October 4, 2011

Above the Abode of Goddess...!!

Kollur, a little hamlet in South Karnataka is known for Mookambika temple, dedicated to Goddess Mookambika. I have been to this temple quite a few times and my last visit to this temple led to a few explorations. Situated at the base of the Kodachadri hills in the Western Ghats, this temple town brings in a lot of pilgrims during the months of October and November. The Sowparnika river flows near to the temple and a dip in the same before visiting the temple is considered sacred. The river which flows down from the top of the hills is supposed to have medicinal values.



All my previous visits to the temple have been short and I have never got an opportunity to explore the surroundings. The first day of my visit ended with the rituals and the blessings. The evening rituals were a treat to watch and with hundreds of lamps being lit all over the place it was a beautiful sight. The smell of camphor, the ringing bells and the chanting of prayers absorbed me into a different world, a mesmerising one.




The next day was set aside for my trek to Kodachadri. Kodachadri, a few kilometers away from Kollur is known for trekking and I did not miss the opportunity this time. This trek leads to Sarvanja Peetham where the scholar, Sankaracharaya had meditated. Further down from this place is the Chitramoola.  Adventurous trekkers can begin their trek from Kollur. As I was travelling with my parents I had to skip that option and take a jeep up to a certain distance. This jeep ride can quite well be compared to the dune bashing that I experienced in Dubai (http://rajniranjandas.blogspot.com/2011/02/tunes-of-dunes.html ). Only jeeps with experienced drivers can manoeuvre this dirt track. It felt as though I was on a roller coaster ride. An unforgettable ride, indeed. As we went higher the thick forests gave way to green plains and blue hills.

                                           


We got dropped off near Bhatt's (temple priest) house. From there it was a long walk. I wouldn't call it a treacherous trek, but definitely it was a tough walk all the way from there to the Sarvanja Peetham. En route to the top we also came across a small cave where there was a deity and a young priest. With the sun spreading its rays, we gulped down a couple of bottles of water and walked towards the top. The views of the hills all along the path were beautiful. The blue and green hills engulfed by the mist and the clouds portrayed a fantastic vista.

 

 
After an hour of walking we reached the Sarvanja Peetham. The place might not seem worth the trek as it is a very small temple perched on top of the hill. A steep trek down from here leads to Chitramoola, which is supposedly a sacred place. We decided to give that a miss and started our return trek. We were taken back to Kollur through the same roller coaster ride. 

 
For trekkers, the options doesnt end at just the Sarvanja Peetham and Chitramoola. You can trek further deep and enjoy Hidlumane falls and Arisinagundi falls. I would definitely want to trek all these routes the next time am there to take the goddess's blessings.

Signing Note- One of the rare places where you can take the blessings before you trek...!!

Route- Bengaluru- Tumkur- Shimoga- Kollur

Distance- 415 Kms

23 comments:

  1. I agree with the comment above. The atmosphere at Mookambika Temple is absolutely heavenly.

    Lovely photos. And this is such a perfectly timed post. Happy Vijayadashami!

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  2. Thanks for beautiful photographs and excellent narrative.Enjoyed the journey through your eyes.

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  3. Nice Clicks and write up Mate!

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  4. It's such a pity that I havn't been to this great abode of the goddess..Apparently there is a belief that if one plans for a trip to Mookambika in advance, it would never work out. It should be like a spur of the moment like decide today, go tom. Wonder how the timeline is defined though.. :)

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  5. wonderful post on Mookambika and Kodajadri...

    nice narration

    beautiful photos

    thanks

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  6. @ Pengu.. Hmm..Thats not the case with only mookambika. Best travels are always decided in the spur of a moment. Head there the next time you are in India.

    @ Krishna.. Thanks a lot.

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  7. The dirt track is so tempting for me... And that trekking path is too good... I wanna go thr...
    Kalangal Kalyana Perumal

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  8. Head there soon. Am sure you will love it.

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  9. Nice coverage of Kollur and Kodachari trek, there is a safari too nearby.

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  10. Thank you. I missed out on the safari.

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  11. This place is so beautiful....Amazing shots!


    Short Poems

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  12. There are so many places which are not travelled. We don't know how much we would be able to cover in this life. Isn't it? :)
    P.S.- Can you pls enable the Name/URL option for commenting ?

    Nisha - Le Monde-A Poetic Travail

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  13. nice architecture and colorful pillars!

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  14. Nice pictures and write-up. You should trek the full distance from Kollur and aim to cover all the trails around. It is fantastic.

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  15. @ Nisha- Very true, a lifetime is not sufficient to do justice to our travel desires. I suppose the commenting option is enabled. Or else am not getting your point. :)

    @ Joshi- Yup, its a beautiful place to be in.

    @ Sankara- Thank you. Yes, i did miss out on a lot of places. Got to do it the next time.

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  16. Hallo Niranjan Very Nice Blog With Big Beutiful Pitures , Can U Clike my Site , Thnks For share Visit Us Tour Packages in India.

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  17. Thank you. Shall definitely go through your website.

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  18. And this is my second most visited temple after Guruvayoor :)

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