Chasing the clouds

Location: Bangalore

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Neelamala -Wayanad

Office team outing was pending for a long..too many options discussed and too many constraints. Finally we concluded that 4 of us will be traveling in my car towards Wayanad. The team is of Nanje,Raghavendra,Devendra & myself..Its all started well from our office entrance with a tea break! [the first tea break in the start of a trip is customary and always special! ;-) ] The team was fully in enthu mood to taste the flavour of KL offerings..without being aware of whats waiting for us ahead.

Within 80kms on the mysore road, the car stopped and refused to turn on any more. The culprit was the timing belt.. a call to Praveen brought some hope back to the trip. In no time the CBZ came to the spot, delivered the spare and departed! ..bikes rocks after all!! The mechanic took his own time as he was learning the Fiat for the first time..good thing was that he was a dedicated learner spending more time in root cause analysis than just fixing the damn belt! :) Finally the car was up & back on the road.. only to stop within 15 kms..this time its puncture..i was rather caught up with an interesting mindset admiring M’s law. It was a dual task this fix the puncture as well as to fix the superstitious beliefs to give up the trip!

It was 11pm when we were back on the track..with a kind of thrilling mindset expecting the next breakdown without knowing when & where it would happen. For a change, Fiat ran smooth this time piercing the darkness of mysore plateau and it kept its vintage till the end of that trip..i must admit, that day's drive was one gem of an experience..driving in dark through the forest.. then smooth and foggy empty Kerala roads..then ripping through the cream twisties.. adding to that the classics collection from the last decade..the team was wide awake till we reached our stay! :)

The next day was spent trekking Nellamala & Meenmutti falls. Both are sitting opp facing each other with a valley in-between. The view of Meenmutti falls from Neelamala top was stunning. Thomas, friend & my usual guide over there was not available..and his cousin was taking us around. The trek was moderate and enjoyable walking through the slopes & lush green vegetation.

The next day we spent time around Lakkidi view point and Pookut late. The lunch was at the usual Jubilee hotel..Team had a nice hunt of Fish / Chicken and special meals in kerala style. After a heavy lunch, we dragged ourselves out of wayanad..supposed to be heading towards Banagalore..and there was one last min entry in our plan..GopalSwamyBetta that is! It turned out to be a nice & chill evening in the hill top..had a long chat session with the temple priest & keeper. While coming down we happened to come across an elephant herd..we stopped the car and they were so close to us with a small side wall being the boundary. We spent more than 30 mins admiring them and clicking around. Later it was an eventless drive till mysore and some eventful rip session in myr-blr 4 lane stretch zigzagging through the slow moving traffic! ;-)

Meenmutti Falls as seen from Neelamala


Meenmutti Falls

Pookot lake