A walk in the clouds

A walk in the clouds

A walk in the clouds

Higher and still higher the road to Kodachadri rises through a landscape scorched by an uncharacteristically early onslaught of summer. Nature has blessed it with plenty of green forest and meadows and clusters of rare trees. Kodachadri is a land of incredible natural beauty and medicinal plants. It is delight to trek this hill situated in Sahyadri region. A biodiversity hotspot, it beckons those who are looking for off-beat trails. Day time is the ideal time to start trekking. While climbing, the thick white clouds embrace you gently and refresh you.

Kodachadri stands at a height of 1,343 m from the sea level and 610 m from the base. Kodachadri stretches across Hosanagar taluk in Shimoga district and Kundapur taluk in Udupi district.

 Trekking the hill makes for a memorable experience. There are five ways to approach the evergreen mountain.

One from Sampekatte near Hosanagar. From Sampekatte, one has to reach the top of Kodachadri either by trekking or in a hired jeep available here. From Sampekette there is a good motorable road about 10 km, up to Kattehole. From there, one has to trek 12 km of mud roads which require at least four hours of trekking. On the way, one can see a rare but distinguished Shiva temple called ‘Gulugulu Shankara’, a small temple. In front of the temple is a small pond full of water. If you clap standing on the edge of a pond you can see the bubbles coming out from the water in the pond. This gives the temple its name. This place is also called Gowriteertha. The temple of Gowrishankar, though small, attracts a lot of people. Another route which is used by most of the people is from Nagodi on the bus route of Shimoga-Kollur. One has to trek only five km from the bottom of the mountain. But as the mountain is very steep, it requires five hours to trek on this path. The third route is from Gowrikere near Nittur. Nittur is also on the bus route of Shimoga–Kollur. At Gowrikere, one can enjoy the cascade called Hiddlemane and from there Kodachadri is not far off.

Another route is trekking along River Chakra, a small river which rises from Kodachadri. One can trek from Kollur also. Kollur is a famed pilgrimage centre where thousands of devotees throng daily to worship Goddess Mookambika.

From here, one has to trek through Mookambika reserve forest. Those who want adventure can trek through the thick and wild forest from Benakal teertha near Kollur. This forest is the abode of many wild animals and the route is very difficult to climb. It requires at least 10 hours reaching Kodachadri from this place.

What to see

The region is famous for its sunrises and sunsets. Viewing the setting sun from Sarvajnapeetha is a unique experience. It is believed to be constructed by Adi Shankara. There are temples dedicated to Goddess Parvathi and Lord Ganesh. The best time to visit Kodachadri is from November to April. Thousands of people visit this place during Shivaratri.

Another place near Nagodi, unknown to the world, is Devargadde, a paddy field dedicated to the gods. It is a flat tract of land on top of a small hill surrounded by a thick forest.

Cattle or any other birds don’t graze on this field, which is therefore called Devaragadde. Another interesting place in the vicinity is ‘Hulibayi’, (meaning the mouth of a tiger) between Nagodi and Kollur where water springs from the mouth of a stone face of tiger.
Kodachadri is about 471 km from Bangalore. Plenty of buses are available to Kollur. One can hire a jeep from Kollur to Kodachadri and back.

There is a government guest house on the top of the hill.