Valparai - Day 2
We had coffee at 6:30 am, breakfast at 7:45 and left for Sholayar dam. The route to sholayar dam was very scenic. So we stopped in many places en route to sink in the unspoiled natural beauty.
Sholayar dam is the second highest dam in Asia and is around 20 odd kms from Valparai.
From there we left for Athirapilly Falls which is around 70 kms through dense forest. This forest is infested with Elephants, Leopards, Sloth Bear, Bison, Lion tailed Monkeys, wild squirrels and wild Mongoose. The road through the forest was really very bad. But some of the views were really out of this world. Too bad, it was raining on and off, so I could not capture most of the wonderful scenes which were one of its kind.
In some places, we just stopped the car at the edge of the mountain and rolled down the window and were seeing them. I was thinking that on the return trip, we can get out and take pictures.
After around 50 odd kms down the forest we reached a place called Vazhachal we reached this place around 1:45 pm and had lunch in a small place. There is also a boating place nearby. But it was closed as they were expecting the dam to be opened any time. Vazhachal also has a waterfall worth seeing.
There is also a place where you can get into the river. We left for Athirapilly falls which is around 8 kms down the road.
On the way there was a beautiful falls called Charpa waterfalls which is on the road side.
We went to Athirapilly falls spend some time there.
We have to go down a rocky path all the way down if we want to take a bath. We didn’t go down as it was getting late.
We started back around 4:45 pm and passed Vazhachal and all was well till around 5 pm. Then the hell broke loose and it started raining heavily by then we had reached the dense forest range and it was pitch dark. Another strange phenomena here was that in spite of the heavy rains there was a thick fog/mist and the visibility was near zero. Now if I use the high beam I see only a white sheet in front of the car and when I turn off the head lights and use the fog lamp, I realized that fog lights in Manza is only a decorative sales pitch and serves no purpose. So used the low beam at the lowest setting and was driving through highly dense forest on a really bad ghat road that was really not there anymore, hidden due to the water logging, dense fog and heavy rain. Imagine driving 50 odd kms in your first and second gear hoping not to go off the road and fall into the deep ravine on one side. My wife was sitting on the edge of her seat with her head glued to the windshield. It was one hell of a scary drive. Due to the rain the wild animals were not on the road. We reached the forest checkpost at around 8:45 pm.
Reached Misty Creak around 9:30 pm and the folks there had our dinner ready and there ended the 2nd day