Kotebetta trek

there is a pleasure in the pathless woods;
there is a rapture on the lonely shore;
there is society, where none intrudes,
by the deep sea, and music in its roar:
i love not man the less, but nature more...
-lord byron

Kotebetta, the third tallest peak of the kodagu district of the western ghats was the recent spot we chose to trek on the long first weekend of April. We went through the usual rhetoric of getting ready for the trek. Freeda came up with the trek plan and holistic as usual, while the guys made plans to hire tent equipments and bed packs. As for myself i reached Bangalore on the 4Th. On the same night selva, bajji, pradeep, dinesh, freeda, and myself gathered at the kempagowda bus terminal to catch our late night bus to coorg.

We reached coorg in the wee hours of the next day. After finishing our early breakfast, we took a local bus to hattihole. Hattihole is a small village situated at about 20 km from coorg. It is a beautiful little village with warm people and serene surroundings. The group got ready to follow the track which would take us to the base of kotebetta mount.

On our way..

We walked across a hanging bridge, took few snaps and continued further. We halted at one of the houses where we were heartily welcomed and given hot water for our ready made noodles. After a while we continued further. We started experiencing a slow ascend and realized that we had come closer to the base of the mountain. It led us through a forest area with tall tropical trees and plants. An hour into the trek we came across a small stream of water body. We rested there a bit and took some snaps of bright red colored beetles.

Further on we came across a small open area which revealed to us the mighty kotebetta in the distance. It was one helluva tough journey to be made!The climate got really hot and sweaty and there was also this constant breeze grazing through us with a constant hiss!

Slowly but steadily we ascended various rocky plains and plateaus. Very often we came across steepness that ranged from forty to sixty degrees. Kotebetta challenged us unlike any other! It was hot, we were getting dehydrated, the steepness was brutal, we were running low on water supplies; and to top it off we had heavy gears to carry along with our groceries.

After hours of walking our way towards the mountain we came across herds of wild oxen grazing over the mountains. One has to take extreme caution while walking amidst them. Usually they are sober creatures, but get a little petrified to see people hanging around in their hood! After passing the wild oxen and walking for about an hour or so, we finally reached at the top. The total trek lasted about five to six hours

The View from up above..

"The core of mans' spirit comes from new experiences."

We reached the open space atop kotebetta which holds a small sanctum of lord Shiva at one corner and two natural ponds nearby. The view from there was breathtaking! we were facing the valley from west and the ghats ran across its breadth under our feet. In the distance we could see similar mountains spreading across a minblowing 180' degree view. We soon unpacked ourselves and pitched our tents. Pradeep started collecting dry woods for later purpose. We gathered water from the ponds which was not clean but we somehow managed to filter it with handkerchief. We gathered near a beautiful summit to finish our late lunch and relaxed near the cliff to witness the sun go down. To me it was the most exhilarating and spiritual experience!!

The night dawned and pradeep helped us lit the bon fire.It soon became pitch dark and the mist from the nearby mount descended onto our tents. It became really cold. we decided to go to sleep after having our elaborate supper.

The morning after, started a little late for us. We gathered up slowly to witness the sun rise and moring mist disappearing into the shoulders of nearby mountains. After having our breakfast of remaining baked beans, bread and cheese with fruits and biscuits, we dismantled our tents and reach the highest point of kotebetta. This small mount gave us a brilliant view of the entire valley down below with river cauvery motionless at a distance.

After spending a considerable time up there we got back, gathered our items and started our descend down. The descend was comparatively effortless. On our way down we met fellow trekkers who suggested that we try a different shot route. We followed a different route that led us to a village called mahadevpura. We realized that we were nearing civilization when our muddy trek tracks changed to dilapitated taar roads. The entire descend lasted about three to four hours and we reached the village to catch our local bus back to madikeri. In madikeri we finished our lunch and took our bus to reach mysore and then to bangalore.

"What if I were smiling and running into your arms? Would you see then what I see now?"


Dubare-Water Rafting

White water rafting at dubaarey. six kilometers from kabinakaad, coorg. During monsoon, the stream simulates anything between class 3 to class 4 rapids!! A must go!!

These ones were taken along with my usual trek gang...again in dubarey..a week after :P