Bike Ride: Germalam Monastery and Dhimbam Ghats

This used to be and maybe is still my favorite route. While the Kanakpura stretch is slowly being turned into a boring stretch and the Mallavalli-Shivasamudram stretch is already widened and rendered monotonous.

Yet this route is still one of the best day rides around Bangalore. It has ample sunrise opportunities on the lakes adjoining the Kanakpura Road, there is early morning breakfast at Vasu’s, there are fields around Kollegal and Chamrajanagar, then there are hills of Dhimbam ghats and finally when you are tired at the end of the day, there is a straight stretch of road home. Nothing beats the all-in-one nature of this route.

So early Oct, in my quest to get to 5K Km on the D250 off I went on a morning ride.

First stop, double idli and double coffee at Vasu’s.

Then the sunrise on the highway.

A little down the road, I veered off the highway to watch the sun rise over the fields and take some pictures.

The little red house on the Malavalli-Shivasamudram stretch. I discovered this on one of the previous ride on this route. Fortunately it is a little inside from the road of the road widening would have ruined the view.

Weeds glowing in the sun.

Cauvery river from the Satthegala Bridge

At Kollegal I turned left and then right towards Germalam. This may be my last ride to the Dhondenling Monastery. The road ahead through the forest seems to be closed to two wheelers on weekend. Thanks to the youth who comes and drinks around in the jungle creating ruckus.

Drogchen Monastery

Posing in the corn fields around the monastery.

View of the Tibetan settlement.

After roaming around the settlement a bit, I moved on towards Dhimbam ghats.

Forest check post where I was stopped. The guard required a bit of persuasion to let me through. Makes me wary of coming down this road again, since its a long way to go back and go via the alternate route.

A poser.

View from the top of Dhimbam ghat.

And the Bannari temple at the bottom.

Crossing the Cauvery river.

At Salem, I stopped for lunch at the Selvi Mess and then the sprint back home.

Ride Month : Oct 2020
Distance : ~560Km

Canine Adventures – Driving with Lily: Day 3

This was the most surprising day of all. I had always known that there is a Tibetan settlement in North Karnataka and wanted to go there. Yet I never bothered to look up the exact location and plan a ride.

And voila, Mundgod falls en-route.

Except for the light streaming in from the window, it was a peaceful night. I slept though most of it. Perhaps it was due to the full stomach.
Left early in the morning as wanted to reach Bangalore early.
Most of the route goes through dense jungles and fields – which was a pleasure to drive through. This one deserves a bike ride.
A little later I started seeing Buddhist monks walking down the road. It then dawned on me that the Tibetan settlement of North Karnataka was somewhere nearby.
Stopping I asked a young monk about any monastery nearby. And he pointed em straight down the road.
Entrance to one of the monasteries.
Gaden Jangtse Monastic University
An old man enjoying the company of his phone. Technology hasn’t spared anyone.
Two young monks carrying a kettle of tea. Seeing the kettle raised high hope, only to find that it was empty.
As I left Mundgod behind, the jungle started all over again.
Lily taking a break at one of the stops.
Peacock in the jungle. Surprisingly Lily did not back.
A sweeping panorama on the way
The road was mostly jungle and rural till it reached Bankapura and joined NH4.
From there it was 350Km of straight highway to home.
I stopped once for lunch. Walked Lily in the field behind the dhabha.
Later reached home for late afternoon nap.