Dudhsagar Trip


      It’s been exactly one year now when we all roomies (Pran, Lokesh, Shrinivas, Vijay, Nishal, Me), Vishwa and Amaresh (friend’s of pran) decided to go for the long pending trip to GOA en route dudhsagar. We planed for this trip long ahead so that friends staying in other states could also take leave. Everyone was excited about the trip as we finally are going to Dudhsagar (got famous recently due to chennai express movie). As 15-Aug-2014 was coming on Friday, we had a long weekend plan set ahead. We made our reservations for train till Hubli junction. We started the journey on Aug-14 from Bangalore station and reached Hubli around 8 AM in the morning. And from there on, we would catch other train till Londa Junction where we met Vijay and Nishal who were travelling from Mumbai and Pune respectively.

At Londa Junction
At Londa Junction

     Once we reached Londa Junction, we decided to take a car to reach Castle Rock station. Before the car was booked, all of them started discussing about drinks rather than searching for the car. As it was 15-Aug, there were no much vehicles available which worked as advantage to the cab drivers who were charging hefty amount. After bargaining, we came to mutual understanding and agreed to pay Rs. 2000. We stopped after few minutes to refresh ourselves and purchase drinks from the store. As expected, the price was high as it was remote area and dry day. It was around 12 PM when we reached Castle Rock and it started to drizzle. As it was Independence Day, Pran was eager to carry Indian flag with him throughout the journey. After searching nearby, he saw a car which hoisted flag on it. He silently moved near the car, stole the flag and hurriedly join the group.

    Castle Rock is the last station that lies within the border of Karnataka. We decided to have food and then start the trek. As we walked to the remote village beside the railway track, rain poured heavily. We somehow managed to reach a small hotel/mess where we have our food. As everyone was hungry, they had food to their heart’s content. It was around 1.30 PM when we started our trek from Castle Rock. The trek from Castle Rock to Dudhsagar is 11 km long which included series of rail tunnels and takes around 6-7 hours to reach Doodhsagar. One of the difficult task was walking on railway tracks. At first, We would not balance right and use to walk in between the tracks but later after walking for about an kilo-meter or so, you start to catch the correct rhythm and start walking comfortably on the tracks.

At Tunnel No. 1
At Tunnel No. 1

       The first tunnel is at quite a distance from Castle Rock Station. We reached  Tunnel #2 shortly after crossing the first tunnel. This is the longest tunnel on the entire stretch which stretches a distance of 2.4 km and resembles the entrance of a church. This tunnel is a bit curved and hence you surely will require a torch to navigate through. It took us around 10-15 minutes to cross this tunnel and the experience was thrilling but scary at the same time. It is really an adrenaline pumping experience to cross such a long tunnel.  As we kept on walking along the railway path, so did the drizzle behind us. It followed us to quite some distance, then we all decided to take a break and refresh ourselves at Tunnel #4. Friends boozed and enjoyed the moment.

      As we resumed, rain stopped completely and which showed the serenity and calmness which lies in forest. There was a waterfall aside one of the tunnels seeing which all of them drenched in it and played near it, it was such a fun watching them enjoying under the waterfall. After an hour or so, we resumed our trek. After Tunnel no.6, lies one of the most scenic rail section – The Viaduct and the tunnel combination (pic below). We were  mesmerized by the sight which we just witnessed. A tunnel was drilled through a huge rock of mountain and a bridge was built just at the exit.

At Tunnel No. 6
At Tunnel No. 6

After crossing four more tunnels, we witnessed the single lined track developing into a double-line. Hence an indication that we were nearing the Dudhsagar Railway Station. A few steps away from the Dudhsagar Station lies the ancient station built by the Portuguese which was called ‘Dudh Sagur“. Just after this station, lies the last and the final tunnel before the very alluring yet mighty powerful Dudhsagar Falls. We were eager to complete this stretch and witness the falls and wanted to know the reason for all the hype which people have created where they say all this trek is worthwhile. Tunnel no. 11 was traversed quickly and we got closer the Dudhsagar Waterfalls Railway Station. After crossing this station, lies the Dudhsagar Falls.

View of the forrest
View of the forrest
     We reached Dudhsagar around 6 PM in the evening. We were afraid we wouldn’t get the proper view and enjoy the scenery as it was late in the evening but we were lucky enough to be at the correct moment. The first glance of the waterfall took my breath away. It was such a awe-inspiring feeling that made all our fatigue go away in a flash. One must visit place like this in their life time which makes you feel like different and refreshing. Even though the falls is bit far from the bridge, the rain droplets were falling on the tracks which didn’t allow me the take pictures near it. I was disappointed as I tried constantly taking pictures from my camera but failed to due to water droplets pouring in. I finally gave up, and my friends took out their mobile phones which captured our wonderful moments. The falls are very much stronger and would pull you in if you try to venture even closer. Hence make a note to view the falls only from the railway bridge and never ever try to go beneath or closer. It is indeed very safe at the railway bridge,We saw many people camping near the tracks and also beside the waterfall, which made us to re-think our plan. But the plan was scheduled and cannot be changed at this moment, so with heavy heart, I agreed.

 

    We planned to reach kulem and from their by train to Goa. As we started to walk back to Dudhsagar station (which is around 600 meters away from the waterfall), a goods train which travels to Kulem was getting heated up. One of the passerby informed us that this is the last train of the day, and is missed we have to be in dudhsagar till morning. Even though we were completely exhausted, we ran in the dark as if there was no tomorrow. I still remember the moment where Me and Vijay were the last guys who were running to catch the train and gave our 200% to catch the train. Amid, Vijay was so exhausted that he couldn’t run and was saying, “I will catch tomorrow’s morning train” but after bucking him up, we finally boarded the last boogie of the train where there is a small cabin for the signal guy. The last picture of the beautiful dudhsagar was taken from the goods train at a spot where in you have to be all set to click a picture which will last only few seconds. Below is one such pic taken by us.
Breathtaking view of Dudhsagar from train
Breathtaking view of Dudhsagar from train
    It was an enthralling trek to dudhsagar which was made special by my close and dear friends. The excitement what followed in goa is a different episode which I will pen down in other blog.

 

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