A Lazy Drive Up The Seventy Hairpin Road...


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We have a habit of browsing the google map looking for green patches, (mountains/forests), to explore. This particular road on a green patch near Namakkal caught our attention and was on our list of places to drive to. The name of the road, Hairpin Road, was intriguing. The road has 70 official hairpin bends to reach the top of the hills called Kolli Hills. and as one continues on the top there are many more hairpin bends that are not recorded.

The Kolli Hills are part of the Eastern Ghats. The mountains are relatively free from commercial tourism and still retain their natural beauty.

The hairpin road...

70.jpg

Up to around the 25th hairpin bend, the road is great. After that the road is quite bad - pot holes and patches. Some of the hairpin bends are very narrow and do not have space for 2 vehicles to take the turn. Once you are on the top of the hill some roads, (to the boat house and garden), are just great while the route to the falls is quite bad.

(To be cont...)
 
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Re: A lazy drive up the seventy hairpin road... (Kolli Hills)

@HR

Great!!! you had been to Kolli Malai. Its a beautiful place and we had a days visit an year back. That time the roads were good all the way to the lake.

Did you go to the water falls stepping down so many steps? That was too tiring.

And the developmental work was going on in the botanical garden; Is it completed now?

@amit1km

Kolli hills is about 275 kms from Bangalore and if you start early morning, you can come back by night. And not much accommodation facilities were there except some Nambiraj Resorts or something, any way HR will be able to update the current situation.
 
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Didn't know about this place.
How far it is from Bangalore and how is the road condition.
Most of the route is through the NH - 4 lane. After Salem, somewhere before Namakkal, you need to get off the highway and cut across to kolli hills. The SHs are also good to ok.


@HR

Great!!! you had been to Kolli Malai. Its a beautiful place and we had a days visit an year back. That time the roads were good all the way to the lake.
The ghat road half way up to Kolli hills is real good. Then the road has a lot of patches and some potholes. Once you reach the top, the road is great again all the way up to the boathouse/lake. But the road to the big falls - AKASA GANGAI, and Masilla falls were quite bad.

Did you go to the water falls stepping down so many steps? That was too tiring.
That is AKASA GANGAI. We skipped that falls for the same reason. We went to the other falls - Masilla Falls.

And the developmental work was going on in the botanical garden; Is it completed now?
The first day we went at 4 pm and were told that they close at 4. They finally opened at 10:30 the next day. There was just one guy managing the park. The whole place was littered with leaves. Practically no maintenance.

And not much accommodation facilities were there except some Nambiraj Resorts or something, any way HR will be able to update the current situation.
[lol]It is actually Nallathambi resorts. We stayed there. Location is good. But not maintained neatly. The rooms had a murky smell. The food was always late.



Lush green forest...

kollihills 01.jpg

kollihills 02.jpg

kollihills 03.jpg

kollihills 04.jpg


View as we climb up...

kollihills 05.jpg


28/70...

kollihills 06.jpg


The road narrows down...

kollihills 07.jpg

kollihills 08.jpg


More views...

kollihills 09.jpg

kollihills 10.jpg

kollihills 11.jpg


A bored Monkey...

kollihills 12.jpg


Some of the 70 hairpin bends...

kollihills 13.jpg
 
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70 hair pins ! Oh my god ! That should have been a wonderful adventurous trip.

Waiting for the detailed log & pics
 
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@ HR

Great pictures. I never seen a monkey opened its mouth sooooo widely, looks scary. Thanks for correcting the resorts name, and I think that's the only one there.

Its very pathetic that they are not maintaining the Botanical garden well.

After stepping down so much, the view of the falls was not so great; and had to see it at a distance.

With your permission, I am posting some pictures taken from there. Hope you don't mind.
 

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OMG... Yet another beautiful travelogue.

Yet another lazy drive[lol], how do you manage to drive lazily. Just joking.

Waiting for updates of some fantastic pictures of wild life.

Looking at so many curves, i am really interested in your experience of driving on this stretch.

How was the traffic on this road.

Do buses ply on this route?

@AR Ram sir: You are a master of these stretches. Thanks for those selected pictures.
 
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Thread Starter #9
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70 hair pins ! Oh my god ! That should have been a wonderful adventurous trip.

Waiting for the detailed log & pics
Totally around 180 hairpin bends negotiated for the full trip - 3 days.


wow..the road look really scenic. share more detail about the place.
Sure, I will do my best...


@ HR

Great pictures. I never seen a monkey opened its mouth sooooo widely, looks scary. Thanks for correcting the resorts name, and I think that's the only one there.
You Are welcome. Now there are a few lodges and another resort called the Kolli resort. They are a bit costly. I read some good reviews about Nallathambi resort in Trip Adviser.

Its very pathetic that they are not maintaining the Botanical garden well.
In contrast, the Nature Park at Yelagiri is very well maintained.


After stepping down so much, the view of the falls was not so great; and had to see it at a distance.
There was not much water in Masilla falls. I am not a fan of getting drenched under a falls. But my wife enjoyed the falls. We were there alone at the falls for around 20 minutes after which a large family turned up. They said that they had already gone to the big falls and somehow managed to climb back up.

