Friday, August 12, 2005

kalya caves

Last weekend was bliss. This blog-let has been posted bit late, as I was unable to find time to blog. We had been to a rocky place called Kalya caves situated near Magdi. A very interesting place indeed.

Rock climbing; cave exploration or a relaxing swim in the clean blue pond, packaged beautifully in the thick rocky hills, offering offbeat adventure for a perfect weekend getaway. For trekking and rock climbing enthusiasts scouting for some daring daylight adventure, the 10-acre (approx) rocky retreat at Kalya caves near Magadi town could be an ideal place.

We were unable to leave at the decided time. We were late by almost 6Hrs. Initially I was frustrated to an extent where in I had almost decided to drop out. But believe me; this was one among my best experiences. The journey was eventful and the road is excellent winding between hills and farms. The weather was excellent and added more colors to the Sylvain setting.

Since we were using our motorcycles to reach there the sense of presence with nature was overwhelming. That road whizzing by five inches below your foot is the real thing, the same stuff you walk on, it's right there, so blurred you can't focus on it, yet you can put your foot down and touch it anytime, and the whole thing, the whole experience, is never removed from immediate consciousness. Getting there is tricky since most of the locals don’t know about Kalya caves. After reaching Magdi you will have to go still further and take a right turn. Follow the winding path across the lake, which is towards the left side. Your base camp will be the foot of the hill that is just beside the lake. We parked our vehicles there & had our lunch. It is better to carry food, as there are no hotels on the way.

The accent was fun since its precariously laid-out multi pitch climb. We came across few temples, which were closed. I’ve heard that there are cave painting inside the temple. We climbed between a small gap of two giant rocks, which was exceptionally dark compared to the surroundings, and we could see a streak of light coming from the other end of the path. Also we had to crawl below bushes and trees to reach the top.

On the way we came across a gap between two rocks that resembled a cave. We had to crawl in and it was surprisingly very cool compared to the surroundings. We spent some time resting on our back, as the space was very less that we couldn’t even sit. The best part is you will be laying inside the two rocks, which is 400ft above ground level over looking the horizon. You could listen to bird’s chirping and the sound of wind brushing the rocks. We lay there for quite some time listening to nature and slapstick comedy Uma Shankar was making.

When we reached the top of the hills I saw the best sunset I had seen and directly opposite to the sun we could see a rainbow. It was like a description from a children’s storybook. All in all the place is worth visiting.

History of Kalya Caves as told by Paawana Poonacha/TNN

Kalya rocky hill abounds in caves, two cave temples, a placid lake and a good number of wells. According to locals, Kalya was known to be a centre of learning for the Jains, Buddhists, Vaishnavas and Veerashaivas. The place was earlier known as Kalavaripattana, which is said to have inspired Telugu poet Vemana to write several of his famous poems. Telugu inscriptions on the main Kalya temple prove this school of thought. There is also a deep well at the base of the rocky hill, which never dries up even during the most severe drought, say locals. Paving the way to the top are two routes - one to the Kali Devi temple and the other to Kalleshwara Math. Ascending the rugged path to reach the hilltop is another exciting adventure. Huge monolithic rocks dot the bushy hill. Some have even spotted bears and mongoose deep inside. A gigantic 20-metre boulder - with its base occupying very little space in comparison to its height and girth - makes a spellbinding spectacle on the hilltop. The Kalleshwara Matha is a large complex of various temples dedicated to Ishwara, Nandi and Parvathi. Other than the cave temples there are many modern temples. The Kalleshwara Matha has a small court yard and a vast cave under a rock shelter. This cave is large and is called the Guru Matha or the teacher's abode. It is here that the main deity or Kalleshwara is installed in the form of a Linga. The Kali Devi temple comprises 108 images of various gods and demigods. The intricate sculptures and objects here are catchy. A stone dolmen exists atop a steep rock behind the Kali Devi temple. The getaway is incomplete without plunging into the clear waters of the pond situated opposite the hillock. Trekkers often descend down the lake to rejuvenate themselves with a good swim here.

Distance: 56 km from Bangalore, Located near Magadi Town.
How to get there: Buses are available only till Magadi town. Private vehicle recommended to cover another 3 km to reach the caves.
Food: Best to carry.
Best time to visit: Monsoon.


pravinism said...

Historically-the state is rich with glorified places second to none
Ecologically-one wonders how the state is endowed with such natural beauty
Culturally-i can probably write a bible on this!..
Considering that we were just 50KMS away from Bangalore the landscape was totally different and Exquisite!
Truly an inspirational place as you have rightly mentioned..

Sahasi said...

Hey man,
Saw your blog and I find the pictures very obnoxious.
First be sensitive towards history and heritage monuments.
Did you know that the dolmen you and your friends have climbed up and posed for photos enshrined a medium sized exquisitely carved Nandi statue? The statue has fallen off the rock because of vandals like you who have no sense or respect for our history, culture or heritage and are absolutely insensitive.
I am the first person to encourage all of you to visit and explore places like Kalya in fact I know at least 150 such places within 100 km from B'lore. But... but... I hate it when I see people like you spoiling whatever is left of our history by treating it so insensitively.
Next time you and your friends visit any place be more sensitive and treat our historical remains and heritage with respect.

Sahasi said...

One more thing I forgot add in my last post. It was me who first wrote about Kalya in Deccan Herald, many many months before that woman from TOI decided to write about it. I regret having written about it after seeing your pictures.

Chandan said...

@ Sahasi

Thanks for pointing out my mistake. You are right there, We should not hav had climbed the Dolmen. I was so exited being on top that I never thought, what we were doing was wrong. Also we were unaware of the fact that the dolmen we were standing housed a Nandi. I'm sorry about that. I greatly respect our culture and heritage and will see to it that I wont do the same mistake again.

Meanwhile I went thru ur blogs and must say I was bowled.As a matter of fact I'm addicted. Eagerly waiting for ur future posts and adventures. Hope U'll soon visit all the countries u always wanted to vist. Meanwhile keep making waves, It has an effect.

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