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|22nd September 2009, 16:12||#1|
Join Date: May 2008
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Wildlife, Water falls, Coffee hills, Tea estates, Rain, River, Mist @ south coorg
The 99th Day. August 22nd 2009.
It was the 99th day of our wedding and like typical south indian movie buffs, we wanted to celebrate the 100Th day somewhere calm and beautiful.
we decided to go out of Bangalore but didn't know where. Since my wife is interested in wildlife the initial choice was Bandipur. After a few searches on google we decided to go to Nagarhole wild life park situated in the southern part of coorg. The next decision was to find a place to stay. A few searches later we finally zeroed on to a home stay called "The jade" situated in a small town called Kutta next to the national park. Called up the owner Mr.Kabir, made our reservation and enquired about the road conditions, weather etc.
Since we had only 2 days to spend, we didn't want to go anywhere else except 20Kms in and around the place.
We took the Bangalore-Srirangapatna-Ranganthittu-Hunsur route. Excellent road up to Hunsur. At Hunsur, found a sign board towards Nagarhole (Kings sanctuary). After about 25 and odd kms of good and bad roads, we reached the forest check post. Instructions were given by the staff. no horns, No loud music, no stopping, no getting down the vehicles and absolutely no littering.
The other end of the forest is about 40 odd kilometers. The drive is picturesque. Thick vegetation on both sides and fresh Elephant dung all over the road adds to the excitement of finding some wild animals along the way. We were not disappointed. Herds of deers, a few peacocks, jungle fowl, bison, sloth bear and a family of wild elephants were sighted.
Almost half way through the forest we reached a small village where they train elephants. Asked for permission if we could stop and have a closer look at the elephants. The guards let us park our vehicle and allowed us to take pictures and walk close to the animals.
By the time we reached the end of the forest, we were delighted. It was also drizzling a bit. Went to Kutta town and found our way to the home stay. The drive to the home stay was very beautiful. This place is right next to the Bramhagiri hills with clouds covering the top half of the hills and mist all around, it was absolutely stunning.
Once i drove into the estate i was impressed. This place is beautiful. It is a huge bungalow with a beautiful garden, wide open space and an amazing view of the hills around. On seeing us, our host quickly walked towards the jeep and introduced himself. After a formal welcome, We were taken to our room. The room is beautiful, neat, warm and cozy. The first thing we did after we dropped our luggage was to run out and check the surroundings.
The estate has a river running through it. So, it was kind of private water park. It was not more than a feet deep and we spent the whole evening there at the river till it was dark.
My wife has never been to such places and she was running all around like a child. Delicious Coorgi style dinner was served. it was one of the most delicious food i have ever had. The drive was great, The place is stunning, The home stay is beautiful, The hosts are warm and The food was delicious. What better way to spend the rest of the days.
Had a hot water shower and retired for the day.
The 100Th day.
The next morning i woke up early and glanced through the window only to find mist all around. Took my camera and ran out in my pajamas to capture the beauty of the place in the early morning sun.
After a heavy and delicious breakfast, our host suggested us to go and checkout the Iruppu falls flowing in its full glory, only 10Kms from there. Off we went, parked our jeep and had to walk a kilometer to reach the place. All through the walk we could hear roaring sound of the falls hidden in the thick vegetation. The place looked almost deserted as no one
was coming from the opposite direction and no one except us were walking towards the falls. It was scary at times.
Once the falls showed up, all the sweat disappeared and all fear forgotten. what a magnificent sight that was. The sound of the water was deafening and cool breeze transported us to a different world. We spend almost half the day at the falls.
By late afternoon we went back to the home stay. After a sumptuous lunch, we walked around the estate, checked out the flowers, plucked some coffee beans and dozed off in the net swing.
The next day we decided to go on a drive in and around the place. our idea was just to follow the road. When we were getting ready, our host suggested that there is a place where we can go water rafting and see beautiful tea estates hardly 20kms from there.
I have never rowed a boat in my life. Forget the boat, i dont even know how to swim. But stil both of us decided to check that out. 20 odd kms in extremely bad roads, took us to a place called srimangala. We took a left there for another 5kms and the whole landscape changed. Suddenly you are in the middle of beautiful green tea estates spread across thousands of acres covering the entire hills. This is the first time i am seeing tea estates.
After a scenic drive thru the tea estates we saw a small board showing way to KKR river white water rafting. There were a few qualis and taveras parked on the road. I found a place to park and when i was just about to switch off the engine, i found this small handwritten board that said "Entry only for 4x4". I couldn't stop giggling. There was some kind of pride that filled my lungs. Turned my jeep around and drove off in to the small estate road while the other drivers kept watching. i had that wicked smile on my face when i saw them disappear in my rear view.
Almost a kilometer into the estate we reached a small place where the river rafting starts. we decided to go rafting. The instructor is a friendly chap who explained the dangers first and then the thrill and adventure next. After finishing off the paperwork, we were assigned a coach who would train us for about an hour or so. There was a 3 member gang of boys from bangalore and 2 of us altogether. He demonstrated all the safety, life saving, breathing and rowing techniques. Then came the practicals.
He asked us to row the boat forward, backward and also made us practice turns. Finally, he said jump off the boat into the water. use all the appropriate techniques to stay afloat. what? jump off the boat into some 20 feet deep water ? no way.
He insisted that we jump. I stood, looked the water and jumped. for a second i couldnt breath. I thought i will drown. He was shouting at me not to panic and stay calm and asked me to turn backwards with my chest facing the sky. slowly i got hold of the technique. after a few minutes, i was really in control. a few more minutes later i was confident. i slowly did a backstroke towards the boat and for the first time, i was moving in the direction i intend to. i reached the boat and held onto the roap. He showed the others how to pull up some one onto the boat. In a second i was on the boat. Its my wife's turn to jump. she glanced at me once and jumped. what happened next can end up as a book.
