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Old 17th August 2007, 02:59   #1
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Default Gopalaswamy Betta

This isn't a full blown travel log, just a snippet (the full one to arrive in my blog soon).

We had a long break at Jungle Lodges in Bandipur National Park, and one day we didn't have much to do between breakfast and lunch so decided to take a short trip to Gopalaswamy Betta nearby. The distance is around 17kms from JLR resort. Half-way through, the road re-enters Bandipur National Park, and past the forest checkpost, it is just all the way up till the temple. Through most of the drive, we didn't encounter a single soul. We were about 2km from the peak when the most exciting event happened.

A leopard crossed the road, around 100m ahead. I jammed on the brakes, backed off a little and kept to one side, switched off the engine; and all 3 of us (me/wifey/kiddo) almost stopped breathing, hoping he'll give us another glimpse. After a short while, he did come back, but hid behind a bush, watching us (we could see his head). In excitement, we forgot to take out even one of the 4 cameras we had (ready in back seat, much later, I could manage to whip out one).

And then I could hear the noise of another approaching vehicle from behind. A yellow board Sumo, in full speed. I frantically waved to slow it down, but he blasted his horn as he overtook me, without reducing speed. Then we noticed another leopard on the opposite side of the road. Both of them were very disturbed, so they just jumped off the road, and disappeared in the shrubs in downhill slope.

May their tribe increase.



The only shot I could manage before the Sumo arrived.

Kousik
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Old 17th August 2007, 10:58   #2
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Lucky you !! Being son of a forest officer, i had gone into forest many times (did I mention chased by elephants before??) but never saw any of the big cats till now.
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Old 17th August 2007, 11:03   #3
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Nice Experience Kousik, Hope to see some more pics and bit more information about your experience in Bandipur JLR.

Abhi
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Old 17th August 2007, 11:57   #4
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It so good to see those majestic animals specially when one is expecting the least. I was one of the lucky persons to see a Tiger on my way to Ooty.While we were going through Mudumalai this guy decided to cross the road. I was so awestruck that I even forgot to take out camera and click(till date I curse myself for not able to click and we were able to see him for more then a minute )

And yeah, Gopalaswamy Betta is a very nice place. I got some pics of the place in my blog Thoughts and clicks and some photos at Flickr: Kaushik Saikia's photos tagged with gopalswamybetta
Regards,
Another Kaushik ;-)
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Old 17th August 2007, 19:18   #5
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Lucky dude, in all my forays into the jungles have only managed to sight a wild cat once, again sadly no snaps.

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And then I could hear the noise of another approaching vehicle from behind. A yellow board Sumo, in full speed. I frantically waved to slow it down, but he blasted his horn as he overtook me, without reducing speed. Then we noticed another leopard on the opposite side of the road. Both of them were very disturbed, so they just jumped off the road, and disappeared in the shrubs in downhill slope.
These guys should not be allowed into forest reserves, many a time I have come across these morons playing loud music and blaring multitone horns in the forests.

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May their tribe increase.
I sincerely hope you meant the cats and not the Sumo wallahs.
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Old 17th August 2007, 19:33   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lukeskywalker View Post
Lucky dude, in all my forays into the jungles have only managed to sight a wild cat once
Well, it was our first cat sighting in 8 years.
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These guys should not be allowed into forest reserves, many a time I have come across these morons playing loud music and blaring multitone horns in the forests.
True, they don't show minimum respect towards forest. Many a times I stopped to watch/photograph a bird, and they honked behind me, spoiling everything, though I make sure I am not obstructing their way (because they'll honk/stop anyway and defeat my purpose). I plan to put a poster on my rear window "DON'T HONK - JUST GO"
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I sincerely hope you meant the cats and not the Sumo wallahs
Heh, I stopped thinking about them (Sumo) as soon as he passed by!

Kousik

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Originally Posted by thalavoy View Post
Lucky you !! Being son of a forest officer, i had gone into forest many times (did I mention chased by elephants before??) but never saw any of the big cats till now.
Hacking | Photography | Bird-Watching: Elephant charging ... was a scary experience for us too. So we have been going to forests all over since 8 years, and we didn't see a big cat. This was our son's first trip, and he got the beginner's luck! We could show him leopard, wild dogs (and other common sightings) in the first trip itself! He is the lucky guy ...

Kousik

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Originally Posted by akroy View Post
Hope to see some more pics and bit more information about your experience in Bandipur JLR.
Yes sure, over the weekend I'll post in our travel log at: “Kousik & Sumana’s Travel Ventures”

Kousik

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Old 17th August 2007, 20:18   #7
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You are one lucky dude, a tiger sighting by itself is very rare , once wheni went to BR Hills Jungle Lodges Resorts there was this Mallu guide who had been working there and accompanying every single safari for the past one year and had not yet got the chance to sight a tiger , leave alone a leopard which is even more rare.

Lucky you !
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Old 17th August 2007, 20:35   #8
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Lucky You!!

Those kind of moments go right up on the top of the list with sunrise and sunset- The best moments of being alive.

Would love a detailed report of your trip, esp a review of 'Jungle Lodges'
as I'M planning a stay there soon.
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Old 19th August 2007, 03:06   #9
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The full travel log and more pics are posted in our travel blog at: “Kousik & Sumana’s Travel Ventures” » Blog Archives » Beginner's Luck at Bandipur
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Old 29th August 2007, 09:56   #10
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Kousik:

Went thro your blog site quickly - the pics are awesome and you are lucky or probably it was your son, Iravan who is lucky to spot so many animals in one trip that most will not be able to in their whole life.

Wish you continue to have more such adventures...I will keep visiting your blog for the lovely pics you have got in there.
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Old 30th August 2007, 00:25   #11
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Thanks guys for your kind replies. After a two year slowdown (because of arrival of my son), things have started looking up, and I am hoping to re-start our long drives again.

Kousik
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Old 30th August 2007, 00:45   #12
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I feel good for you but sorry for your son, he might not remember this sighting at all. This picture will tell him that he did.
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Old 30th August 2007, 18:04   #13
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Koushik, great photos and amazing luck.. I have been going to Bandipur/Madhumalai almost every year and still no luck (just missed a tiger by about 2 minutes in Corbett once)
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Old 31st August 2007, 11:54   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1100D View Post
I feel good for you but sorry for your son, he might not remember this sighting at all. This picture will tell him that he did.
I know ... there is no documentation of my childhood, my parents didn't ever own a camera. So in this modern era, I am documenting my son's early days in a wiki: http://www.employees.org/~kousik/family/ hopefully he can look back when he grows up ...
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Originally Posted by ethanh_hunt View Post
Koushik, great photos and amazing luck.. I have been going to Bandipur/Madhumalai almost every year and still no luck (just missed a tiger by about 2 minutes in Corbett once)
Luck shined after 8 years, man. We have been going to all forests in KA, KL, TN but this is the first time we had spotted a cat! Happy searching for them ...

Kousik
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Old 31st August 2007, 17:20   #15
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I just hope you had a sharper image of the beast. This one is good still.. it must have been one thrilling experience!
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