"Nagamalai" is a one of the many hills of the Male Mahadeshwara Betta (M M hills) range . Nagamalai and surrounding areas served home to the sandalwood bandit Veerappan some time back. After his death, these areas are safe to visit. This place is considered sacred, since here, the rock resembles a shiva linga sheltered from the sun rays under the hood of a snake. This rock is said to be of Lord Mahadevaswamy doing his penance. A snake opened its hood and stood behind the Lord in order to protect him from the sun light. Over time, both of them turned into rocks.
On Saturday evening., we decided to go to M M hills. We called a friend of ours who stays close by to Kolegal and inquired about the place. On Sunday morning, after visiting his farms, we headed towards M M hills (about 60 kms from Hannur).Around 10 am , we reached M M hills. After visiting the famous temple of Lord Mahadeshwara, we headed towards the Papanasini lake.Then we asked him what are the other places to visit around . He said that there are five peaks with a temple in each of the peaks and the peaks had unique rock formations, like the Nagamalai (Snake shaped rock ), Rudraskshimalai (Bachelor's button (flower) shaped rock) , etc .
Nagamalai is the closest from MM Hills which can be reached after a trek of about 7 kms. After some discussion, we jumped into a jeep going towards to Nagamalai. After travelling about 5 kms, we reached the start place of the trek. Since many were visiting this scared place, we had company. We started our trek and had to cross 6 to 7 hills to reach Nagamalai. The scenery throughout our trek was beautiful.
|Initial Trek Path|
|The Lovely Landscape|
|View of the Cauvery Basin|
After walking for about 6 kms, we reached a village . This supposedly is the last village we come across on the way to Nagamalai. The food has to be ordered here while trekking up and we did the same. Heading towards our destination, we finally made it to the temple after having trekked 7 kms.
|The Village and the Hills|
|Home Sweet Home|
|Trishula near the Temple|
|View from the Top|
After enjoying the amazing views, we decided to rest for some time. We started our descent and reached the village where we had ordered lunch. We had to wait for some time for the food to be served. After the very much needed lunch, we headed back to the starting point of the trek. A shepherd boy cautioned us about elephants crossing over. They had spotted some. We were excited about the chances of spotting an elephant. Unfortunately, they seemed to have found their way deep into the forest. From the start point of the trek we took a jeep back to the MM Hills.
|Elephants went this way|
Altogether, a wonderful place to experience trekking amidst the deciduous forest. Though the trek is an easy one, one's stamina is tested for sure. There is well laid path all along. It is advisable to carry drinking water. Food has to be pre-ordered or carried. The Karnataka Forest Dept. arranges for treks to various hills in the MM range(Mystery Trails).Directions from Bangalore : Bangalore- Maddur - Kolegal - Hannur - MM hills
Distance from Bangalore: 225 kms
Places around to visit : Hogenakkal Falls , Bandallidurga Fort , various peaks for trekking
Trip date : 12 ,13 Sept 2009