Chasing Ruins – Hutridurga

“Look at all the people here!”, I directed my comment to R as A chuckled away. The place wasn’t crowded but we encountered several groups of people all through the way. Two days back when we were planning this R was reluctant to give me the name of the place saying that I would just blog about it and make a less frequented place popular. Well, R had forgotten that there aren’t many hidden places anymore.

Pic 1: That’s Uttari Betta or Hutridurga. Look at the refreshing greenery, all thanks to the monsoon.

Bored with the monotony of being home, I had reached out to two of my friends and we decided to go on a day hike in the outskirts of Bangalore. It’s been raining almost everyday in Bangalore. Keeping that in mind we wanted to go somewhere nearby. R recommended Uttari Betta and that was it.

Pic 2: A proper road leads up to the base of the hill but we parked the car well ahead and decided to walk.

Uttari Betta, also known as Hutridurga, is a fortified hill about 70 Km. away from Bangalore. Situated at an altitude of 3708 feet above the sea level it overlooks several villages all around. The village located at the immediate foot of the hill is known as Santhepet while It derives its name from Hutri, a village about 3 Km away from the hill. Hutridurga is one of the Nava Durgas (nine fortified hills) that was built by Kempegowda, who founded Bengaluru in the 16th Century. Later Tipu Sultan used this fort as his military bastion against the British.

Pic 3: It was a lovely day, the ever-changing cloud patterns making it all the more beautiful.
Pic 4: Remnants of the fort remain scattered at various places.

We left Bangalore early and drove through a scenic stretch of road with Savandurga looking out on us most of the way, sometimes from the right side and sometimes from the end of the road. Though we woke up to a rainy Saturday, the weather had become perfect and remained that way for the rest of the day.

Upon reaching our destination, we were welcomed by an arched gateway that welcomed us to Hutridurga Trek. It appeared like a Karnataka Tourism board. We alighted from the car and pretty soon realized that wasn’t the starting point. A little bit of asking around and we found our way to the actual start point, which was a good 2 Km drive away.

Pic 5: A quick pose with ‘A’. There are several doorways all along the hike, this was right at the start.
Pic 6: ‘R’ and I steal a moment at the top of the hill.

It was a very easy hike to the top. In many places there were steps craved out on the rocky surface, making it even simpler though robbing off its natural appeal altogether. Probably done for the villagers who hike up to the temple situated on top.  As we started the walk, I was surprised to see two families with little boys and girls coming down. While it was nice to see adventurous parents, I wondered if I would have done the same. I don’t think I would have quite dared, especially with the pandemic being far from over. The worst part was nobody was masked. And that was true for most of the groups we encountered all along. The only masked people were us.

Pic 7: In many places ‘R’ and ‘A’ created their own route, rather than follow the trail. I couldn’t master the courage to follow them though!
Pic 8: Some good candid shots. Byproduct of hiking with a professional photographer, which happens to be ‘R’.

The total distance of the hike is about 5 Km. up and down. We took our own sweet time to climb up, stopping or sitting wherever we felt like. Ruins of the fort lay scattered all around. We passed through a couple of enchanting stone doorways, some of which had interesting engravings. There were six doorways in all. Most of the times R and A would steer away from the actual path and find their own routes. On one such occasion R got badly stuck in a precarious position from where neither could he climb up nor climb down, making me more than a little nervous. It took him sometime before he could figure a way out.

Pic 9: The temple at the top. In front of the temple is a clear pool of water known as ‘Dodda Donne’, which means big spring. Painted on a rock beside the pool is a large sign that reads ‘Danger’ leading us to assume that the pool must be deep.

The views from the top are just as stunning as one would expect. The cloud patterns on the sky on that day made it even more beautiful. Savandurga was standing out and was clearly visible from the top. The temple on top is dedicated to Lord Shiva.

The three of us spent some wonderful time soaking in nature’s splendour while munching on the sandwiches and fruits I had carried for us. It was a good break after a very long time.

Author: neelstoria

Traveling, Gardening, Trekking, Hiking, Storytelling, Writing, Nature, Outdoors, Yoga, DIY

20 thoughts on “Chasing Ruins – Hutridurga”

  1. A most wonderful hike. The description, as usual, is written well. And the pictures bring out the little adventure quite well. A nice weekend overall.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s quite a big hill. No wonder the erstwhile rulers built a fort and used it. The weather was great, which made it even more enjoyable. Had it rained, the rock surface would have gotten slippery and I don’t know how much of a fun that would be…. 😀
      Thanks a lot for reading through.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. The last time I enrolled for swimming classes, the pool had shut down due to some unexpected renovation. That resulted into me landing up to Yoga class instead and that wasn’t a bad thing though. Yes, I really want to know how to swim!

          Liked by 1 person

  2. This is something I have been thinking of doing for quite some time: going somewhere new to me that is not too far from where I live. But I heard that on weekends the traffic out of Jakarta, especially to the south, can be horrendous. So I’ve been waiting for the right time to take one or two days off to do just that. When you mention about R being stuck, for some reason I can vividly imagine his situation and think of what I would do if I were in the same situation. I think I would curse myself a lot. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Weekday trips are the best as you can expect lesser crowd wherever you go. These places in and around Bangalore weren’t frequented by people earlier. But now we are all so starved of going out that even these seem nice. Though they are pretty good for a break of a few hours. I hope you do get to make those trips sooner than later.
      Thanks for visiting. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Harmonious dear Neel. It only makes my being fill with awe, all that i haven’t seen and nothing nothing around Banglore, which is so filled with love and nature, hills and treks, walks, spirit and trees, weather and the ocean not that far.

    I can only than you for this window, as i am have only been glued to the Himalayas and the Plains. Lovely feeling of the day. Everyone wanted to get out and walk in the nature it seemed.

    Narayan x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, we are truly fortunate to live in a country that’s so diverse. From the snow-capped Himalayas to these boulder strewn green hills, from the gushing hill streams to the rapids of the Ganges, from the sand carpets in the desert to lush green meadows. The list is endless. There’s so much to see right here in our country that a lifetime isn’t enough.

      Thank you for reading, Narayan. And, my apologies for this late a response. I’ve become horrendous with time management!

      Like

    1. There are lots and lots of such hikes in and around Bangalore. Even if you do these every weekend, they won’t end. 😀
      I’ll write about two more shortly.
      Thanks for reading. I hope you have to opportunity to come here again and experience these easy-peasy but rewarding hikes.

      Liked by 1 person

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