Thadiyendamol trek

Since the failed trek in Uttaranchal, I was looking forward to a trek somewhere. Kailash also wanted to go somewhere exciting! As usual, Arun was game. We decided on going to the Coorg side as it was one place we had heard a lot about and none of us have been there. Kailash did some research and I consulted my trekking holidays book and together we found this trek to Thadiyendamol, which looked interesting. Apparently, the only two places to stay there were Honey Valley Estate and Palace Estate. Honey valley was full; however Palace Estate had some rooms. In the process of booking, we spoke to Vincy and Prasad, the owners of the place; and even before we left Bangalore, we knew they were nice people. Prasad gave me the perfect route plan over the phone (only later did we came to know that he is incredible in charting routes). Later we also came to know that Prasad is the youngest of three brothers. The other two brothers are Prakash and Poovanna.

Friday evening, Arun and I had an evening shift. We went back home at three in the night and by four we were ready for the drive. I think it is relevant to mention over here that Arun was the last person to get ready as he was busy with a "phone call" and later he couldn't find the car keys! The drive was smooth and in just two hours, we reached Mandya (118 kms). The later part of the drive was not that smooth; however, it was scenic. Especially the parts near Gonikoppal and the Nagarhole outskirts are very beautiful. The route was Bangalore - Maddur - Mandya - Shrirangapattanam - Mysore (bypass) - Hunsur - Gonikoppal - Virajpet - Kakkabe. The directions given were perfect and we reached there by 1130.

The Prakash Poovanna Palace Estate is a beautiful place and the view that greets you takes your breath away. It is like an endless carpet of hills. The main house is 120 years old and the guest house has been re-built last year. There is a well maintained garden in front of the two houses with coffee beans drying over a square patch. I don't think I will do justice by writing about it; let me post some photographs. This one here is the guest house. Two rooms in the ground floor and four in the first floor. All rooms with excellent view.

Prasad discussed and suggested what to do there while we sipped coffee. There is something about the way he talks that makes you feel very comfortable and at home. He also drew a map for us to follow. After a hearty homely lunch, we went for a short walk around the estate. Saw the Nalnad Palace, which is just below the Palace Estate. Once again the views everywhere were just awesome. We also went to a small waterfall near the house. Dinner was again homely affair with some treat waiting for us - the pork curry was simply unbelievable. Over dinner, met the other guests. One thing about going to unusual and non-tourist spots is that you get to meet unusual and interesting people. Met Elizabeth and Denisse from London, who are with the music industry and have seen more of India than we have. Also met Sam, who is from Lebanon / US, who is on a tour since January, 2005. It was very interesting to listen to them. It gives you a new perspective about our country and it's people. We chatted till about midnight in the balcony.

Next day, we went for the trek. Again Prasad had drawn a map for us to follow. We left at 06:30 in the morning. The trek was divided into four sections. The first section was through the estate itself but it was steep. I think it was difficult for us because our body was not ready for the ordeal that early in the morning. The next two sections were gentle till you reach the base of the Thadiyendamol peak. After that, the tracks are difficult to follow. We actually wandered off twice - all because of wrong left: I never understood the leftist view anyway. Once we took a left that we were not supposed to take and landed up in a valley with no where to go! We managed to trace our way back to the stone wall (landmark) and then instead of taking the track to the left took the other left track to a deep jungle! After wandering again for about half an hour, finally decided to come back. Came back to the wall again and this time took the right track. By this time, there were four other trekkers who almost caught up with us. They seemed to have fresh legs and we were already tired. Realizing that they will soon catch us, Arun wanted to catch his breath and suggested that we don't stop for him. Kailash and I decided to make it to the top without stopping. We wanted to be the first to make it to the top that day! the view from the top is beautiful. It was a very clear day and we think we saw one river meet the ocean! We had our brunch there - rice cakes, eggs and a very sweet pineapple packed for us by Prasad / Vincy. By this time, we had finished all the drinking water that we had.

While coming back, we took a de-tour to visit a waterfall and sat there for some time. The return walk was without any further event. We just joked about things like how Arun said "I don't trust you anymore" when we were lost in the jungle and how Kailash's shoe sole was all but non-existant by then.

After returning, we ate another wonderful meal: this time mango curry being the main attraction. We took the afternoon easy. We slept for some time before dinner. Next morning, after another cup of the fresh coorg coffee, we left at 07:30. The coffee flowers were in full bloom by then. This is not a very common site though since this happens only a few times every year. Sam took a lift till Virajpet. As Kailash said "One Bengali, one Punjabi, one Gujrati and one Lebanese listening to Spanish music in an American car". After dropping Sam at Virajpet, we drove towards Bangalore. We reached home at 3 in the afternoon. Back to office in the evening!

If you are interested, here are the details:

Prakash Poovana Estate
Palace Estate
Kakkabe,Kodagu – 571 212
Tel: 08272-238446
Mobile: 988 044 7702
Contact : Prasad / Vincy Apparanda

This trip reminded me of Gushaini more than anything else. Wish James, Sri and Milind were there to share this experience.


~ | | OM | | ~ said...

WAW !!!!

manh... i love you for writing it so nicely.. almost like i went on the trip myself !!!

Good luck.. keep travelling !!!

Subhadip said...

Thanks man. It was awesome. One day, we will trek together. I will click your photograph. you click mine. Watch out for the pics coming soon.

Arun salwan said...

Well no doubt an amazing trip and it was not once again the destination but the journey which was more that we enjoyed. Ford ride at 110 km/s, trek to top most hills through deep jungles, following treks which never existed.
No doubts its always easire and funny with navigator like shubhu.

Kailash said...

It was a true pleasure to be able to share the entire experience with u and Arun. Like you rightly said "words cannot do justice to the beauty that is....coorg". The pictures themselves do a whole lot of talking. And one clarification that i would like to make is Arun didnot stop before we reached the peak only for a breather..... but also to appreciate one of gods works... which was following not to far behind, dressed in red tracks and a white
Looking forward to the next trip!!

Chitrangada said...

nice post n beautiful pics to match wid :)

very descriptive one ..n i like the way u hav written this ..:)

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Aindree Mukherjee said...

Actually i was thinking of going trekking to Thadiyendamol, could you please get me the cost/rent for the stay in the gorgous place you mentioned, including food?

Subhadip said...

Hi Aindree... sure... I can help. Email me at for the details.

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