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Old 5th May 2017, 15:44   #46
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

Had a few questions i.e.
a) How does Pench compare with Tadoba interms of tiger sightings and resorts.
b) I see that the jeep safari is completely full till mid june in tadoba. Would mid june to beginning of july be a good time considering that monsoon may be underway already.
c) Is moharli and kolara gate the better options considering the availability of resorts nearby?
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Old 5th May 2017, 16:22   #47
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

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Originally Posted by dpkbehera View Post
Had a few questions i.e.
a) How does Pench compare with Tadoba interms of tiger sightings and resorts.
b) I see that the jeep safari is completely full till mid june in tadoba. Would mid june to beginning of july be a good time considering that monsoon may be underway already.
c) Is moharli and kolara gate the better options considering the availability of resorts nearby?
1. Both Pench & Tadoba have their own good share of sightings.
2. Mid June to beginning of July is also a good time to visit. I would prefer that time to do safaris personally.
3. I would prefer Kolara gate than Moharli if I am doing only core safaris. If I want to do safaris in buffer too then I would prefer Moharli over Kolara. I am saying this keeping in mind this season's sightings. For next season my views might change depending on how sightings happen in each zone.
4. Kolsa/Zhari gate has been rocking this season. I would prefer doing safaris from this gate than any other gate in Tadoba this season.

Cheers
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Old 5th May 2017, 17:03   #48
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

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4. Kolsa/Zhari gate has been rocking this season. I would prefer doing safaris from this gate than any other gate in Tadoba this season.
Cheers
Thanks for the quick response. As a newbie, i understand that there are core and buffer areas. Also Canter is only limited to the core areas. Considering this and the sightings for this year, would you prefer Kolara (Core) over Mohrali (Buffer).
Also Kolsa/Zhari gate seem to be completely booked this season till June end. Incase this is the choice, which is the best place to stay.
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Old 5th May 2017, 17:17   #49
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

Quote:
Originally Posted by dpkbehera View Post
Thanks for the quick response. As a newbie, i understand that there are core and buffer areas. Also Canter is only limited to the core areas. Considering this and the sightings for this year, would you prefer Kolara (Core) over Moharli (Buffer).
Also Kolsa/Zhari gate seem to be completely booked this season till June end. Incase this is the choice, which is the best place to stay.
I suggest taking up accomodation for 2 nights in one of the resorts in Kolara & do 4 core safaris from there. Then stay for a night at MTDC Moharli & do 2 buffer safaris. This would be my most preferred option. If not then stay at MTDC Moharli for 3 nights. Do 4 core & 2 buffer safaris.

In case if you get safari permits for Zhari/Kolsa gate then the only good option for stay there is SS Kingdom which is around 26 or 27 kms before the safari gate. Not many stay options available in Kolsa/Zhari.

Last edited by Torque123 : 5th May 2017 at 17:19.
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Old 15th May 2017, 09:23   #50
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

Just came across this thread. Great pictures and your luck with sightings is amazing.
A wild life enthusiast myself we did Ranthambore and Corbett few years ago but just visited Bandipur this April. Unfortunately for us there were confirmed reports that Prince had expired. Nevertheless we did manage to see a leopard, tusker, gaur and the sloth bear. It was here that we were told that Tadoba is witnessing massive sightings.
We are heading to tadoba on the 19th of June.
We staying close to the Kolara Gate in a place called Mahua Tola. 4 nights stay with 4 gypsy safaris is costing us 45000 all inclusive. I am assuming its not to much of a rip off?
Is it easy to get a taxi from Nagpur airport to Tadoba and what would be the approx cost if you could comment?
We then heading to Pench and staying at a place called Mahua Vann.
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Old 15th May 2017, 12:11   #51
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Just came across this thread. Great pictures and your luck with sightings is amazing.
A wild life enthusiast myself we did Ranthambore and Corbett few years ago but just visited Bandipur this April. Unfortunately for us there were confirmed reports that Prince had expired. Nevertheless we did manage to see a leopard, tusker, gaur and the sloth bear. It was here that we were told that Tadoba is witnessing massive sightings.
We are heading to tadoba on the 19th of June.
We staying close to the Kolara Gate in a place called Mahua Tola. 4 nights stay with 4 gypsy safaris is costing us 45000 all inclusive. I am assuming its not to much of a rip off?
Is it easy to get a taxi from Nagpur airport to Tadoba and what would be the approx cost if you could comment?
We then heading to Pench and staying at a place called Mahua Vann.
Thank you for liking the images. Yes, have been quite lucky to get cat sightings . Ranthambore is one place which I have been longing to go for a long time now. Hopefully will do it in Nov-Dec of 2017 or early 2018. Yes, Prince's demise is a great loss to Bandipur & the wildlife fraternity. He was a legend & was the first wild tiger to be seen by many here down south.

