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Showing posts from November, 2013

MM Hills to BR Hills via Dhimbam Ghat and K.Gudi - Travel through less traversed jungles and country-side (Part 2 of 3)

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A mahout riding a captive elephant at K.Gudi The drive on day 2 View  Road trip Bangalore - MM Hills - Hasanur Ghat - BR Hills - Bangalore  on google maps We were glad to have left MM Hills early in the day as we could see hundreds of vehicles pouring into the village to take part in the  jathra at its temple . Getting down the numerous hairpin bends we crossed the narrow road in Kowdhalli village after which the road again passes through Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary for a couple of kilometres. As one approaches Hanur village the hill ridges that mark the northern limits of Biligiri Ranganathaswamy Temple (BRT) tiger reserve become prominent.  The MM Hills region is rich in wildlife, from lesser creatures like this ant to the jumbo Asian elephant At Hanur village, the fresh fruits and vegetables in the bustling bazaar made us take a small break to buy a few of them. Just after the Police Station in the village we took a deviation south (turned left) towards the sm

Bangalore to MM Hills - Travel through less traversed jungles and country-side (Part 1 of 3)

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The rest house of Karnataka forest department at MM Hills.  Summary: I drove with a couple of non-wildlife friends from Bangalore to the forests around MM Hills that were until a few years ago the safe haven of a fascinating character named Veerappan. Along with his accomplices Veerapan was accused of killing dozens of law enforcement staff, from policemen to forest officers, chiefly in these forests. He had made these forests his home for much of his life. According to my interactions with sources- villagers, local forest staff, policemen posted to capture him, forest staff kidnapped by him etc across this vast forest belt, since mid-1990s, Veerappan knew the forest like the back of his hand. He combined this knowledge with his extremely well connected network of informers as well as support/ fear by his fellow caste members to survive in this hostile terrain. He lived amidst wildlife like royal Bengal tiger, Asian elephant, king cobra as he dodged the law for over a decade. T