The diary of a few rides and clicks!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Journey:

After exploring many places in south India, we realized that we have been to many distant places but yet to explore the nearer one - Agumbe, the home for wild animals and snakes. So we planned for this trip. This time also we went in bikes itself.

From Bangalore, we left to Shimoga at 1 in the midnight. After having coffee at the 24 hours Cafe Coffee Day in Tumkur, we reached Shimoga in the morning. We went straight to my home, which is in Shimoga itself. Since it was diwali, I couldn't join my friends on the first day of the trip. I had to stay at home to celebrate the festival.

Day 1:
So my friends carried on without me on the first day. They went to Agumbe first. Agumbe is a small village which is known as the "Chirapunji of the South". It is one of the places which receives the heaviest rainfall in south India. It is also famous for the serial "Malgudi Days". Those who have seen that will never forget this village.
After reaching Agumbe and inquiring about the places to visit, my friends Anoop and Sandeep decided to go to a place called Jogigundi Falls.
Jogigundi falls is not very huge. From Agumbe, you need to take a right in the Sringeri road and then walk for 2-3 kms to reach this place. The place was full of leeches. Even though it is very small, it is a very nice place to swim. You will enjoy here for sure. After playing in water for sometime, they went to Hotel Ganesh in Agumbe, had lunch and then went to Kundadri on the way back to Shimoga. I will give more description about Kundadri later.

Day 2:
On the 2nd day of the trip, four of us again went to Agumbe from Shimoga in two 180cc Pulsars. On the way to Agumbe, we visited Mandagadde bird sanctuary, which was haunted except for a very few bird species. One more friend, Sharat joined us in Agumbe in his Thunderbird. We then decided to go to Barkana falls first. After inquiring about the place, we parked our bikes at a small house at malandur village and started our trek. The villagers warned us that there is no proper path leading to the falls due to the rains and the path is almost closed. We still decided to go there, thinking that we will reach the falls whatever it takes.
And the villagers were right! We had to jump over some trees, cross streams, bend over and walk, fight leeches, etc etc to finally reach the Barkana viewpoint.



Barkana viewpoint is a place from where you can see the Barkana falls from a distance covered with dense rain forests of Agumbe. It is such a calm place to relax, enjoying a tremendous view and the beauty of the nature. We came to know that to reach the falls, we had to trek for 6-7 more kms. We had already trekked 2-3 kms and there was a huge probability of us getting lost in the forest without a guide, if we decided to carry on. So we had to drop the idea of trekking till the falls and decided to go back for now and cover it the next time we come to Agumbe.


On the way back to Agumbe, we were lucky to spot a green snake and took numerous snaps of it.



We then returned to the Agumbe village and had lunch, talking and inquiring about the next place, Koodlu Theertha falls (or Koodlu Falls). We spent some time at the sunset point in Agumbe and then went down the ghat section to Someshwar. We had to take a left turn from the main road and go for 9-10 kms to reach the parking lot. If you go in a 4 - wheeler, you have to park your vehicle there itself. Since we went in bikes, we could go in a very small mud road full of rocks and potholes for 3 more kms and we had to trek for 3 kms in a deep forest to reach the falls. Again this route was full of leeches and every single minute we had to stop and check for leeches. All the way we could hear the sound of the stream flowing parallel to us. Once we reached the falls, our mouths were left open for atleast 4-5 minutes. Such was the beauty of the falls.

It was one of the best water falls I had ever been to, undoubtedly. We could go till the base of the falls easily. We spent nearly 1-2 hours playing in the water here. It was getting dark. So we decided to leave. And wew again lucky to spot a huge scorpion!


We were going to stay at Sharat's place, which was nearer to Someshwara. It started to rain heavily on our way to his home. All of us got totally wet, but couldn't help it.

Day 3:
After having breakfast, we left to Onake Abbi falls, after washing the bikes. Sadly, I couldn't trek to this place. I had applied strong limestone to my foot to avoid leeches. Since it was very concentrated, my foot got burnt and i got many cuts in my legs because of the sandals. So I could barely walk on the third day. I had to stay back at a hotel, while others went to the falls.


To go to Onake Abbi falls, they had to trek for 3-4 kms from Agumbe in a forest again, and full of leeches again. After trekking, they reached the tip of the falls. From what they told me,  it was an amazing place. You can go till the tip of the falls and then bend down to see the falls and the long stream created by it. The whole place was full of greenery and medicinal plants and there are steps till the tip of the falls.


This was also one of the beautiful waterfalls which many people don't know about. Post lunch, we then went to Kundadri.

Kundadri is a huge hill which has a Jain temple at its peak. We could go in bikes itself till the top. After asking about the history of the place, We stayed there for sometime to enjoy the tremendous view from the top.



From here, we went to Shimoga back and stayed at my place.

Day 4:
On the 4th and the final day, we rode back to Bangalore from Shimoga and it was the end of our trip.

Routes :
Bangalore - Tumkur - Shimoga - Thirtahalli - Agumbe.

Final Review :
Agumbe is a must visit place for those who love to trek in forests. Many say the area is Naxal affected. But it is worth the risk and we found no signs of naxals throughout the trip. It is home to many wild animals and snakes. For those who love photography also, it is a must visit place and it is not at all expensive. There is a direct bus from Bangalore to Agumbe everyday for those who want to come in a bus. Home stays are available in Agumbe if you ask there properly. The people of the village are also very friendly. There are some more places like Narasimha Parvatha, base of onake abbi falls and barkana falls, which we plan to cover the next time.

10 comments:

  1. We are planning to visit soon to Onake Abbi falls , can we seek some more information from you ?

    Like , is it worth to plan Barkana & Abbi falls trekking on the same day etc ...

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  5. Nice trip. Thanks for sharing your experience. A picturesque city dotted with waterfalls, swaying palms and lush paddy fields which make for a great place for tourists to enjoy the scenic beauty and refresh themselves, along with the cultural hub of the state of Karnataka. Explore all best hotels in Shimoga also.

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  6. Nice piece of information. Onake abbi falls can also be reached from trekking starting from someshwara. one can reach the bottom of falls by avg 3 hours of trek.

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  8. Can we Trek in Agumbe during Monsoons ? i.e. During the month of July.

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