Fixing a flat tyre on a forest road was indeed an exciting start, as we continued our journey we saw a herd of wild elephants. We heaved a sigh of relief and thanked our stars that we had not encountered them when we were fixing the tyres. It was a treat to watch the mother nudge its baby to follow the herd. The adorable baby elephant captured our attention by its playful antics as we drove as slowly as possible. The winding roads lead us to a paradise which looked like a perfect collage of an artist with tea estates interspersed with small springs and pockets of huge trees. Nature is indeed a great artist, one needs to look around to appreciate it.
As we reached our resort we refreshed and set out we set out to the Pookote Lake, a sparkling fresh water lake bordering a forest .A boat ride in this lake is a surreal experience where you feel you are in heaven. I am at loss of words to describe this stunning scenery. One can even chose to walk around the lake and savor its beauty.
The next day we were woken up by the melodious call of the Malabar whistling thrush, we set out on a trek to the Edakkal caves .The name “Edakkal” literally means “a stone in between”, it is a cave formed by a heavy boulder balancing a fissure in the rock. The prehistoric rock etchings found on the walls of these caves are really fascinating. With at least three distinct sets of petroglyphs, the earliest thought to date back over 5000 years, it is assumed that the Edakkal caves had been inhabited at various stages in history. We tried to decipher some writings which were cryptic indeed .Light enters the cave through a big gap between the two stones. Local legends say that the caves were formed by arrows fired by Lava and Kusha, the sons of Lord Rama hence known as Ambukuthimala. It is believed that Lord Rama killed Surpanaka, the sister of Ravana, in this cave. Many episodes of the Ramayana seemed to have happened here.
It suddenly started raining when we were inside the cave, for a moment we were transported to the prehistoric era where only caves existed. As the down pour stops we started to hear the chirping of the birds. We sighted a beautiful Black lored tit feeding on an insect. Though the bird was wet it concentrated on its prey, unlike humans who would have preferred to dry themselves when food could wait for them.
As we came down the hill we kept our ears alert, Silence pervaded all along only to be interrupted by the pecking sound of the woodpecker, this sound alleviates a birders heart to a different level. Pecking all along the tree the greater flameback continued to climb up.
The shy Indian scimitar babbler made its appearance to disappear among the trees. A stunning scarlet minivet pair makes one wonder at the wide array of colors in birds.
Winding up our trip I promise myself to come back and spend more time in this setting which offered a peek into history, mythology and birding. I wonder what surprise is in store for me on my next trip.
How to get there
The distance between Wayanad and Coorg is 94 kms , Takes about 2 hours drive from the Club Mahindra resort in Coorg .
Picture credits Kannan A.S
This blog has been published in the Club Mahindra blog :http://www.clubmahindrablog.com/amidst-nature-in-wayanad