December 30, 2012

Siddarabetta TreK : An Abode of Caves, Hermits and Temples

Sept 2011: The last bike tour I had , to one of the best biking destinations in India....LADAKH !!!!!!!!
Now after a 15 month gap got an opportunity to go for yet another bike trip and this gap might seem endless for a regular biker. But that's the way it is. End of the day I was content that I was able to have atleast one bike trip for the year 2012.

Initial Climb

On a lazy and chilly sunday morning of Dec 23 morning, 3 of us (SK, Shashi and Myself) decided for a bike ride, a short trek and cave exploration. Regrouped with everyone at the Nice Road-Tumkur road junction and it was smooth ride on this NH4. Had a breakfast stopover at Kamath near Dobbaspet and were mildly surprised by around 100 high end bikes parked in front of the hotel. "Woah!!!! did I miss something???, 15 months of temp retirement and the biker population has shot up". But not surprisingly it was a bikers meet, hence the concentration of bikes of all ages and power. Spotted a gorgeous Yamaha RD 350, among the gleaming bikes.

A water source inside the caves.

Negotiating a difficult section

After Dobbaspet it was a diversion towards Koratgere and this 2 lane road had a love and hate relation with us. At many places it was smooth, with awesome curves , a delight for bikers , but on the other hand it was potholed beyond imagination. Reached Koratgere and soon after exiting the town we get the final left deviation towards Siddarabetta. This part was recently tarred, hence no comments :). Reached the base of the hill, parked our bikes and started the trek along these pilgrim frequented route. Also note that many localites near the base advice not to wear footwear, but no one will stop you and near the top there is a shoe stand just before entering the temple.

The trek directly came to business, with continuous steps we started to sweat within no time. The normal pilgrims had a tough time climbing up. But just when you start to think that this is getting interesting the trek leads to the entrance of the temple. Time taken is just under 1 hr to reach this spot. Left our shoes at the shoe stand and it was time for some cave exploration. Seeing us no one would assume us to be pilgrims and within no time a guide offered to take us for cave exploration. Hence off we started. The cave exploration was quite adventurous, crawling in total darkness, bending our body so as to squeeze ourselves through a narrow opening. At some places it was difficult to negotiate the huge boulders, getting down using 2 parallel adjacent boulders for support :P. Also the guide showed some spots frequented by hermits @ night. These places were so difficult to crawl into , but on the other hand provided absolute silence and void of any sunlight. A perfect meditating spot I suppose. But one thing what surprised is that there are no signs of any creepy crawlies inside this damp place, not even bats.... interesting.

Group Snap

From the temple it was a 20 min climb to the top of the hill and in process we got lost. But we ended in a very good spot hence just rested in this place for some time, reached the top which had a pretty good view of boulder filled mountains everywhere and it was time to return back. Since I am a big time sucker for quick downhill climbs we climbed down from the top within 30 mins. Took the bikes, taking the same route we came in and reached home at around 4pm.

Trek Details --->
Total Trek Distance--> 3 + 3 km
Difficulty Level --->Easy
Total Cost Per Head -->750
Trip 'O' Meter ---> 230 km

View from the top

View Larger Map

1 comment:

  1. Awesome Blog! We could use this as a reference and had a great Trek.
    By the way I know you via Ashwin(IBM). :)


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