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Old 22nd July 2013, 16:59   #16
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

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Originally Posted by shyamk View Post
Berijam to Munnar road does not exist anymore. If you drive for a few more km after Berijam, the road intersects the Kavunji-klavarai road. The Kaunji road can also be reached by starting from the observatory. Once you reach that road, you will get to the old jeep path and from then onto Vattavada on Kerala side.
Shyam
Thanks Shyam, Yes the Berijam to Munnar Road is closed now, obviously. Thanks for the flickr-link, I saw all the pictures. Please inform the route you cycled in 2009 and did you go to Munnar that time thru this route ie via Kilavarai-Vattavada ?

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Originally Posted by mpksuhas View Post
Thanks for the detailed report. Is this the same route taken further ahead as a 4x4 route towards Munnar ?
Few more questions :
- Is there any time restrictions on Moire point check point (In / Out time)
- Is it possible for public to book forest rest house in Berijam
- Do they allow tourists to climb fire watch tower
mpksuhas, Yes it is the same route that once went towards Munnar, but nowadays the drive ends at Berijam. Beyond that the road is closed.

Time restriction in/out of Moire point check post is from 9 am to 4 pm, but the DFO says we have to report back by 3 pm. The remaining 1 hour may be their cushion time .

As per their statement, "this is an inspection bunglow used by the Government/forest officials only. The rest house is not for public".

Yes, we can climb the tower if we can, at our own risk. See people already at it

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Originally Posted by naveenroy View Post
And the next time I go to Kodai, will surely visit Berijam - I also assumed that they don't allow anyone to go there these days.
Thanks for the comments Naveen Roy.
Yes, they are allowing tourists - with permits, Two-wheelers are not permitted though.
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Old 22nd July 2013, 20:01   #17
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

Yes, I did go through Kilavarai, Vattavada. There are some places where you need a MTB with good brakes as there are just rocks out there.

Kodai-Poondi-Kilavarai-Kadavari-Kottakamboor-Vattavada-Top Slip is the route I took. Since I was in no hurry, I did Kodai Poondi on Day 1 and the remaining on day 2.

In 2012, I tried to go back to the same route and have a quick walk. There was a forest officer who did not allow me to go through and cited border conflicts. However, if you get to Kilavarai early in the morning, say 6.00am or so, you could actually walk all the way to Vattada, take a share auto to Munnar and take a bus back to Kodai itself.

Shyam
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Old 22nd July 2013, 20:20   #18
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

Its events like these you remember all through your life! Esp when it comes to knowing about the making of man and how he was before he became famous.

Very nice read indeed.
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Old 23rd July 2013, 12:11   #19
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

Very informative thread.
Despite me studying in Kodaikanal for 10 years, I have just come to know where the forest office is.Good to see tourists visiting Berijam. Hope they keep the place clean and green.
This thread brings back memories of my school excursion to Berijam some 12 years ago. Those days the water in the lake used to be crystal clear and we could see the plenty of toads and fishes along with the underwater plants.
Is the lake in this condition still,Ddrive?
A forest guard took us inside the shola and we were amazed by how cool the shola was compared to the outside.
Bhpians, when you visit Kodaikanal do include Berijam in the itinerary.(Even if that means missing some other tourist spot)
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Old 23rd July 2013, 22:21   #20
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

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Originally Posted by ampere View Post
Very nice read indeed.
Thanks Amp

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Originally Posted by Vj13 View Post
Hope they keep the place clean and green. Those days the water in the lake used to be crystal clear....Is the lake in this condition still?
A forest guard took us inside the shola and we were amazed by how cool the shola was compared to the outside.
Thanks for the response Vj13.

Yes, the lake looked the same like before.. clean and clear. I hear that drinking water for the whole town of Periyakulam goes from this lake. So they should be maintaining it clean.