From your above post I understand that you are doing 4 nights & 4 safaris in Tadoba (Kolara) only. First question is, how many people are covered in the package? Based on that we can conclude if INR 45k is worth or not. Second question is, why only 4 safaris when you are staying for 4 nights? You should be doing bare minimum 6 safaris when you are staying for 4 nights. Nagpur to Kolara taxi charges should be between 2 to 2.5K. You can ask the resort guys to help you with the taxi part. I have not stayed at Mahua Tola, so would not be able to comment on their service & facilities. Also I was supposed to do Pench this month but the trip got cancelled as few other members in the group got held up with work. This would have been my first outing in Pench. So cancelled all the bookings & we guys are doing Bandhavgarh in mid June.

Just came back from an awesome trip in Kabini. As Pench & Kolsa trips which were scheduled for this month got cancelled, did Kabini with family. Will post the images & travelogue during this week .
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Old 15th May 2017, 17:01   #52
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

Thank you for a prompt response.
Ranthambore was truly fantastic. We had the pleasure of seeing Machli the queen of the reserve and T24 Ustad.

It is my wife and I who would be travelling so the package is for 2 people. As suggested, booked ourselves 2 more safaris at tadoba this time directly at the portal. Rather than the resort I was thinking of picking a taxi from the airport itself not that I have a ball park figure.

Kabini you mean the river in Kerala.I ve heard they have some great resorts there that really take you up close and personnel with nature. Wayanad is on our future travel list.

Last edited by bigron : 15th May 2017 at 17:15.
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Old 15th May 2017, 17:26   #53
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Thank you for a prompt response.
It is my wife and I who would be travelling so the package is for 2 people. As suggested, booked ourselves 2 more safaris at tadoba this time directly at the portal. Rather than the resort I was thinking of picking a taxi from the airport itself not that I have a ball park figure.

Kabini you mean the river in Kerala.I ve heard they have some great resorts there that really take you up close and personnel with nature. Wayanad is on our future travel list.
Mahua Tola is a luxury resort. So 45k for a couple for 4 nights stay, all meals & 4 safaris (assuming you re not sharing the gypsy with other guests) seems ok to me. Yes, you can hire taxi at airport too. Good that you booked 2 more safaris

Kabini is a river that originates in Kerala & flows into Karnataka too. Its the backwaters of Kabini which is in the south eastern part of the famous Nagarhole Tiger reserve in Karnataka. It is around 1 hour drive from Mysore. You have loads of Kabini travelogues in this forum. Check them out. A must visit place in South if you are a wildlife buff.

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Old 20th May 2017, 15:59   #54
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Had planned for 5 safaris in Kolsa & 3 safaris in Pench in the 3rd week of May. Had all the bookings in place but the trip got cancelled due to one of the group members going on travel for close to a month for official purposes. Hence Bandhavgarh has been planned during mid June. The itch to visit the jungle just got more because of this & I did not have patience to wait so long.

So decided to do a 2 nights 3 days trip with family on the 12th & 13th of May. Initially had booked JLR for 15th & 16th May but later on got a call from them that safaris would be cancelled during that week due to elephant census being conducted by the forest department. So pre-poned the trip to 12th & 13th May.

So we were all set & started from Bangalore at 7 AM & stopped at our usual joint (Vaishali) near Channapatna for breakfast. Reached JLR Kabini at around 12.30 PM. Checked in, had lunch & rested for half an hour or so. Surprisingly the traffic was not heavy on Mysore road. By 3.30 PM we were at the Golghar where jeeps are assigned & safaris start.

We got Zone A this time. Finished the formalities at the check post & entered the forest. Got the usual Sambars, spotted deers, gaur, serpent eagles. I do not believe in just driving around & hoping to get a cat sighting. As I am quite familiar with the forest & the movement of cats there, had requested the driver & naturalist that we will wait at the most probable places where usually sightings happen & there is movement. They did just that & at around 5.30 PM there she was, the back water sub adult tigress (she is not a sub adult anymore but the name has stuck on to her) lazing beside a salt pit filled with some water. It has been raining on & off in Kabini & the forest has turned a little green though its not yet reached its full green glory. It was cloudy & was starting to get dark as the sun had almost gone down. We did get to see her for a good 40 to 45 minutes but photography wise I wasnt that happy due to the light conditions. The first 4 images below are from this sighting. She was still lazing around &it was 6.20 PM. It was beautiful to see the various moods of a lazy Tiger. We had to finally leave her as it was end of the safari & returned back to JLR. Had dinner & hit the bed soon.

Next day morning we were ready by 5.45 AM. Had tea at the Golghar & we were again assigned Zone A. We enter the jungle cross the main road & enter Zone A. Around half a kilometer from there is a junction of 4 safari tracks. There were already 2 jeeps parked & we could see a couple of people in the jeep standing & clicking pictures. We knew its a cat for sure & when we reach there we see one of the male sub adult cubs of the Powerline Tigress sleeping 20 to 25 feet beside the safari track. The sun was not up yet fully & there was slight fog. I was again not happy with the lighting conditions but managed to take a couple of decent shots. As the jeeps piled up, the tiger got up & went inside the under growth. The 5th image in this post is of this Tiger.

