Sunday, February 15, 2015

Konkon Reise - Netravati to Sabarmati: Part I - Sakleshpur to Subrahmanya Road, Wild Wild Western Ghats

Run...Run...Run… I was not late as per the schedule. Still the internal urge to reach railway station and the excitement of going to unknown places made me stay on the edge. My train - ‘YPR-KWR Express’ - was waiting for me at Yeshwantpur terminal.
As usual this time also other passengers started requesting me to change the seats. Their reason is to bring the entire family together; but for me it is to see the side view. I frequently gave up my lower berths to senior citizens and even moved to other bogies. But, most of that happened in night. In a day train its not a valid reason.
In this case the family requesting for rearrangement was not in any dire need for the same. Finally I agreed; in exchange for another window seat. Interestingly the seat they offered belongs to someone else!!! and they came and claimed it after one-one and half hour. After that I don’t have any option other than getting my original seat back. But they started with another round of excuses - his mother sitting there is not well. Obviously I can’t agree on that after seeing her. In anyway they are occupying more than 8-10 seat in that boggy. Finally I settled for another seat, and started waiting for Sakleshpur to come.
Located on Malnad region in the lap of Western Ghats, Sakleshpur is the starting point of a beautiful train track. 58 km track from Sakleshpur to Subrahmanya Road station is decorated with 58 tunnels, 109 bridges and around 25 waterfalls. Although most waterfalls are visible only in rainy season and bridges are very short in length; it forms a wonderful sight in combination with mystic Western Ghats.
Train stopped for some time at Sakleshpur. When we restarted our journey, I positioned myself at doorstep to catch all sceneries. Slowly we started moving… and one by one tunnels started coming. Lights were not turned on our boggy. Hence, there would be complete darkness whenever we went inside a tunnel. Many of us start shouting on top of our voice the moment we enter inside a tunnel.
It was a wonderful thing to do; forgot everything and enjoy. How many times we want to whistle on top of our voice and won't be able to do because of the crowd around us? How many of us get such an opportunity everyday? We made full use of it. Till all of us were tired, we were shouting and whistling on top of our voice each time we enter in to a tunnel.
Probably the biggest sound was made by a lady standing behind me. Her whistling was fantastic. Rest of us - the mortals - were wondering what to do to produce such a big and beautiful whistle :)
This is a wonderful line to travel, both sides were surrounded by forests. In between, one can see small iron bridges constructed over rivulets. As I was travelling in January end, many streams were running dry. I think, I should travel through this route again on July or August. 
Iron mesh frames were placed on rocky/semi-rocky areas facing the track to stop or control landslide. Still landslides happens during monsoons. While we travel, we could see railway employees checking the tracks on those isolated areas. There were hardly any shed nearby; I wonder how they spend time at night.
One need to see both sides of the track - in one side you can see big boulders saying hello to you, and on other side you can see beautiful valleys!!!
Subhrahmanya Road
This wonderful stretch comes to an end at Subrahmanya Road Station. This station is just 7 KM away from famous ‘Kukke Subrahmanya’ Temple. By the time train left this station, there were hardly 4-5 people sitting here and there in my boggy. I slept for some time and missed Netravati River and Bridge. When I woke up, we were approaching Mangalore Jn (and train was running some 25 minutes ahead of the schedule)
// Photos

1 comment:

  1. Nice Article sir, Keep Going on... I am really impressed by read this. Thanks for sharing with us. UPSC.