Rajasthan Trip 2007 - Mount Abu

The journey from Udaipur to Abu road was a memorable one. The highway was in a total mess as widening of the roads into 4 lanes was under construction. The old highway was broken at many points with diversions made on to muddy tracks which were bumpy due to recent rains. To add to our woes, the driver was in a happy mood. Probably he was a rally driver who enjoyed such muddy tracks to feel his pulse racing. He was maneuvering the bus through the rough roads keeping us swinging left and right and bouncing up and down. It was a total roller coaster ride.

The landscape outside was what fascinated us the most. We had been travelling in Rajasthan and never expected to see anything green around. All you expect in Rajasthan is barren lands and deserts. On the contrary, we were seeing lush green fields and bushes and forests as we passed from plains to the hills. We went through a few hair pin bends and it was like moving through the Western Ghats in Kerala, of which I have had enough experience.

At the end of this roller coaster, we reached the small town, Abu Road, which is the nearest rail head from Mount Abu. A general googling had given us the information that Mount Abu is the only hill station in Rajasthan and is among the highest hills in the Aravali ranges. From Abu road we could see a lot of hills around and tried to guess which one we would head next.

One of our friends had told us that sunset and sunrise is very beautiful from Mount Abu and we had left Udaipur just in time to reach Mount Abu, 23kms from Abu Road by sunset. But looking around from Abu Road we knew that there was no point in hurrying. All the mountains were covered in clouds and there was no scope of sun rising or setting.

A local bus brought us to a small tourist town of Mount Abu which on the first look, gave an impression of a sleeping town. The area around the bus stop was not crowded and we knew we were going to have a nice time away from the crowd. The off-season seemed to have started because of monsoon. This time we were not in haste. So we ignored all the guides at the bus stop, had a stroll on the streets and finally checked into a hotel. The sun had set long back and a slight drizzle along with the low lying clouds gave an eerie look to the town. After enquiring about the options for local sight-seeing, we came to know that the Rajasthan Roadways runs two luxury buses daily. It covers all the important tourist locations and the fare was marginal. So we booked our seats for the next day trip and then spent the evening walking around the Nakki Lake. The few tourists present were all newly married couples on their honeymoon. Feeling a pang of jealousy, we pledged that our next trip should be with our girlfriends, if not spouse.

We were on time at the pick up point of the sight-seeing tour. We went to Shankar Math (a temple of lord Shiva), Suicide Point (a cliff top with long range visibility of the plains below, but all we could see was clouds), Shanti Bhavan (Ashram of Brahmakumaris Peace Foundation), Nakki Lake and a few temples and gardens. Most part of the tour was uninteresting. We hoped to find something worthwhile at Guru Shikhar (the highest point of Aravali ranges).

Guru Shikhar was 15kms from Mount Abu and unfortunately it was still cloudy when we set out. We trekked a small distance to the peak and found ourselves fully within the cloud. Visibility was few metres. Amritanshu was excited about being inside the cloud, for it was his first experience. I had been in such situation during my trip to Chamoli, Valley of Flowers.

After clicking few snaps in different poses (the locations dint matter as the background of each snap was white clouds), we trekked down to our bus and finally reached our last stop, Dilwara Jain Temple. The temple has extensive carving work of marbles. There are hundreds of finely carved structures, each one competing with the other for the best work. Sadly, photography is not allowed inside it and we had to contend storing the images in our own memories.

The rest of the trip comprised of checking out of the hotel, reaching Abu Road by a deluxe bus and catching trains to our bases, Amritanshu to Mumbai and myself to Delhi.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Alleppey, Kerala

My First Long drive

Nandi Hills