About the Shola, they say the sun's rays can not penetrate and touch the ground anywhere inside the Mathikettaan Shola, no wonder you felt cold inside. It is also said that it will be pitch dark at some places deep inside the shola, even during daytime.

(All these info are hearsay from the locals though! )
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Old 24th July 2013, 10:31   #21
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

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Originally Posted by Ddrive View Post
Thanks Amp

Thanks for the response Vj13.
=============
(All these info are hearsay from the locals though! )

Good to hear that the lake is clear and clean.
Guess I can partially vouch for Mathikettan Shola's one specialty.
As of now Berijam is the only tourist spot that has not seen any development. Wish the concerned authorities leave it as it is.
There was a horticulture farm just by the river. Is it still there Ddrive?
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Old 24th July 2013, 11:40   #22
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

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Originally Posted by Ddrive View Post

The Permit
Attachment 1112028
The permit has a nice quote 'If not in this birth, in which birth will I see KK' in a text box! A truly apt statement for misty Kodaikanal!

Good to see Berijam maintained under stringent regulations. Everyone knows the fate the Devil's Kitchen suffered after Kamal shot Guna there. But I'm still a little worried seeing chopped wood lying by the road.

I had been there a couple of years back and went for late evening walks around the deserted lake. At one point we were warned by locals to stay put as there were 'Maadu' ahead. Maadu turned out to be a herd of around 8-10 wild gaur crossing from one copse to another. A thrilling experience seeing the family walk on the road in the misty darkness but an indicator of how much the town has begun to expand and intrude into the forests.

You had spoken about planting trees near Berijam. Most of the trees introduced into the Palani hills seem to be invasive foreign species such as pine and wattle while the upper reaches of Kodai around Berijam were actually grasslands. You can read interesting articles on this subject by the Vattakanal trust on the Net.
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Old 24th July 2013, 12:23   #23
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

Sweet old memories! I had trekked the place twice 20 years ago! Fantastic times when we stayed in pitched tents on the lakeshore with the thrill of having wildlife for company! I remember our day-long trek started from Thoppi thookki paarai and pass through Madhikettan Sholai and end at the Berijam lake. We traced the path of a feeding stream to the lake and walk along the stream. We used to pluck pears(called Beri in Tamil) from trees, fresh and sweet. Ah, good ole' times!

Madhikettan Shola gets its name because once you get in, you will sure lose your way for the denseness and lack of sunlight owing to the tall trees, and hence lose your mind!

And, I personally have witnessed the effects of throwing a cap at Thoppi thookki paarai!

@Ddrive Thanks for kindling the memories, and more importantly, thanks for the useful information on getting the permit! I will most definitely make the trip to Kodaikanal just for visiting Berijam!
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Old 24th July 2013, 13:39   #24
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

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Originally Posted by Sivasankar View Post
1. A truly apt statement for misty Kodaikanal!
2. Worried seeing chopped wood lying by the road.
3. I had been there a couple of years back and went for late evening walks around the deserted lake. At one point we were warned by locals to stay put as there were 'Maadu' ahead. Maadu turned out to be a herd of around 8-10 wild gaur crossing from one copse to another. A thrilling experience seeing the family walk on the road in the misty darkness but an indicator of how much the town has begun to expand and intrude into the forests.
1. 100% true and apt.
2. I felt the same feeling too.
3. The lake-walk you are talking about ought to be in the Kodaikanal lake in town, and the 'maadu' incident you are talking about is very true. Nowadays bison-herds are found in large numbers even inside the town limits.

You can see a bison family walking cool on the lake road right in the centre of Kodai town.
Name:  Bisons.jpg
Views: 2954
Size:  45.6 KB
(Picture shared from the FB page of my nephew. Copy right to the respective owner)

This is another picture clicked by nephew himself right behind his house in Kodai.
Drive to Berijam-bisondhinesh.jpg

Not just the Gaurs, the the wikipedia link I shared at the end of the TL says, even tigers (a tiger & its cub) were sighted in Berijam during Feb-2010.

