Talakona, June 21-22, 2008




Thursday, July 10, 2008
1am Monday morning. Just came home from the Talakona trek. How was it?

Well, it was definitely different from all other treks we did so far.
Lots of water fun for the past two days

We started with 33 trekkers on Saturday morning 5am from Chennai with 4 cars and 1 rented Tempo Traveler. 3 members joined us in Tirupati - 1 from Bangalore and 2 from Vijaywada. Most of the group as usual joined their first trek in CTC and we also had 7 ladies joining this time. We followed our usual route, following NH5 and stopped at the Andhra border to get a permit for the Tempo Traveler (yellow board). At Tada we turned left towards Tirupathi. We took breakfast in Sri Kalahsti.

We reached the AP forest guest house around 12pm, just in time to take lunch. After this we started our trek to the Talakona falls, the highest waterfall in Andhra at 272feet. There was a small change of plan - instead of staying in the guest house we decided to spend the night on top of the hill from where the waterfalls originate. We reached the bottom of the falls after a 45 minute walk and nearly all trekkers were quick to jump in at the pool where the falls came down. As usual, we used a long rope to get also get the non-swimmers to the other side. The water was great - clear and slightly cool.

After the regular photo sessions and splashing in the water we proceeded climbing up along a path that brought us to the 2nd level of the falls. Here the water was coming down from around 40 meter vertically on a rock where we could sit and enjoy a second refreshing shower. No one was able to resist and joined the natural spa. The
falls was moving left and right according to the wind speed. It became late afternoon and we decided to proceed climbing up the hill along a path. This took us around 1 hour. At the hill top there was a shed where we spread our sleeping mats for the night. Two porters had also eached at that time with two large bags with lemon rice.

After this we went again to look for the river from where the waterfall originated. We climbed down again along a steeper trail towards a smaller valley and reached a beautiful river inside the jungle which we followed in the direction of the streaming water. This took us eventually to the edge of the mountain where the water fell down vertically. Meanwhile it had started raining and the rocks were very slippery so we stayed at a safe distance from the edge. It was also getting darker due to the evening and many dark clouds above us. We posed for a few snaps near the edge of the hill which offered a wonderfull view on the green valley below us through which we had trekked towards the Talakona falls.

We reached back at the camp just before dark. Everyone was quite exhausted and the lemon rice went down quickly. We spread all the mats together and after a male-female hindi singing competition we slept off. And then it started - heavy rains coming down. The shed protected us to some extent but it was open on all sides and some of us got wet. It was a rough night...



The next morning we got up around 6:30am and went down again to the river from where the Talakona falls originate. This time, we continued our trek upstream for some time till we reached a very beautiful scene in the middle of the jungle: a big circular waterpool of around 50m diameter surrounded on 180degrees by steep rocks and a second waterfall splashing down from around 20m height. A big rock near the front of the pool became another victim of an extensive CTC photo session with everyone posing in and up the water. A few swimmers swom to the other side of the pool and climbed up behind the waterfalls.

After spending quite some time in this scenic spot we backtracked our trail from this small river valley up the moutain in search for the origin of the 2nd falls (we wanted to see this spot from the top of the rock). We followed a jeep track for around 2 km till we noticed that we were deviating from the right direction. A wooden signboard indicated the name of two villages on the other side of the mountains. So we returned back and discovered another small trail down the valley were we reached our river again. We followed it downstream for some time to reach the top of our 2nd waterfall which was one of the most beautiful places I have seen - it reminded me of that scene in the movie 'The Beach" where Leonardo Decaprio jumped down from the hill on the hidden island down into a large water pool in the forest.


From the top one could see the circular water pool and its surrounding rock formations carved through 10-s of thousands of years of water erosion. Some of us sit on a rock beneath a third waterfall where the water was lashing down on our heads and backs giving us a wonderfull massage. God, this was heaven! We spend some time on the rocks taking in the beauty of our surroundings before we decided to head back to the camp where some of the group who got separated was waiting. When we reached the camp, some people told us that divya, sheethal and some others were gone looking for us.


We went back to find them and found them at the top of the Talakona waterfall where another extensive photo session took place. This was the same place we had visited the previous evening but this time - being clear daytime - the views were splendid. From the top we could see people down at the fall the smaller then the size of ants. Damm, this falls was scaringly high. Samyak, the only SLR participants kept shooting till his flash card got full.


As the time was approach 11am and we did not yet had our breakfast we went back to break up the camp and proceed back down the main mountain to the bottom of the waterfalls and from there to our forest guest hous were breakfast was waiting. After breakfast we decided to visit the Kalyani dam, one of the three nearby dams. As this was on the way back to Tirupati, we checked out from the guest house, packed our bags and drove back with the cars along a scenic rural road towards the main road NH205. We reached the top of the dam around 4:30pm. The
scene behind the dam was breathtaking - a huge clear water lake surrounded by hills on all sides.