I have been longing for sometime to see a Leopard on tree. Have got them on trees on a few occasions but it was quite sometime back. So we were scouting the area of a male Leopard called "Torn Ears" & saw a lone female elephant. At around 8.30 AM there were spotted deer alarm calls almost near the same place where we saw the Tiger earlier in the morning. We & another Jeep waited thinking that the same Tiger along with its brother might come out but to our surprise "Torn Ears" walks out. Unfortunately our Jeep was a little ahead from where he appeared. Else would have got him head on. He then crossed the safari track & went in the direction of the main road. Posting a couple of images of this Leopard who is being challenged by the Black Panther currently for territory.

Returned back to the resort, had breakfast & rested for an hour. Though we had very good sightings, I was not that happy with the images taken so far. We were ready for the evening safari & got Zone B. By 3 PM it was already cloudy & I expected rains. We started our safari & went on the Old MM road (5 km stretch) because a tigress called "Tiger Tank Female" was seen there in the morning with a spotted deer fawn kill. She has 3 sub adult cubs too. There is not much water source in this stretch & when it rains there are big puddles of water which get formed. This tigress & cubs have been known to sit in these puddles or drink water from that. So we waited at such places for quite a while but there was no movement or alarm calls. It was a little early to expect them because there was breeze & the weather was cloudy. The chances of them coming to those puddles to drink water were less.

So we we decided to go to the backwater area, scout for Leopards for sometime & come back to this stretch at around 5.30 PM. When we reach the back water area the back water sub adult female had crossed over from Zone A to B & was sitting in a small puddle of water. We could barely see her as there was 2 safari buses & 2 jeeps ahead of us. She finally got up & went in the undergrowth leaving me with only a few record shots.

I was positive that she will definitely patrol her territory & was expecting her to turn up somewhere near the Mastigudi chain gate area. So we went there & there was already a jeep there which was having an elephant sighting. So we stopped our jeep at good 100 meters distance from the Jeep & waited for them to move on. Fortunately to our left was a fireline & I suddenly saw something walking towards us at a good may be 200 meters distance. It was then clear that its the same tigress & she again deviated her route & took a right. The driver said she would have come straight if she wanted to as she is bold but if she took a right it means she will again cross the main road & go to Zone A. I was some how not convinced but agreed to wait near the main road. We asked the Jeep which was having a elephant sighting to wait in the same place for the tiger. 10 minutes go past & nothing happens but the driver was still positive about his instincts. By now it was almost 5.45 PM & it had become pretty dark as it was cloudy. Then started the thunder & I was like no, not now. I told the driver that the tiger will not cross the road & was getting a strong feeling that the Jeep to whom we had told to wait was already getting her sighting. So on my persistant insistence the driver went back to the same place where we had seen her in the fire line. Even before we could reach the spot, much before from that spot there she was, on our right perched on a big dry fallen tree at eye level. The friendly eye contact between me & the driver did it all for him. This was the first time I was seeing a Tiger on a big fallen tree. It was 6.20 PM & had to leave her again & go. The driver did acknowledge my instincts & thanked me because even for him it was the first time seeing a Tiger sitting n a big fallen dry tree. I was now happy with images I got out of this sighting. The images were taken at high ISO due to very low light but am impressed with the low light performance of the Nikon D7200 for the first time. The last 4 Tiger images posted are from this sighting.

Will continue the last leg of this travelogue tomorrow as I am yet to process the images from that safari. Till then enjoy these images.

Cheers
Torque
Attached Thumbnails
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Tadoba Wilderness!-backwater-female1.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-backwater-female2.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-backwater-female3.jpg  


Last edited by Torque123 : 20th May 2017 at 16:02.
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Old 2nd June 2017, 00:28   #55
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

The last & final morning safari in Kabini was cats all the way. We got "A" zone again. Got the power line sub adult siblings & also a brief sighting of the backwater female. Below are a couple of images of one of the power line sub adult cubs at the famous waterhole called tiger tank.

Finished the safari & were back at JLR for breakfast. Checked out at around 12 PM. Had lunch at Hotel Vaishali & were back home by 5.30 PM. Overall it was a blockbuster trip & as the saying goes "Kabini Never Disappoints"
Attached Thumbnails
Tadoba Wilderness!-powerline-cub3.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-powerline-male-cub.jpg  

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Old 8th July 2017, 19:03   #56
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Default Re: Bandhavgarh Wilderness!

The Kolsa-Pench trip which was scheduled for May got cancelled. So Bandhavgarh was planned for June 2017. This time it was 5 of us doing the trip. Had booked 3 safaris in Tala zone (all morning safaris) & 4 safaris in Magdhi zone (1 morning & 3 afternoon safaris). The morning safaris started from 6 am & went on till 11 am. Due to soaring temperatures, the afternoon safaris started at 3.30 pm & ended at 6.30 pm.

Accommodation was booked at our usual place "Aranyak" resort. As I have mentioned earlier, these guys are too good & the experience of staying there gets even better each time. Bandhavgarh has been rocking this year with lot of cubs. We got sightings of 10 different Tigers (5 in Magdhi & 4 in Tala). Below are few images from this trip. Not going to do much of writing this time. Let the pictures do the talking.
Attached Thumbnails
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Tadoba Wilderness!-kankati-cubs.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-rajbehra-male-sub-adult1.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-bheem-framed.jpg  

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