With your permission, I am posting some pictures taken from there. Hope you don't mind.
Thanks for posting the beautiful pictures of the lake and the falls. If you have more please do post.
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After our BR Hills drive we were planning on another trip, but had not finalized on any destination. We had Masinagudi and Satyamangalam in our mind. Then while browsing on the net, I found out one particular guy saying that Kollihills was also a place for birding. So contacted the resort and transferred an advance to their account and booked a room for Friday and Saturday nights.

Wednesday afternoon, I got news that my friend's father passed away (@Chennai) and the funeral was on Thursday. So we left for Chennai Thursday morning and then left for Kolli Hills Friday morning from Chennai.

We started from Chennai at around 5 am and had breakfast the new Saravana Bhavan just after Krishnagiri on the highway towards Salem. Good option for Veg.

We used the Google navigation that took us close to Namakkal and then branched off left to Kolli hills. We passed through some small village roads and at the foothill of the Kolli Hills we spotted some birds and stopped to click some pictures. It was pretty hot, so didn't spend time to track the birds and continued on to our destination.

We lost GPS signals many times during the climb. We reached our resort at around 12:30 pm and ordered food that was delivered at 2 pm. We inquired the guys there about birds and they said that the only birds there are Crows and Mynas.

We rested for some time and left for the botanical garden and the lake at around 3:30 pm.

When we reached the Garden, it was closed. So we continued down the road to the lake. We spend some time walking around there and had some Tea and some snacks at the parking lot.

By the time we reached the resort it was dark. We ordered our dinner and just walked around the resort waiting for the dinner.

The climate was good. pleasant, not very cold.


Chestnut headed Bee-eater...
@ the foothills

Chestnut headed Bee-eater kollihills 02.jpg


Siberian/Asian Stonechat...?@ the foothills

Siberian_Asian Stonechat 01.jpg

Siberian_Asian Stonechat 02.jpg


Purple-rumped sunbird... @ the foothills

purple-rumped sunbird kollihills 01.jpg


Black Drongo...
@ the foothills

drango kollihills 01.jpg

drango kollihills 02.jpg


Butterfly...
@ the foothills

butterfly kollihills 12.jpg


The road to the lake...

kollihills 15.jpg

kollihills 18.jpg


The walkway at the Lake/Park...

kollihills 19.jpg

kollihills 22.jpg

kollihills 23.jpg

kollihills 25.jpg


A nice tree sans leaves...

kollihills 20.jpg


The Lake....

kollihills 21.jpg

kollihills 24.jpg

[to be cont.]
 
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Thread Starter #10
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OMG... Yet another beautiful travelogue.
Thanks mukeshus!

Yet another lazy drive, how do you manage to drive lazily. Just joking.
[:D] If I were to drive to Goa, it wouldn't be a lazy drive... as I have a destination to reach before sundown. But a drive to BR hills, Nagarhole, etc are lazy drives for me as I have no time limit and the drive/route becomes a part of the vacation. I have no agenda or itinerary to follow and just follow my heart.

Looking at so many curves, i am really interested in your experience of driving on this stretch.

How was the traffic on this road.

Do buses ply on this route?
I too thought this might be a different experience. But I found it was just like driving any other ghat road. Only thing that caught our attention was the greenery.

We climbed up on Friday and there was hardly any traffic. While coming down on Sunday there were a few cars, a bus, a lorry and lots of bikers climbing up.
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The next morning I got up around 6 am and was ready to go for a walk. Then my wife reminded me that what the resort guys had told us... only Crows and Mynas... Anyway I decided to look around the resort for some flowers. My wife said she will join me later.


The sun was already up and I found this butterfly on a leaf...




and the flowers that were blooming...

flower kollihills 02.jpg

flower kollihills 01.jpg

flower kollihills 03.jpg

flower kollihills 04.jpg

flower kollihills 05.jpg

flower kollihills 06.jpg

flower kollihills 07.jpg

flower kollihills 08.jpg

flower kollihills 09.jpg

flower kollihills 10.jpg

flower kollihills 11.jpg

flower kollihills 12.jpg

flower kollihills 13.jpg

flower kollihills 14.jpg

flower kollihills 15.jpg

flower kollihills 16.jpg

flower kollihills 17.jpg

flower kollihills 18.jpg

flower kollihills 19.jpg

flower kollihills 20.jpg

flower kollihills 21.jpg

flower kollihills 22.jpg

flower kollihills 23.jpg


My wife joined me later and we stepped out on the road for a small walk.

We had hardly taken a few steps from the resort and three red birds flew across the road and perched high on top of a tree.

Scarlet Minivet...

red bird kollikills 01.jpg

red bird kollikills 02.jpg

red bird kollikills 04.jpg

[to be cont...]
 
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Wonderful TL again[clap]

So, this time you started your trip from Chennai.

All the pics are wonderful[clap], Waiting for more pics and let us know the interesting places in Koli hills[:)]

BTW,How about Manza's Behavior on the abandon area?
 
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@HR

Always something unique in your travelogue; the pictures speak more than the words.

I don't know what to admire, the photographs or the photography?[cheers]
 
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