After a stroll on the dam, we gave in (again) to the temptation of the clear water and drove with our cars a bit further around the lake. Some time later the road became too narrow and we proceeded on foot along a trail that brought us to the side of the lake surrounded by small rocks. It did not take long before most of the group was neck deep in the lake for yet another photo session. Some of us swam further inside this scenic lake - the feeling of this clean water around our body was amazing. It felt so good and our hair was so soft afterwards. Around 6:30pm we decided to head back home to Chennai where we reached around 11pm at Koyambedu.


The weekend was wonderfull with lots of waterfun and scenic views. The green hills that feed the Talakona falls and Kalyani dam are beautiful and we promised them that we would return soon for a more extensive trek through this wonderfull paradise.

Hmmmm.. 2am... time to take some rest now and start thinking about
next weekend...

Image Library:

Best Photos
Samyak
Vinod
Sudha
Gokul
Vinod
Mony
Gokul
Bala
Anand
Paneesh


Participants: Peter, Divya, Balaji, Ratnavel, Sheetal, sankaranarayanan, ram prasad, Rajesh KR, Gokul, Rahul, Samyak, Smitha, Sudha, Uma, Vinod, Ankur, Huzefa, gopal, Varun, Deepak, anand, Tarannum, Tabassum, Rounak, Subramony, Prasanna, Teja, nani, Deepak, Pradhamesh, Pramod, Balamurugan, chezian, Paneesh, Vignesh,
venkatesh ravi, Marcie




GPS Log
Trail in Google Earth


Experience by Deepauk:

It’s really tough for me to organize my thoughts and experiences during the last weekend. The hangover is so universal over my body and soul. To be honest I don’t remember, of course prior to this weekend’s experience, when I had last seen the beauty of sunrise. I was so stuck up in the mundane affairs of life that I really could not realize when I had started to roll like a wheel screw with so many nuts and bolts.


Well, than came Chennai trekkers for my rescue. I never new that there would be so much of treasure hidden in this trip.

I had to push myself when I got up in the morning to reach to Tidel Park as it was difficult for me to stop the momentum of the wheel. I was a in a little dilemma when I started in the morning. Then we all gathered at Tidel Park, all strangers but again, all adventurers. When I reached there I saw Peter at the top of the Scorpio, tying the entire luggage with his undying sprit and Rahul the “rough n tough” giving him a helping hand. This took away my entire dilemma & I started to sense a trekker inside me.


We started our journey sharp at 0520 Hrs, reached Talakona forest, had our delicious, hot & spicy, of course less spicy than Balajee’s humor, Andhara lunch. By now, I felt as if everybody had become trekkers, perhaps losing his/her individuality for the moment and better identifiable as a “Gang”.




I was a little hesitated to move into the first waterfall on our way to the camp. But than how could I resist myself from the Gang’s enthusiasm, the view of adventures of the Gang passing the pool of water fall by the rope, Peter’s cunning and cool style of inducing every reluctant guy to jump into the fun.




Then started the tougher, of course not toughest, part of our operation ie climbing the steeper terrain above the water fall. I saw Sudha “The Mummy” losing for a moment. I gave her boost by shouting some slogans and bypassed her to my way to the camp. I was filled with all the more enthusiasm when I saw the mummy with the same spirit at the camp. I was feeling as if the operation was giving me and perhaps everybody a power & teaching to win all our fears, to conquer over all our physical and mental limitations…..


The peak the surroundings were amazing. Lush greenery, beautiful mountains, deep valleys, cool wind, naughty monkeys, everything was so fulfilling. Ah! I was so close to the nature and so tired till the deepest part of my soul. When I closed my eyes I felt as if I would merge in the air.




Slowly the silence of the forest started to creep in. For the first time in my life I was inside a forest in the mid of night. The deadly silence along with the noise of silence, full moon sporting behind the clouds, and then the heavy rain banging on the shed of our camp all was so terrifying. I felt as if it was a “Harry Porter” movie. My blanket got wet which was not letting me sleep. But than this is adventure not a kid’s play……..! Its not cake walk all the time….Rough night made me all the more stronger.



In the morning our search for the mysterious source of the river gave me an amazing feeling of explorer. When Peter & the swimmers troop were playing deep into the water fall I regretted I did not know swimming. Alas, I could not reach the source of the river because our gang got divided while the search was on.




Then when we started to descend I was so emotional & for the first time I realized that the time of our departure was getting closer. But I have kept the memories inside myself. Certainly we would make thousands of such memories… Thanks to Chennai Trekkers…….!

Deepauk






2 comments:

Mohan on: May 18, 2009 at 1:51 PM said...

Hi,
Good Article. Based on this we went to Talakona y'day.

We couldn't find following locations :
01 :
http://bp0.blogger.com/_6Tc-w5p2VnA/SHUKZHg94WI/AAAAAAAANU4/7Q5Xdsh7r40/s1600-h/20+Picture+457-1.jpg

02:
http://bp0.blogger.com/_6Tc-w5p2VnA/SHUKZHg94WI/AAAAAAAANU4/7Q5Xdsh7r40/s1600-h/20+Picture+457-1.jpg

.

Would appreciate if you could post details off how to reach them.

Best Regards

Mohan.J

Tinku - Srinu on: September 2, 2009 at 2:24 AM said...

Very Good naration !

i spend there for 4 days !

 

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