4th August 2013
Four years had passed since the aborted climb of Madhugiri fort. The defeat was so shocking that it had punctured ego a lot!! The failure lingered on our minds but our confidence was low to attempt another climb. The steep hike where we retreated back was too much to handle for us. Hence, we liked to keep hike to the fort in our backlog. That was until I saw a photo of Madhugiri fort. Railings were put on the path. Phew!! Time to hit back!!
So, the failed guys (Me, Krishna, Subbu) sat for supplementary exam!!
The drive to Madhugiri was uneventful with only nuisance being some parts of Dabaspet – Koratagere stretch where road widening was in progress. And nothing much had changed in Madhugiri town in the last four years.
The initial part of the climb was easy. We reached the place where we had retreated in just 20 minutes. We always thought that we could not climb the last stretch. But that was not true!
This is the stretch that is quite steep and risky. But the risk part has vanished with the construction of railings. Even at the place where water was oozing out, we could climb without much difficulty with the support of railings. But this part is exposed where a portion of fort wall on the top has collapsed. The structure looks ready to collapse at any time!!
Madhugiri fort is deceiving as the top of the fort is never visible during the climb. While we were relaxing after the steep climb, few locals joined us. Looking at our tired faces, they suggested us to eat “raagi balls” each day to gain strength. We had a readymade answer for that. They were teenagers and we were “old” people. “It’s because of the age guys”, we told. Their next sentence made our mouth shut. “My father can climb this fort without taking break even today”. We went silent.
The climb never seemed to end. As the pinnacle was not visible, we would climb the peak only to find another one!! The railings were not present at this stretch was not dangerous.
Finally, we reached the top of the fort after 75 minutes from the start. We had gained a height of 1450 feet from Madhugiri town.
We ticked off a long pending item!!