From here started the exploration of Arshingundi Falls. Patrick, our organizer has a GPS device which guided us till a certain point I’m guessing but after that a lot was dependent on their sense of direction. So initially we ended up at a stream leading to a certain falls. There was absolutely no trail through the forests and we had to slide, slip, run, jump, grab trees and roots to move forward. All this while trying not to get bitten by leeches. After some more climb and descend we reached an unknown falls but a beautiful one.Guys played in the falls and I sat with my feet in the water getting a natural foot massage. Lunch followed and without too much rest, we started the ascend. There were 2 options. One was to head towards Kollur and the other to go back to where we started from. I’m again guessing we couldn’t figure out the route to Kollur and hence walked back the same way we came.While descending, I kept hoping we won’t have to climb back the same way as the route is very steep but god definitely was not listening. Everytime I looked up, I couldn’t see the sky, which meant we were still in dense forests. I am not sure how long we climbed for or the distance we covered, but it sure felt never-ending. And not taking enough breaks did not help either.I wonder what I would have done if not for the trees. They supported us in every way possible. I held on to them to pull myself up, hugged them to make sure I did not fall, leaned on them when I could not carry my weight anymore, grabbed their roots when I couldn’t find anything else to hold onto. It’s ironic, even a tree which probably is very young and looks strength-less could help us in so many ways. New found respect for Nature God.We finally made it to the top from where it was another 4-5km walk but on flat surface. After walking till the main road, we spotted our matador, where we dumped our bags, and headed straight to the stream to freshen up. It felt good to be clean again :)You would expect a bunch of totally drained human beings at the end of such an ordeal but this group was crazy. We danced in a moving matador for over an hour and played antakshari for 2 hours after that. But a sumptuous dinner at Shimoga is all it took to shut us up and open our eyes only to see Bangalore flyovers and morning traffic.One of the toughest treks I have done so far but a must do.Things I loved:The gang of guys I hung out with. Tulu (my mother tongue) jokes were hilarious and definitely reduced the extertion.The sunrise was beautifulLandscape unmatched. I have dreamed of being amidst such mountains for really longMafia game was super fun. Thanks GirishI have more or less overcome my fear of leechesThings that could have been better:More breaks during trek would have been most appreciatedA visit to Kollour Mookambika temple would have been greatMore time to click pictures.Trek Details:Date: 16th and 17th Nov 2013Place: Kodachadri, Shimoga DistrictOrganizer: Bangalore AscendersCamera Used: Canon Powershot SX230HSMode of Transport: 21 seater Matador Useful Links:BASC Website: www.bangaloreascenders.orgSleeping Bags on hire(Rs. 50 per day): Saravana – 9035914262 The itinerary we followed is as follows:Day 0We left Bangalore by 11:00 PM.Day 1Reached Nagada Fort on the way by 730AM. Spent an hour exploring the fortReached Nittur by 9:30AM and started hiking from here after breakfastReached Hidlumane falls around 12:00 PMContinued hiking from 12:30 PM. Stopped for a really short lunch break around 1:15 PMStarted hiking again around 1:40 PMReached Kodachadri peak by 5:00 PMWatched the sunset and headed towards our camping site by 6:45 PMStarted building our tent by 7:00 PMCompleted tent building by 8:00 PMPlayed Mafia for the next few hours and called it a day by 10:30 PMDay 2Started next morning at 5:30 AMHeaded to a nearby hill to watch sunrise. Reached by 6:30 AMStarted hiking again at 7:30 AMReached Batrumane at 8:00 AM and stopped for a cup of ChaiReached Santosh Hotel at 9:00 AM. Had breakfastStarted Arshingundi Falls Exploration. Ended up at a different spot of the same stream and continued the hikeReached an unknown falls around 1:00 PM. Had lunch here and headed back by 1:30 PMReached a plateau by 4:00 PMReached our bus by 5:00 PMWashed up at a near-by stream. Headed back to Bangalore at 6:30 PMDinner at 9:30 PM at ShimogaDay 3Reached Bangalore by 4:30 AMThis travelogue was first published by Evrything I Love.