Sunday, 8 June 2014

Drive to Devarayanadurga

During the week, my friend and I decided to drive out of town. Our destination was their farm and Devarayanadurga. On a beautiful Saturday, we began our journey from Bangalore drove via Dabbaspet to reach the farm, and later drove to Devarayanadurga, which is about 65 kilometers from Bangalore. The roads were good except in a few places. Yes, we saw birds; will post the list of birds later.

On this route, we stopped at Kamath for breakfast. There are several hotels and eatery joints on the entire stretch of Tumkur road. After a lazy breakfast, we headed straight to the farm. The farm was a soothing sight for a sore eye. Fruiting trees in plenty. Coconut and arcanut trees standing tall. A big buffalo shying away as we approached. Ferocious dogs barking at us! And a variety of birds merrily singing their songs. We drank tender coconut water, ate cherries, and smelt the freshly plucked mangoes, and chit-chatted. We clicked photos of birds. Yes, the greenery helps beat the accumulated stress (of city life)!

A shed of sorts
Ant nest, and fruits at farm
From the farm, we continued our journey towards Devarayanadurga. The traffic was manageable. Only word of caution is that honk wherever necessary; the vehicles can speed down the hilly roads. The forest looked dry; however, we heard chirping of a lot of birds. My friend said that a leopard and vultures were spotted near their farm. So, yes, the forest does have animals.

There are sign boards indicating the different tourist places. At the bottom of the hill is the Bhoganarasimha temple; at the top is the Yoganarasimha temple. People can either climb the stairs, or drive up to a point and then climb the last few steps. We chose the latter because the Sun was shining bright on our heads. The steps are well-laid. Vendors selling puja items, fruits, flowers, cool drinks, and other items welcome every one. Oh, there are plenty of monkeys trying to steal from people! Be careful. The view from the top of the hill is beautiful. On the opposite hills, one can see traveler bungalow or guest houses.

Views from hilltop
Yoganarasimha temple complex
From the temple, we headed towards Namada Chilume. There is a deer park and Karnataka Forest department nursery of medicinal plants. Quoting from Wikipedia -

Myth has it that Sri Rama on his way to Lanka halted here. As he did not find water anywhere around to wet the "Nama" (a kind of paste Hindus apply on their forehead), he shot an arrow into the ground, and a spring sprang and thus the name (Rama)-Namada chilume. The spring can be still seen, and there is a foot impression of Lord Sri Rama near that.

We lost track of time admiring the deer, and were pleasantly surprised to see the non-captive Gray/Hanuman Langurs (with their young ones). The fig trees with fruits definitely attract birds. We sighted many barbets and sunbirds; however, getting a good photo was a challenge. During weekends and holidays, this place has visitors. During the weekdays, I am sure that the place will seem lonely. Ensure not to wander off. Stay safe.

Namada Chilume and Deers
It was time for us to drive back to Bangalore. This day-trip made my soul happy; thanks to my friend!