Well Aramane gadde is where the 3 trekkers got lost and died on one tragic rainy July evening.
Shiradi ghats was one area that i hadnt explored for long and i was glad to explore one of the key areas.Vikram who is a nature lover along with his gang of 3-4 local boys accompanied me on this trip.
Started from bangalore by the 22:47 Kukke volvo which was unfortunately late which left me like waiting for over 2 hours in the bus stand waiting for it.Finally the volvo arrived at 11:30pm and i got into it.I arrived at around 4am in sakleshpura.
With no place to go i managed to get a sole bed in one of the lodges where i had to sleep with the caretaker of the lodge.I got up by 6:30 am and got ready and had breakfast.By 8 am i was on my way with Vikram and gang moving towards Kadumane estate.
The jeep dropped us a bit inside into our jeep track near a stream.We quickly munched onto some yummy puliyogare and started our trek by 9:30 am.The intial path is through grasslands and some amazing landscapes.The ridges and the paths make way for some beautiful landscapes.Vikram showed around some peculiar plants and trees as we moved along.
Above : Views as we trekked along enroute to Aramanegadde
We soon stopped at a one rocky place where a small stream flowed.We quenched our thirst and relaxed here.There is a small temple believed to be of the maharaja era ,we went there and prayed there -it is a custom here ,we had coconut and bananna as the prasada.We were soon on our way from here trekking through some grasslands,the sun was slowly coming out making the trek through the grasslands slightly tougher.
We soon came across the place were the 3 trekkers lost their lives and the crash site of the navy helicopters.It is just plain grassland and no trees anywhere near this place ,yet navigational equipment dont work at this spot.We saw some faint remains of the helicopters at this spot.
Above : 1)Helicopter crash site 2)Lunch site on day 1
We then entered some very small patches of trees where small streams flowed.Soon we entered a dense patch of forest where we found some very huge trees some as tall as 400 to 500 feet in height.Then we hit one of the bigger streams and it was decided that it will be time for lunch.Time was 12:30pm.Lunch was simple with ganji and mosaru,nevertheless very tasty and yummy.
We started from here by about 1:45 pm .Vikram had warned me of a very steep patch here ,but surprisingly to it wasnt as steep as he had told me.Only later did we realize that we took a new route created by deers and sambhars and hence it was manageable :).We soon hit a grassland where we rested for about 15 minutes.
Above : Aramanegadde
About 45 minutes from here we hit Aramane gadde-a plain flat in the middle of nowhere.It is believed this is the place where once mysore maharaja cultivated paddy for sometime ,evidence of two small check dams can be seen in the shola forests near the aramane gadde.Apparently the raja had also planned to build a palace at this place which didnt materialize due to some reason.It is a nice view of plain flat grassland at this place
Above : A weird looking insect
Above : Campsite
The next couple of hours was uneventful and we reached a cave which was initially planned to be our destination for the day but we later decided to abandon it and camp at small stream and waterfall area.It was about 5 pm now and i was exhausted after the hard days trek,i decided to rest for a while.This place is very scenic with a several stage waterfall a little below our camping place.The intial path of the stream was a natural pool :)
All of us had tea by 5:30 pm and enjoyed the sunset as we ended day 1 on an amazing scenic day in aramane gadde.Dinner was at 8:30 pm with rice,sambhar and radish raita.I was tired and retired for the day by 9:30 pm .Sometime in the night i woke up,it was an amazing moonlit night ,i was also looking out for some wild animals since we had camped at a waterhole.
End of a memorable day.Continued