On a bright friday morning, it was a lovely drive past the traffic snarls and concrete structures of Bengaluru onto kanakapura road and then further onto dusty village roads. After manoeuvring past the village houses, nonchalant cattle and curious onlookers, the road snaked past barren brown lands and trees that had shed its leaves. With hardly any civilization in the vicinity it was a nice lonely drive through the woods. The only specimen that popped up quite frequently were the monkeys who were loitering all along the road.
After a drive of more than 2 hours and 100 Kms we reached the nature camp of jungle lodges and resorts beside the beautiful Cauvery. The place looked quite interesting with the tented lodges, lots of open spaces, little birds fluttering around and macaques welcoming the guests.
We had opted for a day package and the programme began with a light trek through the forests in search of that elusive wild being. However after a long walk through the eerie looking trees and hot brown earth, we chanced upon a few spotted deers that ran across when they heard our footsteps and also a beautiful peacock which kept gazing at us from a distance. Wild boars were also seen in good numbers. Our guide mentioned that elephants and leopards were commonly spotted. The guide also pointed out a few dungs of the pachyderms who had visited the place a few days back. We however were not lucky enough to spot one. I also felt that spotting a wild tusker amidst the trees should not be something that I should pray for. We had no precautions taken and the guide just had a stick in his hand. I am better off seeing the deers and the macaques. :)
After the 45 minute walk through the forest we got back on to the tarmac and walked back to the camp. The month of march is not an appropriate time to visit the place as the sun was beating down on us and the only solace came in the form of beer. We had a relaxing afternoon with a sumptuous lunch later at the camp's restaurant beside the Cauvery. The place was quite crowded being a long weekend and most of the visitors had taken an overnight stay package.
Even though it was the beginning of summer, Cauvery wasn't dry and had a good amount of water. Our next activity was a coracle ride on the hot waters of the gorgeous river. In the hot sun we ventured out into the burning sand and then hopped onto one of the numerous coracles. A half an hour ride through the river turned out to be futile as we could not get a glimpse of even a single crocodile which supposedly are found in huge numbers on the rocks that pop up in the middle of the river. My boatman's reason for not spotting them was that we were out in the river during the wrong time. The rocks are pretty hot during noon time and the crocodiles avoid them. They come and lie on the rocks before it gets very hot or after the hot sun has mellowed down. Bad luck!! However the ride on the Cauvery was nice despite the blazing sun and the breeze helped us to a certain extent.
Signing Note: An ideal getaway for a good break for Bengalureans...!!
Route- Bengaluru- Kanakapura- Halagur- Bheemeshwari
Distance- 100 Kms