A Primer to the Kumara Parvatha Trek
The famed Kumara Parvatha trek in the Western Ghats of Karnataka is a trek that every trekker must do at least once in his lifetime. Touted to be one of the most challenging treks in all of South India, Kumara Parvatha has got it all from deep jungles to high grasslands. Here is everything that you need to know about this amazing trek.
Kumara Parvatha peak which lies in Kodagu district of Karnataka is the second largest peak (1712 mts) in the district after Tadiandamol peak (1748 mts). The best time to do the Kumara Parvatha trek is from October to February.
There are two routes that can be taken to reach the peak- one from Somwarpet side and the other from Kukke Subramanya side. Though the later is a much difficult trek route, it is the route of choice for many as it has some of the most beautiful views that one will miss to see if they do the trek from Somwarpet side.
The trek distance of the route starting from Kukke Subramanya is 13 kms (one side). The first stretch of this distance is from the base to Bhattaramane (5.5 kms). It is the most easy part of the trek as you’ll walk in forest under the shade for most of this distance. You’ll know you are close to Bhattaramane when the forest starts getting thin. Bhattaramane is the place where you can rest for a while, have food, & fill up your water bottles before continuing the trek. Also this is the only place on the trek trail where rest rooms can be found.
The second stretch is from Bhattaramane to ‘Kallu Mantapa’ (2.5 kms). A little ahead of Bhattaramane you’ll find a view point and the Girigaddhe forest check-post where you need to take trekking permission from the forest department. Soon after you cross the forest department you’ll find another view point from where the trek trail starts getting steeper. Don’t let this deter you. Keep moving ahead and you’ll find a water source near the next milestone, ‘Kallu Mantapa’. Rest here for a while if needed before starting the next stretch of the trek which is considered to be the most difficult part of the Kumara Parvatha trek.
This next stretch is from the Kallu Mantapa to the false peak, Shesha Parvatha which covers a distance of 3 kms. Stop here for a while to enjoy the views and take the much needed rest. From here the Kumara Parvatha peak is just around 2 kms. This last stretch of the trek is relatively easy as it is relatively flat and also you’ll have the shade of trees almost till the end.
Once you reach the peak rest for a while, explore around to find some panoramic views of the surrounding forests and start your descent back to Bhattaramane.
You can have your dinner at Bhattaramane and camp there itself or behind the forest check post. Wake up early next morning to see a beautiful sunrise, pack your tents, have breakfast, and start trekking back to Kukke Subramanya.
This trek will be one of the most adventurous and transforming experiences you can have in your life.