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Old 27th January 2016, 16:29   #1
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Default Tadoba Wilderness!

8 of us visited Tadoba Andhari Tiger reserve in the third week of Nov 2015. Though we had good sightings (2 Tigresses & 2 cubs), there was always a desire to do the trip again.

So 4 of us decided to visit Tadoba in Jan 2016 again. The dates finalised were from 19th Jan to 23rd Jan. All the safari (6 safaris) & accomodation bookings (for 3 nights) were done online in the last week of November 2015. We got the 19th Jan evening safari & 20th Jan morning safari booking permits from Moharli gate. We stayed at the MTDC facility for that night. The rest of the 4 safaris and accomodation were from Kolara gate. We had booked accomodation at Tadoba Tiger King resort for the same. The count down had started and I was literally counting days for this trip.

We took the 8 PM Rajadhani express from Bangalore. This is the most convenient option according to me because you get to sleep during the majority of the journey. The restlessness to get into the forest and experience wildlife is negated by sleeping throughout the journey.

We reached Balharshah station at 12.45 PM on 20th Jan. The logistics (cab) to reach Moharli gate from Balharsha were also arranged well in advance. It is a 50 KM drive. Hence we reached Tadoba - Moharli gate at 1.45 PM. Here we were surprised as the safari timings had changed. The afternoon safari was from 2 PM to 6 PM where as when we had visited in Nov, it was from 3 PM to 6 PM. We hardly had any time on our hand. Hence checked into the room, dumped the luggage and headed straight to the safari gate.

Completed the formalities at the forest gate and got into the forest. We had decided that we will be exploring only the Moharli side of the forest and will not visit other zones. The same morning, Sonam and her 3 cubs were seen in Telia lake. We headed straight to Telia lake and parked our jeep comfortable behind a large bush. There were jeeps which came and went by. Nobody stopped for more than 5 minutes. To my surprise, there were very less jeeps for that safari from Moharli side. There were Spotted deer and Sambar alarm calls through out. Around 30 to 40 minutes of waiting, we see a sloth bear walking down the bank of Telia lake. As we had maintained silence, the bear was unaware of our presence. It walked down and had quenched its thirst. By then the cameras in our jeep were firing all the way. This made the Sloth Bear aware of us and after giving us a look it transformed into Usain Bolt .

Tadoba Wilderness!-bear.jpg

We were patient and were still parked behind the large bush. The alarm calls kept us alert and vigilant. We knew that a predator/predators would surely be resting under the tree line on the other bank of the lake and would surely move at some point of time. At around 5 PM the forest was bombarded with alarm calls. As the calls came from further down, we moved and our driver saw movements in the tall grass. We parked the Jeep at a vantage point and we could see multiple movements. We were sure that it is Sonam and her cubs. There were small patches of clearings where in the tigress and the cubs sat, played etc. It was quite a long sighting and it was time for us to leave the park. I have a small camera gear and the below image is what I could manage to get the best out of it. It is magical and unbelievable to see these Tigers moving in the tall grass so well camouflaged.

Tadoba Wilderness!-sonam.jpg

Tadoba Wilderness!-sonam-cubs.jpg

The next morning, we were up by 5 AM and were at the gates by 5.40 AM. This safari was dry and we did not have any predator sightings.

Last edited by Gannu_1 : 27th January 2016 at 17:16. Reason: Inserting images in the post.
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Old 27th January 2016, 16:56   #2
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After the morning safari on 20th Jan, we reached Kolara the gate by 1 PM. Checked into the resort, refreshed ourselves and had lunch. We were at the forest gate by 1.45 PM. We waited at a couple of waterholes through out the safari as there were consistent alarm calls. However, no predator showed up. By 5.15 we decided to leave that place as it takes around 30 minutes to reach the gate if driven sanely. By 5.30 we reached a place which was earlier a small village within the forest. The people from that village have now been relocated and there are no man-animal conflicts. We were around 3 to 4 KMS from the forest gate & for our safari to end. As they say that the forest is full of surprises, A Tigress (Choti Tara) surprised us who was walking down the fire-line towards the safari track and was almost near our Jeep. There were absolutely no alarm calls from other animals & ours was the only Jeep at that place then (not for long).

