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Old 3rd May 2021, 16:13   #1
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Default Road-trip to the Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary (Assam)

I hope all of you are doing good in these testing times and taking care of yourself and your loved ones. The thing with this pandemic is whatever happens in rest of the country, the same thing happens here (Assam and the rest of North East) with a delay of around 2 months. I along with my wife, Mandira and four year old son, Nibir made a weekend trip to Hollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary, District Jorhat, Assam in April, 2021. Things were pretty normal with the 2nd wave of COVID-19 yet to hit our shores (or so we were made to believe).

I had always wanted to visit Hollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary and was in two minds over the weekend- whether to laze at home or make a trip to the sanctuary. I have learned over the years that given such a choice it is almost always better to go out.

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Going out!

A delayed start from Pasighat, Arunachal Pradesh saw us reach a beautiful home-stay called Gibbon Resort, Nagadera Village in the evening. There are some rough roads just before reaching the home-stay but nothing which our Bolero 4wd couldn't handle. The home-stay is owned by Mr. Diganta Gogoi and he ensured our stay was comfortable and memorable. Nibir (who carries a fake snake with him at all times) instantly hit it off with Diganta who is a avid wildlife photographer himself.

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Gibbon Resort

After a delicious dinner of chicken and rice, we retired for the day. The Gibbon Sanctuary is explored on foot and the best time for that is early morning.

Next morning, Nibir was awake at 5:30 am and we all got ready by 6:30 am. The Gibbon sanctuary is around 20 minutes drive from our stay and Diganta and Mr. Baruah (an elderly gentleman) were our guides. I will let the pictures do the talking. I once again cursed myself for not having a telephoto lens .

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Hollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary

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Nibir looking at confiscated trucks at the Forest office premises

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Looking out for gibbons!

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Nature trails

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On dry land to save ourselves from leeches. Trains often kill elephants here.

We were enjoying the trail walk when a rather unpleasant smell hit us. Diganta and Baruah confirmed that a leopard was walking just a few minutes ahead of us and was watching us. They made loud noises and clapped and were very happy that a leopard was so close by. This was enough to give Mandira the scares and she asked me - " If the leopard is walking ahead, why are we following him?" . It was a good question and I just suggested her to keep pace with the rest of group and avoid becoming leopard breakfast. We need not have worried as we soon came upon the dung(?) of the leopard and our two guides confirmed the the leopard had eaten a wild pig.

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Fresh pug marks

We were also attacked by a lot of leeches which stuck to our shoes and made us stick to dry trails. Nibir was fascinated with a small leech and carried it it in his hand before Mandira threw it away. We spotted a family of gibbons and another family of pig tailed monkeys. Later on, we were allowed to drive our Bolero inside the main trail leading to a beautiful village at the end of it.

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Inside Gibbon Sanctuary

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Tea garden at the village

We then went to Sukafa Udyan, Marangial Village which is a big park on the Assam side of the Assam-Nagaland border. It is open only on Sundays but was opened for us on request by Diganta. We spent more than an hour just lazing around and enjoying ourselves. After a heavy lunch back at the home-stay, we bade good-bye to Diganta and his hardworking staff. I highly recommend Gibbon Resort for anyone visiting the sanctuary.

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A breather after a tough trek

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Sukafa Udyan, Marangial Village


Since it was getting dark, we had a halt at my sister's place in Dibrugarh, Assam for a night. Next day, we made our way back to Pasighat in the afternoon. We tried out the newly opened river ferry restaurant near Bogibeel bridge and it was a good experience.

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Sharing a few short unedited videos:







Thank you for reading and I hope good times will be back again

Last edited by gunin : 3rd May 2021 at 16:14.
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Old 4th May 2021, 06:14   #2
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Default re: Road-trip to the Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary (Assam)

Thread moved out from the Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 4th May 2021, 11:46   #3
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Default Re: Road-trip to the Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary (Assam)

I had my hairs almost upright when you were following a leopard, had it been me I would have turned back and left immediately so hats off to your courage and adventure spirit. I think you have a remarkable advantage to be residing in a state surrounded by such natural habitat, something we cannot think of having weekend destinations like these over here. Enjoyed reading this TL fully. Nice photos there and I hope your son enjoyed the jungle tour. Take care and wish Bolero 4WD was still available, I would have certainly fallen for it.

Last edited by haisaikat : 4th May 2021 at 11:48.
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Old 4th May 2021, 12:07   #4
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Default Re: Road-trip to the Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary (Assam)

Beautiful pictures, thanks for sharing. All I can say is 'Parenting done right". Introducing kids to wildlife at an early age has profound effect on them. The kid playing with the leech melted my heart. Fearless one you got there!

I can imagine how it must feel to be in the vicinity of a predator, on foot, where all your senses are heightened. We have been in that situation on couple of occasions now. One in Shola National park, where there is guided trek organised by forest dept of Kerala, we saw a fresh Tiger pub mark. My wife wanted to return back, I somehow convinced her to continue (reason why men die younger ). Another one in Bandipur, near Mangala village.

Hope to visit North East soon and explore, once this is all over.

