Monday, December 28, 2009
The hills beacon us like we belong there in its lap one more trek organised by Mangalore YHA this weekend to ‘Valikunja’ near Kudremukha national park situated 1039m above the sea level.
As per our plans everyone reached Andaru village late evening & Ramesh Kamath sir’s local friend arranged for very tasty food & shelter at a local school. Sudeer from our group took initiative to arrange program & take responsibility to get permission from Kudremukh National Park department.
We started our journey through one mud jeep track; we went on slowly on this long, winding, steep road in the middle of thick tropical forest. Forest guide told us that this road was constructed long back when the Government wanted to estimate the proposition of Uranium some rare earths (Bangargudda) on this mountain range. Might be they found that it won’t be profitable to undertake mining Uranium here or might they didn’t find anything here, they abandoned the project and hence Valikunja was saved from devastation.
Dense forest completely covered this mountain and we had to climb 9.5kms non-stop up in this jungle. High moisture content in this weather almost all the animals found in these forests of South India could be seen here also. Deer, tiger, leopard, wild pig, sheep, fox, wolf, monkey, variety of snakes are the common animals found in these forests. Even we saw Elephant & Bear mud’s in several places; the varieties of birds are also seen here. We took sufficient water from one small stream before entering the open place.
After that we came to an open place where we could see grassland. Wherever we see it was full of lush greenery & mountains were really amazing. There was cool fresh breeze. This is a typical feature of Shola tropical forests, which characterize the Western Ghats of India. Grasslands cover the peak even though the whole mountain is covered by dense forest. We rushed towards grasslands like mad.
Next 6kms tough walk in open grassland was pleasant last stretch to the peak was a little dangerous with slippery rocks we reached the peak. The clouds were slowly uncovering the mountains and the view was splendid.
Really it was excellent experience we should thank for last night rain which had on this place & also cloudy atmosphere. Otherwise it would have been little difficult ,a slight drizzle had started by the time we descended totally exhausted walking around 30kms at a stretch it was one kind of an experience where body mind soul all are strengthened to give a living experience.