There is a place on earth which is feared for its mysteriousness, which is worshipped for its magical powers, which is horrorred for its witch crafts; which is a home for many saints; which is a place for many cave temples. Standing tall and spreading its wings on the Eastern Ghats this place is a beauty by creation; it’s a paradise by birth; it as the vibrations which can peel your heart and as the name suggests it can kill you with its gorgeousness.
The agenda of the trek was to start from Puliancholai village and trek along the main stream to reach Akash ganga water falls. To explore and visit the caves on this mysterious mountain, to reach the top of the Akash ganga falls and to hit the 1,100 mts peak and ascend along a village trail to reach back to Puliancholai.
Trek along the stream to reach the Akash Ganga waterfalls:
The initial steps of the trek were climbed along the chill and refreshing stream of Kolli hills to reach the famous Akash Ganga waterfalls. Although the place was quite dry and the sun was on top of us, it never denied anyone of us from marching ahead. Taking a dip on the reverberating chill waters of Kolli hills we energized our bodies and headed towards the hunt for caves hidden deep inside the mysterious hills. Indeed, I have heard loads about the caves, the saints, the magical powers, the heeling leaves etc. etc. about Kolli hills but now all I wanted was to witness all these for myself.
Visiting Shri Gokarnath siddhar cave and Pamb atti (Snake Charmer) Siddhar cave:
Like a child who for the very first time witnessing a surprise thrown at him. I saw and wondered at the Kolli caves and learnt the life’s of these Siddhar’s who have left behind them loads of energy and vibrations in these caves. Now these places are worshipped and visited only by the locals and tribes who are aware of these consecrated places.
I admired and wondered how on earth these caves were formed and how these Siddhar’s happened to choose these places and used it for practicing mediation and as a laboratory to understand the medicinal properties of the flora in that region. Really they would have been brave hearts to have lived amidst these sorts of places encountering innumerable difficulties in their life.
The amusement of Kolli hills – taking bath in the Akash Ganga waterfalls:
Lost at the sight of her majesty; loving the chill moisturized breeze hitting my body; adoring the smell of her waters; I saw and admired the mind blowing view of the beautiful Akash ganga waterfalls dropping from the sky. No wonder it was named as “Akash ganga” a well deserved name.
Wondering at her appealing beauty I slowly ventured into her bone chilling water to take a dip in her soothing waters. I should confess here that this was one the best experience’s I ever had standing below a waterfalls and enjoying the pin-like water hitting me hard. My body was enjoying the enchantment of the nature and my heart was filled with absolute delight. Akash ganga will be ever remembered by us for the wonderful life-time experience it offered to us.
Camping near the Arpaleshwar temple:
Arpaleshwar temple is Lord Shiva devotees must visit place and as planned we camped there for night. The temple was thronged by devotees owing to upcoming Shivarathri from various parts of South India who knew its significance. The shops nearby offer excellent herbal soups made out of plants roots which can easily refresh any tired body and mind; I can recollect most of us having many rounds of herbal soup unable to control their taste buds.
As it became dark we cooked and had yummy dinner and the night which followed was a long and sleepless for many since the mercury dipped leaving behind poor souls to tremble in cold.
Visit to the top of the Akash Ganga waterfalls:
The next day morning we woke up to witness the revitalizing early morning sun. Soon we decided to conquer the Akash ganga waterfalls and hit its top and watch how it feels like to witness it from its top. When the tourist world is limited to Akash Ganga waterfall beautifying the Kolli hills we have realized that there is a life and society beyond tourist destinations which is close to our hearts. Sitting on the 400 mts. humongous cliff; enjoying the magnificent views; with the chill breeze soothing through nostrils; looking at the paths trekked; with an unconscious smile on the face and heart filled with happiness certainly quenches our adrenaline rush. It’s a trekker’s feeling lost in his own world far away from humanity nevertheless close to nature.
Conquering the 1,100 mts + Kolli peak:
After the return from the top of the Akash ganga waterfalls we decided to reach to the top of the kolli peak braving the scorching sun. We initially trekked through a village trail and soon reached the base of the peak then it was full of tricky rock climbing.
The climb to reach the peak braving the scorching sun was rewarded with wonderful views of the entire Kolli valley. The Akash Ganga waterfall was beneath us and we were blessed with the mind-blowing view of the entire Kolli hills. I could hear the appreciations going around on reaching to the peak through legs and watch the victorious moments being captured. The sense of satisfaction was very obvious on every once face and I am confident all the trekkers would cherish these memories forever in their life.
Ascending the Kolli hills through a rocky village trail:
After conquering the Kolli peak we ascended along the village trails crossing several villages and spending wonderful afternoon and lunch in some of the most beautiful and peaceful villages situated in the Kolli hills. The best part of the afternoon was fetching water from the village water well and quenching our thirst and finishing our lip-smacking lunch from the gardens of the village.
The most tiring part of the trek was ascending along the hilly and rocky steps to reach Pullianchoolai village. After few initial steps of hiking down our thighs started aching and made us feel exhausted but slowly and steadily we successfully ascended through the village trail and reached the Pullianchoolai stream and had a nice bath in the chill water.
Yet another good encounter was a villager who was successful in his attempt in capturing a huge fish from the stream. Initially when we saw his catch we mistook it to be a snake but finally realized that it was stream fish.
Kolli had been in my must visit places for hiking and I did not wanted to miss this opportunity and at the end of the two days adventure at Kolli hills I had a absolute sense of satisfaction in completing this wonderful trek and exploring few less visited places by mankind.