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Old 6th October 2014, 20:48   #1
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Post All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls

Dudhsagar Falls

All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls-11.jpg

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I don’t intend to dwell into the legend or history behind these falls.
But, geography, YES!

Lat Long- 15.314468 N, 74.314082 E
Lat Long of Kulem (point till where vehicle goes)- 15.335527 N, 74.24354 E
Best time of visit- June (after onset of monsoons)- End September. Preferably in forenoon hours.
Distance from Panjim- 62.5 Kms
Distance from Airport- 63.3 Kms
Places which you can club along with Dudhsagar-
  1. Tambdi Surla temple- 20.9 Kms http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...ml#post3537635 (Goa - Of the lesser known Sojourns)
  2. Salaulim Dam- 26.7 Kms

All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls-panjim-dudhsagar.png

All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls-dudhsagar-viewpoint.png

Prologue

I visited Dudhsagar falls on 05 Oct 14, towards the fag end of the monsoons, with obviously the falls not being in its full glory.
And quite understandably, for me the impression of the falls was “OK. Good enough”, but not “outstanding”.
However, my journey to reach there and the whirlwind ride back was “Out of the world”.
It was truly worth for its uniqueness and for the experience it rendered.

All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls-14.jpg

How to reach Dudhsagar falls- Six options as per me.

Option 1 -

Drive to Caste Rock. (It seems to be a fantastic drive).
Hitch a ride in one of the goods train to the falls.
Visit falls and then hitch a ride in another goods train to Kulem.
Take any regular train back to Castle Rock.

Fellow bhpian laluks has written a fantastic report on this option.
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...bangalore.html (Dudh Sagar Falls, Goa - A Weekend Getaway from Bangalore)

Option 2 -

1) Drive to Kulem.
2) There are two trains daily which stops at Dudhsagar on the way up. At 0830 in the morning and at 1630 in the evening. The train stops in the station for hardly a minute.
3) On Thursdays and Sundays, there’s a train at 1100 hrs which can take you back also if you get dropped by the 0830 train.
4) The train journey is around 30 minutes.

5) You have to purchase a ticket to Castle rock station (which is the next authorised station).
However, you need to get down at Dudhsagar waterfalls station (14 Kms).

6) The train has a very brief halt and you should jump out of the train during that halt.
There is no platform and you would be getting down onto the mettle on the tracks. If travelling with kids and elders, cater for that in your disembarkation plans.
You could probably request fellow passengers to help you get down.

7) The return regular train which stops at Dudhsagar is only in the evening.
However, you can request the guard/ engine driver of the goods trains which plies in the route for a drop to Kulem.
They generally oblige happily. Some allows free of cost and some would be happy to get some tips.

8) All goods trains which comes down the slope from Castle Rock station towards Kulem stops at Dudhsagar for brake testing.
But trains which go up the hill doesn’t stop anywhere except their final destination.
So getting a drop at Dudhsagar on the up train is not a possibility, but getting a hitch on the goods train from the falls to Kulem is a sure bet.

However, the frequency of these trains is questionable. I was told that goods trains come down every half an hour. But, during my visit which spanned close to two hours, I saw only one.

Goods train entering tunnel

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Option 3-

Drive to Kulem. Take jeep to the foot of the falls.
There is a small view point at that landing point which is their parking area.
The four wheel drive part has large rocks jutting out on the road, slippery steep inclines and slushy muddy parts which can get your tyres lodged in for good.
I would never even think of taking my own ride to these roads. From the landing point, take a trek up the hill through the jungle to reach the view point and then the falls.

Option 4-

Drive to Kulem. Take a bike ride to the foot of the falls.
The road travels alongside railway tracks and in the second half treads the same path as the four wheel drive jeep does.

In the thick of monsoons, the rivers will be so swelled to be upto the waist level of an average person.
The bikers keep their bikes revving and cross these with water level submerging the bike till half fuel tank level!!!
You, definitely have to cross the river in full flow on foot.
It sure is an experience to cherish.

Option 5-

1) Drive to Kulem.
2) Trek 14 kms along the track to the falls.
3) There are four tunnels which you will cross in the route IIRC.
4) If a train comes through while you are transitting, there is enough space to move aside and be safe. However, you sure are gonna get a pounding on your ears.
5) Carry enough water and snacks if desired.
6) Wear a good pair of shoes. Trekking shoes if possible or atleast running shoes. Sandals will not be forgiving to you on the long walk through the rocks on the track. And ofcourse, when it is railway track, you can also expect all the ingredients it brings along with it. Regretfully, our nation has bio toilets in only a handful of trains and these don’t ply in this route.
7) After the 14 Km trek one way, I would recommend taking a hitch back on one of the goods trains or if lucky, take a ride back on a bike (if you can find one). The return trip would be cheaper and would ensure that you get a taste of everything.

