Trek to Rayakottai Fort
Call of the hill beckoned the restless BTCians again. Dinesh and Aravindh sent the weekend temptations across on a busy Tuesday, it was a trek to rayakottai fort. The fort is situated within the town of Rayakottai which is one of the ancient fortress in the Krishnagiri district. It is now one of the protected monument by the Archaeological Survey of India.In the 18th century Hyder Ali and Tipu sultan ruled this fort. The fort was captured by Major Gowdie during the third Anglo-Mysore War in 1791. According to the Treaty of Srirangapatna, this fort came into the hands of the British.
It was projected to be cloudy, perfect for trekking, no wonder the registrations closed within a few hours.Me, Sravya and amreen boarded the SBC 56514 at bypanhalli and joined the rest of the group who had managed to occupy seats in a very crowded train. Following BTC traditions, we broke the ice with a game of dumb charades, only we were guessing the names of the trekkers; and we managed to get them all right !! Trekking is known to stimulate brain cells after all. An hour and a half flew by in no time and we off boarded at rayakottai railway station. The hill , clearly visible from station was a sight to behold.
Ready to trek
We decided to conserve our energy and instead of walking 2 kms to the hill, decided to cram into two very small Autos,(in the process, we might have set the record for most adults crammed into a rickshaw).
Stuffing into the record books
Dinesh infact was part tollywood hero, barely hanging on to the auto with the entirety of his body outside the moving vehicle. Its possible that this act of dare devilry was meant to motivate us. Whatever the reason, we managed to reach the base of the hill in 10 mins or so post passing through rayakottai town. It was unfortunately, quite hot. The MET department lived up to its reputation of predicting the weather wrong. Post the customary photo at the base , we began the trek with anirudh trailing and Dinesh leading. The group split up almost immediately, that afforded the ones at the back to get some interesting shots.
Pointing to the destination
The path is mostly Rocky with a decent bit of vegetation and cover along the way. All along the route, one can find remnants of the once glorious rayakottai fort.
After a trek of about 30 mins or so, we reached a temple located within the rock cave. It was pretty cool in the shade and the amreen and sonia decided to use the time rebuke Dinesh for not providing their phone number early during the registration phase. Photo sessions obviously followed.
After 15 mins or so, we set on the path again. The fort remains provided decent resting spots from the merciless sun and some time to get some landscape shots in as well.
After about 1.5 hours of trek, we reached the hill top. It was beautiful sight with complete 360 degree view. Some dozed off, others explored the hill top.
A series of photo sessions ensued and it was time for BTC lunch potluck already. We managed to locate a crevice atop the hill and make ourselves comfortable within. Veg pulao, coconut rice, egg sandwiches, curd rice and host of other delicacies made their way around and we’re gorged upon after the reasonably tiresome trek.
The hungry bunch
Post the lunch, it was time for the most fun part of the day, the ping pong game; a rather complex game comprising of exchanging and assuming identities of other BTCians present at the stop , calling out random identities and singing a song/ dancing in case of a miss. This led to rather hilarious name restructuring.. anirudh became un-read, tauqeer became tihar …latha even managed to introduce hypothetical BTCian into the group by the name of Pavan. Dance session by amreen , rendition of a nursery rhyme by shravya and dialogue delivery from latha ..all were hilarious and fun to watch.
It was already approaching 2 p.m and we had only 20 mins to spare for the last round of photography sessions. In the never ending quest to find the perfect spot to take photographs, BTCians managed to locate interesting view frame points for the perfect shot. Some even risked their life sitting on rock face hundreds of feet above the ground. Others went further up the hillock to get better background view.
Overall a fantastic trek was nearing the end; barring the sunny weather none had any other complaints. The trek down took barely 45 mins and all us were back to bangalore by 6.30 p.m. Another wonderful end to the weekend.