Saturday, October 26, 2013

Drive to Shringeri and Sirimane waterfalls - Part 2 - The captivating Sirimane Waterfalls

Continued from part 1 here

Western ghats are beautiful places to visit all time around year. During monsoon season, they are paradise on earth while during sunny days they are best place to trek and relax for some time. It has got vast bio-diversity and waterfalls with pure aqua. That is the reason why UNESCO recognized Western Ghats as world heritage site along with Amazon rain forests. During our journey along Kuduremukh ghats we had glimpse of Tunga river at many places. Tunga river along with Bhadra and Netravati rivers, originate at Gangamoola near Kuduremukh. All three rivers are termed as sisters. Out of the three, Netravati rivers flows via Dharmasthala, Bantwal and finally meets Arabian sea at Mangalore. Unfortunately there has been stupid rampant effort to divert some portion of Netravati river towards east despite reports of  severe damage to Western ghats :-(. Tunga river flows towards HanumanGundi waterfalls then Shringeri and finally merges with Bhadra at Koodli near Shivamogga. At this place they flow as single river Tungabhadra and meet Bay of Bengal. Sirimane waterfalls is not as vast as HanumanGundi but equal in beauty though. The waterfall has source from one of the stream originating from Western ghats and plunges with absolute beauty. The stream water finally merges with Tunga river at some place nearby. I am not sure why is it called so, may be Sirimane is village name.

Sirimane waterfalls is 14kms from Shringeri town. One has to drive along narrow road through dense western ghats to reach waterfall site. You will enjoy the beautiful hillocks all along the path. As mentioned earlier, this visit was not planned. But as I glanced through the signboards near Shringeri, I felt like visiting the place. Even father was OK. From Shringeri, after 1km towards Karkala along NH-13, one can see clear signboard directing to Sirimane falls. 6kms from here, you will reach Kigga and from Kigga the roads are not good. Recent torrential rains have completely destroyed roads. Also they are very narrow and difficult for even two cars to negotiate. Also the curves are steep and forest is highly dense. If you are hiring a long bus, you may have to walk for 4kms since bus cannot negotiate further. 30 minutes drive from Shringeri, we reached Sirimane falls and heavy rains started pounding. We were really in middle of dense forest and could hear gushing water despite of heavy pouring rain! There is parking fee as well as entrance fee levied in waterfall site. Few steps down, we reached majestic waterfall site. It was plunging with thundering sound. Only difference was less height as compared to HanumanGundi falls. Also HanumanGundi falls is situated in middle of relatively dense forest as compared here. As always, I tasted the water :-). That is the first thing I do as I reach waterfall site. Despite the gushing water, one could easily take bath nearby due to manageable geography. Also it is wonderful experience having headbath beneath waterfall plunge ;-). At this velocity of torrent, it was not possible to have head-bath though!


The water distribution from top is not uniform here. The rightmost part had the powerful plunge while the leftmost was like minor stream. As I neared the powerful part of the plunge, the strong wind generated due to energetic plummet, started pushing me hard. It was difficult to manage since the rains were also heavy. My umbrella almost flew away and somehow held on to it ;-). Watch out for silent leeches :D. They can hold on to you at anytime. It had bit some tourists too! Since we were traveling to Malnad under heavy rains, I had carried Odomos to avoid leeches. Luckily, none of them bit me this time too even if I was wearing dhoti ;-). After enjoying pure natural magic, I went near viewpoint to have distant view of waterfall. I shot many milky ways too! Even mother enjoyed with me :-).



This picture was featured in incredible India g+ page. It is page where some unique pictures from India are shared among vast number of followers. This picture which was shared in g+ Landscape forum was shared in incredible India page where many people appreciated the picture. It is really honor for me to unknowingly feature this picture in incredible India page for second time. Hope you will also enjoy the milky way ;-).

When to visit:

If you want enjoy the glory, visit during peak monsoon season. If you feel like taking bath, visit around Oct-Nov timeframe. No buses available, you have to make your own arrangements. I believe you can even hire auto from Shringeri. Don't miss Kigga temple also. If you are driving, be watchful since roads are not so good after Kigga. Signboards to site are laid very clearly and no need to panic even if you feel like getting lost. Humans are feeble along the way due to dense forest. And finally do not miss to taste sweet water of Tunga river stream ;-). No food options available nearby waterfall site except for small churumuri shop :D.

Around 3:30PM, we headed back to Kaup. We enjoyed those delightful western ghats for one more time ;-). Also there was heavy rains at intermediate places. Due to downhilling, we reached our native early at 5:30PM. As we reached the sea-level, Sun welcomed us with bright rays :-). The rains in coast had completely receded by then. I also enjoyed the distant view of Kuduremukh ghats but did not take any snaps. Recent statistical reports suggest that some place along Kuduremukh ghats has surpassed Agumbe as highest raining place in south India. It has not been made official though ;-). Probably met department want to sample for few more years. Last time I did lament not visiting Sirimane falls and it has finally ended now :-). End of day, one more travel, one more waterfall and all anxiety eliminated. That's power of western ghats! We always regret not visiting some more places nearby and this time it was not different. We could not visit Horanaadu Annapoorneshwari temple as well as Kigga temple due to dearth of time. Nevertheless, it opens up one more opportunity to travel again :-).

A panorama and a HDR is documented here.

Two videos this time. One, monsoon drive along Kuduremukh ghats which is already here. One more from Sirimane waterfalls! Enjoy the raging waterfalls!

Timelapse was possible but no time :-(

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