Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Vibhooti Falls and Gokarna

When I was in hostel, Shimoga while studying engineering (2002-2006), we went to many places. This is about one such trip, when we went to Vibhooti falls (also called Mabage falls, since its near Mabage village) and Gokarna.

It was November 1st, 2003, Saturday and we had holiday because of Kannada Rajyotsava. We planned to have one day trip, starting early, about 4 AM, go to Vibhooti falls, about which we had read in "Taranga", a Kannada magazine (article titled Mabage falls), play for sometime and start from there and go to Gokarna and come back to Shimoga late night reserving next day for rest(Sunday). We didn't know by then that we would not come back on the same night due to unforeseen circumstances!

8 years back we were not used to Internet search. So, we just followed what was written in the magazine. And by doing so, we took a longer route of Shimoga-Sagar-Honnavar-Kumta-Mabage. The better route was Shimoga to Sirsi and then to Mattighatta, Devanalli via Hegadekatta and from there to Vaddi Ghat from Vaddi cross and Mabage. As per our plan, we started around 4 30 AM and reached Honnavar via Sagar around 9. Having breakfast at Honnavar, we started towards Kumta and after about 20km from Kumta, took deviation to the right at the place where deviation to the left goes to Gokarna. We further traveled for about 22 km enquiring Mabage village. From here, left deviation goes to Yana at a distance of about 8 km and right one goes to Vibhooti falls, again at a distace of 8km. It was around 11 when we reached Vibhooti falls after about 2km trekking.

Vibhooti falls is a two stepped falls. Water collects at the bottom to form a pool which is a good place to swim and play. We played for about two hours and started back to our vehicle. We retraced to NH17 and took deviation towards Gokarna, where our lunch was arranged.

I usually take front seat near driver, since I would love to watch driving (back then). Likewise, I was sitting at the front seat while most were asleep. There was a right curve and I could see a car coming from opposite direction but the sad part was our driver didn't see it! In a fraction of second of thinking why our driver is driving dangerously on the right lane, a loud noise, "Dhab", is heard. I could see our vehicle hitting a local car. An accident. Soon we got down from our vehicle and people started gathering. Luckily only the car was damaged but the family inside were safe.

We were 30 boys, all aged between 18-21, most were only in shorts, not expected to be treated well in a situation like that. We waited by road side for about 3 hrs and finally, after our vehicle owner agreed to come down to Gokarna, we were allowed to move but the vehicle had to be in police station until the owner arrives from Shimoga. It was 6 pm by the time we sat for lunch! We roamed Gokarna main streets and called the day off to settle at a place for the night, 10 each in 3 rooms.

Next day, visit to Mahabaleshwara temple was followed by playing in Om beach till evening. By then our vehicle owner and the car owner had compromised, so we could start our return journey. It was 10 30 PM or so when we started from Honnavar towards Shimoga after supper. Reached Shimoga around 3 AM. Thus, our one day trip was extended to 2 days with one day vehicle rent!

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