Trip To Muthathi, Karnataka
Right after a three month IT project, I was in desperate need of a break. But a day's off was all that was sanctioned to me. So I decide...
The Journey Begins:
So I applied for leave on a Friday and went around hunting for tents. I got a couple of igloo tents on rent for 500 INR per day. Then I called up my pals and started gearing up for the trip. The GPS systems were on, the angling rod was packed, tons of snacks stocked up and a few light clothes were thrown inside the car. Needless to say we also carried some bedsheets for cushioning the tent floor. At 2 AM in the morning, we were excited like little puppies as the gear shifted inside the car. Hurray! Finally we were leaving the maddening crowd of the city and going to some distant land.
As the dawn began to break, we came to a halt on the Mysore Highway. The car meter read 90 kilometers. To our left was a board that read Sathnoor. According to our GPS, Muthathi village was down the Sathnoor road on the left. The car was steered accordingly. After about fifteen minutes, we entered some sort of a jungle. I felt goose bumps and we kept driving through the jungle. Suddenly out of nowhere a fox crossed the road. Even before I could get my camera out, it vanished into the wilderness. And then we were greeted by a host of deer. I could not fathom the fact that such wild life was roaming freely around this place.
Right On The Banks Of Kaveri River:
It was almost morning and we stopped by a small village. On asking, we came to know that this was Muthathi. There was a government sanctioned area for picnics and festivities. But I did not want to be amid people. So we kept driving farther down. Suddenly the river Kaveri was within our line of sight. We reached a clearing in the forest and decided to camp there – right beside the river. There was a temple on the other side of the clearing but no humans were in view. So this was it. We pitched out the tents right there.
Fishing, Cooking & Dining Amid Nature:
It was time to start cooking and so we went to the village to get some supplies. Everything right from vessels to knives, live chicken, salt, onions, tomatoes were available at an amazingly cheap price. We stocked up and came back to our camp site. One of my friends went fishing and caught some fish. The IT guys turned into professional cooks and began to prepare lunch.
The whole scenario was so mesmerizing. People who were till yesterday trapped inside plush office cubicles are now working like skilled primitives, miles away from the concrete jungle. I was sitting beside the river taking in the beauty of this simple place. After a couple of hours, the food was ready. There was nothing plastic about the whole affair. After a yummy meal, it was time to rest. We spread a bed sheet on tree branches which acted like a canopy and lied down under the tree. It was so peaceful.
I don't know how long I had been asleep and woke up when I felt some one throwing stones at me. I opened my eyes to see a monkey right on the top of the tree. My first reaction was to scream with fright. But then all of us burst out laughing. The evening was spent talking and chopping vegetables for the night.
The Night In The Forest:
With nightfall, the entire place emanated an eerie feeling. The sounds of monkeys and birds had died down. The silence was mind numbing. But in spite of it, there was a certain charm about the darkness in the forest. It was a full moon night and there was no dearth of light from the gorgeous natural heavenly bulb. We began to cook dinner under the moonlight.
After dinner, which needless to say was a sumptuous affair, we lied down under the starry night. It was an inexplicable experience, watching the stars without the halogen glow of the city lights. The day had been quite hectic and one by one all of us began to retire inside the tents.
Enjoying The Nature:
The morning greeted me with the sound of splashing in the water. I came out of the tent to see my friends swimming in the river. Without much thought I also dived in. I have never had so much fun in a swimming pool. This was a real thing. After hours of playing in the water, we were famished. We ate whatever was leftover from last night and satiated our tummies.
A few people from the temple came to us with an invitation to have lunch with them. We were surprised at their hospitality. We sat down at the temple courtyard and ate a simple lunch of rice and fish curry.
One of the elderly men said that they do not have visitors in this area. People just go only to the government approved area. This place is quite dangerous at night time as wild animals are on the rounds. Sometimes elephants go berserk and end up trampling people on their way. It is also not surprising to find crocodiles in the water. While hearing the tales, I felt shivers run down my spine and I thanked my stars for our safe night in the wild animal infested area. Though it felt dangerous after knowing the facts, we vouch that we had one of the best times ever and an unforgettable experience in the lap of nature in Muthathi Forest.
End Of The Journey:
Soon the wrapping up chore began. Once everything was packed inside the car, we were ready to leave this gorgeous river bank. Nevertheless we were refreshed and rejuvenated. Living close to the nature away from the hush hush of our daily life is a blessing. I think everyone should experience it at least once. It is definitely one of the mind blowing experience I ever had which I will cherish forever.
Contributed By: Kriti Mazumdar