Tadoba Wilderness!-langur.jpg

Tadoba Wilderness!-choti-tara2.jpg

Tadoba Wilderness!-choti-tara3.jpg

Tadoba Wilderness!-choti-tara1.jpg

Tadoba Wilderness!-choti-tara4.jpg

Tadoba Wilderness!-choti-tara5.jpg

Tadoba Wilderness!-choti-tara6.jpg

She is a bold tigress and has successfully raised a litter to adulthood in the past. When we saw her in Nov, she was calling for her partner as she did not have cubs. She walked behind, beside & in front of jeep for around a KM giving us a good sighting for around 20 minutes. There are 2 Tigers radio collared in Tadoba and she is one among them as there is a group who is doing a research.

We relaxed at the resort, had dinner and hit the bed eagerly waiting for the next morning & dreaming about what the forest has in store for us.

Last edited by Gannu_1 : 27th January 2016 at 17:17. Reason: Inserting images in the post.
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Old 27th January 2016, 17:44   #3
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Default re: Tadoba Wilderness!

Tadoba Wilderness!-spotted-deer-fawn.jpg

21st Jan morning , we were in the forest at sharp 6 AM. Waited near the same waterholes where we had waited the previous evening. However, 2 Jeeps (entered from another gate) which had reached there before us saw tigress Maya with her 3 cubs. By the time we reached there, the Tiger family had just then moved into the grassslands behind the bank of the waterhole where there is no access to Jeeps. We however waited the entire safari and kept moving in and around that area hoping to see the cat family. With no luck we returned back to the resort.

Tadoba Wilderness!-maya-cubs.jpg

21st Jan evening safari, we covered a lot more area. However we had no luck but did enjoy the forest. We were done with 5 safaris & the last (6th) safari was on 23rd Jan morning.

We again waited at the same waterholes where Maya and hers cubs were seen the previous day as there were no movements seen of the family. Our patience and waiting for 3 safaris paid off as at around 10 AM Maya the tigress first came to the waterhole. She then called her cubs and they too joined her. The light was against us & the distance was a little too much for my lens. But the sighting of the family and seeing them resting under shade for more than 20 minutes was a treat to the eyes. It was around 10.25 AM and we had to leave the park & the tiger family.

It was overall an awesome trip and Tadoba keeps raising my expectation every time. Can't wait to get there again. Till then.

Signing off.

Last edited by Gannu_1 : 27th January 2016 at 19:36. Reason: Inserting images in the post.
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Old 28th January 2016, 10:02   #4
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Thread moved out from the Assembly Line to the Travelogues section. Thanks for sharing!

Last edited by GTO : 28th January 2016 at 10:03. Reason: Bump
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Old 9th March 2016, 18:05   #5
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Default Re: Kabini Wilderness!

Did a quick & short trip last weekend to Kabini. In all my visits to Kabini, most of the times I have stayed in Jungle Lodges & Resorts. Booked accomodation at Waterwoods Lodge as Jungle Lodges & Resorts was full (as expected) & no accomodation was available. The package cost came up to approx Rs 20,500 for a couple (all inclusive). This was my first stay in this resort & I would rate them 3.5/5. For me what matters the most is the safari experience. The resort has all the frills like well maintained swimming pool, AC, TV etc. The service & food is good too. A similar package minus the frills would have cost around Rs 16,000 in JLR. I personally prefer JLR any day.

We started from Bangalore at 7.15 AM. Stopped at Hotel Vaishali (just after Channapatna) for breakfast & then for a quick tender coconut break before H.D. Kote. We reached the resort by 1 PM. Got refreshed & headed straight for lunch. The food is simple, a little bland but tasty. The variety is limited compared to JLR. Rested for an hour and we were waiting at the JLR by 3.40 PM for our first safari.

No matter in which resort you stay in Kabini, the safari is through Jungle lodges only. This is a disadvantage as majority of the guests from other resorts are given a bus for safari. Requested the person in charge of safari at JLR and we were allotted a Jeep .

