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Published: July 15th 2006
Waterfalls...amazing ways in which nature manifests its simplicity and marvel at the same time...
Well, what more can I ask for, eh! Given my lust
for travel and exploration, if I get an opportunity to pen down my experiences and have enthusiastic travel freaks read about them - my spirits would surely be lifted!
So, I would like to exploit this oppurtunity to the fullest and talk about my adventure in a place called Hogenakkal (also spelt as Hokenkal), which lies on the Karnataka - Tamil Nadu border. It is home to a number of magnificent waterfalls. Also, the song - 'Dil hai Chota sa'
from the famous hindi movie 'Roja'
was shot in it's serene
A brief account of the adventure :-
I was accompanied to Hogenakkal by three friends of mine - Taran, Rochana and Pallavi. The day before we left, I had made a mental note of the route to be taken by referring to a couple of travel websites.
We started our journey at 0700 hrs on two vehicles - my Yamaha and Rochana’s Activa. Driving to distant places on bike is a thrill in itself.
Hogenakkal is located at a distance of 180 kms from a place called Silk Board in Bangalore.
The 'Coracle' boat...
Better known as the 'Tokree Boat'...it offers an ambience of a lounge-bar on water!
We straight away hit the Hosur Road, which, according to NHAI
is better known as the NH-7
. The highway is amazing and it is a pleasure to drive on such smooth roads. At a place called Krishnagiri
, we took a diversion towards Dharmapuri
. Then after driving for a while, we entered a forest patch which was spread over 30 kms and ultimately ended in Hogenakkal.
On entering Hogenakkal, we were stopped by the cops, who, as usual, sensed an opportunity to earn some easy money. But we were smart enough and didn’t obilige them with a single paisa!
Even before the cops could make there move, guess who was there to welcome us! The boatman! He wooed us right from the very moment we entered Hogenakkal and followed us till the place where the boats were kept. He was soon accompanied by his rivals who were trying to steal the deal from him. Now, these folks are shrewd businessmen - one has to really exercise
one's negotiating skills
if he or she wants to get a good deal. We paid 600 bucks for 3 hrs of boating. I thought that we were robbed, but as it obviously turned
Green - Calm and Serene...
On our way back from Hogenakkal, we stopped to capture this calm and beautiful moment...
out, it was worth it.
The boat is called a 'Coracle'
and it is made out of bamboo sticks that are woven together. It is circular in shape and some prefer to call it a 'Tokree'
boat. Check out the snap. Don't I look cool ?!? Thinking of switching my profession, eh!
Our boatman - Bhupathi
- turned out to be quite an educated
person. He acted as a perfect guide telling us all about the place. The terrain was such that the boat could only go to a point, from where we had to get back on land and walk a bit to the other side in order to hit the water again. Bhupathi, meanwhile, carried the boat on his head. The amazing part is that, while on the water, one has to pay Rs. 10 to cross the border from KA to TN and vice-versa!
On the way, we could see kids on the top of the rocks and cliffs (approximately at a height of 30-40 feet) who were trying to attract our attention & show-off their diving skills
for a sum of Rs 5. I thought it was a bit risky to
Such magnificent sights make me feel humble in front of nature...
do that, but I soon gathered that it is a way of life in this part of the country, eh! And they enjoyed it too.
We reached a pseudo-island
after traveling in water for about 10 minutes. The sand was almost like the one found on beaches - light brown and very hot at that time of the day. After clicking a few snaps, our master photographer
aka 'Bhupathi' asked us to get on the boat quickly so that he could take us in the direction of the waterfalls.
After another 15 minutes or so, we reached a place which showcased almost 20 mini waterfalls. They looked splendid
. The current was pretty fast and the rocks underneath our feet were slippery too. We had to be very careful while splashing around and getting wet under the water.
I & Rochana ate fish which was prepared using the local recipe. It was delicious, but for the ‘kaantas’
! There were mobile boat shops
all around us, with the boatmen trying to sell food and souvenirs to the tourists. It was pretty fascinating to see them.
Then after a fairly long walk on the stretch of land, we made it to the other side which boasted of the big waterfalls. And believe me, they were simply amazing! Check out the pics and you will know what I mean! The way the water roars, dances and flirts
with the rocks makes me feel humble
. The currents of the river Cauvery are so very fast, that I didn't dare to go towards the edge of the cliff! Even before reaching the waterfall, we could see the water arise from the abyss in a spray like manner which appeared to be very exhilarating
After spending some time at the big waterfall, we 'rowed'
back to our starting point. And like a perfect farewell
, we clicked a snap with our much 'educated' and 'skilled' friend - Bhupathi! He even gave us his visiting card, eh!
All in all, it was a very refreshing
trip to Hogenakkal. We all felt really energized
at the end of the day inspite of travelling 400 kms! Hogenakkal is one of those places that is not known to many people. But take my word for it - it is a 'must watch'
for people who appreciate
the beauty of nature and love
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