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Another weekend, Another BTC Trek: Ramdevra Betta

The alarm rang at 5:15, it was Independence Day & I got up and got ready for the special trek. The reporting time was 6:45. I was already excited when I caught a metro to Majestic where everyone was supposed to meet. My thoughts were wandering places, to the last trek and how good it was, to the present one and what all we could expect. The more I thought, the more excited I became. I knew it would be fun for sure. Finally, I reached Majestic & met Ankit, who immediately sent me to have breakfast. By the time I came back the tickets had been bought and all the people had come. The gang moved to platform 10.
Train Ride: Our train had already arrived at the platform & we got inside one of the compartments. I got into a conversation with Bala aunty (what a wonderful woman she is!). The train started at 7:45. After Veera and Srikant joined us with the rest of the members from Yeshwantpur, we started with a short introduction session and wished each other a Happy Independance Day. Post the intro, Punitha opened a tiffin that got over in seconds. The rest of the time was spent posing for photographs. Quite a fun train ride. We reached our destination around 9:30.
The start: Once the rules were re-iterated, we started the trek with Veera leading us. I got into a conversation with Ankit then.
            Ankit: “Tujhe hua kya, last week bhi trek and iss week bhi (considering I had just come back from Kodachadri the previous night).”
            Me: “Haan! BTC spoilt me I guess.”

As we walked along, it started drizzling but stopped after a while. The climb wasn’t difficult except for a few places. Bala aunty kept motivating and pushing us to keep going. Since I was wearing a blue T-shirt, my name changed from Meghal to “blue t-shirt”..!! Whenever I would stop, someone from behind would shout out loud, “Hey blue t-shirt, walk!” or “Blue t-shirt, kya hua? You fine?” Somewhere in between we stopped where Smriti mesmerized us with her amazing voice. This and a lot more things kept us going till we reached the peak.
The peak has a small pond filled with lotuses flanked by a fortified structure on each side. We stopped at one side and started taking a lot of photographs. While others were still getting their matrimonial profile / DPs clicked, I sat at a peaceful place enjoying the view and the wind. The feeling was so wonderful that it’s difficult to put in words.
12:00 - We decided to have lunch and everyone opened their tiffin’s. I just got a pack of bourbon biscuit and sat in one corner when Veera called me. He took food from everyone and made me eat a lot. We were all sharing food which included uttapam, puri and aalo (waaaah!), roti sabji, rice and sabji, apple, chocolates etc etc. Ankit got poha and had even bribed Smriti to call Srikanth “Uncle” if she wanted some. Hence, as soon as he opened the box, it got over. I hardly got any. Everything was so delicious. I hadn’t eaten like that ever since I came to Bangalore.
Once done with lunch we took some rest for about 15 minutes after which we were to go and explore the place. Just before moving out again, we started singing songs to hike up the tempo of the team. After a couple of patriotic songs that were apt for the occasion with the tri-colour fluttering in the wind, we moved towards the other part of the peak singing “baar baar haan, bolo yaar haan” from Lagaan.
We started climbing and crawling in between thorns and low bushes and more thorns. With the destination (the peak of a huge rock) in mind, All of us went in different directions. A few of us went in the wrong direction and returned with a lot of thorn pricks..!! But the experience was worth it. At least we all had some memory to take back with us, i.e. the cuts made by thorns. I still have it from the last trek. We finally found a safer, less prickly path to the top and let out a sigh of relief once we made it.
The team played a few rounds of dumb charade and then began descending down. Most of participants took the “tree way”, While I took the other way and came down almost sliding in between the rocks. Then we began the descent to the base. Owing to the blazing afternoon sun, most people were pretty fast and were led by Srikanth this time. Though I wanted to go a bit slow and accompanied the slower ones, who were taken care of by Bala Aunty, Veera & Ankit. Whenever I would slip there was someone or the other to help me out, to teach me a few techniques about trekking in between. We had the most awesome company with us.
Those who had reached before us were all monkeying around on a huge banyan tree. The sight of so many people dangling on the branches of a tree, that’s something you don’t see in our busy city life..!! Once all had reached the spot and taken some rest, the monkeys had to give up the race to the top and we started towards the railway station.
On the way, we stopped for sugarcane juice. Oh! What a relief it was to have that after the trek. Totally refreshing. We went to the train station and realized that the next train would arrive at 6:30 which left us with 1.5 hours to kill. For half an hour we had a feedback session and then we were passing time here and there. Srikanth & Ankit got pakoda for us and it finished in a jiffy. It didn’t even last a few minutes. Around 150 pakoda just vanished in thin air..!!
By the time we finished all that, and paid the organizers for the trek (Rs. 60/-, most of us spent more than that to reach majestic that morning...!), it was time for the train. Though the train was packed, we somehow got inside and the fun continued.
We reached Majestic around 8:20 and parted ways promising each other that we would definitely meet again very soon. The trek was indeed wonderful with the best group ever. With a smile on my face, fully satisfied with myself, I came back hoping to join more such treks soon.

Written By      : Meghal Khatri
Photo Credits : Ashish, Naveen, Saroj, Satish, Saurab, Shrinivas
Organized By  : Veera, Srikanth Ankit
Date of event  : 15th August, 2016
Place               : Tumakuru
Members         : 32
Pictures          : BTC FB Page
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