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Antyodaya Express: The best a common man can get. - Vikas Kumar

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Blog Entry# 823009
Posted: Aug 08 2013 (10:33)

109 Responses
Last Response: Sep 06 2013 (14:19)
Aug 08 2013 (10:33)   17311/MGR Chennai Central - SSS Hubballi SF Express (PT) | DDS/Dudh Sagar (1 PFs)
Narayanan~   2476 blog posts
Entry# 823009            Tags   Past Edits
Part 1 :
Part 1 : /blog/post/823009
Part 2 : /blog/post/823009/2
Part 3 : /blog/post/823009/21
4 : /blog/post/823009/38
Part 5 : /blog/post/823009/46
Part 6 : /blog/post/823009/69
Part 7 : /blog/post/823009/78
Part 8 Concluding Part : /blog/post/823009/86
A trip report to the Mecca of RF's
The Preparation :
Started January 2013 onwards
This has been a trip which I wanted to do for a very long time and for some very known reasons, I was never able to do this at all for almost 5 years. This year come what may, this trip will happen and that is how I prepared myself. This also turned out to be a nice excuse to get all the things that I wanted for a long time. Well you will know that this is an overkill if you see my list below
1. Nice Swiss Champ Knife with 32 functions. Is it really needed ?
2. Super Fenix Flashlight with 650 lumens output (It lit an entire 15 x 12 room like a fresh and new tubelight). Is this really needed ?
In addition to these, I got high end rainwear, footwear, backpack and a whole lot of things which in reality is not an absolute necessity, but well make hay while the sun shines.
Aug 1 2013 :
Got my salary a day ago, but the excitement apparently does not seem to stem from that fact. 24 hrs to start for my long awaited trip, lots of undecided loose ends. We will stay at DDS, but where ? no idea. No idea if we will trek from CLR to DDS. No idea if we will stay at DDS. No idea if we will get a lift to Kulem. Oh no.. forget trek, shall we get down at DDS instead of CLR. Lots of questions, no answers. Well we decided to hell with all, lets all just go home and pack and get ready. It was a hectic day and lots of stuff to buy. We needed food for 2 days and after lots of deliberation, decided that 1 day stock should be enough. Your sub conscious always tells you .. "Arrey Bhai.. Just in case.." and you always sub consciously listen to the sub conscious and ended up getting food that would last a family for an entire week, some of which are still at home !!.
2 hrs of shopping and 1 hr of planning, I ended up with a list like this. Clothes, Cosmetics, SLR, Point and shoot, Charger for SLR, Charger for P&S, Cell phone and charger, Extra batteries for SLR and P&S, extra SD cards, Rain Jacket, Rain trousers, Ankle shoes, regular shoes / sandal, blanket, sleeping bag, medicines & first aid, flashlight, swiss knife, loads of food for 2 days, cooking utensil and well what not. Packed them all and found that I would need one more person to carry it for me. So off goes a lot of stuff and somehow managed to pack them all nicely into a single backpack. What really amuses me is that we pack so perfectly and once you start taking out things from your backpack, you find no place to put them back in. Somebody needs a lesson on free energy here ;)
It is 10PM now and all set. I want to sleep. I am desperate to sleep and in the excitement I did sleep around 4 am, when my body could take no more. Still those unanswered questions remained unanswered. Some wild instinct told me it will all fall in place. With that in mind, my body slowly took over my brain and dozed me off to a much needed rest in preparation for an exciting 2 days. Stay tuned for more
To be continued ...
End of Part 1.
Part 1 : /blog/post/823009
Part 2 : /blog/post/823009/2
Part 3 : /blog/post/823009/21
Part 4 : /blog/post/823009/38
Part 5 : /blog/post/823009/46
Part 6 : /blog/post/823009/69
Part 7 : /blog/post/823009/78
Part 8 Concluding Part : /blog/post/823009/86