Quote:
Originally Posted by luvurride View Post
1. Sweet old memories!... Ah, good ole' times!
2. Madhikettan Shola gets its name because once you get in, you will sure lose your way for the denseness and lack of sunlight owing to the tall trees, and hence lose your mind!
3. thanks for the useful information on getting the permit! I will most definitely make the trip to Kodaikanal just for visiting Berijam!
1. Nostalgic !
2. Exact explanation it is.. thanks.
3. You are welcome, all the best.
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Old 24th July 2013, 17:17   #25
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

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Originally Posted by Ddrive View Post
1. 100% true and apt.
2. I felt the same feeling too.
3. The lake-walk you are talking about ought to be in the Kodaikanal lake in town, and the 'maadu' incident you are talking about is very true. Nowadays bison-herds are found in large numbers even inside the town limits.
You can see a bison family walking cool on the lake road right in the centre of Kodai town.
Attachment 1115950
(Picture shared from the FB page of my nephew. Copy right to the respective owner)

This is another picture clicked by nephew himself right behind his house in Kodai.
Attachment 1115951

Not just the Gaurs, the the wikipedia link I shared at the end of the TL says, even tigers (a tiger & its cub) were sighted in Berijam during Feb-2010.



1. Nostalgic !
2. Exact explanation it is.. thanks.
3. You are welcome, all the best.
That spot on the road around the lake is exactly where I saw the herd. Could make out from the green shack behind and the truck tracks leading out to the left of the picture. These guys being out among the crowd shows how much the intrusion has happened. Trucks come there to fill water or something...
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Old 26th July 2013, 14:47   #26
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

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Originally Posted by Ddrive View Post
Thanks Joe. Doing some road trips in Aachen huh ? Post some pictures
True to some extent. I've been doing quite a few road trips around Europe, especially to the Netherlands. I'm just a bit lazy to put up a travelogue. May be I would do that very soon by summing up most of the places that I have visited in the Netherlands.
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Old 28th December 2014, 12:53   #27
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

That's a brief explanation with wonderful set of snaps. Had a virtual tour to Berijam & thanks for sharing.

I will be driving to Kodaikanal in a couple of days and obviously Berijam is a part of my itinerary. Can some one please confirm the current road condition to Berijam? I'm worried seeing the road condition in these snaps as I'm travelling in Nissan Sunny which doesn't have a good GC.
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Old 28th December 2014, 21:58   #28
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

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Originally Posted by Mr.Boss View Post
That's a brief explanation with wonderful set of snaps. Had a virtual tour to Berijam & thanks for sharing.

I will be driving to Kodaikanal in a couple of days and obviously Berijam is a part of my itinerary. Can some one please confirm the current road condition to Berijam? I'm worried seeing the road condition in these snaps as I'm travelling in Nissan Sunny which doesn't have a good GC.
Thank you for your comments sir. Though I do not know the present conditions of these roads, I believe your Sunny wont have any GC issues, as broken roads will be only at one or two short stretches and you can drive through these easily. Moreover this being a common tourist attraction and become more a common visiting place, the roads ought to be in good condition always.

We would like to hear it from you after you make the trip.
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Old 28th December 2014, 22:27   #29
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

Thanks for the prompt response. Will update the current status in a couple of days. Just noticed your other threads (Travelogues) to Kodaikanal, hope you must have visited n-number of times.

PS: Being a common tourist attraction won't have better roads (at least in TN) Learnt this from my experience after Ooty trip (Roads to Dodabetta deserve an SUV for sure)
PPS: No "Sir" please, I'm just 27
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Old 29th December 2014, 16:42   #30
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Default Re: Drive to Berijam

Hey sir... Awesome log as usual.
Had a great time reading through.

On other news, I could not reach you through PM.
Please mail me the snaps you promised to dhzeals@gmail.com
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