Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Splendour of Cauvery

 I had been to Chunchi falls with my cousins(Sujay and Sushmitha) who had come from USA. It was a trip to Nature's lap which is very near to Bangalore city. I visited Chunchi falls after 12 years.
Our plan was to cover Chunchi falls, Sangama , Mekedaatu and Shivanasamudram.
We left Bangalore on 28th July morning in a Qualis. On the way , we ate some delicious "Thatte Idlis " at Sukrutha hotel which is on the Kanakapura road.

1.Chunchi Falls

Bangalore, an urban metropolis and housing India’s very own Silicon Valley is not only well known for its steel and glass buildings, swish malls and entertainment complexes and historical monuments. The city abounds in natural splendor and that is manifested in the cascades of the picturesqueChunchi Falls.

On a trip to Bangalore Rural District laced by the meandering Arkavati River, tourists encounter the picture perfect and serene Sangama of three of Bangalore’s principal rivers. Chunchi Falls is located 90 km from Bangalore City and 16 km before the Sangama near the quaint Yeleguri village.

The waterfall whose cascading ripples gleam like flowing quicksilver is situated in a beautiful rocky valley and surrounded by dense, green forests. With the Kanakapura town located in its vicinity, Chunchi Falls is a popular picnic spot. Visitors can halt at the nearby small-scale hotels in the Kanakpura town.

The panoramic view of the gurgling Chunchi Falls are a sight to behold. Although a small waterfall, the beauty of its gushing cascades in an idyllic green setting mesmerizes tourists. Chunchi Falls is thus a worthwhile stopover for tourists on their way to Sangama or Mekedatu.

It is best to visit this paradise in early winter. The good roads and abundant transport facilities are also conducive for the potential development of Chunchi Falls as a popular tourist spot.
Satish uncle, Ambika,Sushmita,Sujay

It was raining in Bangalore. And  we were worried as the day would be wet. But , it was dry all over. There was a clear blue sky. 
We crossed streams and rocks, to get a glimpse of the waterfalls. The falls is beautiful in monsoons. But the   less.

2. Sangama : Sangama is 103 km (64 mi) from Bangalore. Here the river Arakavati joins the Kaveri inside the Chilandavadi forest. The Kaveri has several whirlpools in the stretch between Mekedatu and Sangama and it is not advisable to swim in the river at either of these places.

3. Mekedatu (Kannada: ಮೇಕೆದಾಟು) is a location along Kaveri in Kanakapura Taluk. Sangama is the place where Arkavati merges with Kaveri. From this point, about 3.5 kilometers downstream, the river Kaveri flows through a deep gorge so narrow that one would think that a goat can leap across it ('Mekedatu' means 'goat's leap' in Kannada). It is not really so narrow and no goat commonly found in that part of India could cross that distance in a single leap. It is about 90 km from Bangalorevia Kanakapura. The name comes from an incident which is believed to have been witnessed by herdsmen in that area a long time ago. It is said that a goat being chased by a tiger made a desperate attempt to save its life by leaping from one side of the gorge and managed to cross over the raging river below, whereas the tiger did not attempt to replicate this feat, and abandoned the chase. The point where the goat leapt has widened since then from erosion caused by the river Cauvery.
There is also some mythological significance to this place (both Sangama and Mekedatu). As per one version, the goat (meke) that is believed to have leapt across the Kaveri was Lord Shiva in disguise. On both rocky precipices of the gorge, one can find strange holes, whose shapes resemble goats' hooves, though several times larger. It was thought that only divine goats could have marked their 'footprints' in such hard rocks.
At Mekedaatu, the Kaveri runs through a deep, narrow ravine of hard granite rock. The river, which is more than 150 meters wide at the confluence (at Sangama) flows through the hardly 10-meter-wide gorge at Mekedatu. One can see the ferocious flow of all that water, displaying Bernoulli's theorem. It is said that a goat could leap over it, giving the falls the name Goat's Leap.
Upstream on the Kaveri is the famous Shivanasamudra Falls, the second largest waterfall in India and the sixteenth largest in the world,both of which statements are disputed by world waterfalls

4. Shivanasamudra (Kannada: ಶಿವನಸಮುದ್ರ) is a small town in the Mandya District of the state of KarnatakaIndia. It is situated on the banks of the river Kaveri and is the location of the first Hydro-electric Power station in Asia, which was set up in the year 1902

The Shivanasamudra Falls is on the Kaveri River after the river has wound its way through the rocks and ravines of the Deccan Plateau and drops off to form waterfalls. The island town of Shivanasamudra divides the river into twin waterfalls. This creates the fourth largest island in the rivers course. A group of ancient temples are located here and there likely was a village.
This is a segmented waterfall. Segmented waterfalls occur where the water flow is broken into two or more channels before dropping over a cliff, resulting in multiple side by side waterfalls. It has an average width of 849 meters, a height of 90 m, and an average volume of 934 cubic meters / sec. The maximum recorded volume is 18,887 cubic meters / sec. It is a perennial waterfall. The time of best flow are the monsoon season of July to October.
A common misconception about these waterfalls are that the left segment is called Gaganachukki and the right segment is called Bharachukki. In reality the Bharachukki falls  are a few kilometers to the south-west of the Gaganachukki falls . This is due to the Kaveri river itself splitting a few kilometers to the south into western and eastern branches . The western branch results in the twin waterfalls of Gaganachukki, whereas the eastern branch results in the Bharachukki falls. The Gaganachukki waterfalls are best viewed from the Shivanasamudra watch tower . Most of the pictures showing the twin waterfalls are taken from that location. There is another approach to the Gaganachukki falls from the Darga Hazrath Mardane Gaib Despite warnings being posted, people climb down the rocks and attempt to view the waterfalls from behind/top, resulting in many fatal accidents. It is 139 km from the city of Bangalore.

Asia's second hydro-electric power station after shimshapura, is located at the waterfall and is still functional. This station was commissioned by the Diwan of Mysore, Sir K. Seshadri Iyer. The power generated here was initially used in Kolar Gold Fields. Thus, Kolar Gold Fields became the first town in Asia to get hydro electricity.
The Gaganachukki waterfalls are best viewed from the Shivanasamudra watch tower. There is another approach to the Gaganachukki falls from the Darga Hazrath Mardane Gaib. Bharachukki falls are situated at distance of approximately one km from the Dargah. These falls are best during the monsoons, nevertheless their beauty mesmerizes tourists throughout the year.

The Ranganatha temple in Shivanasamudra Island is a huge structure of the Hoysala period. The place is also called Madhya ranga. The deity is called Jagan Mohan Ranganatha, about 8 ft. in reclining posture. There are images of Goddess Cauvery, Takshaka serpent, Ramanujacharya, Alwars and huge stone image of Sugriva in the temple.

This is one of the oldest generating station in India The electricity produced here was initially used in the Kolar Gold Fields. Thus, Kolar Gold Fields became the first town in Asia to get hydro electricity.

Best time to visit is July to October (the water falls looks full and gorgeous during this season)


  1. Lovely blog post and amazing pictures. Chunchi Falls, located at a distance of approximatley 90 kms from Bangalore city, is nestled in the middle of dry decidous forest and amazing ranges of rocks on the banks of the River Arkavati. Click here to know more about Chunchi Falls.


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