Friday, August 24, 2012
MetKal in Monsoon!
I’ve been there 4-5 times before but not visited in Monsoon, the region is wonderful in monsoon, with gusty winds and swirling clouds, misty mountains, lush green valleys, in grueling winds, numerous waterfalls and heavy downpour. So have to dig experience to the thrills of getting myself into a heavenly place, once again I chosen to visit Metkal in a fine Rainy day.
A long exhilarating bike ride in incessant pouring rain we reached at Hosangadi, a small hotel used to be opening just as we reached and we would all pile on for a quick breakfast. After small continuation we left our bikes and started to walk through a mud trail.
After few minutes walk we find ruined steps and we followed the same, this was the beginning of the actual climb. This was 4th time that I was walking on this path, so many of the landmarks were familiar. It took us through slippery routes, muddy rivulets, mini waterfalls and colorful tiny wildflowers, which attract a large number of butterflies, moths and birds. It all added to the fun.
After a steep climb it would take us under a huge rocky slab that the trail was originally slated to climb. This climb was very exhaustive and everyone was quite tired. There are two caves called Tiger caves, and one ruined small temple under the rock slab. Heavy rain seeping down into the underlying rocks contributes to the instability of the area and aids in speeding up the movement of these huge columns further down slope. The route here goes through some stunning rocky portions and tricky in some parts.
We had steep climb we came to a ledge section to an intermediate plateau. We were able to get a glimpse of Beautiful Valley and wide Balebare Ghat ranges and some other unknown Pinnacles in our right. There was a small pond and a monsoon lake on the top. Needing a break at this point we headed up to the ledge to relax a bit and re-nourish ourselves.
Thereafter, we had a gradual walk till the top. By the time we had reached the top, the rain increased its volume. We took few minutes shelter on Ganesh Temple we were pleased to see a beautiful lord Ganapathi Deity. Later we headed to ruined fort located on a hilltop just next to the temple after a risky attempt on a edge of the hilltop safely we reached the fort. The Fort was built during the rule of the Keladi kings; the panoramic view from the summit is awe inspiring and is ideal for trekking in rainy days.
It is an isolated fort with dense forest all around. This hill fort has a great view of the Varahi River. Huge pinnacle are visible from a distance. One can see plenty of waterfalls here in the monsoons.
Kunchikal Falls is one of the highest waterfalls in India its cascades down rocky boulders and total height of this fall is 455 meters.
I heard from villagers that one beautiful lake called Kustappana Kere and one huge ruined fort was there inside the nearest forest range and on king’s time it’s connected to Kavaledurga Fort on a continuation base. The Ramalinga Temple at the foothill is another major historic attraction here. After the lunch we went more interior places and it commands a grand view of some waterfalls, river and mountain ranges.