8 Public Posts - Thu Aug 08, 2013

6 Public Posts - Fri Aug 09, 2013

3 Public Posts - Sat Aug 10, 2013

3 Public Posts - Sun Aug 11, 2013

25 Public Posts - Mon Aug 12, 2013

32 Public Posts - Tue Aug 13, 2013

Aug 14 2013 (09:55)
Narayanan~   2476 blog posts
Re# 823009-78               Past Edits
Part 7 :
Part 1 : /blog/post/823009
Part 2 : /blog/post/823009/2
Part 3 : /blog/post/823009/21
4 : /blog/post/823009/38
Part 5 : /blog/post/823009/46
Part 6 : /blog/post/823009/69
Part 7 : /blog/post/823009/78
Part 8 Concluding Part : /blog/post/823009/86
Aug 4 2013 : Early morning
Sleeping in the forest was a first time experience for me. The night was absolutely silent except for frequent bouts of heavy to very heavy rainfall, however the huge canopy of trees ensured that the ground had not become extremely soggy as they had absorbed a whole lot of the rains.This is going to be a very hectic day and hence we decided to act quickly. Quick rounds of freshening up and changing to appropriate clothes and we were ready by around 7:30 for the final trek of the trip. The trek will be to a place called Surla waterfalls from where the water actually flows down to the streams where we had our bath the previous evening.
This trek was much more difficult than we had expected. We walked along the streams with a steep ascent. There were more than 4-5 occasions where we had to cross the stream to ensure we were on the right path. Crossing the streams were much riskier than we had thought. The water flow was very high and the uneven surface at the bottom ensured that we had to tread very very careful lest being washed away. Fortunately the water was crystal clear and we were able to judge the depth slowly and steadily. The standout crossing was one stream where we had to actually climb a branch and crawl across it to the other end. An adventure worth the risk, but very slow considering the fact that only 2 of us were able to cross at one time or else the branch would break.
Almost an hour of trek and 4 kms later, a few of us felt that we had actually missed the trail and decided to turn back to the base camp. The remaining decided that we would carry on for another 15 minutes and will turn back if we do not reach the peak. All I could say was those who turned back were just plain unlucky for 2 reasons. The first being, we reached the falls in about 5 minutes and second, they missed a sight which was absolutely phenomenal. The falls was nothing in comparison with Dudhsagar, but the surroundings, flow (Which was quite strong) and the mere fact that was absolutely not a soul in sight was a reason in itself that this was indeed special.
The only regret was that there were very very few cameras on board for this trek as we were sure of getting drenched head to foot. I have managed to salvage a few snaps from my colleagues and in the process of sorting them and editing them. Will upload them next week in this same blog for your viewing pleasure.
About half an hour of stay at the falls, numerous leechbites and half a mind to stay back for another week, we turned back to our base camp. The return was swift and we were back in about 40-50 mins. It is around 11:00 AM now and the Jeep is supposed to pick us up by 1 PM to drop us back at Kulem. So off we go, quickly pack the tents, sleeping bags and collect the trash, but there is one more thing left to do. Yes, you guessed it right, another 60 mins of pure bliss in the stream in the rains. Another refreshing bath and we were all ready by 12:30 to get back to Kulem. By now this area has become a tourist spot and considering the fact that it was a Sunday, there was a small crowd who had come to enjoy the streams and a visit to templ close by. While, the previous nights bathing experience in the stream was absolutely private, it was not all the secluded and private this morning. But who cares, we had a great time again nevertheless.
Being a tourist spot, we treated ourselves to steaming hot chai and vada pav. A visit to a lovely quaint and small temple inside the forest and we were all ready for the pickup for on our way back. 1 PM was the pickup time, give or take about 15-20 mins. No sign of the Jeeps till 1:30. Well, nothing to worry, Kulem is just about 20-30 mins by Jeep and our train is at 4:20 PM. It is 2:00 PM now and no sight of the Jeeps. We started cursing ourselves that we should have given those folks only about 25% of the fare instead of 50%. We started discussing alternate plans of reaching Kulem. While we would have loved to stay back for another day, it was not all that appealing considering that we have to be at work the next day. 2:30 PM now and still no sign of the Jeeps. Oh my god, we would now have to skip lunch which we decided to treat ourselves at Kulem. We were getting hungry and the Vada pavs seems to have been fully digested.
2:45.. No sign of Jeep. Panic sets in. Plans discussed. Extreme measures brainstormed.
Just so you know the Climax, We indeed boarded Goa express back to Bangalore, but the final scenes have not yet been shot.
To be concluded ...
End of Part 7.
Part 1 : /blog/post/823009
Part 2 : /blog/post/823009/2
Part 3 : /blog/post/823009/21
Part 4 : /blog/post/823009/38
Part 5 : /blog/post/823009/46
Part 6 : /blog/post/823009/69
Part 7 : /blog/post/823009/78
Part 8 Concluding Part : /blog/post/823009/86

25 Public Posts - Wed Aug 14, 2013

3 Public Posts - Mon Aug 19, 2013

1 Public Posts - Tue Aug 20, 2013

2 Public Posts - Fri Sep 06, 2013

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