Another weekend, another trek with BTC :) This time to Siddarabetta, one among the various hills near Tumkur. But easily reachable via public transport. So, we mini-bus for us 20 trekkers. As usual, our meeting point was Shantala Silk house, opposite Terminal 3, Majestic. Most convenient to reach by Metro :P
After we were on our way, we had our introductions followed by a round of Dumb Charades. Some were guessed quick enough, some went on for a agonizingly long time. One was guessed even without acting :O In between, we stopped for breakfast and got lunch packed (Most of us had got fruits and snacks aplenty, some got food from home, so we packed about 10 to be on safer side). We still had time to pass after the game, so with music on, we danced and shouted about.
It was a hot day. And steps to climb initially. We took plenty of breaks and hydrated well before we could get used to terrain and conditions. Taking steps all the way up would be boring, so of course we took an alternate path.
We immediately liked this path. Steeper to climb than the steps but much better than monotonous steps. We were more exposed to Sun as well, but we took our breaks when needed under the comfort of trees.
With not much of a path to follow, sometimes we had to wade through bushes, getting scratched from their tiny needles all over our exposed parts of body. For the moment it was fun, but itches for a few days after :D There was a water pipe to refill our water bottles just before we had to wade through series of boulders.
We took our time and organizers - Vikram and Ameer co-ordinated to find a way. By sheer bad luck, we got split into 11 member on one side and remaining 9 another side (turned out to be right way to reach temple). Among the boulders formed like cave structures, one group took to left and we tried the one straight ahead. We thought we would just go around and meet on the other side. Not to be.
Luckily though, organizers got split too. Vikram leading from front was with other group and Ameer co-ordinating from trail end was with us. We were close to carved steps to our right, but we continued climbing on our alternate way. Sudesh had a moment of scare though - slipped on wet patch and escaped unharmed, thanks to bushes. I was dumbstruck watching it close by and moved after Ameer told me. Phew, hope next time I act faster.
At the temple, Ameer and Sandeep went to see if the other group were nearby. We had mobile signal, but were not able to connect with any of their numbers. While waiting, we had oranges and Electral to energize ourselves. Monkeys gave us a hard time.
Ameer and Sandeep came back with no sign of them, so we decided to move to peak (as per plan, hoping they would reach it either coming after us or some other way).
For a while, we skirted the cliffs with boulders nearby or in our way. Then it was among trees and bushes till the peak.
We were pleasantly surprised by the pretty large open spaces on the peak. Not smoothly continuous though and large portions weren't easily accessible due to height differences.
We took plenty of photos before settling down for lunch with beautiful view all around. Most of the packed lunches were with other group. But we had more than enough fruits and snacks to compensate.
All the while we kept trying to reach the other group. Soon we connected a few calls (which kept getting cut frequently) and got to know they were still stuck inside caves. We told them our position and said we'll wait for them to come.
The wait turned out to be too long though. After resting and masti, we started our way down. Short while later we finally met them coming up. Instead of going to peak, it was decided to go back. First though, we stopped for them to have their lunch. Some of our group had second helping too :P
The boulders and cliffs gave plenty of nice opportunities for clicking profile pics. After reaching the temple, we took the stairs all the way down. We were all pretty quick in descending. Some of us had cucumber with bhel-puri kinda masala mixing - yummy.
On the way back, we continued our music with dance for a while. Then about half of us kept on with singing whatever came to mind. Ashish led the way with plenty of odd ones.
At Dobbspet, we stopped for refreshments and feedback session. With long way to go yet, some took to sleeping and others passed time with individual discussions and group banters. The day ended with Bengaluru rains making a pleasant weather :)