Scale this high-peak

Challenging heights: Minchukallu, the highest peak in the Charmadi range is an ultimate paradise for trekkers.It is the highest peak in Charmadi range. At the top of the hill lies a huge bauxite stone, which attracts lightning during monsoon. With this, the hill gets its name ‘Minchukallu’ which means the stone which attracts lightning.

For trekkers, who love adventure and challenges, this is their ultimate paradise because there is no short cut and easy route to reach this peak. Apart from tedious trekking route, what adds to the challenge is the herd of elephants making frequent appearances here.

There are three routes to reach this peak. Firstly, Mangalore-Ujire-Kakkinje-Gandibagilu and Devarakanive, second Somanakadu forest via Aniyur valley and Devaramane route. Of the three, Devaramane route is comparatively easier. The amazing part of the trek is that the trekkers can savour the nature’s bounty with Aniyur hole on the Charmadi side and Kapila hole on Bairapura side.

Kumbakallu is another hill which is worth seeing in the vicinity.

Trekkers will come across two dense forests namely ‘Banjaru Male’ and ‘Ambati Male,’ which are like safe abode for pachyderms.

The elephants are seen even on Minchukallu hill and if locals are to be believed, elephants follow a corridor from the foothill to the peak accelerating themselves in zig-zag movement. At the top of the hill, these pachyderms get their staple food, which is called ‘Aane Hullu’ in Kannada.

With the fight between man and elephant increasing over the years, the number of elephants coming to this area has increased. It is said that plantation owners from Mudigere scare the elephants and shun them away. The elephants directly follow the corridor and reach Minchukallu area, where they have food and abundant space to move around.

Dinesh Holla, an ardent trekker, says that it is advisable for the trekkers to seek help of local residents who have accurate idea about the movement of elephants in the area.

“Once I had been to Minchukallu alone. It was challenging and cherishing experience. During this visit, I had seen a herd of 13 elephants from a distance,” recalls Holla adding that it is better to go in groups and also with advise from local residents because due to increased tiff between elephants and human beings, the elephants are often seen in destructive mode in the region.

The best season to go to Minchukallu is from December to January end because the region would have just got over with rains. Lush green surroundings and moist weather will start fading away by February end. There are no facilities to stay in the region. There are some water spots where most trekkers opt to camp.

However, with nature and the wild, only those with adventurous nerves should go to have a look of Minchukallu.

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