At 02.00 PM we left for Jaganath Gattu, which was hardly 3 KMs from his house. We left by his Tata Scorpio vehicle. All our things were packed as per the list. We took a right turn from Nandyal Check post towards G Pulla Reddy Engineering College. This college is on the foothill of this Jaganth Gattu. The road to this Hill winds up till the Temple, where you can park your vehicle and from there you have to do some rock climbing to reach the top, not much though. But yes, if you don’t want to take the road, and want to climb the mountain top, for the sheer thrill of it, you can do so from Dupadu Village side on Bangalore Highway.
The definition of a Hill and a Mountain is very vague, and so I am using both the terms, I hope my readers are not confused. But if height is the criteria, then it qualifies to be called a Hill, because anything below 2000 feet is considered a Hill and a mountain if it exceeds 2000 feet. Anyway, let’s not get into the technicalities.
The afternoon Sun was receding and it was not scorching. The breeze up there was very cool and we settled under the rock, spreading the Bed sheet. We took out our flask and had a cuppa tea with snacks. It was heavenly. The scene around us was really very magnificent. Hey wait, it’s still not the weekend for you, where are you rushing to…?
The golden rays of the setting Sun fell on the River Handri, and the Sunset looked spectacular. The Sun signed off here, to rise on the other side of the globe to wake people there from their sleep. It was 7.00 PM and I am a regular listener of Vivid Bharati’s programme for the soldiers’ called Jai Mala which is aired on radio daily at this hour. I tuned in, and my God, never in my life, had these songs sounded so mesmerizing. I myself felt like a soldier on the border. But really, how hard it must be for them, to lead the life of a soldier on the border without any facilities. And here, we sleep so ensconced and so safe because of their toil and sacrifices. A BIG SALUTE to each and everyone in the Indian Army, Navy and Air Force.
As night crept in, the stars made their way in the open Sky. It was beautiful to gaze at the twinkling stars, but the sounds of insects made us a little uncomfortable because it was the first time we slept in the open, with the insects and bees. Taking with us mosquito repellents helped us ward off these swarming mosquitoes. Not one dared to bite us.
At 09.00 PM we had our dinner of Lemon Rice, Chapatis, Chips, Potato fry, Coconut Chutney and Maaza. When Nature gives you company, you feel your inner voice speaking to you. It cleanses your soul, mind and body. You feel refreshed. The view from the top, of Kurnool Town lit in lights was fantastic. And the occasional serpentine train passing by. The train track passes just below Jaganath Gattu. The trains looked like crawling centipedes.
At 11.30 PM we started feeling drowsy and wanted to sleep. So, we laid our sleeping bags and slept. I was a little apprehensive to sleep in the open for fear that some insect may enter my nose or ears, childish thoughts na? But, my bones were so tired and my mind so relaxed that I slept in no time and woke up at 06.30 AM when the glare of the morning light was penetrating through my closed eyelids. It was indeed, a day (and a night) to remember.
We packed our belongings and got down the Hill for the morning Chai (We Indians can’t do without it). After having my lunch at my friend’s place, I left Kurnool again by Tungabhadra Express which left Kurnool at 03.00 PM and reached Secunderabad Station at 08.00 PM.
Kurnool is 209 KMs from Hyderabad and 359 KMs from Bangalore and is well connected by both Rail and Road. In fact, it is strategically tucked between Hyderabad and Bangalore on NH No. 44. And if you are rich in time, you can head to other places of interest like Orvakal Rock Garden (20 KMs), Alampur (26 KMs), Mantralaya (92 KMs), Belum Caves (107 KMs), Ahobilam (135 KMs), and Srisailam (180 KMs).
I think, no one ever thought of camping here. We set the trend for others to follow.
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"When you start saying “YES” to experiences, you become enriched".