May 18, 2010

Surprising Kolar!

This was probably the most desired getaway as far as I know. Well, needless to say it was worth a shot... Visiting Kolar was a real surprise.

This was the first time we left just 15 minutes late than expected :) Blessed were we to zoom away from the early morning hustle bustle of Namma Bengalooru… leaving early has its upside, just like the chill experience of driving through the thick drapes of fog and opening your eyes to the rising sun who seemed to be pour his warm light on the bed of fog over the lake… that really was an inspiration beginning to a new day!

We zoomed quickly and halted at Hoskote to satisfy craving coffee lovers in our group. I am an anti-coffee and probably that’s why I got to notice something elegant besides the little chai shop. A small hardworking group of old, young and the little ones making “Chandrike” silk worm breeding frames made of bamboo. These guys were already sweating at work around 8! This was an impressive learning experience about their knits and speed! The “Chandrike” seemed to have stolen the show under the bright Sun.. yes, she did!

It didn’t take us long to enter the soothing lands of Kaivara, the experience was similar to entering Nandi Hills, except for that there were loads of vendors selling self produced most fresh veggies at the entrance.

Kaivara is around 65 kms from Bangalore. Kaivara has immense history attached to it. It is believed that The Pandavas of India's greatest epic lived here during their vanavasa and Bheema, one of the brothers has established a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva the Bheemalingeswara temple.

I personally was keen on the cave temples I had heard so much of. After a quick tasty “halli mane breakfast” we headed towards Ambajji Durga cave temples on Kailashgiri. The massive white rocks were welcoming! The name Kailashgiri seemed apt. It was a quick walk uphill and view from the top hill was worth it. I was amazed to see the immense hard-work that had gone into carving out the temples! This was something!

Walking through these cave temples was an amazing feeling… just to know that you we’re “inside” a huge rock was an out of the world feeling! Honestly, I had a heavy heart to walk out of this gorgeous palace of rocks!

After experiencing this amazing piece of art on rock we headed towards Antharagange.
Antharagange is around 2 hours journey from Kailash Giri. The drive was a superb country side experience! Picking tamarind, driving over the ragi crops laid on the ro
ads, mulberry leaves, carrots, phew! The list goes on… so fresh… so green…

Reaching this place was a real good physical exercise and saving our food from the large (now that’s an understatement) family of monkeys. One has to climb thousands of steps to reach to the temple but walking through these shola forests was soothing to the mind and soul… That’s the magic of mother nature..

It was noon by the time we reached Antharagange. Antara Gange is a mountain situated in the Shathashrunga mountain range. Antara Gange literally means "Ganges from deep" in Kannada and is also known as Dakshina Kaashi.

Antara Gange is famous for the Kashi Vishweshwara temple situated on the top of the mountain. In the temple is a pond which gets a continuous flow of underground water from the mouth of a Basava (stone bull) but nobody knows the source of water or the place from where it originates. Water is seen streaming out throughout the year! This water is considered as holy water and flows into a pond besides the temple.

It was sad to see that this pond, which otherwise could have looked wonderful, was spoilt by the lack of civic sense amongst people washing themselves with soap! Our groups started sharing a common joke that probably these guys were desperate to scrub off all their sins forever and that too with branded soaps!!

We’ll I had had a lot of exercise by then, I decided to back out and except me my other mates went ahead to check out the seven villages on top of the mountain. The mountain contains volcanic rocks and lot of caves around. They took the narrow path to the top of the mountain and it took them around an hour and a half to climb up and down. I was told that they were not able to complete the climb to see the streams. We termed it mission unaccomplished :) and I could read on their face that probably it was quite a climb!

Hmm meanwhile, what was I doing all alone? I was researching on the behavior patterns of immense monkeys there, and yes, not to forget, even some men who behaved like monkeys! Probably even worse! Phew! During my wait, I also had a chance to see people, specially children between the age of 8 and 16 collecting water in plastic cans and selling them down the hill. It was amazing to see these little boys carry two cans on their little shoulders numerous number of times up and down the hill but it was also sad that this natural resource was getting cashed on.

Another trouble to the eyes was the lack of civic sense in tourists is gradually spoiling the beauty of this wonderful place. Plastic bags and liquors seemed to have strewn everywhere on the hill. It is probably high time that environmentalist and general public take up initiative instead of waiting for the authorities concerned to take up appropriate measures to conserve the glory of this hill.

Time was ticking away quickly! After having a cheap yet tasty lunch in a Dhaba on the highway, we went ahead to visit the temple This town is famous for the saint called Narayanappa or popularly known as Kaivara Thatayya.He lived here during the last half of eighteenth century and first half of nineteenth century. Thatayya was a bilingual poet. The temple has very interesting architecture, simple and neat. There was a sense of peace and tranquility which lies above any religion…

After experiencing the highest level of peace we headed towards the “tapovana” a huge park of flora and fauna maintained by the Forest Dept. There was nothing much to see, but it made all justice for a lovely evening walk!

Our time plan was a superhit… we left on time after shopping the green fresh veggies!
I spent my time in solitude… thinking about all the wonderful moments tha
t past by…it was a day to remember… a date with nature….