Last edited by dhanushmenon : 12th October 2014 at 13:04.
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Old 10th October 2014, 12:31   #2
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Default Re: All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls

Option 6- What I did--> Do a mix and match of these as per your convenience.

1) Reached Kulem station by road.

All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls-21.jpg

All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls-23.jpg

2) Took the 1630 train to Dudhsagar falls.

3) The train was late by 50 minutes (which eventually ate up into my day light hours)

4) The train was again halted at Sonaulim, a platform-less station with double track area for ten minutes; which further ate up into my day light time. The entire route is single tracked and this halt was to ensure train spacing I believe.

All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls-26.jpg

5) Reached Dudhsagar falls when it was already cloudy with string threats by Uncle Cloud for rains. I couldn’t care less anyway

Dudhsagar falls and station, first view

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6) Took a lot of snaps and then walked across through the twin tunnel to the view point on the other side

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View from Dudhsagar View point.
Apologies for the low light in the pic. I was really running short of day light.
With whatever bit of shutter and aperture management I knew, this was the best I could manage.

All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls-221.jpg

7) Later, got hold of a biker who offered to take me back on the bike for Rs 500. It was a good offer as I wanted to take the bike ride on the way up also.
That didn’t turn work out as the number of available bikes was less when I approached them. The pleasant long weekend with overflowing crowd to Goa also did not help my cause.

8) Happy of being able to meet the best of both worlds, I started the trek down the railway track to the bike landing point.
Boy!! What an experience!!
The descend was through a steep incline, slippery, slushy with mud and ofcourse no light since it was already sundown.

9) We were three of us and we were joined by another group of five which made it eight of us.

10) The roads were rocky and covered with mud to begin with.
The bike in which I travelled shifted itself from atop one slippery round rock to the wedge of another.
I asked if he could give me a helmet. He gave a good glance and I got my answer. “Lord, save my head”.

11) Soon, I was happily bobbing up and down on the back seat with an excited grin painted all over my face.
I soon learnt from the pilot that the road is only going to get worser further. I looked ahead and beyond the reach of the headlights, it was pitch dark!!!
This definitely turned out to be one hell of a ride, literally!

12) A lot more bobbings, mud covered shoes and close shaves later, we reached the first stream.
I was actually happy within. I could wash some dirt off my mud covered ankles. I had to try hard to spot my shoes through the coating of thick mud.
The rider told me that the water is on the lower side now. Still, the bike was half submerged as it passed through.

13) Long story short, we reached back Kulem station from where we left in one piece and with a lot of mud all over us.
My blue denims have acquired a new shade of brown and the thrill of the ride was overflowing from my face.
We gave him 20% extra of the fare which we had agreed for. It was worth it. Totally!

14) We all knew that this was an epic adventure and probably may not be repeated again.
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Old 12th October 2014, 13:40   #3
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Some snaps:

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View from the elevated structure next to the falls.

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Another angle

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Trek at night through the slippery upslopes in the jungle.
But for this camera flash and some mobile phone illuminations, it was all pitch dark!!!

All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls-dscn4632.jpg

Tips

1. There is an office at Kulem which gives tickets at prescribed rates. (rs 750/- for a bike ride up and down inclusive, and Rs 2400 for a jeep of 6 people [as on 06 Oct 2014]). Reach early in season time for tickets. They generally shut down by 1200 hrs.

2. Rates of rides taken outside is higher than what is given through the office. The bikers were going for Rs 1500- Rs 2000 when I visited during a busy long weekend. (The jeep rides had not started yet).

3. The selling rates out of counter increases as the day progresses as per the existing demand. More the demand, more the rate. The rates starts to come down approaching evening; especially close to 1630 when there is a regular train which stops at Dudhsagar Railway Station for about a minute.

4. I was told that the bike rides will stop as soon as the jeep rides begin. The beginning of jeep ride is as per the water level of two rivers in between which has to be crossed. (Yes; there are two river crossings)

5. Bike or Jeep rides are definitely not recommended for people travelling with kids (aged below 12), pregnant ladies or elders. The trek up the hill is a bit slippery but there are tweeds tied along for holding at some places through the trail.

