Sunday, February 14, 2010

Agasthyarkoodam Trip - Part IV

The water from the stream there was the tastiest I have ever drunk. And so cold even at midday. The Agasthya forests contain numerous medicinal herbs and plants that are not found elsewhere. And the water that comes trickling through the roots of these plants and filtered by nature is supposed to be medicinal and healthy. After drinking like 2 bottlefuls after trekking – I totally have to agree.

So after the refreshing dip at the Bona Falls we continued our journey – again through the dense forest till we re-joined the official trail. All through our slight detour we only saw one soul – a tribal guard. He was amazed to see us emerge from the dense clearing with no guide. Anyway he pointed us to right direction and we finally joined the others who had started before us. The last group that went before us were obviously going slowly and we were moving very quickly, which is why we could catch up with them even though we had taken a longer route.

Another exciting feature of an Agasthyaarkoodam trip is that you pass through all types of scenery – from dense forests with huge trees to grasslands peppered with bonsai trees to steep rocks. We pass all these to come to Athirumala, about 10kms below the summit, where we rest for the day. Since the next stage of the trekking is extremely steep and dangerous no one is allowed to proceed after dusk. However there are pilgrims who insist on going the same day itself but since we are devoid of any divine intentions we stop and rest for the day.

(To be continued...)


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