Paatala Ganga Lake is the spiritual water source near Srisailam temple, in the heart of the Srisailam hills and Nallamalla forests. The extension of this lake has happened post the construction of the prestigious Srisailam Dam for the power project in and around Andhra Pradesh. Technically and Spiritually, this lake has many specialties and the beauty of this water source is another feather in the cap of Srisailam Temple premises.
Mountain ranges are always beautiful and the prettiness of it gets elevated by the presence of water sources like waterfalls, lakes, ponds and rivers. The river Krishna flows near the Srisailam hills. And Paatala Ganga is the product of the back waters of River Krishna in which many devotees and visitors take bath before visiting the Srisalam Bramarambha Mallikarjuna Swamy temple on the hill. There are many spiritual reasons to visit the Paatala Ganga.
One can reach Paatala Ganga through rope way and also can reach by climbing down around 500 steps from the Hanuman Temple of Srisailam. Most of the visitors opt the ropeway because it's easy and flexible to travel to reach the destination. But people who want to enjoy the boating on the Paatala Ganga, they need to climb 150 steps on both sides each. Hence, to reach the Paatala Ganga water source, one must definitely get use the rocky steps on the mountain. These steps are a bit dangerous and one must be cautious enough, while climbing up and getting down.
But it's worth taking a little risk to witness such a beauty, and hear stories about the Paatala Ganga from the local tour guides. Our whole family has visited the Paatala Ganga through ropeway but only the cousins who are young took steps to reach the Paatala Ganga water because there was no choice left to enjoy the boating. Take the steps way was little difficult, but the view of the Paatala Ganga has been elevated step by step. Hence, I have captured few clicks from my lens which are naturally splendid.
Construction of steps on such a rocky mountain was really appreciable. Because the mountain was sort of straight and climbing the steps on straight mountains are always difficult because of the nonexistence of inclination. While taking the steps and getting down to reach the Paatala Ganga, the view was sightly enough. The mountains were like borders to the back waters of river Krishna. The huge trees and plants slightly move every single second, to provide the mountain breeze to the visitors. The Srisailam dam and the rocky hills of Srisailam are the borders of this lake. We have visited in the late afternoon and returned during the sunset. Hence, we got to witness the sun rays on the water and that was epic.
Be conscious and careful enough, while taking the steps and also be careful while performing holy baths near the Hanuman temple and the boating place because the depth level is dangerous and it can be a life threat to a person. Due to the mossy nature of the rocks, a person may easily slip into the water. So, one must take care of oneself and also others during performing rituals and visiting the lake.
Srisailam is a place where all the elements of nature exist at every single inch of it. We humans must be really grateful enough for the mother nature. The views are exclusive and the words aren't enough to describe the beauty of it. The Paatala Ganga lake is also one of such places in Srisailam.
The water here has medicinal values and also can be used as drinking water. The water here tastes sweet. The water appears to be green till it is inside the lake, but it becomes transparent as soon as we take into our hands or fill it in bottles. The reason behind the color of the water isn't the moss plants inside the lake. There is a spiritual reason behind it. We came to know that from one of the tour guides there. The King Chanukya has made her daughter took a holy bath in this water to get rid of her curse and he left an emerald necklace inside the water source. It is said that since then, the water appears to be green. Isn't it interesting? Not so sure about the story, but I'm damn sure about the appearance because it's quite visible in the pictures and to our own eyes. This is a magic of nature.
And it is also believed and indeed a fact that there exists a Nandi statue, which was submerged in the Paatala Ganga lake. Before the construction of the Srisailam dam, people used to worship the Nandi Statue near the Paatala Ganga lake and go by walk to the temple to visit the Nandi statue in front of Mallikarjuna Swamy in Srisailam Temple. Those two idols are popularly known as twin Nandi deities. But after the water level has increased, the statue was submerged inside and hence, people leave flowers and coins in the lake to pay the respect and worship that statue of Nandi.
These are some of the interesting stories that are quite untold to the world about the Paatala Ganga lake. Like its beauty, the stories are also appealing and alluring. So, if you visit the Paatala Ganga lake, take these difficult steps in a careful way to capture the whole beauty of the nature at one shot. What else a person need more than a mountain, water, sun, trees, breeze and a reason to enjoy the nature?