6. The rates which you pay at Kulem is for the ride till the landing point. There is a further trek up. If you need them to show you the path and help you with the climb, you will have to pay them extra. The rates are generally Rs 300- Rs 400 additional per person.
Therefore, finalise that too before starting your adventure ride.

7. Do take and wear the life jacket which the bikers provide. It is quite a re assurance on the river crossing points. After all, who would want to be washed down with the river?

8. Carry food and water or have your fill at Kulem. There is nothing enroute. Else you will have to make good with the water from streams. The streams looked crystal clear and may be potable too.

9. There are no good family restaurants at Kulem. Even a shady place will charge you beyond reasonability as compared to their facilities.

10. If you intend trekking from Kulem to Dudhsagar station through the railway track, wear a good pair of shoes. The walk through the railway tracks is sure to wear you down and tear your regular sandals. Also carry a torch (in case it is getting late). Track pants and T shirt is strongly recommended for rigs.

11. If you plan to take the train to Dudhsagar, keep in mind that there is no platform and you would be getting down onto the mettle on the tracks. If travelling with kids and elders, cater for that in your disembarkation plans.

12. It is recommended to take the morning 0830 train. This will have the following advantages:
a) You have the whole day ahead of you to decide how much time you want to stay there. There is a view point across the falls, a pond where all the water collects and then forms another fall and the walk through the tunnels nearby. Evening train, if it is delayed, then you will be rushing through for lack of daylight.
b) You have the flexibility of options to walk back the 14 Kms by the rail track/ take a return trip on a bike/ hitch a ride on a goods train.
c) No uncertainity of darkness or the availability of options to return back. If not the train or bike ride, you can atleast walk the distance in daylight. This flexibility is not available in the evening slot.
d) Rush is lesser in the morning.


Strongly recommended not to take your own rides through these tracks view the following reasons:
  1. The path is quite treacherous and risky for the un experienced.
  2. The ride on the bike and jeep is all of technique and if not done properly might end up in totalling your ride.
  3. All bike operators (pilots as they call them) venture in pairs/ groups; so that if someone finds a problem enroute, they have the help of someone. You going alone will not have that luxury.
    If you think of tailing the local bikers, you won’t be able to keep up with their pace either.
  4. Your precious ride is not worth being ripped apart here. So, take a ride on the jeep or bike. They are experienced drivers/riders and you wouldn’t measure up to their experience in one day.


End note:- The experience of the ride back on a motorcycle through pitch dark thick jungle was a “One of a Kind Experience”.
The boulder strewn and mud covered track along with knee deep slush and the sprint alongside the railway track only added spice to the thrill.
I would recommend one and all to take the bike ride atleast one way. Believe me, you would be only thanking me in future.

It only re affirmed my belief:
“The ride is more important than the destination...”

Last edited by dhanushmenon : 12th October 2014 at 15:52.
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Old 12th October 2014, 16:14   #4
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Default Re: All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls

Thread moved from the Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 12th October 2014, 18:59   #5
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Default Re: All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls

Great report Dhanush. Woud have been better if there was more water in river though.
Couple of questions -
Did you feel the trek and falls is a family friendly place (Safety wise) ?
Is there any safe parking space along Kulem station if driving down ?
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Old 13th October 2014, 06:37   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpksuhas View Post
Great report Dhanush. Woud have been better if there was more water in river though.
Couple of questions -
Did you feel the trek and falls is a family friendly place (Safety wise) ?
Is there any safe parking space along Kulem station if driving down ?

1) Safety wise, it is family friendly I believe if you do it during daylight.
If you do it in the evening, then it can get quite scary.
The trek isn't something which annoy be done by a lady. I've seen many of them doing it too.
But elders and kids would find it difficult. Even the bike ride

2) There is enough parking space available in front of the main entrance to the station.

The drive is beautiful too.
Your wanderlust ride will definitely love it.
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Old 13th October 2014, 21:18   #7
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Default Re: All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls

Lovely snaps and very informative write up. Unique travelogues differentiates you. Proud to be your buddy.
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Old 14th October 2014, 01:40   #8
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Lovely and very informative write up mate! Good snaps too.
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Old 14th October 2014, 11:00   #9
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Default Re: All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls

Hi Dhanush,

Where are your kids?
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Old 14th October 2014, 14:45   #10
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Thanks for sharing detailed report Dhanush!!

