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Published: December 30th 2013
Tea estates on the way while travelling by Bus
This is the mountain that you see in the left side when you travel from Mettupalayam to Coonoor, also called as Hullikal Drug. The peak of this mountain has the ruins of the old fort used by Tipu Sultan (called as Droog fort) during the 16th century. It has an altitude of over 1900 metres and full of tea estates like Glendale and Nonsuch.
I wanted to go trekking here for a long time, and yesterday I finally went there.. The trek was a wonderful experience and the scenery was marvellous.. The climb was steep and very difficult but it was finally rewarding as it gave me an unforgettable experience...
Through these pictures I will take you through the same journey I went through and show you everything that I saw.. I had called my friends to accompany me and no one was ready to take such a physically demanding trek in an isolated area like this especially during winter. I went on my own and joined a group of college students from Tirupur who had come for trekking as well. I met them after getting off the bus that came from Coonoor which dropped us until Droog bus
stop, which is close to the Nonsuch tea estate.
I started from Coimbatore early in the morning at 6 AM and reached Coonoor by 8:30 AM. There are only few buses to Droog and Bakkasuran malai (also spelt as Pakkasuran malai) and so I had planned to take the bus that leaves at 9:15 AM from Coonoor to Droog. Droog is just one stop before Bakasuran malai, which is the last stop that you can reach by bus if you want to trek this place.
I was very eager to watch the scenery on the way. The bus passed through Katteri Junction and then crossed the bridge above the Katteri river. It is also possible to trek from Law falls that is on the way to Mettupalayam to this mountain's view point and the Droog fort. But taking the bus is a lot quicker and easier though the trek from Law falls must be more rewarding than this one.
After crossing the Hullikal village, the bus stopped right before the Nonsuch tea estate for a break. I got off the bus to take some quick photographs as it gave an amazing view of the Coonoor and the
mountains. The Nonsuch tea estate also has a retreat where one can stay (Rs.3000 per couple during off season and Rs.3500 per couple during the season time). If you stay there, you can go trekking from the estate at a cost of Rs.500 per person and their website says that they take you to various other places in addition to the Droog Fort.
The last stop was the Droog bus stop after which one had to walk nearly 4-5 kilometres, the last of which is a steep uphill climb through the jungle for at least 1 kilometre. There is a couple of small shops and some small houses near this bus stop. Not knowing where to go, I made friends with a group of college students from Tirupur who had also come for the same trek.
As we started walking from the bus stop, we can see the view point in Bakasuran Malai, far away on the top of a hill that is covered by clouds. We crossed the Bakasuran Malai bus stop, started walking amidst the tea plantations and then started climbing uphill after a long walk of over an hour. It was very steep, and had
a few steps that take you through the middle of jungle. There are a lot of bisons in the area and so it is advised not to go alone to this place.
After the hardest part, we finally reached the top of the hill where there is a view point that has a few steps to climb. You can sit and relax there and enjoy the view. When we went there it was covered by mist. If it is a clear day, then you can get amazing views of Mettupalayam, Coimbatore, Kothogiri and many more.. From the view point we still climbed further to reach another place full of rocks. We saw a ruined stonewall near the viewpoint which I believe is the ruined Droog fort used as an outpost by Tipu Sultan during the 16th century.
After passing the time enjoying the view and taking pictures, we headed downhill and walked through the village near the Bakasuran malai bus stop. Through tea plantations we reached another view point where there is a huge cell phone network tower. You can see this tower when you travel by Mettupalayam to Coonoor ghat road.This offers some wonderful views as well
and unfortunately we can't see anything due to the thick mist that had covered the valley below.
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