Meandering around Wayanad

If you google for “Wayanad” and click images, it wouldn’t take long for you to long for a visit to this place, looking at awesome pics pulled by Google.  Dare me, and google it now :-).  Yes, this place is almost as good as it looks in the pictures you see on the google.   If the Kerala state pays little more attention to the needs of tourism, we wouldn’t really need to go as far as Australia or New Zealand searching for pristine locations.  We concluded our 48 hours (Phase 2 of our trip) in the Wayanad with lots of meandering around mountains, peaks, and valleys. Phase one updated can be seen here.  We drove around Lakkidi view point where there are 9 wild hairpin bend curves.  Only in India, you will find a chai point near a hair pen bend.   Yes, we did stop for the chai, which wasn’t too great though.  We drove to the rough terrain of Chembra Peak and did a partial trek.  We started little too late in the day and regretfully did not make it to the top of the peak.  Radhika and Aniketh did their own trek to Soochipara waterfalls where Aniketh shot some cool pics in slow shutter mode for that silky effect (Scroll down to see them).  We also did innovative rafting on the boat made of nothing but bamboo sticks (which was suggested by Muddy Boots), and took a stroll around pookat late. Do scroll to see some of the pics in the below blog, while we are now heading to Coorg (which is Final / Phase 3 of our trip)

Story on Bamboo Rafting: We had an opportunity to try out Bamboo Rafting, which is a light weight adventure for a duration of about an hour or two. I got the reference of this event while browsing ‘things to do’ on TripAdvisor and learned that it is arranged by fine folks @ Muddy Boots. It involved driving down to south Wayanad amidst plenty of greenery, tea estates, peaks & valleys, and walking down (actually getting boots muddy) grass lands to the venue. Our raft Chauffeur was Shahjahan, who helped us with life jacket, and got all three of us onto the raft. Each of us got an opportunity to raft the bamboo boat and it did require some effort. We enjoyed the nice stroll on the water but missed our younger one, who couldn’t join us. I captured the footage on GoPro both on the ground and first under the water. I realised that I never shot footage under the water, and instantly kept the GoPro under the water for about a minute, and pleasantly surprised with the footage I was able to capture. I have retained the nice sound of streaming water, which was captured by GoPro in surround sound. Check out the below video

Spotted these on the road, as soon we entered Kerala

Spotted these on the road, as soon we entered Kerala

Bamboo Rafting
Bamboo Rafting
Bamboo Rafting
Bamboo Rafting
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Love the reflection in the serene water
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With Shahjan, our Chauffeur for the Raft

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Car Park
Car Park for Bamboo Rafting

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PC: Revanth
Near Pookat Lake, shot by Revanth
Always ready for Meditation (now at Pookat Lake)
Always ready for Meditation (now at Pookat Lake)
Meaning Mountain Pass - Churam View Point
Meaning Mountain Pass – Churam View Point, from where you can see hair pin bends
9 Hair Pin Bends
9 Hair Pin Bends
Chai @ Lakkidi Pass. Only in India, you would find a chai point at hair pin bend
Chai @ Lakkidi Pass. Only in India, you would find a chai point at hair pin bend

Radhika and Aniketh went to Soochipara waterfalls in Wayanad, while Revanth and I went for a Chembra trek. I asked Aniketh to take Waterfall in Slow Shutter mode to get the silky effect.  Aniketh spent 30 minutes in front of the water (though he was unwell), figured out the settings on the camera, and shot these beautiful pics of waters fall on his SONY SLT (which I had retired last year) in Manual mode.  Thankfully they were shot in RAW format, hence it was easy to make few corrections in the light room

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Incomplete Trek for Chembra Peak:

Revanth and I attempted a trek to Chembra peak today.  It took an effort to reach to Chembra car drop point on not so well maintained road.  Once we reached the car park, we have learned that there is another 5-km ride to reach the Chembra peak base station.  We hired a jeep which charge INR 800 for round trip, as we were advised not to use our Innova on such a really bad road.  We went to the ticketing center (which was almost to be collapsed and dilapidated structure, and the person at the centre charged INR 750 for two of us together for trekking permit.  It was noon by that time we started the trek, and it was reasonably warm or close to being hot.  We walked for about 45 minutes to amidst tea plantation and thinking ‘trek is not so bad after all’.  After 45 minutes of walk, we saw the sign, ‘Trekk Path Staring” 🙂 and “OMG” was the words that came to our mind.  We trekked for about 30 minutes on the steep hill (and it felt as we trekked for an hour), and learned that we are still another 3 to 4 hours (based on our current pace) to complete the trek.  I was already gasping for the breath, however Revanth was doing pretty good.  Given the limited time available for the day and gut feeling on what it takes to make it to the peak, and need to get back to Radhika and Aniketh and head to Coorg, we called it a day.  Here are the few pics on what we saw on the way to peak

View from Chembra Peak Trek
View from Chembra Peak Trek
Not easy to get all 4 of us on a single frame
Not easy to get all 4 of us on a single frame
View from Chembra Peak Trek
View from Chembra Peak Trek

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Start of the treak
Start of the treak

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Ticketing Office for Trek
Ticketing Office for Trek

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Sometimes, its not easy to get all 4 of us in a single frame 🙂

A family that travels together stays together. Yes there will be hiccups given the generation gap, but at the end, you will come out wiser, with lots and lots of memories to cherish and look back.  I made it easier to cherish, with my blogs, photos, and videos 🙂

 

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