I had been to Dudhsagar last year during August timeframe and we didn`t follow none of your options mentioned above. We boarded Vasco Express from KRPuram railway station and got down in Castle Rock. Initially our plan was to catch a goods train to Doodhsagar but after getting down in Castle Rock decided to have trek all the way to falls. Thankfully we had our tummy full and some backup items in the rucksack. I must say 16kms trek is one of most thrilling experience I had. With lush greenery on both sides of the track, path covered with thick fog and occasional showers made it one of my best track-walk I ever had.
Sorry for hijacking your thread as I am very much tempted to post some of the pics of my trip.

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All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls-optimizedimg_3887.jpg

Last edited by DragonHawk : 14th October 2014 at 15:01. Reason: Removed extra space.
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Old 14th October 2014, 14:54   #11
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Default Re: All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls

Quote:
Originally Posted by jacs View Post
Lovely snaps and very informative write up. Unique travelogues differentiates you. Proud to be your buddy.
Thanks jacs. Hope to pen in a few more soon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CliffHanger View Post
Hi Dhanush,

Where are your kids?
My kids were in Kochi when I visited Dudhsagar.
However, I think it will be a bit risky to tread a visit to this place with kids on tow.
The halt at Dudhsagar station is too short for us to manage to clamber down onto a place with gravel and no platform.
Bike ride is anyway risky for them without saying.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DragonHawk View Post
Thanks for sharing detailed report Dhanush!!

I had been to Dudhsagar last year during August timeframe and we didn`t follow none of your options mentioned above. We boarded Vasco Express from KRPuram railway station and got down in Castle Rock. Initially our plan was to catch a goods train to Doodhsagar but after getting down in Castle Rock decided to have trek all the way to falls. Thankfully we had our tummy full and some backup items in the rucksack. I must say 16kms trek is one of most thrilling experience I had. With lush greenery on both sides of the track, path covered with thick fog and occasional showers made it one of my best treks I ever had.
Oh yeah!
I did not cover the option of a trek from Castle Rock.
My bad
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Old 14th October 2014, 15:30   #12
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Default Re: All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls

Lovely narration, with so many options. It is good that you've warned us on the damage a trip will cost to our clothes and footwear. Many would drop out if such information is shared in advance. Crossing a river with waist-deep water on a bike will surely mess up whatever is in your pockets. God forbid if your mobile is in it.

I have a question on the trekking option: which route offers a down-hill trek? That would be far easier, right?

Last edited by vnabhi : 14th October 2014 at 15:31.
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Old 14th October 2014, 16:31   #13
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Good details there dhanushmenon!

Couldn't resist from adding some quick info from our trip to Dudhsagar falls.

I went there walking on the tracks in the last week of sept with 4 of my college buddies. before the trip we did a lot of googling to find the best way to visit the falls, which included hiring bikes from Kulem.

But finally decided to walk down the tracks from castle rock station. took the chennai vasco train till castle rock, being a saturday the station was flooded with 1000's eager walkers! so we decided to proceed till caranzol station.

From there we walked 6 KM to the dudhsagar falls and from the falls another 5 KMs further to sonalium station via the famous view point from there you can see the train crossing the falls. At sonalium station we hopped on to a engine and reached kulem.

Saw a lot of bikes carrying people to and from the falls besides the tracks. good thing that i observed was the people who hired the bike all wore a life jacket!

we didn't carry any camera (other than mobile) as we felt instead of enjoying the nature we will end up seeing the beauty via camera lens only! Here are some pics taken from my mobile!

All you need to know about Dudhsagar Falls-img_20140920_122127.jpg

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Old 14th October 2014, 16:46   #14
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Awesome details! Having been to Goa umpteen number of times, never happened to be there. Your guide comes at the right time - coming monsoon, I must hit dudhsagar. You have so much information put in here, it only shows your thorough exercise and preparation

Quick question - Do good train just slow down or they literally halt at falls for any moments? The reason I ask is - how difficult or easier it would be to hop on them for return journey with two little ones (2 & 8yrs)? As you mentioned, the passenger train stops only for a minute or so. Is it any easier on the goods trains?
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Old 14th October 2014, 17:23   #15
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Quote:
Quick question - Do good train just slow down or they literally halt at falls for any moments? The reason I ask is - how difficult or easier it would be to hop on them for return journey with two little ones (2 & 8yrs)? As you mentioned, the passenger train stops only for a minute or so. Is it any easier on the goods trains?
Avinash, a better option will be walk back to dudhsagar station from the falls. this would be roughly 1.5Kms. As all passenger/goods trains and engines stop for break checking it will be easy to get on one of them.

Also note that there are no platforms as such in any of the intermediate stations, you will have to get down or up from the jelly stone filled ground and with the kids you would need help in getting them on/off the trains
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