Western Ghats, The Sahyadri; call it as you desire but one of the most iconic and historical mountain range of Indian Subcontinent, diverse in its biological flora and fauna running along the west coast f India, it is a mind boggling feat of nature and for nature lovers it offers a passage back in time to how nature is supposed to be in all her grandeur.
I have always yearned to travel and see the various gems that lie hidden in this massive mountain range which is heavily forested and hides a world within itself. Among the various jewels, one that draws me the most are Waterfalls. There are some which are famous and then there are some which are hidden, showcasing their beauty to few those who venture through forest glades and past the barriers that nature has erected in order to gaze in wonder at the beauty that lies out there.
This will be multi series sequel and would be documenting over a period of many months I guess, so here goes with the first part of it:-
Uttara Karnataka holds the key to many a hidden jewel and one among these is SATHODI FALLS. Formed in the Kallaramane Ghats near to the non-descript yet vital town of Yellapur, this 50 feet high fall eventually flows into the backwaters of the Kodasalli Dam formed on the Kali River.
The route to this place is motorable although in the monsoons a sedan needs careful navigation view there is no metaled road in the forest. So it was the onset of the peak monsoons when I ventured out here, the monsoons had peaked as I had reached Yellapur early in the morning while the town was waking up. After I took the diversion from the National Highway post the town limits, I was on my own as the metaled road finally gave way to a well-used country road. The sky was laden with monsoons clouds as I followed the path and after almost 11 kms came to the backwaters of the Kodasalli dam which lay silent in the morning hours, one could feel the Quality called Patience so omnipresent. Here was a huge expanse of water, utterly still and calm as though waiting for some pre-ordained destiny to occur. After spending some time here on the shores, with the sounds of the birds and the jungle for company I decided to move ahead and after 10 odd km came to the final stage till where the vehicle could go.
After parking here, I collected my photographic gear and followed a well-defined path that guides one towards the fall. The fall itself is hidden and can be heard from a distance but once it comes into view , is a glorious sight to see , the waters had still not risen to their full glory and still awaited the monsoon bonanza but event then I loved the place.
There were hardly any people here and after leaving the path, I entered into the water carefully and waded right up till the base of the fall. Readers to note that this is risky in case the falls are in their full glory as the flow of water will be substantial and there are hidden pools which might not be visible, for even in present state, I was waist deep in the waters as I waded carefully towards high ground, once out there I relaxed and set up my gear for some long exposure clicks and basically owing to my early arrival and venturing this ahead had the entire falls to myself. The falls has cut the limestone rocks and made interesting formations which are razor sharp to bare feet yet offer some great subjects.
This place is famous amongst the locals and hardly any traveler from other region ventures here, definitely worth a visit.