Thursday, 2 January 2014

Nagarhole, call of the wild

Dear 2014,

 I am really happy that you have finally arrived.I was waiting for you for sometime, as you are expected to come to me with some goodies - new aspirations, new hopes, new bunch of sick/casual leaves. But I want one more thing from you. As you know I am very very fond of my readers, so I want you to shower my dear readers with good health, love and of course a bag-full of travels.

 I hope all my readers and we have a good time with you.
 Happy New Year 2014

 Loads of affection,
 Soma and Ankur


  Reminiscing all our last year travels, we realized that we had been to some of the most beautiful places. So to bid a decent goodbye to 2013, we decided that a trip to Nagarhole will do justice. The good thing about Nagarhole is that it has never disappointed us. So we have developed some soft corner for this place in our heart.

Last time we saw a bear, this time a pack of ... 

  In-case you are interested in the route and all please go through my previous blog here.

  Nothing much has changed, only the road from Hunsur to Nagarhole has now become better. A lot of homestays has come up in Kutta, though we preferred to stay at the same homestay that of Mr Narendra Pattu's.

  The first thing the we saw on entering the forest checkpost was a beautiful kingfisher. We were just a few metres inside the park when I spotted this beauty sitting pretty on a branch. Ankur stopped the car, we took a few pictures and moved on. Next some more metres inside we saw a big family crossing the road. There was father boar,mother boar, aunt boar, uncle boar, brother boar, sister boar and baby boar. By the time I had my camera ready they had vanished from the frame.


White throated kingfisher
 We were driving very slowly when Ankur spotted a female plum headed parakeet. After that a bunch of parakeets flew screeching over us. Since it was afternoon, not much of birds or animals were sighted. We were a little down.
Last time we saw so many deer, sambhar and gaurs....where were they now? Thankfully a herd of deer cheered us up. We were soon driving past them towards our homestay.


Plum headed parakeet

  On reaching Mr Pattu's homestay, we freshened up, had our lunch and decided to visit the Iruppu falls before taking the 3:30PM safari. Iruppu falls is roughly 15 Km from Kutta(place where we stayed) and the fall looks heavenly.


Iruppu Falls

  We were back to the National Park safari counter before 3:30 PM(the evening safari timing starts from 3:30 PM). There were more people than usual who had come for the safari. The reason was the temporary cancellation of morning safari due to the national tiger census.

  Safari was okay. We saw plenty of spotted deer, few sambar deer, langur, malabar squirrels and a lone tusker. After getting down from the safari bus both of us wanted to have a short drive inside the forest before heading back to our homestay.


Langoor Mom and Kid

I want some too. :)

Spotted Deer

Sambar

Malabar giant squirrel

  We drove almost a kilometre when we suddenly saw some animals at a distance. We slowed our car and then we saw something interesting. It was a pack of wild dogs. There were about eight of them and they were sitting in the shade and panting maybe because of the evening heat.


Wild Dog
  The next day morning we took a stroll inside Mr Pattu's coffee garden. The coffee trees were full of red beans. Morning is the time for birds. We saw at least 30 different species of birds, most of which we could not identify. Well I am still in learning phase.. :) Among the ones, we could identify, were racked tail drongo, ordinary drongo, plum headed parakeet, crimson backed sunbird, coppersmith barbet, asian koel, minivet, asian fairy, orioles, bulbuls, rose ringed parakeet.


Crimson backed sunbird

White cheeked barbet

Rufous Treepie

Coppersmith barbet

Coppersmith barbet

Crimson backed sunbird

Asian Fairy

Plum headed parakeet

Racket tailed drongo
Coffee seed
  After a hearty breakfast we set off for Bangalore. Since we had to take the road inside the National Park, this time we saw some action.....Yes the same pack of wild dogs that we saw the day before was on hunting spree. We had to drive at a very very slow pace since the pack was on the road.They walked at least half a kilometre before us on the road, before finally chasing a wild boar and disappearing into the forest. We were amazed by the coordination of their hunt. As the pack moves forward, a random few  will go little inside the bushes dettaching a little from the main pack, sniffing along their path and then again aligning themselves with the pack.