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Old 4th May 2021, 13:05   #5
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Default Re: Road-trip to the Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary (Assam)

Beautiful images to go with the trip report. As a parent you can't do anything better than to introduce your child to nature. It's a bond he will cherish throughout his life.
You need a telephoto lens of at least 400 mm focal length as the gibbons seldom leave the tree tops. Had been to the sanctuary long back (probably 2010) with friends. We stayed in the forest rest house inside the park.
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Old 4th May 2021, 13:28   #6
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Default Re: Road-trip to the Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary (Assam)

Hello gunin,

Nice travelogue with nice pics. I can only imagine how it would have felt knowing that the Leopard was watching you. Hope you had spotted the leopard. I was once on a trek in BR Hills and we came across a herd of elephants pretty close to us.

I must say, nice car. We have an old Bolero Sportz in the family and it has taken us on countless trips.
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Old 4th May 2021, 15:09   #7
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Default Re: Road-trip to the Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary (Assam)

Nicely written Gunin. I always wanted to go here but somehow the idea of waking up at 0500 to see shrieking monkeys somehow never took root. Great to see that you and family enjoyed the trip.
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Old 4th May 2021, 15:54   #8
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Default Re: Road-trip to the Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary (Assam)

Quote:
Originally Posted by haisaikat View Post
I had my hairs almost upright when you were following a leopard, had it been me I would have turned back and left immediately so hats off to your courage and adventure spirit. I think you have a remarkable advantage to be residing in a state surrounded by such natural habitat, something we cannot think of having weekend destinations like these over here. Enjoyed reading this TL fully. Nice photos there and I hope your son enjoyed the jungle tour. Take care and wish Bolero 4WD was still available, I would have certainly fallen for it.
Thank you haisaikat. It is always a pleasure to hear from you. Even I was apprehensive of continuing but I had full confidence in our able guides when they said there is nothing to fear. I do consider myself lucky to have beautiful places only a few minutes or hours drive away. Nibir really enjoyed the trip and continues to make gibbon sounds .

Quote:
Originally Posted by vj_torqueaddict View Post
Beautiful pictures, thanks for sharing. All I can say is 'Parenting done right". Introducing kids to wildlife at an early age has profound effect on them. The kid playing with the leech melted my heart. Fearless one you got there!

I can imagine how it must feel to be in the vicinity of a predator, on foot, where all your senses are heightened. We have been in that situation on couple of occasions now. One in Shola National park, where there is guided trek organised by forest dept of Kerala, we saw a fresh Tiger pub mark. My wife wanted to return back, I somehow convinced her to continue (reason why men die younger ). Another one in Bandipur, near Mangala village.

Hope to visit North East soon and explore, once this is all over.
Thank you vj_torqueaddict for the kind words. I am trying to make full use of my current place of posting and let my kid enjoy all that nature has to offer. He loves jumping and frolicking in the rivers here and is at his best behavior when running through jungles (with me puffing and panting close by of course ). Hahaha I can relate to that- our better halves trying to push us towards sanity and failing! Do visit our place some day and I pray for better days ahead.



Quote:
Originally Posted by UD2021 View Post
Beautiful images to go with the trip report. As a parent you can't do anything better than to introduce your child to nature. It's a bond he will cherish throughout his life.
You need a telephoto lens of at least 400 mm focal length as the gibbons seldom leave the tree tops. Had been to the sanctuary long back (probably 2010) with friends. We stayed in the forest rest house inside the park.
Thank you UD2021. I am trying my best to bring up a good, strong man and luckily for me he loves being out there and doesn't shy away from a good swim or run. I need to get that lens as I have visited a few wildlife sanctuaries recently with good animal sightings and have only landscape photos to show. Staying in the forest rest house must have been another level of adventure. I have been eyeing the Manas one (Mathanguri) for some time. Its great to see a fellow Bhpian from Guwahati. Do keep in touch!


Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiragM View Post
Hello gunin,

Nice travelogue with nice pics. I can only imagine how it would have felt knowing that the Leopard was watching you. Hope you had spotted the leopard. I was once on a trek in BR Hills and we came across a herd of elephants pretty close to us.

I must say, nice car. We have an old Bolero Sportz in the family and it has taken us on countless trips.
Thanks ChiragM. I felt as scared as my wife but the guides reassured me. Such moments make for great memories. Bolero Sportz came with rectangular headlamps I believe. It looks great. The Bolero is a very rugged vehicle- it will always pull through no matter what. Although uncomfortable, It gets the job done all the time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderernomad View Post
Nicely written Gunin. I always wanted to go here but somehow the idea of waking up at 0500 to see shrieking monkeys somehow never took root. Great to see that you and family enjoyed the trip.
Thanks wanderernomad. The bit about waking up early to hear monkeys had me in splits. It is a very nice experience nevertheless with the morning freshness of a jungle.
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Old 4th May 2021, 22:05   #9
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Default Re: Road-trip to the Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary (Assam)

Beautifully narrated travelogue. All of your threads are cherishing. Myself being from this region haven't explored these many places yet. Keep it up.
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Old 5th May 2021, 14:54   #10
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Originally Posted by Phukan23 View Post
Beautifully narrated travelogue. All of your threads are cherishing. Myself being from this region haven't explored these many places yet. Keep it up.
Thank you! nice to meet a Bhpian from Assam
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Old 5th May 2021, 23:11   #11
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Default Re: Road-trip to the Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary (Assam)

Very nicely narrated Gunin and you and your family were quite brave following up the leopard on his trial. Anyways enjoyed reading...
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