10th April 2011
This beautiful hillock is about 20 km from the town of Ramanagara. Like many of the hills nearby, a Temple is on its top. Situated at the backdrop of a nice lake, this is a nice location for people looking for a half day adventure.
Subbu and I started quite early from our homes. Our plan was to complete the climb before the sun comes up. We had a stupendous breakfast at Kamath lokharuchi before proceeding further to Jalamangala. The road from Ramanagara was surprisingly smooth. There were mango trees all along the path. It was quite tempting for both of us to stop our car for a few minutes to grab a few of those mouth watering mangoes. (While returning back, we asked a villager and took couple of them!!)
We parked the car on the side of the road and took a path that went to the top of the hill. Initial few minutes were difficult for us as we were out of touch from trekking. The heavy breakfast at Kamath did not help the matters. The hill looks like a monolith from the road but there are enough shades and trees all along the route to relax. Except for a short stretch near the top, there is no rock climbing. The villagers have made a path in the crevice and provided directions. On the way, we found a huge cave with bee hives.
It just took us about 40 minutes to climb to the top. We had not seen anyone on the route and expected the place to be empty. But few people were in the Temple. We thought that they had come for worship. A closer look at them revealed that they were playing cards. Arrived on the previous day, they had partied in the night. The filth and the broken bottles were testimony for that. People don’t even spare the place of worship. They had run into shortage of cigarettes. Disappointment was visible when we told that we were non smokers.
There are few ponds on the top but all of them are covered by green moss. We spent about 45 minutes on the top before we started down. On the way, we found a villager and asked them how they allow such activities in the Temple. “It is a shame for the village. What would outsiders think about it?” was our question. He was visibly disturbed by that and promised to take care of that. “Come next time. You will not see such things” was his say.
Take Mysore road from Bengaluru. At Ramangara signal near the bus stand, take right. A “Y” junction is at a distance of 100mtrs. Take the left arm and proceed for 20 kms to reach Jalamangala. The roads are in good condition.