the dictionary to reorient myself to the correct spelling of "foreigner." Notice how they used 4 different spelling combinations for the 5 times the word appears; probably they were hoping to get it right at least once. Well done, they did get it right one time .

Last edited by darklord : 20th July 2013 at 21:11.
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Old 20th July 2013, 21:11   #118
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darklord View Post
Great pictures and great presentation, as always.



Isnt that a disaster. I had to look up the dictionary to reorient myself to the correct spelling of "foreigner." Notice how they used 4 different spelling combinations for the 5 times the word appears; probably they were hoping to get it right at least once. Well done, they did get it right one time .
Thanks darklord for following the log along with me
LOL, So much for 100% literate state
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Old 20th July 2013, 21:32   #119
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Day 06
27th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Chembra - Kalpetta - Sultan Battery

We started our trek from the lake by 09:30AM, after a nice 30 minutes at the beautiful heart shaped lake.

The lake really started to look like a heart!
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PPGs almost hidden by the tall grass

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You have to cross this peak and climb yet another one to the peak!

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Wifey also seems to be hidden by the grass!

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What an expanse
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A panorama
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Heart shaped lake - truly
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Some more panoramas
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Jr. PPG trying some climbing tactics
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Jr. PPG calls for a halt

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Old 20th July 2013, 21:42   #120
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Default Re: Civved : Wayanad

Day 06
27th December 2012
Sultan Battery - Chembra - Kalpetta - Sultan Battery

You can see the peak, and we have two more hills to climb
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Jr. PPG was always ahead and with the guide she waits for us to catch up

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Finally we catch up

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A panorama
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The climb was steep and slippery

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continued...
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