There were good sightings during that week in Kabini. The safari was quite eventful. A couple of boats (safari) had got a glimpse of a tigress entering the forest from the banks of the back waters. There were alarm calls from Spotted deer almost near the same place where the boats had seen the tigress. There were quite a few jeeps waiting (including ours) hoping that the tigress will cross the safari track. However she decided to stay put in the under growth and slowly one by one all jeeps dispersed. We then saw the usual fauna.

This sub adult elephant did give us a mock charge and stopped around 6 to 7 feet from our jeep. After that we saw the usual fauna like spotted deer, sambar, jackal, peacock etc. We were back in our resort room by 6.30 PM. Had a light dinner & hit the bed by 10 PM.

Next day we were up & again waiting at JLR reception by 6.15 AM. This safari was quite uneventful. Below are the few pictures from the trip.

Finished breakfast, Checked out at around 11.30 AM & reached Bangalore by around 4.30 PM. Thank you for reading this travelogue.
Attached Thumbnails
Tadoba Wilderness!-sambar.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-charge1.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-charge2.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-charge3.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-jackal.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-jackal1.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-peacock1.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-squirrel1.jpg  

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Old 31st May 2016, 18:12   #6
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Default Re: Bandhavgarh Wilderness!

As there are a lot of travelogues on Bandhavgarh already in the forum, I will keep this one very short & simple. Had always seen parts of this forest & its legendry Tigers on TV in various documentaries on NatGeo/Animal Planet. This was my first visit to this legendary & wonderful Tiger Reserve.

Did a 3 nights 6 safaris at Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve in May 2016. We stayed at Aranyak resorts. It is a new resort in Bandhavgarh. The food, stay, ambience & service is very good. I would surely recommend this resort for fellow members if any of them wants to visit Bandhavgarh.

The morning safaris start at 6 AM and go on till 10 AM. The evening safari starts at 4 PM and ends at 6.45 PM. There are 3 tourism zones within the forest namely Tala, Magdhi & Khitouli. Tala is the premium zone & the Govt entry fee is more for this zone than the other 2. As of now action packed zones are Magdhi & Khitouli. We did 2 safari's in Tala, 1 in Magdhi & 3 in Khitouli. The forest landscape & vegetation is so different from what we have here down in South. This forest is Lantana free which is a great blessing.

Most of our sightings were in Khitouli zone and we were not lucky enough to see the famous Rajbehra female with her 4 cubs. We did get to see a glimpse of one of the cubs in Tala during our last safari.

Few images taken during the trip. Thank you for reading the travelogue.

We saw this 4 to 5 year old Male Tiger in Magdhi zone during one of our morning safaris. The second & third images are of the dominant male cub of the Khitouli female who has a litter of 4 cubs. The 4th & 5th images are of the female cub from the same litter in the same zone during the same morning safari.
Attached Thumbnails
Tadoba Wilderness!-mahaman-male.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-khitauli-male-cub2.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-khitauli-male-cub.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-khitauli-female-cub.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-khitauli-female-cub1.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-khitauli-female-cub2.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-sambar-bandhavgarh.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-solo1.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-sambar-n-fawn.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-jackal-kill.jpg  


Last edited by Torque123 : 31st May 2016 at 18:20.
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Old 12th September 2016, 12:43   #7
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

Did a quick & short trip to Bandipur last week. Due to the Karnataka bandh on 09th Sep Bandipur did not have the usual rush. Left Bangalore at 12.45 AM & Took the Kanakapura - Mysore route and reached Bandipur gate by 5.30 AM on 09th Sep with a couple of short breaks for tea. Around 5 to 6 kms stretch just before we reach Mysore is yet to be tarred. Otherwise this route is the route to be taken if you are heading to Mysore with no or minimal stops. We returned back to Bangalore on 10th Sep. Took the regular Mysore Bangalore highway and all was peaceful.

Did 3 safaris. The first 2 yielded in a missed Tigress sighting & 2 sloth bears. The sloth bears were sighted at around 6.30 under extreme poor lighting conditions. We did see a lot of elephants with tiny calves this time. Images of elephants will be posted later.