Anyways nothing bad happened. she just panicked a bit but got back into her senses and followed the technique. after we pulled her up onto the boat, she was much releived. Now she wanted to jump again.
This particular rafting circuit is only for 2.4Kms unlike the one at Dubare Elephant Camp which is almost 8kms. But here the water is really dangerous. According to the coach, the Dubare one is just like boating and not really white water rafting. Anyways i leave that to him. Here, there are 4 tricky places that are really challenging. As a team we performed extremely well, our coach was very patient and took the best route enjoyable.
For almost 1/2 km into the river, with thick vegetation on either side, huge trees and weirdly shaped branches and bird sounds, the ride was almost like the one they show in the anaconda movies. It was scary and exciting for first timers like us. Unfortunately since we were in water, we couldn't use our cameras. The only camera was with the driver who comes to pick us up at the other end of the river. From there, the boats and the people are taken back to the starting point in their jeep. And since it started to drizzle, the driver couldn't take any good photos.
what an experience it was.
By the time we signed off from here and reached our home stay, it was almost 5:00 pm and we were not even hungry. The excitement and the adventure took our hunger away. we reached the place and as usual had some delicious lunch at 5:00 pm. Signed off there and headed towards Bangalore. The check post closes at 6:00 pm sharp. So, no night traffic is allowed through the forest. we reached the point just in time and were allowed to pass through. couldn't see much animals as it was dark.
Reached Bangalore around 12:00 midnight.
Total Distance covered : 600Kms
Diesel : 2000Rs
Home stay : 2500Rs per couple per day all inclusive
Rafting : 1000Rs per person.
Other miscellaneous : 500Rs.
For homestay details checkout The Jade Homestay and take my reference. (krishna. The Black jeep guy from Bangalore).
Last edited by kittigadu : 22nd September 2009 at 16:17.
|22nd September 2009, 16:56||#3|
Join Date: Sep 2007
Thanked: 249 Times
Krishna -well written. Terrific snaps - you have captured beauty of Coorg in the rains. Need to try Jade sometime soon. BTW do they have all traditional Coorgie non veg? Sloath bear is not spotted frequently, how about some more snaps of the wildlife
|22nd September 2009, 17:09||#4|
Join Date: May 2008
Thanked: 106 Times
well, this bear crossed the road at a turn, and by the time we could switch on the cam and take a snap, it disappeared into the vegetation.
i have photos of a peacock and wild elephant family. Most of the others ran away before we could click hearing the jeep sound.
|22nd September 2009, 21:01||#5|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Dec 2007
Thanked: 146 Times
That was a wonderful trip and congrats on crossing the century mark!
Place noted! Definitely a place worth going over a couple of lazy weekends.
|22nd September 2009, 23:34||#6|
Join Date: May 2004
Thanked: 8,695 Times
Beautiful thread with excellent pictures and narrative, thank you for sharing!
|23rd September 2009, 00:41||#7|
Join Date: Mar 2009
Thanked: 21 Times
beautifully written kittigadu. Thanks for sharing and congratulations on 100 days! Wish you many more - years!
Was thinking of doing a trip sometime in May - summer vacations - how is the weather during that time?
|23rd September 2009, 07:00||#8|
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Phoenix, Coorg
Thanked: 539 Times
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Am missing home kittigadu.
The watchman in the first gate from mysore i pretty weird. Expects you to come over to sign while none of the others demand the same. Couple of my relatives have got into solid arguments with him.
The route you had taken is excellent. Had seen wild dogs, bears and was chased by a wild tusker too on this stretch. Love this road.
The place you had been for water rafting is one of the best in coorg. Better than the cauvery river one in terms of rapids. The tea estates are a feast. They used to let people visit the factory before but some tourists pissed off the manager by driving rashly on private roads and drinking so i doubt if its permitted anymore.
Perfect way for 100 days. May you have many more
|23rd September 2009, 08:28||#9|
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Hyderabad, Bangalore
Thanked: 10 Times
Hey Krishna, excellent write up and amazing pictures there. Now that you survived 100 days in wedlock (:-) just kidding pal), I wish you a happy and along blissful journey. Great stuff and thanks for sharing.
|23rd September 2009, 09:06||#10|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Dec 2006
Thanked: 17 Times
lovely report and wonderful pictures. makes me feel as if i was almost there !
and wish you many more 100s of days ahead .
|23rd September 2009, 09:11||#12|
Join Date: Mar 2005
Thanked: 144 Times
Congrats on your 100 days of your wedding. [Well, 100 Days...reminds me a thriller hindi movie name ]
Awsome write up compiled with good pic's. How much did the safari ride cost you and are there night safaris offered????? Did you take your jeep in or went with the resort jeep as private 4x4's are allowed into the forest.
|23rd September 2009, 09:13||#13|
Join Date: Apr 2004
Thanked: 4,296 Times
Great stuff Krishna. That home stay looks really good. If possible please share their tariff.
How come there's no pic of your black beauty? Or is it coming up soon?
|23rd September 2009, 09:21||#14|
Join Date: Jun 2008
Thanked: 63 Times
|23rd September 2009, 10:36||#15|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Mar 2006
Thanked: 325 Times
I had been to same place for rafting very recently. Coorg white water rafting (Barpole river) is a good experience , the rapids are exotically named, "Morning Coffee", "Grasshopper", "Wicked Witch" "Big Bang".
This is the best season to visit Coorg.
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