MakaliDurga Hills: One Day Trek From Bangalore

Written by : Shashank Vissom

Trekking, for some is a passion, for most is a get away from the reality. The harsh reality this world possesses. Yet, against all the odds, against all the entities in this eccentric world, we always find ways to find calm in the chaos. In brief, we humans are in this constant search for a little “me” time amidst the life that we life. We’ll there is some positivity burst towards the reader. This little getaway which is about 70 kilometers from Bangalore Central is the place you all need.

History:

According to the legend, Makalidurga is a hill fort, mostly ruins, is located near a small village which the hill is named after. It is well known around the village for its Shiva Temple at the summit. As the ancient history suggests, It is also infamous for Markandeya Rishi to have performed his final Penance at this very location. The ruins of the fort also belonged to the rulers of the Vijayanagar Empire in the late 1600’s mainly to train the army. This hill was formed by hillocks of granite rock and its sediments which makes it harder to trek upon as there are huge slippery boulders. Standing tall at 1120 meters, Makalidurga does have a mesmerizing view all around. It is also popularly known for night treks amongst most Bangalorean’s. It is intriguing of how quite this paradise is. There are hardly any people around and this adobe to calmness is what most getaways truly mean.

The Journey:

One way trip to Makalidurga is about 60 kilometers from Bangalore, one must admit, the road which leads to this foothills is a journey not to be forgotten. Newly built roads make this trip easier. It is also advisable that one should travel to the base of the hills via a vehicle as the nearest commute is about 2 kilometers away, Makalidurga Railway Station. There is plenty of room for the travelers to park their vehicles in an open car park. However, the other alternative route to reach the foothold of Makalidurga is by Train travel. This also includes a 2 kilometer walk on the train tracks. The location on Google Maps is on point and would lead us to the exact location of the foot hills, irrespective to the mode we choose to travel.

Parking

The trails starts from the temple at the bottom as soon as we cross the railway track. This trek requires prior permission from forest department, it is recommended to either go with registered trekking company or take help from local guide.

Further, the trail continues with hard climbs. There are enough signs to lead the way and there is zero possibility of loosing direction to the peak and back. There are also a few local guides who reach the peak often in the day just to help trekkers. One can also follow these good Samaritans for directions.

Breeze this view brings, the joy it carries, It just makes up stop for a moment and wonder, WE ARE LIVING

Halfway through the exhausting patch of this trail, there is this impeccable view of the waterway “Gundamagere Lake” which is just the right amount of peace one requires after a hard climb. We are living in this robot world, this beauty is really a medicine to most who just need to feel the nature’s calm. One can be assured that most part of the hard climb for this trail is complete and the peak is not far away.

The peak offers ruins of an old fort and surprisingly, these destructed walls still do hold some significance. The opening towards the peak is like a gateway to heaven which makes me feel that we are witnessing history today and these shattered walls still do hold some stories of past. Maybe our ancestral forefathers ruled this particular place, maybe we ourselves have ruled this place, conquered this fort in the past. The only answer to that is very hypothetical in the form of a time machine. Perhaps we might find out someday. All these thoughts revolve as we reach the peak as these ruins really look like they are trying to communicate with us trekkers about the past. Nevertheless, the peak itself is magical. It is surrounded by lush greenery, foggy weather and an artistic view of the highway which ironically is very small. One such suggestion is when we reach the peak, take the load off you, sit at peace and enjoy the calm for a few seconds. Those few seconds, we should realize the hardship we face every climb. ” There is always this satisfaction and realization” of why we are doing this is simply what one should think of at the peak. It changes the whole perspective.

The Entrance to the peak -These walls constantly try to tell us some history of the ruins.

Recommendations:

  1. Plan in advance and do enough research before coming on the trail. It should be a must for every trail as it helps us better understand these mountains.
  2. Trek is Moderate, hence affable amount of physical and mental exercise is necessary to conquer the peak. The trekking distance is about 4 kilometers and an average trekker would approximately take 3 hours to reach the peak.
  3. As the best time to summit this trail is in the month of December – February, sufficient amount of fluids needs to be taken care of as none of the mentioned are available at the peak.
  4. Makalidurga Hills is an integral part of the Dodballapur Forest Department, there are a few sightings of Wild animals on top due to which night trekking is banned, however, only with proper guidelines one should plan their hike.
  5. Safety should be given at most importance, always help fellow trekkers at any given circumstance.