Taking advantage of a weekend without the family around, I decided to try out a trek. The Bangalore Mountaineering Club (BMC) had a planned trek up Munnar, which sounded like fun.

When I boarded the van at 8 pm on Friday night, I joined a group of 10 fellow trekkers, who would become good friends over the next two days. The group comprised largely of techies (and data scientists!), and a doctor.

It was a long overnight drive to reach the foothills of Munnar. After a freshen up break at a restaurant near Theni, we started our trek from the village of Kurangani (which I understand is the base for the start of number of nearby treks too).

The climb was long and strenuous, but great fun given the cameraderie in the group. We spent time at a waterfall on the way, which provided cool comfort to our tired legs. The vegetation for a lot of the way up was rather heavy and forrested, in some cases, we could hardly see a few metres ahead.

After almost a climb of 6 hours we reached the top station, and gorged on a meal of maggi, omlettes and juices (thank god for that restaurant!).

Top station is a popular view point near Munnar, offering brilliant views of the surrounding hills. We spent a bit of time looking around, before commencing our walk towards the tea plantations, towards the camp for the night.

This was my first experience walking amidst tea plantations, and it was a novel experience. There was lovely greenery around and clear star-studded skies above.

By the time we reached the campsite, night had fallen, and we had to find our way around with torch lights. A campfire had been lit, and the group spent time talking about past experiences with trekking (and mountaineering). After a quick dinner, we snuggled into our tents and sleeping backs for a well deserved sleep.

Next day was an early start at about 6.30 am. After a quick breakfast and fresh up, we headed back walking among the plantations.

The plan was to follow a ‘short cut’ route down. It was clearly more scenic, with incredible views of the mountains around and green meadows everywhere.

But it was steep. For the experienced trekkers in the group, it was a quick run downward. For us amateurs with a bit of vertigo, it was a slow and trepidous climb down. We ended the trek with another waterfall wash down, to cool our much tired legs.

Overall, a very memorable trek – not just because of the scenic beauty, but also for the camaraderie in the group, and the care with which BMC managed it (kudos to Girish, the trek lead!)

vasantvTravelsmunnar,travel,trekTaking advantage of a weekend without the family around, I decided to try out a trek. The Bangalore Mountaineering Club (BMC) had a planned trek up Munnar, which sounded like fun. When I boarded the van at 8 pm on Friday night, I joined a group of 10 fellow trekkers, who...Cataloging a wonderful world