Saturday, December 12, 2015

Trek to Brahmagiri – An Elephant Corridor

Brahmagiri always sounds for adventurous trekking place.  It is quite difficult to get the permission in season due to more demand.  The actual plan was to go in October month, however by great difficulty and continuous follow up, we got the permission on 12th December 2015.  The kudos goes to my lovely friend Shanthi Prasad.

The team is set for 12 members and booked a Tempo Traveler. We put the pickup points Majestic Shanthala Silk – Kathriguppe – Raja Rajeshwari Nagar.  The TT came on time and left the Bengaluru around 10.30 pm.  The journey was as usual joyful with lot of fun.

Reached early morning around 4 am to Srimangala.  This the place, where Forest Office is situated and we need to finish trekking official formalities.  The weather was very cold and it was misty.  Most of the friends settled in the TT to get a good sleep, few of us tried in the Bus stop.  We could not able to get sleep, so thought to explore around places.  No specific destination, pushed the time till 7 am.  We all got freshen up in the public toilet and set ready for breakfast.

Many of us brought the home made breakfast and lunch.  We all gathered in a plain ground near the Forest Office. Put our food in the mid and all enjoyed the yummy homemade breakfast.  The forest officials reached around 8 am.  Shanthi Prasad quickly finished the formalities and we paid the trekking fees.  Now again we have to travel in the TT till the starting point of the trek.

Irppu falls is the beginning point of this trek.  The distance is approximately 8 – 10 KMs.  We all boarded the TT and continued the journey.  The guide was waiting for us at the Irppu Falls.  Everyone got ready to hike the Brahmagiri.  We took the group photograph and headed towards the trail.

Initial trail take you to Irrpu falls, before 500 meters of the falls, took a deviation and entered the forest.  It is thick forest with complete shade.  Of course it is very tough during peak monsoon with Leeches.  Continued our journey with guide.  The trail was really awesome in thick vegetation.

Taking a small breaks we entered into the grassland.  Now we can see the 360 degree view.  All peaks are decorated with green carpet.  Spent good time for photography and had lot of fun.

Soon we reached the Narimale Guest House.  This is the only place where we can camp during the night.  This range is strictly prohibited to camp in the forest and also elephant attack is quite common. Little part of the guest house is abounded, it is well maintained with all kitchen vessels.  The guest has double bedroom with cot, a big Hall, Kitchen section, veranda, sit-out and back yard.  It is fully protected by electrical fencing to prevent from the Elephant attack.  This is very ideal place for camping in the Brahmagiri.

Dropped our luggage and quickly finished our lunch.  Again it is sharing homemade lunch, finished the lunch and ready to scale the Brahmagiri.  We all got relief from our luggage, carried a small backpack with snacks and water.  Our guide gave brief instruction about the trail and wild animal movement in this area.  Asked us to unite in the group and not to go individual away from the group.

It is complete open grassland with flat terrain.  We can easily view the entire valley.  Crossing the small stream continued our journey.  You will get an opportunity to put your foot one in Karnataka and another one is in Kerala.  

Clearly you can find out the state boundaries.  Continued our journey enjoying the awesome nature and weather.  Suddenly guide said “silent, look at the bunch of Elephant”.  We spotted some 8 – 9 elephant group.

We all happy to spot the bunch of Elephants.  Enjoying the valley again we come across Tusker.  Guide little deviated the trail and safely crossed the elephant area.  We all continuously shouting to push it into forest.

Now the real fun and challenging part of the trek. The final stretch of the Brahmagiri is not so easy to ascend.  Guide was watching the tusker not to rush towards us, so he asked us to ascend the final stretch.  

It was really fun, we all literally crawling to reach the peak.  The path was very slippery and there was nothing to hold the grip. By great difficulty we all reached the peak.  The joy of reaching the peak was awesome, no words to explain the joy.  Spent good time on the peak.

The descending was more challenging than the ascending.  Again taking more time we all came down to the base point.  The guide was suggesting us to move fast since it is getting dark.  The tusker was still at the same place.

We all moved so fast to reach the Narimale guest house.  Again we spotted a bunch of elephants. Reached the camp site by 6 pm.  

Dinner team was busy in preparation, few of us helped them in cutting the vegetables, bringing the water from stream. Hot Bisibelebath was ready, we all finished the yummy dinner. The time was to open our sleeping bags, by the time it was 10 pm.

Night we had a good sleep, when opened the eyes the time was 5 am.  Guide was about take us a beautiful view point where we can witness the sunrise. It was again a small hike, we witnessed beautiful sunrise. 

Now the time to prepare the breakfast. Quickly we all engaged preparation of breakfast.  Many of us were busy in photography and fun.  Finished yummy breakfast and good bye to Narimale guest house.

The trail was remain same, taking multiple breaks reached the basepoint Irrpu falls.  The humidity was more and we all badly required to dip in water.  Enjoyed in the stream and had good fun time.

The time was to adieu Brahmagiri and back to the practical life Bengaluru.  Reached city around 8pm and good bye to all.  It was memorable trek to all of us.

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