"Like all great travelers, I have seen more than I remember, and remember more than I have seen." - Benjamin Disraeli
I hear a sound, Click-Click, what’s that, I wonder. Oh again it’s the sound of the shutter, predominantly from those SLRs. This event has been all about waterfalls and photography, isn’t it? Yes, we started out for North Kanara falls trip organized by Bangalore ASCENDers on 10th and 11th July 2010. Sirsi and Yellapur towns in North kanara or Uttara Kannada district are surrounded by lush green forest and are popular for a large number of waterfalls. Unchalli, Shivgange , Vibhooti, Magod, Sathodi, Burude, Benne holle, Mattighatta, Waate halla, Muregaar, Mabgi and Jog falls are some of them. Also Yana is a famous tourist destination.
We nearly visited all type of waterfalls (cascade, cataract, chute, talus, screed). The tickets for the journey was booked in KSRTC Rajahamsa buses. we all met in Majestic and got into the Bus at 9:30 PM. I was sitting with a fellow traveler who travelled with me till Sagar. It was quite good initially when I spoke to him, but that guy wouldn’t let me to sleep at all, he had so much of verve that he even started singing songs to affirm he is a good singer. I was relieved by 12:30 PM after 3 hours of torment, had a prissy sleep in the bus. We reached Sirsi by 8:30 AM; supposed to be reached there by 6:30 though. You’re right, the bus and the driver, both were exasperating.
We freshened up in Sirsi and got into a cab which was waiting for us near the bus stand. We collected our home made parcel food for lunch from a place called “Poornima Bendeghaddhe”, arranged by our guide cum cab driver. Then we left to Sahasralinga, on the way we had an appetizing breakfast in Hotel Madhuvana. We had fun in cracking PJ’s while travelling to Sahasralinga. So, what’s PJ? poor Joke, pathetic joke, painful joke, prabhu’s joke (Prabhu-Fellow Trekker), the list goes on. Guide Ananth, I would call him the man with tolerance and agility. We had no problems what-so-ever with the cab and the cab driver, enjoyed every moment spent in the cab. We reached Sahasralinga here around a thousand lingas which are carved in the rocks on the river bank by 11:00 AM which is located around 15Kms from Sirsi. We had a dip in Sahasralinga, while taking a dip we were bitten from fishes and even from crabs, we also had an intro session after bathing and left to Sathodi falls. We stopped at the spectacular backwaters of Kodasalli Dam to have lunch. That’s the place I started hearing the shutter sound of camera’s, which is still whispering in my ears, coz we really don’t know how many images were clicked (Roughly around 20 ≥ Gb). The parceled lunch from Poornima Bendeghaddhe was lip smacking, hmmm, the Pulav and Curd rice was delectable. After the lunch and photo session we left to Sathodi Falls, and we reached it by 4:30 PM. We had to walk around 1 Km to reach the waterfall, throughout the walk there was a small stream to the left and huge drop-off to the right, oh I will remember that 1 Km stroll forever.
Then the Sathodi waterfall (Its about 15 meters tall), awe-inspiring, it’s a multi-cascading falls trying to block out the sounds of the world behind it. There were too many slippery rocks on the way towards the water falls base. Had a prolonged photo session and left to Magod. Took a good view from the top of uninterrupted Magod waterfall (The h eight of this water fall is around 650ft) which was bubbling and roaring, and posed for photographs. Then left to Jenukallu Gudda (Sunset View Point) and reached it within 20 minutes, had a squeamish view of the sunset, though we were not satisfied with the sunset the cycloramic exquisiteness of Jenukallu Gudda mountains was breathtaking, the mountains there extend to infinity. Once done with photography in Jenukallu Gudda, we had Rusk with Milk-Maid, not s ure who invented this recipe but it was yummy. Later at 9:30 PM reached Yellapur and finished dinner. Once done with the dinner, reached home-s tay by 11:00 PM and went for a small walk in the woods, we also laid down on the road, took some snaps and put out a campfire which only lasted for 15 minutes and went to sleep by 12:30 AM.
Next day on 11th July 2010, Rafi woke me up by 5:00 in the morning. We finished bathing and cleansing rituals and clicked few photos while the cab was on the way to pick us up. Got into the cab by 7:00AM and left to Yana, had breakfast in Sirsi on the way to Yana. We watched those fascinating rock formations in Yana and walked in between the rocks by taking some snaps. We were certainly disappointed with the commercialization, which is ruining that place. We left to Vhiboothi Falls by 11:00. On the way to Vhiboothi Falls, we witnessed another anonymous falls which was inaccessible with the descent of around 70 degrees and the slippery rocks. We reached Vhiboothi Falls by 11:45 by trekking around 1 Km, Vhiboothi Falls is a overhanging ledge falls which it around 60 feet height and comes down with the splashing waters that creates a steady pattern of endless rhythm. We could have trekked to top of the falls but there were only few who agreed for that, the plan was dropped.
We thought of visiting two more falls and left to Unchalli Falls. On the way to Unchalli Falls we had a lunch at 1:45PM which was okay. Most of us dozed off after having lunch, reached Unchalli Falls by 3:30. Trekked to Unchalli Falls view point which took around 15 Minutes. Unchalli Falls also known as Lushington Fall s roars louder and louder, you can clearly hear that thunderous sound at least 300 Meters away as you approach the falls. This falls also expels a spray of water (kind of haze) which comes due to its colossal preeminence. This water spray supports large vegetation around the falls by keeping it green year around. This makes Unchalli waterfall the most elegant, extravagant, exorbitant waterfalls of North Canara region. After watching the incredible exquisiteness of Unchalli, the plan was to trek down to the base of the falls, but the trek route had a steepness of almost 90 degrees and the rocks were slick due to the mist formed by falls. We incontrovertibly required a rope and an expert to guide us in that trek route. So, left back to Sirsi.
We decided to have fun in one of the streams we would get while travelling back to Sirsi. On the way back to Sirsi, we found a green snake on the Road, one of our friend Bagath (I would call him a Zoologist) caught the green snake and took some snaps with that gorgeous creature. Most of us including me touched the snake and actually held it in our hands for the first time (Who said that the snakes are vicious creatures?, in no way it can be considered vicious). We released the snake after a photo session (we all thank Bagath for that). While proceeding towards Sirsi, we came across a stream which was quiet and extensive; we stopped our Cab and had fun in that large stream.Then left to Sirsi, on the way to Sirsi, we had Mirchi Bajji, noodles and soup. Reached Sirsi by 8:15 PM and had dinner and left to Bangalore by 9:00 PM. Reached Bangalore by 7:00 in the morning and our trip ended there. This trek rather I call it a trip, was a fabulous experience. If you have read this blog till the end and watched the images as well. I think now you are staidly planning to get off to North Canara, right?
Sirsi can by reached by KSRTC or private buses. It do not have a railhead.
If one plans well and move fast can cover 5 waterfalls along with Yana and Jenukallu Gudda.
Carrying parceled food is an prudent option as one can save time.
Best time to visit: Just after monsoons.
Guide contact details: Anantesh – 9845817152- he is a localitie of Sirsi and can speak in Kannada and bit of Hindi.
Expenses incurred: Around 1500/head. (Includes transportation, local cab travel, food, home-stay, parking and entry charges)