02 October 2006

Mullayangiri Trek

Last weekend I had been for a trek to Bababudangiri and Mullayangiri. The trek conducted by Arun (parisarapremi) of Rambling Holiday Maker (RHM). We left Bangalore on saturday(30th sept) night and came back on Monday(2nd Oct) evening.

For me this was a trek after a gap of 4 months. I was frustated bcz my new camera(S2 IS) was not getting used comprehensively for many days. Till last weekend there were many probable plans for trip/trek (one was with my BE classmates.). No one took the initiative, ultimately no plan could materialise.

There was a twist in the tale. After keeping 'very very busy' status in gtalk for 2 months suddenly Ande(Naveen) got enthu from somewhere for a trek. Since we were only two, we decided to join an adventure club for a trek, and hence we got on board with Arun's plan. The group was of seven ppl myself, Ande, Arun, Dean, Shusruth, Srinidhi and Pavan. The advantage of going thru an adventure club is that one can be relieved from headache of convincing and getting people on board, but the thrill of planning won't be there :(

Dean, Srinidhi, Arun, Ande, Shusruth,
Shande and Pavan (photographer)

We left Bangalore at 11.30 pm by KSRTC Rajamhamsa to Chickmaglur and reached there at 5.30 am. We decided to have breakfast at Nandini Hotel in bus stand. The most sought after breakfast foot item Idly was not ready and he had opt for chow-chow bath, and it turned out to be horrible.

As per plan we had to take '7 am' bus to Bababundangiri, but the departure got delayed because of Ayudha Pooja. The bus was decorated like a bride. Event hough driver of that bus was a Muslim, the pooja was performed in a usual way with Lemon and Kumbalkai. After all formalities the bus departed at 8.30 am. The uphill journey was picturesque, but I dozed almost entire journey. Ande used to frequently wake me up when there was some breathtaking scene to see outside.

Myself in front of bus to BBgiri

We reached Bababudangiri at 10 am. The place was brimming with people in khaki uniform, may be avoid communal violence. On the way to BBgiri also there were many temporary checkpoints. From BBGiri Manakyadhare is 4km. The route to waterfalls was very slippery. My woodlands shoes almost gave up 4-5 times.

Neelakurinji in SuperMacro mode

One of the significance of this trek was Neelakurinji. The blooms once in a blue moon, 12 years to be precise. On the way to waterfalls we came across lots of Neelakurinjis. The vegetation of the region was dominated by blue color (instead of usual green color). I experimented with my new camera by capturing Neelakurinjis in various modes from supermacro mode to landscape mode.

Model Ande amidst Neelakurinji

We reached Manakyadhare around 11 am. The falls was not so graceful., disappointing to be precise. But our disappointed was annulled by nice view of valley downhill. From the falls we took a jeep back to BBgiri as we had catch 11.30 am bus to Sarpadari.

Manakyadhare falls

At BBgiri we had bun and bhajji at a chai shop opposite to dargah entrance. The 11.30am bus was delayed as the driver waited for bahrah savari (group of 12 people) and finally the bus left around 12:30 pm. We got down from the bus at Sarpadhari entrance around 1.30 pm, from there we had to climb 8 km to reach Mullayangiri peak. It was time for lunch. chappaties and gojju which Arun had brought quenched our hunger. after having lunch we continued our ascent. the altimeter reading was 4860.

The ascent was steep but the path was not slippery. we didn't felt tired so much, thanks to overcast condition. On the way we came across flowers other than Neelakuranji. Our first milestone was a Nandi Statue under a tree . We halted at this place for a while and shot some photographs. Further ascent took us to a second milestone - a cave, just 50 mts below the peak, inside which there was a shivalinga. We thought of exploring it further, but gave up after Arun warned us that there might be snakes inside.

Mullayangiri Peak

At 4:45 pm we were atop Mullyangiri peak. On the peak there is a Mulleswara(shiva) temple. It was nice feeling that we were on highest point of Karnataka. The wind was blowing like anything, visibility was not more than 5 meters. Our night stay was planned at bhattara mane. Nice dinner was served at the same place. There was a cat in their house which got celebrity attention from people who were visiting the temple.

Cat at bhattara mane

Next day morning I got up at 6.30 am. when I opened my eyes I saw Ande smiling at me as though he d achieved something great. Then he told me he got up at 5.00 am and completed his morning activities :). After finishing breakfast and morning activities we left the place around 8.15 am. The altimeter reading at the peak was 6180.

Sand Boa

Arun took us thru a different route while going downhill. we had to catch bus at Seethalyamatha(4 km from the peak). while going down temple steps we found a struggling snake (sand boa). Arun and Dean made sure that it's moved to a safer place.

By the time we reached Seethalyamatha the bus had already left. then we had to walk 9 km more to Kaimara. There was no disappointment in the group, instead we had more enthu to trek. From seethalyamatha a dog accompanied us till Kaimara. It helped us in showing the route, a part of the route included a shortcut thru a coffee estate. 3 km before Kaimara we relaxed in an open field and had chappaties which were left over from previous day's reserves.

At 12:15 pm we reached Kaimara. From there we got a local bus to chickmaglur and reached bus stand around 1 pm. As we soon we got down we got 'Suvarna Karnataka Sarige' to Bangalore. The journey was very nice. Myself and Ande discussed about many stuffs. Pavan, who was sitting in front us had a horrible time being next to a promiscuous female (as described by Ande). Lot of things happened and it turned out to be free entertainment for us.

Finally, at 7 pm we were back in Bangalore. Thanks to Arun and Dean for conducting nice and wonderful trek. In entire trek I never felt like the trek conducted by an adventure club. It was nice beginning for the current trekking season. Looking forward to more treks in this season with more people on board (esp naresh panda).

Snaps are shared at Mullayangiri Picasa Album.

The more snaps of this trek are uploaded to Kodak Gallery. click here to see the same.

Comments are welcome.

Trek Route:

[Image Source]


  1. Anonymous10:12 AM

    Sandeep, u did a grt job man, nanu kannada blog baryoke help agatte! :)

  2. Neelakurinji in news.
    check this link of CNN-IBN.

    12-year wait for flowery splendour

  3. nice blog... can i also join trekking grp?

  4. Anonymous8:57 AM

    nice blog. u forgot to invite me.

  5. Do v hav to take prior permission to stay at bhattas place? Any contact details?

  6. prior permission is not mandatory, but will be a necessity if you are going in a big group.

    The contact number is 9448116289. ask for bhatru! muLLayanagiri bhatru antha ne keLi.

  7. Great Review!
    Will it be alright to visit Mullayangiri in the mont of May? How hot would it be?
    Which are the other places to visit / trek in Malnad region in the month of May? Coz I have never dared to venture out in peak Summer.

  8. @sumanth:
    thanks for comments.
    Generally it's not advisable visit Mullayangiri in summer. Firstly greenery will be very less and in daytime it will be very hot. The situation is same for all regions in Malnad.. May be you can give a try after 2-3 spells of pre-monsoon rain.

  9. Anonymous12:38 PM

    akshay: sir can i visit mullayangiri in july??

  10. @akshay: it's not recommended to visit in July .. wait till October :)

  11. Anonymous5:44 PM

    Nice blog you seem to be avid trekker. It may of help if you take help of locals; so that you can cmoe to know more about the place and also experince local culture and cuisine. Many locals have homestays and are very helpful; this would also create some income for them. You can find more on this link.