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Old 2nd March 2007, 12:22   #1
DRC
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Talking Whoooooaaw!!! White water rafting in River Kali, Dandeli..

If you have noticed, My post count has reduced drastically these days. My career is undergoing a sea change. I have been laid off, so is my whole team. Well My office closed down. The mood is blue. To cheer the team up, we decided to go on a fun trip! Last time in such a situation a team trip had greatly helped. 50% of my team agreed and others cited "genuine" reasons to drop off

Thursday, 22nd Feb
Finally on thursday night eight of us I, Yogesh, Praveen, Prashant, Sudhi, all my team, Kits, my Brother-in-law, Lohit and Deepak, new frieds of Praveen started of to Dandeli at about 9 in the night against 7:30 as planned. Fuelled up my Petra and Sudhi's Esteem at a Shell station at Peenya. We had to pick up Prashant at Tumkur and drive through the night till we reach Dandeli.

We started off from Tumkur at about 11:00 in the night after picking up Prashant and meeting my parents. We drove continuously with adequate pee stops till we reached a little short of Hubli, when Sudhi unduely got concerned about the fuel level. Stopped by a fuel pump and filled the esteem about 10 lts. Thena gain stopped at a relience pump near Hubli to top up.

I too topped up my petra realizing I would not likely to get quality fuel enroute any further. I think it was about 5 AM friday then, I preffered staying in the pump and get some rest, others wanted to drive to Dandeli. I was driving alone, and Esteem was seeing new driver every 200 KMs.
Friday, 23rd Feb
We decided to continue to drive till the day break to freshen up and have a break fast. We entered Dharwad town when the day broke. We had driven in a toll road from Hubli to Dharwad, I am still wondering why the toll was for? Its a regular 2 lane road with not so great quality! Its a day light robbery by govt.

When we entered Dharwad, we searched for a hotel to freshen up and for breakfast, but in vain. We lost about an hour.

Then we started off on Dharwad-Haliyal-Dandeli road. Not a good road at-all. Speed was almost nonexistant. When we reached Dandeli, it was a few mins past 8. We had to find the travel agent who booked the event for us and find our accomodation. (Pressure in building up!). And then we finally in a hotel (of some sort) to to do the necessary in the morning. Some nice breakfast of Mangalore buns and Idlies.

Later what we discovered was we had o drive further to Ganesha gudi where our resort(tent) was booked. Imam, the tour guide and the agent told us about the direction and collected the money and left us alone. We prepared for the night (read bought some Ramanov and breezers) and started driving again..This time I let Praveen drive my car. Road only got from bad to worse. I was all the way trying to get some sleep but could not. At 10:30, when I was about to fall asleep, I was woken up by a flat tyre! After completing the ritual of tyre change in the middle of the jungle, we reached the resort at about 11:30. I had a hot shower and crashed into the bed. So much for the drive. Tiresome but enjoyable though. Others went to swim in the river.
Some one woke me up to say the jeep is ready. FOR WHAT? A safari and a trek had been arranged as part of package. I quickly got ready to spend my regained energy and there we were in the jeep. About 45mins of jeep ride and we were in the middle of a thick jungle, There we started our trek. Initially we were told it was a 3+3 kms trek, but ended up being lot longer. Though painfull for me because of my overwieght, I must say I enjoyed every bit of the trek. We happened to notice a lot of birds, hoof marks of Bison and Elephant, Pugmarks of Jackle and leopard. All in all a very exciting one
Back in the resort that night, we drank, sang, danced around a bon-fire, had a very good dinner, and retired in those beautiful tents by the river side

Saturday, 24 Feb
I was woken up by Kits to a wonderful sight in front of me. Sun has painted the sky and the river all hues of red and yellow. I had never seen a beutiful sunrise in my lifetime. And at a closer look on the river, I could see the mist rising from the river to form clouds. Please see the photos, they hardly do any justice to the actual sight.

After the breakfast, we were to check out ot move to the Old magazine house log cabins at the Jungle lodges, from where the Rafting ride would start. We drove to that place to be greeted by our trainers, and off wee were in a Mahindra 4x4 to the jetty, in the thicket of the jungle.

At first we were introduced to the rules of the rafting, some commands to watch for, and safety and split into 2 teams and set sail. The trainer asked us to jump into the water to get acquented to the water, then we realized, all non-swimmers were in one boat and all swimmers in other. Though I am a reasonably good swimmer, it took some courage to nose dive into the water. And then everything was cool. After some fun swimming, we were heading for our first rapid which was also the biggest one, and first rapid of my life too. We all felt the rush of adrenaline, as we slid through the turbulent waters, by this one seemed to pass too easily

Very soon on the second one I took it too lightly, as we slid, before I could realize, I was thrown out of the boat. I was in the river, being washed away even before I could realize. At that moment I felt it was fun jumping into water, but everyone who saw me going into water seem to have scared that they lost me. But when I stuck my head out of the water everyone sighed, but I was sh!t scared as I saw myself being washed along with huge sharp rocks. I quickly swam to the boat and back on board. I learnt to respect the river, and did not jump into water hence forth.
Totally we passed 9 such rapids and none of them failed to pump a lot of adrenaline into our veins. I strongly recommend this event if you enjoy a little adventure.
Sad part is that we can not carry the camera to take pictures. I happened to sight so many exotic birds including a family of Malabar horn bills, Fishing eagle, Flying fish, Barbetts, Cormorants(Spelling?), kingfishers etc.. I missed them all on my camera.

Special Note: This event happens in a national park. Littering here is prohibited. If you happened to visit this place, please take this seriously. As we rowed along the river, I was hurt to see some pan masala sachets and ciggy packs. Let us respect nature and preserve. I have a standing curse on those who litter/spoil beautiful places.


