- What – One day hike from Bangalore, India
- When – Have visited in 2007, Repeat visit is certainly due.
- Travel –
- 70-75 Km car ride from Bangalore, Behind Nandi Hills, comes in Chikballapur District
- Highlights –
- Beautiful Sunrise pictures made this place very famous and known way back in 2005
- Easy to moderate trek, can be done by all. Children must be accompanied by parents as uncharted routes are not safe
- Very close to Bangalore.
- Skandagiri has lot of history how things got evolved over the years. In 2004-2005, the chain email with beautiful morning cloud pics made this place extremely famous. This place is hardly 60-70 km, became even popular than Nandi hills. Every weekend hundreds of people started flocking and so are the troubles. Local people started asking for guide fee, parking etc (which is still fine), but notorious group started taking advantage and there have been reports of many criminal activities. The forest department banned trek there for many years. At one point, there was so much uncertainty that it was not clear if place is open for public or not. I had read blogs reporting police taking complete vehicle in custody and so on… ..These are the reasons I never venture out to this place from years. This is all past, mentioned here only to be cognizant about it
- Reading the blogs on net (2022), normal trekking seem to have resumed and again place is becoming very popular. Still what I know, night trek is still not allowed / safe.
- Follow the trail, can become very stiff/unsafe if you miss the trail.
- Suitable Time Period
- Any pleasant day one can visit. Try to be there as early as possible. During monsoon one get wonderful clouds below the hill, which is the USP of the place
- Arrangements – Self.
- STAR Rating – 2/5 – Lower ratings only due to uncertainty around the place, otherwise very good hike and being so close to Bangalore makes it attractive destination
My Experience – Old Blog from 2007
It was a re-union time for me. Recently I got in touch with my colleagues, from Basic Mountaineering Course, Prasanna and Deepak. They are part of group called Backpackers in Bangalore. They organize treks around Bangalore regularly. This time finally I got the chance to join them.
We choose very good day for a night trek to Kalvaara Betta. It was a full-moon with a option to switched off moon light when its not required :). There was complete lunar eclipse starting after 3 AM. So we could comfortably reach top and light was gone just when we started campfire. What a perfect timing !!!!
More than 60 people joined us for the trek. However organizers did a excellent job.
we started from B’lore at around 7.30 PM to reach meeting point after Hebbal bridge.
Organizers had arranged Bus for us to take to kalvaara base. After a short diner and briefing by group leader, Lacchi, we started climbing around 11.30. It being full moon night, we had enough light and don’t have to bother, even to take out the torch. After a walk of around 2.30 hours we reached the top.
After brief walk, it was getting bit cold, and its time to start Camp fire. Initially people were bit reluctant, but Prasanna started the ball rolling with his Kannada folk song. Not many people understood, but everybody got into mood to start the un-ending Antakshari till Sunrise.
As the sunrise started taking over the battered moon, every thing become pleasant. Early sun rays brought beautiful mist and its time to take out our cameras and enjoy the natural beauty.
I was just thinking, since it would be almost noon to reach b’lore, I wont be able to celebrate HOLI. But then to my surprise, organizers even brought colors with them, to celebrate HOLI !!!!
It was a perfect end to the trek.
How to go: Kalvaara Betta is around 60-70 Km from Bangalore (Adjuscent hill to Nandi Hills).
Difficulty level: Easy to moderate.
Recommendations : If not night trek, plan early morning trek to this place. Day time trek may become boring b’use of less trees in the region.
Keywords: Kalvaara Betta,Kalvara Betta, SkandaGiri, kalavarahalli betta, Bakpackers