Pack of wild dogs in hunting spree

  Ankur has a good eye for birds as well. He was quick to spot a beautiful black rumped flameback woodpecker. I wanted to photograph this bird for a very long time; finally my wish came true. He also spotted a beautiful cuckoo enjoying its early catch of the day. I spotted some babblers. Sightings of hill myna, bee eater and paradise flycatcher followed. 


greater flameback woodpecker

Babbler

Cuckoo

Hill mayna
  When you see a lot of wild animals your expectations also go up. Similar thing happened with me too. I was hoping fervently to catch a glimpse of a leopard but soon I realized that we had reached the exit checkpost of the forest.

23 comments:

  1. Thoroughly enjoyed the post...amazing clicks...thanks :)

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    Replies
    1. Thank you very much Anuraag. It was a real pleasure to know that you loved the photographs.

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  2. Replies
    1. Thank you very much R Niranjan Das. We're really glad that you liked the photographs.

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  3. These are awesome shots...This place is on our list of places to see now! You guys have a real knack for picture clicking...check out our blog and let us know if you would like to write a guest post for us :)

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  4. very detailed and attractive shots

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thank you so much...we are glad that you liked the photos :)

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  5. Beautiful Pics im planning to go there soon with my camera and equipment. Can you suggest me something related to safari and all. I mean is the safari organized by Forest department good?

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    Replies
    1. Thanks...
      The forest department has the usual bus safaris,but on request you can book a jeep safari as well.
      A jeep safari will cost you 3000 bucks but is worth.

      Delete
  6. Hi,

    Nice account and lovely pictures, ended here from indiamike.

    Also, the Rufous Magpie should be Rufous Treepie and the Black-rumped Flameback looks like Greater Flameback to me :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Santosh,

      Thanks a ton for correcting the bird's name. I am really happy that you liked our blog.
      On a slightly different note, I also came across your blog today and found it amazing.......admire every click that you have taken :)

      Delete
  7. Hi ..amazing pictures!! What camera do you generally use. Here I assume you have used a telephoto lens?

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    Replies
    1. Hi Manjot, thanks....we generally use Canon 550D, 5D Mark III and an all purpose SX 50 HS
      yes we do use telephoto lens

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  8. Hello Ankur and Soma, We are new to Bangalore(arrived just a month ago). I was searching for the NNP and after some two hours on net, I gave up, as it only showed up the most expensive ways of visiting NNP. Luckily I stumbled on your blog and found that NNP can be visited in pocket friendly ways also. Your blog will be my source for South Sojourns!
    You suggested that we can request for a jeep safari as well. CAn you elaborate a little about it like where to hire the jeep, is request accepted normally and like that.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I don't know why it is not letting me select my profile. Btw, I am Jaishree Khamesra, who wrote the above comment.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jaishree
      thanks and nice to know that you found our blog useful.
      You can go for a government jeep safari as that is the cheapest and best, but however there are a few constraints.
      First is you need to shell out around 2500 for booking a jeep which can accomodate 4 people comfortably.
      The safari duration is also 45 mins to 1 hour, so its basically not very cheap, but better than the other options.

      Secondly the forest department has only one jeep. I am not sure if recently they have added some more.
      But because of this there is a huge demand.On weekends I have seen people waiting for 3 hours to book
      that sole jeep. So best is to go on weekdays and try your luck.

      Happy journey!

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  10. Hello Ankur and Soma,
    Such fascinating blogs on Nagarhole National Park, I was just glues to it. Just a few quick queries:
    1. How far is the Entry Gate of NNP (from where the Safari Tickets are available) from Mr. Puttu's Homestay (in which we plan to stay)? i.e. whether we shall be able to take the Morning Safari?
    2. Can you update the present rate/person in the Homestay (in your previous blog I find that as 900/per person/day, inclusive of everything in 2013)? Of course it has risen by now.
    Thank You
    Shankha
    Kolkata

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    Replies
    1. Hi Sankha, thanks so much...really appreciate your compliments!!
      1. The Safari gate is inside the National Park....from mr Pattu's homestay its almost 2.5 kms
      Yes you will be able to take the morning safari, but you need to have a car to reach upto the safari booking counter.
      Also the NP gate opens at 6 AM, so you need to start early from Mr Pattu's homestay.

      2. I am not aware of the present rate, but I think its over 1K per person.
      Maybe you can call him up for the latest rate.

      Happy Journey!

      Delete

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