Those 9 kms in the rever result in 22 kms of driving back to the camp.
We devoured some delicious lunch at old magazine house and left to steal a nap.
Later in the after noon, when we woke up for a tea, I noticed a large red giant malabar squirrel playing on a nearby tree. This guy kept me company for about half hour and pulled me into the jungle in quest of taking some pictures.

In the evening, while others decided to go on trek to see the sunset, I chose to drive to Dandeli to get some more Ramanov to make the evening colorful again. Kits joined me.
On the way I happened to spot a great malabar pied hornbill (pictures), And as we entered Dandeli we were greeted by a beutiful sunset. We also bumped into Imam our tour agent who was going to collect balance money from us. He also joined us on our drive back to Old magazine house after we got some spirits. This time he showed us a better road to Ganesh gudu from dandeli
That night was colorful again. We tweaked our plan for the return drive, dumped Karwar route to save time and decided on the Dharwar route

Sunday, 25th Feb
Next day wee set out to Bangalore through Dharwar after breakfast. This one being a day drive, was slow due to traffic. We were in no hurry either.
We entered Dharwar town to buy some "world famous Dharwar Peda" After that I ended up being on the pld highway instead of the toll road. Here there is another kind of state sponcered robbery. Speed limit is set to 40KM/h on a highway. There are cops to enforce this every half a KM. Amazing! I could not find a single cop to regulate traffic in Dharwar or Hubli, but all of them are here to fleece money for an unrealistic speedlimit ! Mera bharath mahan! I stuck to the speed limit and did not pay the fine.
We also stopped for "world famous Davangere butter masala dosa" in Davanagere, we also planned to stop for "world famous Kyatsandra Tatte idlies" but it was too late and half of the team had dropped off at Tumkur.
Finally we reached Bangalore at about 10:30 PM.
This was not a motoring centred tour. Other than me none were car geeks. But the company and the tour itself was so good to be forgotten anytime. We travelled about 1200kms and consumed 102liters of fuel on my car.
Linky for pictures Picasa Web Albums - Chandrashekar - Dandeli

Last edited by DRC : 2nd March 2007 at 12:30.
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Old 2nd March 2007, 13:22   #2
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Nice write up DRC and good pics also ,life cant any better when you have sucha get away.
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Old 2nd March 2007, 13:52   #3
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WOW I just loved those pics!! A nice write up too.
I completely support you on that littering thingy!! People are so crazy nuts!! It is always better to carry a strong plastic bag to carry all the rot you would like to throw away and dump in a designated place/area.

Also, it is always better to rest a while even if a little fatigue is present or felt.

Kudos DRC!! Thanks for sharing your experience with us. We hope to see more from you of this kind.
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Old 2nd March 2007, 14:07   #4
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I have been dreaming this for almost an year but held back due to my young daughter..

Is it still good time to go there?.. I can get some free time during March end..

Sorry to hear about your office closure(Do not know the details though).. Hope you can pull back soon..
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Old 2nd March 2007, 14:15   #5
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DRC excellent write and pics , please PM the contacts and price of the package .
Thanks
Santosh -
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Old 2nd March 2007, 14:18   #6
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Hey DRC, nice report...May be another destination for me to explore...Will do it sometime...
BTW, which company laid u off? Amazing, when there is hiring everywhere, somewhere there is laying off as well....Suprising

Abhi
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Old 2nd March 2007, 15:13   #7
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Good Luck DRC! Godspeed!
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Old 2nd March 2007, 15:14   #8
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Lovely pictures....heavenly for an avid bird watcher!
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Old 2nd March 2007, 15:42   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by black12rr View Post
DRC excellent write and pics , please PM the contacts and price of the package .
Thanks
Santosh -
Sorry, I do not have a picture of complete package. It costed about 5K per person, inclusive of everything.
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Old 2nd March 2007, 16:35   #10
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Great report DRC. This is really a very positive attitude to take after a lay off. Don't worry, you'll get back on the saddle very fast, it is a very hot job market.

The sunset is indeed beautiful, could have avoided the flash though. Next time take a tripod too.

We wanted to do Kali river rapids forever, never been able to make it happen, yet. Can't take the kids, that's problem.
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Old 2nd March 2007, 16:59   #11
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Thanks everyone for the kind words


@samurai, There is not flash on the sunset pictures.

I had a tripod handy, but could not use it as the birds were too mobile.
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Old 2nd March 2007, 17:08   #12
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Nice writeup DRC. How did the car handle the bad roads? Did the rattling (if there was any) become progressively worse? Have not been able to open the link to your pictures.

P.S. Dont worry about the job thingie. You will get one soon. Till then recharge yourself for the next stage.
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Old 2nd March 2007, 17:10   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DRC View Post
@samurai, There is not flash on the sunset pictures.
Hmm, then what is the light source from your direction that is illuminating the nearby objects in the sunset photo?

Quote:
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I had a tripod handy, but could not use it as the birds were too mobile.
Even the non-bird photos have shook.
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Old 2nd March 2007, 20:05   #14
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Samurai,
I think you are talking about the Sunrise picture. Yes there was flash turned on in that picture.
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Old 2nd March 2007, 20:36   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by typeOnegative View Post
Nice writeup DRC. How did the car handle the bad roads? Did the rattling (if there was any) become progressively worse? Have not been able to open the link to your pictures.

P.S. Dont worry about the job thingie. You will get one soon. Till then recharge yourself for the next stage.
Yes the rattles increased with bad roads, but over the time I have grown up to ignore them.
On the Job thingy, Thanks for the kind words. Actually, I have worked out to move my team to a diff company. Waiting for the things to take good shape.
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