Amboli Trip (Western Ghats)- In the lap of mother nature

Tripoto
28th Jul 2017

The Beauty of Amboli 

Photo of Amboli Trip (Western Ghats)- In the lap of mother nature by Saurav Bakshi
Day 3

Bi-color Frog

Photo of Amboli, Maharashtra, India by Saurav Bakshi
Day 2

Bio Luminescent Fungus

Photo of Amboli, Maharashtra, India by Saurav Bakshi

Gliding Frog Mating

Photo of Amboli, Maharashtra, India by Saurav Bakshi

Gliding Frog

Photo of Amboli, Maharashtra, India by Saurav Bakshi

Gliding Frog

Photo of Amboli, Maharashtra, India by Saurav Bakshi

Malabar Pit Viper

Photo of Amboli, Maharashtra, India by Saurav Bakshi

Well, just thinking from where to start the description of this piece of beauty on the earth!!!... Okay, let me tell you in this way that if you are a nature lover, biologists, photographer or just want to spend couple of days away from all the hustle-bustle of city life, far away from the honking of car horns to the cacophony of the birds, from breathing in the poisonous smoke of fossil fuel to inhale the chest full of fresh air, from tring-tring & ting-ting of you electronic gizmos & mail box to the sweet dripping sound of water & dew drops, THEN This Is The Place To Be. It's pure bliss to be here.

Malabar Pit Viper

Photo of Amboli, Maharashtra, India by Saurav Bakshi

It's a hill station in Maharashtra at an altitude of 2260 ft. It lies in the range of western ghats and famous for it's flora & fauna. It's also famous for it's wide range of snakes, frogs and butterflies. Nearest airport is Belagaum (70 KMs approx) and Goa (100 KMs approx). From here you need to hire a cab to reach here. Road from Goa is very good but from Belagaum, one will find couple of rough patches in between.

It was a friendly group photography trip where 7 of us gathered at Amboli from various corner of the country. Since I joined them from Delhi, and there is no other way to reach there except air, hence it costed me little extra as compared to others. If you are travelling down from southern part of the country or Maharashtra, then the entire trip cost will be approx 5K lesser than the one I mentioned and if it's a group trip, cost will go down further.

It was my first trip to Amboli and also for the group members as well, hence hadn't had much idea about the travel route, so I booked the flight ticket to Belagaum via Mumbai due to which it took longer than usual as there was a layoff of approx 3 hours. If I would have traveled via Goa, it would've taken 5 hours instead of 8 hours. I boarded the flight of 10:00 AM from Delhi and reached Belagaum at 4:00 PM. Then from there I took the cab to Amboli at 4:30 PM which took 2 hours time to reach. Since it was mid of rainy season hence there was intermittent heavy spells of rain in between. If you are a photographer and coming via Belagaum, then try to grab the window seat and keep your camera ready for some breathtaking aerial landscape shots while entering the Belagaum air space, unfortunately I missed it. On the way you will also witness some lovely frames.

I reached Amboli at 6:30 PM and checked into Atharva Resort. Nice and clean rooms in low budget. Rest of the group had already checked in at 11:00 AM and went to see waterfall & sunset point which I missed. Nonetheless, I was so excited about the trip and with the thought of witnessing & capturing the beautiful varieties of snakes, butterflies and frogs that I forgot about my long journey. I just put my bags down and grabbed my camera and went out with the group in search of these beauties. It was pouring heavily but still the rain god was not able to dampen our spirit. We spotted geckos, vine snake & wrinkled frog. Since it was raining heavily, we returned early to our resort.

Since it was a photography trip and that too in rainy season, we prepared few must have items checklist before the trip. Those were- Macro lens(1:1), flash & diffuser, leech socks (yes you will get these blood sucking creatures over there), poncho ( a gown type raincoat which helps you to save you and your gear from getting wet), silica gel, torch & headlamp (as most of the walks are during night), extra dry cell, gum boot, tape, plastic packets to wrap your gear, umbrella etc...

Next day we moved to the Whistling Woods owned by Hemant Ogale an avid photographer and naturalist. He is also the best guide available in Amboli and has wide knowledge of Western Ghats ecology & biodiversity. He is one of the co-founders of the Malabar Nature Conservation Club, that works on improving awareness of the area’s biodiversity among locals, and on in-situ conservation of species such as the Malabar Gliding Frog. Don't miss to check out his enviable collection of butterfly images. It's him due to which we were able to spot varieties of snakes, frogs and one of the most magical phenomenon of nature, Bioluminescent Fungus.

They don't have kitchen, hence for meals, you need to tell them in advance and they will arrange for it.

Next day after breakfast, we went for 2 hours photowalk and then @ 2:00 PM we checked out to our mundane life.

Day 3

Double Scale Malabar Pit Viper

Photo of Amboli, Maharashtra, India by Saurav Bakshi
Day 2

Green Vine Snake

Photo of Amboli, Maharashtra, India by Saurav Bakshi

Malabar Pit Viper (Green Morph)

Photo of Amboli, Maharashtra, India by Saurav Bakshi

Wrinkled Frog

Photo of Amboli, Maharashtra, India by Saurav Bakshi

Wrinkled Frog with egg

Photo of Amboli, Maharashtra, India by Saurav Bakshi
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