13 brave trekkers from CTC completed a 47km trek through the Sri Venkateswara (hills around Tirumala) national park this weekend. We started from Kukkaladoddi nearby Mamanduru and trekked along a gradual ascending mountain stream (green trail in map below) towards the Papanivasam dam nearby Tirumala.
We obtained forest permission and were accompanied by a local forest gard who showed us a small trail along our earlier planned route. We discovered two unique locations - one was the most beautifull and clear water pool ever discovered by CTC in any previous trek so far - simply amazing - greenish, deep and fairly large, crystal clear and cold, refreshing pool within the wide mostly dry river.
The second was a splendid 300m long, 200m high, 10m wide narrow gorge, cup deeply into the surrounding mountains by a stream. We had to cross a deep pool to enter this narrow gorge which had many jacuzzi-style pools and a beautiful waterfall near the end.
Amazing piece of rock formation.
Never seen this anywhere else in my life.
The gorge of Tada is nothing compared to this. Definitely worth visiting again and easily accessible with not much of a climb.
Trail in Google map
Towards late afternoon we started climbing up via a narrow path along the valley which was slightly more steep and quickly took us high above the river and valley floor. We had to trek around 30 minutes through darkness to finally reach the dam. We took a bus to cover the 9km distance to Tirumala where we enjoyed a hot dinner before returning back into the forest to spend the night in a temple.
The next morning we followed a deserted jeep trail winding down the hills, very slowly descending into the surrounding valley. Views were enchanting - we passed through large, open high grass fields, never seen before on earlier treks. The long grass had a golden glow in the afternoon sun. After some time we left the jeep track and trekked through the forest, grass and bushes to discover two more wonderful waterfalls/pools along the trail. The water was so clear and cool that we enjoyed long breaks in these scenic spots.
After Venkatagiri/1 and Venkatagiri/2, this is the third trek in the Sri Venkateswara national park. This mountain range which is much larger then the Nagalapuram range holds so much beauty and hidden teasures that we will soon be visiting again. Enjoy the photos which will be send out soon and ask yourself - "Why did I not join this wonderful trek?"
Write-up by Peter
Participants: Peter Van Geit, Divya, Vinodha Jeyanthilal, Rama Mohan Reddy, Vinod D Varghese, Vetri, Madhu Hanumantha, Madhu friend, Mathan kumar, Naresh Kumar KN, Krithinarayanan G, Baranidaran.D, B.Karthikeyan, Amal, Sreekumar R