Thekday was calling loud and clear on the Ugadi weekend. I reached Kumily , which is the town nearest to Thekady by bus from Bangalore on the morning of 28th March. It is at the Tamil Nadu / Kerala border and very close to Kodaikanal and Munnar. The plan was for the old Reflections (a collegiate magazine team of ours during Engg college days) to meet and have a look around. Sujith, Rahul and Thomas ettan apart from me were the participants for this trip. Sujith had booked an Inspection Bungalow (IB) at Kumily , which is where the stay for the next 2 days had been planned for. Kumily being just 4 kms away from Thekady, this was the perfect place to halt.
The very title here is an indication of what this post is going to be about. Yes it was my first ever bike trip. Another enduring, animated, serene and blissful experience to the wish list.60..65..70..engines stroking 3000 rpm...the bikes roaring on the dark roads;zooming past the wide paths me, Shreyas and Anuj set off on our bike trip to Wayanad. Dinner on the way on Mysore road at Kamat's and a night halt at Hotel Mayura in Srirangapatana , just enough to accommodate three of us in a room but at 450 bucks was worth, considering the time for which we had to halt. We freshned up in the morning, a cup of tea and we started off at 6 am to Wayanad , Via Nanjangud , Gundulpet, Bandipur. It took us no less than 3 hours to reach Wayanad.
After another long gap we got an opportunity, in the form of a 4 day Christmas holiday, to go on an outing. It was late by the time we started planning and getting accommodation was getting difficult. After evaluating different options, we closed in on to either Coonoor or Kudremukh. We got a booking in a small hotel in Coonoor. But Kudremukh was more tempting as we had read quite a bit about it and it appeared more beautiful and pristine. Kudremukh or "Kudere Mukha"literaly means "Horse Face". It gets this name from the highest peak in that region which resembles the face of a horse. It belongs to the Western Ghats mountain ranges of India and has 600 sq. km. of protected forests. There was a large open pit iron ore mine by KIOCL ( Kudremukh Iron Ore Company Ltd.) which has ceased operations now owing to environmental pressures.
Day 1:We took the Rajhamsa from Bangalore to Hampi. This is a direct bus but a better choice would have been a Volvo to Hospet and local transport to Hampi which is 12 km from Hospet. As soon as we set foot in Hampi , guides and rickshaw drivers stalked us like any typical tourist spot. We walked past them to figure our way to Padma Guest house (try this number if you want to book 08394 241331) which is just around the corner of the street, haggled with the landlady Padma (as Chetan had hinted me to bargain prices), checked in for Rs.350. But I feel the price was not a bad option considering I am not the foreigner who would take a room for Rs.50 and soak in the culture.