(To read Day 1 triplog please click here)
25th August 2013
As always the plan was to start early had to make sure that I started early because I had to reach Bangalore by noon as I had my return flight to Mumbai in the evening. I was on the road by 7:00 A.M. Stopped at the only open restaurant to have Chai and some biscuits, next thing was to withdraw money to support me through the day.
Previous night I had inquired about the ‘touristic’ places around Madikeri and the hotel boy had given me a small pamphlet with the major points with distances from the hotel. The nearest one was Raja’a Seat, but I don’t know why I decided to skip it and headed to Abbi Falls. The road was a bit confusing at the start but thanks to the locals I soon was on the correct road. I came to a junction and I took the left road as someone had told me to take the left road when I came across a junction. However after a few hundred meters I was sure that this wasn’t the left turn that I needed to take. I had to retreat my steps once I hit a dead end. Soon enough I came across the Y junction where a left would take me to Abbi Falls and the right turn would take me to Maandalapatti. I headed to Abbi Falls.En route I stopped once for clicking pics of the smooth roads. I was in relaxed mode today as I didn’t have too many kms to cover till noon.
I noticed a couple of landslides on my way on my way. Upon reaching Abbi Falls parking, I couldn’t yet spot the falls, on inquiring I learnt that the waterfall was walking distance away from the parking. Now I was confused, what to do? I had expensive camera equipment and I hate walking with my riding gear. I decided against it but within seconds I changed my decision again and took all my camera gear and walked upto the waterfall. To be honest it was just another waterfall for me, maybe because of the short height, however I did a customary photo session and headed towards Maandalapatti.
The road to Maandalapatti was much more exciting and less crowded. On my way to Maandalapatti I could spot some plantations on either side of the roads, not sure what they were. I could find a few good spots to click pics.
It seemed this road was more prone to landslides, as I could see lots of landslides that had happened in the recent past and at some places it was a bit extreme where almost the entire road was blocked by a fallen tree. From a distance it looked like the end of the road, but on reaching near I noticed space enough for a motorcycle to get past it. I stopped to click some pics, and soon I noticed a couple of bikers heading towards it and on seeing the uprooted tree they slowed down thinking that the road was blocked. I waved my hand at them indicating that there was room enough for motorcycles to pass, they reciprocated by waving back at me.
Once I moved a few kms ahead, it started drizzling and within the next km it started getting foggy. Now I was sure what I would get to see in Maandalapatti. I still kept riding ahead and on reaching Maandalapatti I could majorly see only three things, fog, fog and fog. I was disappointed but consoled myself by saying that I would come here again when there is no fog. However I liked the fact that the fog gave a mystic feel to the entire place.
By the time I got done with the elongated photo session it was already 9:20 A.M, so decided to head back to Madikeri and head to Bangalore. On reaching Madikeri, I tanked up here and started for Mysore. Well the Madikeri- Mysore road yet again made me feel how lucky these Bangalore based guys are. They have such good scenic roads so near to them. The curves on the roads made sure that I put in all my skills to get past them at decent speeds. I saw a barricade on my way which indicated for a diversion from the mail route, I slowed down and then suddenly I saw a car guy zoom past the barricade, I happily followed him as I was enjoying the road to the core. I didn’t stop much for pics as I had another place to visit before Mysore. KD and a lot of other people had suggested me to visit the Golden Temple, a Buddhist monastery, around 30-40 Kms from Madikeri. After riding for around 20-25 kms I kept asking people about the monastery and they efficiently guided me to the correct location.
On my way I was stopped by some people who were collecting donations for building a temple, I told them that I would donate some money on my way back, as it would be too tiring now to open the gloves and take the wallet out of the bag. They happily agreed and moved ahead.
11:00A.M.: I entered the monastery it seemed like I have come to a completely different world. The air was so calm and pristine. The entire place was radiating peace. I inquired if I could click pics and then started to capture anything and everything in my camera. The innocent kids, the immaculately clean surroundings, the well mannered people, the monks smiling at me looking at my knee guards and commenting that they are meant for cricket :o, my shoes getting lost, I can go on and on about it but I allow the pics to do rest of the talking.
I had decided that I would go there, quickly click pics and move out within 15-20 min as unfortunately I was running late again. However it took me more than an hour to get out of the monastery. Now I was seriously worried as I was running behind schedule and decided not to stop anywhere apart from lunch break and other necessary breaks.
I kept riding at decent speeds and looking out for a dhabba for lunch. One thing that I had noticed all through my ride was that wherever there was a hotel, there would be a guy holding a placard of “HOTEL” and standing on the edge of the road, something which is not seen in Maharashtra. I finally stopped at Hunsur for quick lunch. Mysore was something around 40 Kms from here. While having Lunch I called up KD and updated him about my location. The only fear that I had was the city traffic of Mysore. However as I approached the city limits I saw a bypass for Bangalore. Hell yeah I was so happy to see it. It was an empty stretch of 6 laned highways. Albeit there were a few diversions, I could rip the bike as much as I wished. Soon I got connected with the Mysore-Bangalore Highway and kept riding towards Bangalore. I was sure that I would get lots of traffic within Bangalore so the only place where I could make up time was this highway. The entire journey was uneventful. I had to stop once to take off the raincoat which I had to put on due to the overcast skies. Soon I was feeling very thirsty tahnks to the enormous amount of sweating caused by the raincoat and hence stopped at KFC and got myself a bottle of water. I almost drank 900ml of water, ii guess that tells you how thirsty I was.
The rest of the story is mundane stuff:
Getting lost in a new city | Asking for directions | Getting lost again | Getting mindfucked | getting traffucked | Stopping at every 2 kms to confirm the directions | finally reaching the destination
The ride, the journey ended with a promise, a promise to be back with much more time in hand, when I would not rush between spots but would have ample time to spend at each place. Next time I would come back with enough time so that I don’t get irritated when I take a wrong turn but enjoy it all the more.
That being said like all rides I loved this one too. I did around 860 kms in 1.5 days and was back on time for my flight. The fact that makes this ride even more special is that it was an unexpected ride and it fortunately so many things came together to make this possible. My Boss agreeing to my wish, KD and Rishab helping me with everything, I guess I forgot to mention it before, but Phanikar also helped me a lot with the route. I was able to cover all the places I wanted to and that thought made me even more happier. Well I guess I couldn’t have asked for more.
Now I am back to Mumbai waiting for the time when I can jump on the saddle and ride to distant lands… 🙂