The last safari was a bumper. It is hard to sight this guy. But if you get a sighting of him it will be the one to remember in your lifetime. He is called Prince & is the dominant male of Bandipur tourism zone. We first sighted him at around 7.20 AM and from then till 9.15 we were lucky to give him company

Few images of the sighting of Prince. He is one bold & cool Tiger. He was on a patrolling & tracking a female spree. All he kept doing was walk and sniff and scent mark & relax in waterholes.
Attached Thumbnails
Tadoba Wilderness!-prince-bandipur7.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-prince-bandipur2.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-prince-bandipur.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-prince-bandipur4.jpg  


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Old 12th September 2016, 21:08   #8
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

Wow that is a beautiful compilation of sanctuaries visited and the amazing rich amount of sightings.Truly envy you as we are yet to make our "debut" sighting of a tiger though have spotted a leopard at Debrigarh in Orissa.

Superb.Photographs are mind blowing.
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Old 13th September 2016, 12:01   #9
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

Quote:
Originally Posted by vijayols View Post
Wow that is a beautiful compilation of sanctuaries visited and the amazing rich amount of sightings.Truly envy you as we are yet to make our "debut" sighting of a tiger though have spotted a leopard at Debrigarh in Orissa.

Superb.Photographs are mind blowing.
Thank you Vijay. It took me 3 years to have my first Tiger sighting in the wild. Visit the forests more & you will be rewarded with the sighting All the best.

Adding another image of the same tiger sighting from Bandipur & also an image of a brown fish owl.
Attached Thumbnails
Tadoba Wilderness!-prince-bandipur8.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-brown-fish-owl.jpg  

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Old 13th September 2016, 13:25   #10
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

Prince being pretty old is still a stunning one at that.

Nice snaps by the way.
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Old 13th September 2016, 13:44   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nkrishnap View Post
Prince being pretty old is still a stunning one at that.

Nice snaps by the way.
Yes, he is old but still holding his ground. The new male has also stood his ground & is here to stay in Bandipur. They have already had territorial fights twice. Its all about rules of the jungle. We are mere spectators.

Thank you for the appreciation.
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Old 13th September 2016, 19:54   #12
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

Wow, amazing trips to the wild and great sightings. Loved the Prince's stance and his pictures the most.

Where did you stay at Bandipur?
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Old 14th September 2016, 13:42   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by srikanthpotluri View Post
Wow, amazing trips to the wild and great sightings. Loved the Prince's stance and his pictures the most.

Where did you stay at Bandipur?
Thank you for liking the travelogue & images. We stayed at Gundlupet & did the government safaris.
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Old 20th October 2016, 15:50   #14
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

A couple of images from Bandipur safari done in Aug 2016. Visiting Bandipur again this weekend. Hope to get some sightings
Attached Thumbnails
Tadoba Wilderness!-leopard-bandipur.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-malabar-squirrel.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-peacock-bandipur.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-leppy-bandipur7.jpg  


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Old 30th November 2016, 15:27   #15
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Default Re: Tadoba Wilderness!

Did a 3 nights 4 days trip to Tadoba last week. We stayed at the MTDC resort near Moharli gate & took the Rajdhani express for our onward journey & took a flight from Nagpur for our return journey. It was very cold during the early hours of the morning safari & post evenings. So if anybody is planning to visit Tadoba before Feb, then I suggest you to carry a lot of warm clothing.

We did 6 safaris (3 in core & 3 in buffer zones). Ended up seeing Tigress Madhuri with her 4 cubs in 2 of the 3 safaris we did in buffer zone. Also was lucky to see Tigress Maya with her male cub (he is a around 1.3 years old) in 1 out of the 3 safaris we did in core zone. Camera gear used is Nikon D7200 & Nikkor 200-500 f/5.6 VR.

Held up with a lot of work. So could process very few images & post them in this thread. Will update this thread with more images of the sightings shortly. Till then enjoy these images

Cheers
Attached Thumbnails
Tadoba Wilderness!-madhuri-cub1.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-madhuri-cub2.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-madhuri-cub3.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-madhuri-portrait.jpg  

Tadoba Wilderness!-maya-head-.jpg  

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