Some trips change perspectives - New Year’s eve 2015: Part I03 Jan 2016
On the day before new year’s eve a couple of friends from work invited me on a road trip. I said yes.
The year 2015 just ended, and the end I must say was spectacular. Every new year’s eve since the last few I’ve always had grand plans which always fell through. When NYE 2015 rolled over, I figured it would be a slow night, hanging out with my mate and nothing more. But on the day before new year’s eve a couple of friends from work invited me on a road trip. I said yes.
I did not know the destination, how many days the trip would last and I had no idea what the budget for this would be, but I said yes anyway for the heck of it and boy am I glad that I did because on this trip as I got to see some of the most beautiful vistas I’d ever seen, drive on amazing roads and meet some truly wonderful people. I’m breaking this up into 2 parts as even though the trip was over the span of only 2 and a half days, I feel putting it all into one post would make it far too long.
We started early at 6:30 in the morning and headed out towards Coorg on NH275, only stopping for breakfast on the outskirts of Bangalore. The road was exceptional, getting twistier and twistier as we got closer to Mysore.
The road was well paved with very few rough spots anywhere. Since we wanted to get to Coorg and find a place of stay, we bypassed Mysore and instead headed out straight to the Coorg valley. Once there, we made a few calls and found a homestay house to stay the night in. The concept of homestay was an interesting one, where coffee estate owners lent out rooms in their houses to visitors. They also included home cooked breakfast and dinner in the stay. The decision to stay here instead of a hotel in one of the larger towns was validated once we saw the view from the patio of our room.
The homeowners were very welcoming and their hospitality was great, especially their coffee. Once with we got some rest and got fresh, we enquired about some of the places to visit around the area. They told us about a waterfall close by which was next to a popular trekking trail. After having lunch we headed out to the waterfall and started the hike.
The hike was pretty fun as once we got to the top of the waterfall, we decided to explore around a little more and came across an abandoned temple. There was complete silence around and it looked like no one had visited it in years. There were hills surrounding us from all sides and a large field expansively lay out from under the temple. The whole place gave an aura of tranquility and calmness. It was eerily beautiful.
After staying there for a little longer, we went back to the waterfalls and started to explore the roads around. Driving up a dilapidated road we came to the base of one of the tallest hills in the area. Asking one of the people there, we were told that our car couldn’t go any further but we can hike up to the base of the hill and climb to the top of it. The road ahead was pretty rocky and we couldn’t see very far ahead, so once we got out of the natural boulevard we were completely unprepared for the view that was in front of us.
That day, I had a new found respect for all those who have climbed the tallest mountains in the world.
On our left was the high peak of a hill which we had our eyes on all day long climbing the waterfall and in whose shadow the abandoned temple lay. All around us was a thick forest but a grassy knoll stretched out all the way to the top of the peak. On the right was an even taller and steeper peak which stood majestically casting a gigantic shadow on the little valley in which we stood. Seeing as the sun was setting we decided on climbing the shorter hill as we wanted to see the sunset from one of the tallest points in the entire area.
That day, I had a new found respect for all those who have climbed the tallest mountains in the world. We were exhausted by the time we were halfway up the peak, panting for each breath, every step harder than the last one. I had to stop constantly to get some rest before resuming the journey to the top again. Alas, after trying for a while, I had to stop a little short of the top as I was completely out of breath and it was clear that the sun would set by the time we reached the peak, so we stopped a little short of the actual peak. But the view that lay in front of us was astounding.
The picture I took does little justice to landscape that we could see from the top. The hills went rolling all around us, as far as the eyes could see. Only the tops of the hills around us was visible as the clouds were covering everything up, giving a misty look to the entire vista. A slight breeze flowing on top and the sun setting far away in the west. The entire scenery was simply beautiful. That was the most calm and serene I felt up until that point of time and thought this was the best possible way to end the year 2015.
That’s it for this post. I could not have asked for a better way for the year to end, a road trip with amazing friends who did not mind just sitting quietly and soaking up the view in front of them, but with whom I could have endless arguments about a plethora of different topics. They really made this road trip.
What I didn’t expect was that the next day would end in an even higher note. An amazing end to an amazing year which I hope will continue to become tradition.