April 8, 2017
New day and a new destination, this was the first two day journey on a summer. The plan was to visit Gundal Dam, Dhondeling on Day 1 (8th April) and to take the streets of Mysore that evening and the second day to visit Chamundeswari temple, Ranganathitu Bird Sanctury, KSR Dam and Brindavan Garden. With over 320+ km to be covered on the day, started early in the morning right around 04:30 so that Gundal Dam can be reached before the sun starts to play a major role.
05:00 Needed take Nice road to reach kanakapura from where I ascend towards kollegal. The climate was moderate neither too cold nor hot, making it easy for driving. It was around 05:30 while reaching kanakapura, shops were opened with steam of hot coffee and tea passing over, took a stop at a shop for a hot cup of tea.
06:00 Stared towards kollegal.
09:30 Gundal dam was 17 KM away, just to be cautious checked for the route in google maps, and followed the suggested route, the tarmac was not that good, numerous potholes, and the road ended after few kilometres taking to the off road. It was better to drive through the damaged road. It was a 10 KM drive on the muddy and rock paved narrow path, and there were no sign of dam nearby, Google tricked again. The drive was adventurous and challenging too, finally to see the words appearing from the midst of trees one after the other M-A-D L-A-D-N-U-G. Entire stretch of the dam could be seen from the starting point and there was a way leading to the top of the Dam. The first view of Gundal was amazing, water body surrounded by beautiful serene. [When I reached the dam, the first view was amazing, water body surrounded by beautiful serene.] And indeed the water was less, there was an extended stretch from where the water source could be seen.
Moved to the other end which was the starting point where the marking of the water level and a temple that marked the significance of Gundal. There was a steep stairs, and saw two people getting down, had a word with them and learn there’s an officer quarters and you no need to walk there’s a way which will also take you. I went there and the view was spectacular, the entire dam was visible from the top. To summarise from left, mountains, then the water source, then the pavements holding the water and the outflow canal, to the other end farms and village. Wow what else to expect, mind-blowing.
11:30 Started from Gundal Dam. This time took the correct path, there were corn farms and the crops were uprooted.
Temperature at its peak. Towards Dhondeling, the first 20 KM was hectic, no tress no shades and no shops too. I could see the tarmac fuming in the hot sun. The moment on reaching MM Hills road thing drastically changed, the climate turned moderate, trees surrounding on both sides and curved roads, good for a rider. After 20 KM to the right there was an arch written in Tibet, understood I have reached the destination, moved further, it was colonised, tibetian settlement that was established in 1974. The place was well maintained and it really took me off, I felt as if I belonged to that region. The structure of the building, the culture, the temple, it was like really being in Tibet.
14:00 Started to Mysore. With frequent breaks for lunch, snacks to keep myself hydrated. 17:30 Reached Mysore.
April 9, 2017
05:00 Since I have already been to Mysore Palace during Oct 2016 (Coorg trip) I decided to skip it. Plan for the day, Chamundeswari temple, visit Ranganathitu bird sanctuary, KSR and Brindavan garden and return to Bangalore.
Early morning ride to Chamundeswari Temple. The city was silent, morning walkers, cyclists, joggers, free from pollution, like being in hometown.
06:00 At Chamundeswari Temple
Had a couple of hours rest before next exploration. 14:00 Reached ranganathitu bird sanctuary at the banks of the Kaveri river, surprised to see the place maintained neat and clean, one will feel like walking through the wildness. There was a row boat, where the guide will take to a ride across the river. Worth visiting the sanctuary. Must visit for bird lovers.
Best Time to Visit: November to February
Asian bill stork and black headed ibis were the birds spotted, it was informed by the guide that during the months of January and February about 30 species of birds can be spotted among which great stone plover and river tern nest during those months. And if you’re lucky enough even the crocodile can be spotted.
15:30 Started to KSR Dam and Brindavan garden. By 16:30 reached Brindavan garden, spent an hour at the garden.
17:45 Started to Bangalore. 150 KM drive, as always as it used to be, the return journey is quite tiring. Need to go through the Sugar city Srirangapatna – Toy city Chanapatna – Silk city Ramangara. The drive from srirangapatna to ramanagara is always busy during the weekends, need to be cautious on each and every move.
20:30 Finally after 550+ KM of journey reached Bangalore, with the pleasure of visiting and exploring the Tibetan settlement and the Capital city.