7 June 2015
The idea of climbing Nijagal Betta was conceived while I and Krishna were driving towards Makalidurga. It seemed that we could quickly climb that hill before attempting Makalidurga. We crossed Dabaspet and parked our vehicle at Coffee day and started walking along the highway. After about hundred meters a small road deviated from the highway and crossed railway line. Due to recent rains the path under the bridge was waterlogged and hence we climbed up to cross the railway line. The hill looked majestic from railway line.
|Crossing the railway line|
Due to the presence of religious sites, the hill was frequented by locals. The path was clear and we had no issues to find the way. As we climbed up the path slowly, the scenery became clearer. It was a sunny day and watching blue sky against hilly background was a treat to our eyes.
At midway we took a small detour that provided a nice view of the Mantapa. It was not possible to reach Mantapa from the place where we were standing. We decided to find the way while coming back.
We thought we reached that top after crossing a gate but we had hit a plateau where the real hill was still away. The place was beautiful with a mix of greenery and rocks. That place demanded some time for our cameras.
After another stretch of climb, we reached the place that looked like top. A Temple and Durgah are situated next to each other inside the rocks. Animal and chicken were sacrificed; those poor creatures were cooked and consumed by people. It does not give a good feeling.
|Shivaganga seen climbing the hill|
To reach the top, a steep rock face had to be climbed. It was slippery and looked risky, so I removed by shoes and climbed those final steps. On the top were some dilapidated structures and trees had grown on them. The view of the plains below was simply amazing.
After spending some time, we climbed down and reached Mantapa situated near the dargah at the base. The Mantapa was in a bad shape. Treasure hunter had dug at many peoples. It looked at the Mantapa could collapse at any moment. It was precariously standing with the support of few stones which prompted us to quickly come out of that place.
Though it was a Dargah, Hindus were the primary visitors. In A small pond in front of the Dargah was used for bathing purpose. People looked strangely towards us. They all wanted us to take their pictures though it was known that we would not be sending any hard copies. We did not oblige to their demands!!
Overall it was a simple climb of about 870 feet and it took us about two hours to perform the round trip. It is a nice little place with easy climb. The hill is also called Siddara Betta by locals. This should not be confused with Siddara betta that is situated near Madhugiri.