My third trek – Mission Nagada – Apr 2nd to 4th
My third trek was with Peter ( the founder of CTC ) on April 2nd to 4th. It was a 3 day trek know as Mission Nagada. It was said to be a difficult mission and I was confused about whether to join this trek or not. I didn’t want to go for a trek without much experience level and then get in the way of others. But anyway I signed up for the trek and was shortlisted for it.
We started the trek from the less know southern entry of Nagala. We came in a cab which we parked near the village. Our destination was Tada, the north most part of Nagala hill range. We started walking towards hill and in some time we reached a small pool which looked like a dead end. I was wondering about which route we will be taking and the biggest surprise in the trek came when Peter said “”Pass your bags”!
Without a oral description I will show the route which we took. It was damn slippery and risky. One fellow fell into the water. Luckily he wasn’t injured because he fell into water.
After passing the bags we followed the same stream. The stream was full of medium sized boulders initially which turned into gigantic ones later. It was real exciting. We followed this main eastern stream for some time and then started climbing up. We reached on top of the central peak by 1 pm. This peak is at an altitude of 820 m and gives nice view of the eastern stream which will lead to the picnic pool. The below pic is taken from top of central peak.
After spending some time, enjoying the view started climbing down to eastern stream. It was a moderate steep climb down. In some time we reached the eastern stream which we followed downstream. I should say that this stream is filled with really huge boulders. There were many tricky places and the trek at this point was really thrilling.
After around three to four hours we reached the picnic pool. Picnic pool is a name given by CTC because of its super awesomeness. It has good flat rock on the sides where you can camp, a small waterfall and a large deep pool where you can swim till your mind gets tired. A well suited name. For day 1 we camped here. Some volunteers cooked Maggi noodles for everyone. I had a good sleep because I was dead tired after all the workout I did in the morning.
In the second day, the trek started slow. Many were tired and some had some sprains. Around 10 people said that they will go back to another village on the way. We started following the same stream for another 2 hours and then we reached dead end pool. The people who wanted leave took another route at this point. The route was clearly explained to them by Peter.
The group size was now 10. And Peter repeated his warning. “If any of you want to go back do it now. Because its gonna be ten times tougher now”. I got worried again. But I though of staying with the group. This is a test of endurance that I should pass. This is how I grow up. Thinking these thoughts I proceeded with the group.
Now the entire trek felt different. The group moved was much faster. There were few parts where it was too risky. After following the stream for another 2km (2 hours) we satrted climbing up. Peter said that we will go up and walk north towards Tada. It will be kind of sunny but once we reach on top there wont be much climb ups and downs. The water resources where getting low this time. I filled my 2 liter bottles fully. Still I didnt want to finish the water as we may have to camp for the night without a water source nearby. I got really tired during this part. This was my first difficult trek and I think I was mentally ready for this. Though I enjoy writing about it now, I was really reaching my limit that time. But Peter’s voice motivated me and I kept walking. By around 6.30 pm we reached on top of a Tada stream.
By that time it was getting dark and we climbed down to the stream with a torch. We reached the stream and walked till we found a small water source. It was small dripping source, but since it was already dark we decided to camp there. Peter climbed up little bit and told us that there is a superb camping place on the top and we will camp there. So for cooking we started filling all out water bottles. After filling our bottles and pots with water we started climbing up. In 15 mins we reached top.
Some people cooked the soupy noodles. It was amazingly tasty. I had lot of noodles until I felt like my stomach will burst. Peter and Durai took a large fallen tree from nearby and started the camp fire by then. It was huge. Peter asked all of us share our experiences and Bala took a video of the same. I couldnt sleep so well that night because of the chill breeze and the uneven rocks( I didnt take my sleeping mat for this trek ).
Next day we went back to the stream and followed it downstream. There were really nice rock formations on the way. We reached on top of Tada some time which provided amazing views.
To get to the main Tada stream we started climbing down. It was difficult with all the over grown thorns around. To get down safely we had to catch some plants for support. But most of the plants had thorns which made it very difficult. Also we didnt had any water so reaching the main stream became the top priority. After one or two hours we reached the main stream. We followed the stream and reached the part of Tada where there are lot of tourists. I will that this was the only disappointing part of the trek. There were lot of garbage all around us and people shouting all around us. All the peacefulness which I was enjoying the last 2 days were gone. We reached a gorge in some time where there are only less people. With the help of Peter we went to other side of the gorge by swimming and got a nice massage from the waterfall.
After this we changed our dress and took a share auto to the place where we took a bus to Chennai. This trek was a great experience. It was my 3rd trek(after 2 easy treks in Nagala) and I realized that Peter’s trek are in an entirely different league. Well planned, good leadership and good navigation skills. I felt very proud too, completing the trek because out of the 23 people who started the trek only 10 of us completed it..:)