Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sariska Tiger Reserve

For wild life enthusiast Sariska is one of the closest Tiger Reserve near Delhi. If you too are feeling trapped in your daily hustle and tussle then this can be a great daybreak from Delhi. On the last weekend of March my travel companion and buddy Ravinder and I decided to give a shot to Sariska, as the summer is already testing our nerves and in few days it would be impossible to visit Rajasthan.

 
We started at 1 in the night from Ghaziabad and took the root of Gurgaon – Sohna – Nooh – Firozpur Zirak – Alwar – Sariska. Total 240 Km from Ghaziabad. Although the road was in really bad shape, sometimes you force to drive at 20kmph, but still less crowded in night so somehow we managed to reach Alwar by 5 in the morning.




On the way to Sariska there is Alwar written in Hollywood style in a large rock. We couldn’t resist ourselves to pose there. From there it took another one hour to Sariska. Just before Sariska there are few dhabas where you can get crispy onion parantha for 15 bucks per piece, little costly but worth it and nice hot tea to rejuvenate from the heck of long drive.


 
The reception area is nearby the entry of the park and it costs just 150 bucks for two persons including car. We entered with great enthusiasm but somehow got unlucky till few minutes because in Sariska you are just allowed to drive through the main road, but as the wild has no sense for traffic so they obviously get themselves busy inside. Finally we decided to go in core areas in so called kachha rashta (with due apology to concerned authorities).



There lies the true beauty.  A group of deer mingling with peacocks in the same pool of water. A Saambhar visited to pose for us irrespective of hot weather. Another core area and there was 5 to 7 Saambhars drinking water probably after their afternoon nap.







After 10 km roughly the road divided into two ways, one goes to Pandupole and another to Kalighat. Firstly we choose the Kalighat root but after few kilometers didn’t find it interesting, so went back to Pandupole road, which is a real worth. At the end point there is an ancient Hanuman Temple but the way itself was awesome. We encountered with a group of wild pigs and an army of langoors. The landscape was so beautiful that you can even think to hire a room for few days if provided.





We back around 2 when nothing much was left to do. Another great news is that, they even allow two-wheeler inside the park. Sariska to Alwar is a great fun drive with picturesque mountains and scenic beauty spread all across.






This time we took the root of Sariska – Alwar – Kisangarh – Tijara – Bhiwadi - NH24 to Gurgaon, total again 200 km roughly. Overall it was an unforgettable experience, which will cherish our memory forever.

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Heaven! I bet you can't ask for more

It is one of the rarest place where you’ll tired of asking but offering will remain one step ahead. There are many articles and travelogue full of information about Jim Corbett, so why this one. It is because once you’ll be here; you simply can’t resist yourself of describing the matchless beauty, the wilderness, the unparalleled thrill, and many such words which is not sufficient to capture the whole aura of its divinity.


Can you believe this....amazing!
Wide grass land




You just name it and you have it. Be it dense forest, wide grass land, river side, one of the best flora and fauna, surround by large hills and nurtured by real blue water river, every single moment feels like Wow! Is it real?

Blue Kingfisher

Corbett National Park is situated in the foothills of the Himalayas, and is haven for wildlife lovers in India. The present area of the Corbett national park is 1318.54 sq. km. including 520 sq. km. of core area of and 797.72 sq. km. of buffer area. The core area of the Corbett tiger reserve forms the  Corbett National Park while the buffer contains reserve forests (496.54 sq.km.) as well as the Sonanadi Wildlife Sanctuary (301.18 sq.km.). It has a tiger population of around 160, which again boost its prospects as a hottest wildlife destination.


My journey started with two of my friends from Ghaziabad at 12 in night, and in our Alto car we reached Ramnagar by 5 in the morning with normal traffic on the way. Due to Christmas we witnessed heavy rush at the booking counter. Finally thanks to our guide Lakshman that we managed to get dormitory at the main Dhikala area and entered in the forest by 4 pm. To avoid the last time disappointment, plan in advance and book the room in Delhi itself at:

Uttaranchal Tourism
Indraprakash Building
Barakhamba Road
New Delhi - 110001
Tel. +91-11-23319835

Or, you may also contact at

The Director
Corbett Tiger Reserve
Ramnagar – 244 715
Distt. Nainital
(Uttaranchal)
Tel.: +91-5947-253977, Reception – 251489
Fax: +91-5947-251489 and 251376
The Chief Wildlife Warden, Uttaranchal
85, Rajpur Road
Dehradun-248001
(Uttaranchal)
Tel/Fax. : +91-135-2744225, 2741607

