||[Jan. 17th, 2005|08:59 pm]
"There is a high probability that there will be strong winds" - Chandan when discussing on where to camp.
"For you nothing matters, for me everything matters" - Gautam when asked if it mattered whether the bus back reaches Bangalore at 8pm or 8:30pm.
"You will not complain tomorrow morning...If nothing happens, you will not complain...if something happens, you will not complain" - I couldn't resist; when discussing on the wind affecting our tent.
Adding to bchandan's entry:
Since we were late in booking the tickets, the Rajahamsa was not available; Took the Express! bus also called the 'Laal Dabba' to Viraajpet. Another local bus got us to the Palace/Aramane stop from where we begin the trek. The starting path is a tar road for some time which then becomes a jeep track before finally changing to a path/trail. The tar road has some steep ascents on the way. The jeeptrack split into two on the way and we took the path going down only to find out later that it goes to Abbe falls and not to the peak(Luckily we found some houses where we were told this before it was too late). Following the trail, we reached a couple of boulders where we were supposed to take a left. It led to a small stream(the last one before the peak) where we had our lunch and rested for some time. Following some wrong info we had got earlier, we followed this path for some time but it was only going down. Going back to the boulders and following the 'right' path, what followed was a steep ascent to the peak. The path also takes us through the forest for some time. Reaching the peak, there was a big discussion on where to camp. A local on the way had answered 'There will be a wind, go and see(translated literally)' when asked whether it was possible to camp at the peak. Both Gautam and Chandan wanted to go back down and camp near the boulders believing that the wind would be strong enough to blow away the tent and take us along with it(what is that hindi saying '______ ka bathanggad banana'? or something like that?). After some(or was it a lot? when people are afraid for their lives!) convincing, we pitched the tent finding a small area without any rocks(we did find some elephant dung though!!). After the sun set, the night was cold and windy.
Waking up to see the sunrise, we found the tent to be covered with dew both inside and out. The sun and some newspaper helped to dry the tent before we packed up. The way back was simple; Getting back to the boulders from the peak took almost 1/4th the time it had in the opposite direction. It was a good thing we started the trek on Friday; we saw 3 groups on our way back going to camp at the top and another 3-4 groups who had come for a day trip. I still think travelling by bus in the daytime(which is what we did when we took the 1:45 bus back to Bangalore) is a waste of time when the same can be done overnight.
Below is a snapshot of 19 photos from the trek. Click on the snapshot to go to the main photo page. Link to direct slideshow courtesy Flickr.
Flickr Hint 1 : The 'All Sizes' button on the individual photo page gets you a bigger version of the picture(but still limited I would say, the originals are >2MB in size!).
Flickr Hint 2 : You can click on the photo during the slideshow to see its details(like a brief description).