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Getting High on Republic Day

Well, don’t get me wrong. Irrespective of the fact that Republic Day is a Dry Day, we still managed to get high high on adrenaline, high on brotherhood, high on altitude and high on JOSH.

The occasion: 71st Republic Day of India, on 26 January 2020. The event: One Day Bike Ride Trip to Devarayana durga, Tumkur, Karnataka, under the aegis of Bangalore Trekking Club (BTC).

Waking up at 4 am to get ready for the Day long Bike Ride to Devarayanadurga didn’t deter anyone of the riders. It started off with all 11 of us gathering at Goraguntepalya for a small intro by the BTC Organizing member Ramesh KC, flagging off the ride. The early morning chill notwithstanding (well, it was really chilly, sending severs down the spine), we headed towards our destination. A Breakfast Break beckoned and we settled at Shree Vrindhavan Veg Restaurant, 45 kms off our Falg-off point, for a high-on-taste Idli Vadaa Dosa fest and piping hot cup of Coffee. The “Pet Puja” taken care of, the gang took off for the destination.

Cruising along the smooth roads, we reached Namada Chilume, almost 60 kms from our starting point. Namada Chilume is a natural spring situated 6 kms short of Devarayanadurga, where you can see water emerging from the surface of the rock and flowing away. It is believed that Rama, along with Sita and Lakshmana, stayed here during their exile in the forest. Rama searched for water to apply Tilak to his forehead. When he could not find any water, he shot an arrow at the rock. The arrow penetrated the rock, made a hole, and the water came out. Namada Chilume means "Spring of Tilak". The place is well maintained by the Forest Department and one can
spend a good time just sitting & chilling around under the shades.

Thereafter we made our way along the hair pin bends uphill towards Devarayanadurga on the top. Parking our bikes, we climbed up the stairs to reach Shree Yoga Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy Temple and the adjoining Temple pond. After spending some time chit chatting and getting to know each other, not to mention clicking some memorable photos, we descended. Before we forget the place, let me mention that the view from the top was breathtaking, from all sides. Cool breeze added to the sense of romance once can feel atop the hill.

After spending some quality time taking in the beauty of the place and clicking some more photographs, the bikers came down. The hill gave enough opportunity to the bikers to hone their hill riding skills, while maneuvering the innumerable hairpin bends. Adding icing to the cake were the excellent road & the surrounding view. After visiting the Rama temple downhill,

with the Sun up and the heat draining out the body fluids, we refueled ourselves to fresh sugarcane juices before heading off to Irakasandra Tank Lake, 15kms off Devarayanadurga. The lake is fairly large with rocky terrain& boulders on one side and plain land on another. We ventured out on our bikes to both the sides, doing some off-roading too. After spending a good amount of time, cooling our heels (literally) in the lake waters and having some fun time with each other (not to mention some cool photographs that we clicked of each other), it was our
journey back.

The return journey was the true riding experience, riding or rather cruising along the beautifulroads, passing through villages and forests, lonely stretches and some crowded  streets. The bikers reached Udupi Grand Restaurant to refuel, aka Lunch. After feasting on the South Indian Thaalis, the “Dil” still asked for more. Off to Vishwa Shanti Ashram, located at Arishinakunte in Neelmangala Taluk, appx 20 kms from Bangalore. The Ashram provided a calm atmosphere and a quiet Prayer Hall, enough to fall asleep after the sumptuous lunch. Nonetheless, still high on spirits and few more photographs later, it was time for some hot cup of coffee and to bid bye to the fellow bikers on the 175 km long trip. A feedback session later and everyone thanking
Ramesh KC for his excellent coordination and organizing skills, we zoomed off to our respective locations.

The trip provided an excellent opportunity to come together, learn the nuances of riding in group following the group guidelines, share life stories, visit & see new places and overall get a fresh perspective of life. While riding at high speeds on a highway, one is truly into the elements of the Nature and the wind in the face (well, not really, given the fact that there are helmets covering the head) literally gives you a high like nothing else. For the more curious souls, there are unknown people, unknown cultures and unknown places to explore during the trip.

Well, this is just the beginning of an endless journey... hunger still on for all the bikers, to come together sometime soon and explore another place. Another place, another time, one common factor  Bangaloretrekkingclub , the catalyst. Till then, keep riding, keep getting high on life.

Written By      : Bikash Das
Organized By  : Ramesh KC
Date of event : 26th Jan, Sunday 2020
Place              : Devarayana Durga, Tumkur
Pictures          : BTC FB Page

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