Since it was my first encounter with forest so after entering few kilometers, I was like shocked, scared, pleasantly surprised and very much excited that lets see what is yet to come. We reached at Dhikala base before closing time that was 5:30 pm, because after that no vehicle movement is allowed. A word of caution, while driving you can’t blow horn, can’t put the light on, can’t race to much and never throw any plastic, rapper or burning cigarette etc into the area, as it could prove fatal to yourself and to those who actually belongs there.
Looking for Tuskar through a Machan.
In the night I took a quick round with my friend around the camp. It was scary, but an experience to feel and listen the voice of forest, which is always mix of few known and many unknown things. In dormitory it was so chilled that we need to wear the protection from inside in liquid form. With high spirit in all means we sleep tight waiting for another day’s endless excitement to happen.

In my happiest moment
Next morning we woke up early to catch the virgin beauty of wild. To enjoy this place, one must hire an experienced guide, and luckily we get so. Our guide was so familiar with forest that he can understood most of the voices of different animals, let the path aside. We had a great time covering around 50km or something inside the deepest area as far allowed for vehicle movement.


We had our lunch at Dhikala base itself, which was great but what surprises us is the taste of water. Believe me friends you can’t have such a taste of water anywhere else.

Since our booking was for one night so we came back to forest but didn’t leave the area. We decided to move Ramnagar for night stay and promised to back another day for a day picnic in Mohan another paradise just few kilometers away from Jim Corbett. In Ramnagar there is a Shama hotel, which offers delicious non-vegetarian food that you must try.


We reached Mohan by 11 in the morning, crossed few small streams and finally zeroed on a beautiful location to have our blast. We had our life time fun there to cook food right in the elephant zone, and fear gets doubled and so the excitement when our guide narrate the story of a man-eater that was there, at that particular location, few days back. We ate, sang, drink enjoyed the bonfire and had a blast of lifetime. Finally we started by 7:30 in the evening and drove back to Delhi.




A last piece of advice. You need to visit in just two cases; you love forest and you will enjoy it, you don’t love forest you’ll fall in love with it.

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India's most haunted place

It all started with an idea to visit some off-beat destination around Delhi. Google search leads to an image of Bhangarh ruins that claims to be India’s most haunted place. Great! I goggled more and it appears to have a potential of a good day trip.

Bhangarh ruins
Around 5 in the morning we started from Ghaziabad. The Jaipur highway is just too good for drive, hit it before dawn and savor the sunrise en-route. We drove around 200 odd kms then turned to Thana-Gazhi.


Ajabgarh


From here it was right turn for Ajabgarh that leads to Bhangarh. Second round of pleasant drive will start from NH-8 to Thana-Gazhi, with rugged mountain en-route. From here till Ajabgarh road was really in bad shape, although construction was going on so one can hope good road in future. After that it was a memorable drive. Landscape was so unique that we enjoyed the drive most. One can get feeling of some haunted place. If you find anybody en-route don’t hesitate to ask the way and also pay detail attention to signboards.

Lone drive
Finally we reached the fort by 2 PM. I inquired to parking staff about any mischievous presence or something but he replied negatively. I asked about night arrangement but he replied that he can be with us till 12 in the night and then we have to manage our own, that obviously we can't.

Some first hand idea

Isn't it amazing

Now we started our introspection to each and every ruins to find something roguish, but didn’t get anything of that short. Although a negative energy was there in the environment. Probably they shifted somewhere else due to increasing foot-falls.

The place was crowded due to Sunday...although not in pic
A Temple was also there...
I too deserve one image of mine
Something could be there...
We came,see and conquered
A distant view...to keep them away
About to leave now...
 After 3 hours we started back through a different route this time i.e Thana Gazhi-Sariska Tiger Reserve-Alwar-Shahpura-Behror-Gurgaon-Delhi. This route was again great for driving.

Drive carefully in Sariska

In evening we had famous snacks of Alwar i.e pyaj-kachauri and get packed some Kalakand (called palang-tod by locals). Finally before hitting Delhi we had usual Rajasthani Dinner i.e gatte ki Sabzi, missi roti and dal-bati choorma.


Overall it was a great fun drive and a day well spend.

Check the rest of the pics on "Picasa Web Streaming".

Thanks for reading.