Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary and KRS dam

Yesterday was a holiday! yay!! And it has been a long time since we went for a ride, isn’t it? So there, we went to Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary and KRS dam. But this time, we didn’t go alone. Wondering how two people go alone? Well, Its not about people, its about their bikes. ;) 2 bikes, 4 people and lovely roads. It doesn't get better than this. Let me introduce you to the characters involved (in the ride).
2 bikes - our beloved Royal Enfield Electra and Yamaha RD350
4 people - Anurag, yours truly and Savita, Jai
Lovely roads - Bangalore-Mysore highway

The story (ride) begins with our meeting point on the highway. We thought of meeting at 7:30 but we finally met at 8:30. There is a marked difference in weekday mornings and holiday mornings. On a weekday at 8 o'clock, there is a lot of hustle bustle. But on a holiday at 8 o'clock, hardly a soul on the road. Within half an hour after meeting, we stop for breakfast at Kadu Mane. Super soft idlies and chai. Good food but costly. Tummies and fuel tanks get filled and we proceed. Jai's bike has new engine parts which impose a speed restriction. So our speeds are limited to around 50-60. I am not sure if we would have done better in terms of time without the speed restriction because we like going slow. Speed does have its thrill but slow is good too. At Mandya, the farmers had blocked the road by spreading sugarcanes on the road. Thankfully, we had only two wheels and could maneuver our way out. ;) We reached the Bird Sanctuary at about 12:15.
Took a personal boat for 250 Rs. The good thing about it was the roof on the boat protecting us from the sun. This apparently is the season of White Ibis and we saw a lot of them. One or two other kinds of birds here and there. And of course, the crocodiles. They looked like they were having their afternoon nap.
1:30 to 2:30 is lunch time at the Sanctuary. We reached in good time to catch the pre-lunch boat. After that, we had lunch at the restaurant on the premises. Food was quite ok. Most importantly, the place looked clean.

We decided to go and see the KRS dam as it is further down the road. According to, it was built in 1924, and is India's first irrigation dam. I like visiting dams because of the contrast you see on either side of the dam wall. This dam had still and calm water on one side and water flowing down rocks at great speeds on the other side. I wonder why we couldn't see the Brindavan Gardens because it supposedly is adjacent to the dam. Maybe we had to go further down but we wanted to reach back home around 6:30 so we didn’t think of exploring. And it is a good thing because it is really not fun riding in the dark. Dark after sunset that is. Dark before sun rise is a pleasure because watching the sun rise is so beautiful.

It is 3 o'clock when we leave KRS dam. Stop on the way at Coffee Day near Channapatna. Back home at 7:15. Savita and Jai still had to brave some more city traffic before they reached home.
Good trip especially if you are enthusiastic about biking because most of the time was spent sitting on the bike.

Directions :
Keep going on Bangalore-Mysore highway till you reach Srirangapatnam. Keep going till you see a sign on the right announcing the right turn for Ranganathittu bird Sanctuary. Take that turn and keep going till you see another sign on your right. Take that right turn and you will reach the Sanctuary. It is around 3-4 kms after you take the diversion from the highway.
To reach KRS dam, do not take the second right turn for Ranganathittu. Instead keep going straight till you reach a forked road. Take the road on the right and keep going straight. The dam was around 5 kms from the bird sanctuary.

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