This post is written by our Guest Blogger Vaishnavi Rao.
Nijagal Betta is one of the hillocks just in the outskirts of Bangalore, nearby Dabaspet on the way to Tumkur from Bangalore. The total distance for Nijagal Trek is around 4 km. Trek difficulty can be rated as 1 on 10. Fairly easy and a good option for a beginner. It is said that the place has a lot of medicinal plants. And it is also said that even breathing the air around here can cure some problems!
It so happened that one day my friends and I decided that we had to spend some quality time with each other outside lab hours. I was an Intern at one of the research labs in one of the best institutes in India. My friends happen to be my seniors(researchers). Our gang was as big as 10 explorers. These are some of the most insightful people I have met! It was my first trek with them and I was looking forward for it with all excitement.
It was planned that we would go by Tempo Traveler at 6 am till the base of hillock and come back in that vehicle. Alas! God had a different plan for us and thus begins our adventure! At around 7 am we left for the Yeshwanthpur bus stop and took a bus to Nijagal. After some convincing and cajoling the conductor agreed to give us a stop just at base of the Nijagal.
Usually it’s advised that we travel light during treks but even before we started our stomachs started to growl. Luckily, we spotted a Kamat hotel just opposite to this hillock. After pacifying the hunger, it was around 9 when we set out on our trek.
All we knew was to follow the electric poles to reach the top. The path was mostly muddy and was fairly inclined. We could easily cover the muddy path. We stopped after some distance to click pictures and pose to selfies. The breeze was cool and relaxing. With each passing breath, we could feel our mind and body calming down.
Soon we resumed ascending. After a while we all stopped to drink some water. But the monkeys around were waiting to grab anything that came out of the bag. Hiding from the monkeys we took our sips and continued further.
Next we came to a cave and it was so cold inside. Similar to the feeling when you get as soon as you enter an air-conditioned hall from outside. We took few steps and much to our dismay, we found no exit. It seemed like a dead end. No poles to follow. We looked everywhere, as ardent explorers tried to find new paths to reach further up, but we didn’t find any! Inside the cave, we saw a temple, a darga and a pool of water.
We tried to estimate the depth of pool by throwing a stone inside and calculating the time it needs to reach the bottom (Don’t blame me, I told you I was with a team of researchers). We didn’t want to take the risk of getting into the deep pool. We limited ourselves to washing our faces. Then, someone from the team seemed to have found the way up further through the Darga. The most challenging part was that our shoes didn’t support us. They were mostly slipping. And in such places, you don’t want to take risk. You never know what can happen the very next moment. I promptly removed my shoes, and climbed up. Bare foot gives you more grip.
And finally, we reached the top. We celebrated by eating chocolates. The stone was surprisingly cold. The heat of sun didn’t seem to influence on it much. After spending some time discussing random stuff which was mostly about experiments, current events, train timings, eateries etc. we began our downward journey. We even went to a temple which was in ruins. Someone in our team could even see a Shiva Murthy.
Truly satisfied with our experience, we reached Kamat again to have lunch around 1.00 pm. Lunch seemed tastier than ever. Treating our taste buds with the yummy milkshake was the best.
Next thing on mind was how do we reach the nearest bus stop? Whichever way we took, it was more than a kilometer. We clearly didn’t want to walk in the scorching heat. We decided to take autos. But surprisingly God seemed to show mercy on us. Just as we walked out, a bus seemed to slow down. We ran to the bus and got in. We were highly elated and realizing how smoothly things fell in place without much effort. It was only later we realized that bus driver had slowed down to notice an accident that happened just few yards away from where we stood. And just like that another adventure of ours came to an end. On the way up the mountain, we spent lot of time in getting to know each other, we discussed our interests etc. May be this is what they mean when they say journey is more worthy that the destination.
And as I hit the sack that night thinking of the adventurous day we had, I can’t help but hope to have another one soon!
Vaishnavi Rao is an engineer from Bangalore who will soon be pursuing her Masters. She loves to travel, trek and explore new places.
Hope you loved reading through Nijagal trek experience of Vaishnavi. Explore some of the other places near Bangalore where there are plenty of options to trek! Some of our other trek diaries that you might like to read are Savandurga and Makalidurga.