Coorg district in Karnataka is famous for its coffee estates sprawling over the lush green hills of the Western Ghats. Also famous are the numerous waterfalls, wildlife, gurgling rivers and its famous cuisine.
But one of the major attractions for a trekking enthusiast in Coorg can be the treks it has to offer.
Who doesn't wants to walk amidst the dense Western Ghat forests and to find one's self lost among the grasslands of the high mountains.
Tadiyandamol is the highest peak in Coorg district, with a height of about 5900 feet above sea level. It is one of the lesser known trails and most of the tourists visiting Coorg are unaware of it. The trek starts near to a small town called Kakkabe, which is around 40 kilometres from Madikeri, the district headquarter. Hire a cab or even an auto-rickshaw to reach kakkabe. The trail starts from a place near the Nalaknad palace, and there is a distinctive path that will lead you up to there. If you are having your own car then just follow your GPS.
The total trekking routes would be roughly 5-6 kms, with the trail being easy most of the time. The final 500 metres to the top is steep. The trail is well defined, and passes through forests and grasslands. You will take roughly 6 hours to complete the whole trek.
The real beauty of this trek can be experienced during the monsoon, when the grassland and the forests turn lush, vibrant green. The shola forests are a unique feature of the Western Ghats, wherein you can find the trees growing in patches amidst the grassland.
The Western Ghats has a different charm of its own during the monsoon season. But if you are visiting during the monsoons, do expect rains, heavy to moderate. Carry a raincoat or poncho with you. Also beware of the numerous leeches. Western Ghats are full of them, especially the forest patches. Do not forget to carry salt along with you. Expect leeches to crawl up your boots and socks, so it is better to wear shorts rather than jeans or track pants. And even you may get a chance to see some exotic snakes!
Don't forget to carry your own water, as water sources are not available on the way to the top. And even during winter months of November- December the days can become terribly hot. The best time to visit would be just after the monsoon season, from the end of September month. If you want clear blue skies with excellent visibility then target trekking in Jan-Feb. Post March it would to be hot to go for the trek. Camping too is possible here, but you need to carry all your supplies.
Being close to Bangalore this trek is a perfect weekend getaway, and breaks the monotony of the city life. So next time visiting Coorg, do not forget to miss out on this trek.
P.S. I have tried this trek thrice, being unsuccessful on two of the attempts. Once in the month of May, which was due to the leeches and we didn't have any salt with us. Horrified by these creatures we were forced to return. Second time was in the first week of september, heavy torrential rain turned the trail into a stream, and once again we had to return. It was only in January I completed the trek when the weather was good, and leeches were gone. Most of the photos are from that successful attempt!