Saturday, March 21, 2009

Parson Valley - Part 1

9th,10th,11th of March, 2007

Parsons valley is 8 kms from Ooty, at a slightly higher altitude. Normally the place upto Ooty is very well populated, but once u cross Ooty, there are lots of places that are clean and unpopulated. Parsons valley is one such place which is serene and absolutely stunning. As the name suggests, this place is in the trough created by the hills surrounded on all sides, with a stream running nearby and pine forest and farms everywhere. This has a big dormitory which can accommodate upto 30 people and couple of rooms each can hold 2-4 people, a big lawn/playing area, a kitchen and a dining room. This place is being owned by an elderly couple(henceforth referred as Uncle and Aunty) and being maintained by an old man. When there is any visitor to this place the uncle and aunty, along with a cook(who really cooks well) come and stay in this place. This place is best suited for a group trip. Though there is not much activity around as you expect in Ooty town, the serenity of this place will blow you off your feat and it is an effort to leave this place. They normally dont permit for couples, as this place is quite unsafe due to wild animals movement. The activities here involve trekking and visits to couple of reservoirs nearby. Best suited for 3 days trip.

It was the time for our team trip and we all zeroed in on this place. We all, numbering 24 started from Chennai Central and reached Tiruppur early in the morning on March 9th. Got into the two vans which were waiting for us. From there we went to a marriage hall which we booked before hand, got refreshed and set out our journey to Ooty. On the way, had our breakfast and loaded the vehicle with abundant supply of drinks and snacks and set out the long journey ahead. The road to ooty was as usual busy and chaotic. It took us a long time to reach Ooty and even more to cover the last 8 kms. We crossed through huge mounds of garbage which made us doubt whether its the plastic free ooty or Chennai. Past this place, there is a forest department office, to whom we showed the cottage booking confirmation. Here we were told that tiger census is going on and that the trekking is prohibited in certain areas of the forest. From here we proceeded to the cottage through a narrow and absolutely secluded road. The last one km of the path leading to the cottage was very very bumpy with no road at all with big boulders covering the path. Moreover, it was very steep with some sharp bends in-between. Once we reached the end of the stretch, we were in for a breathtaking view of the cottage. There was a little stream running nearby the cottage. Unable to resist.. we jumped out of the vehicle and immediately went to the stream and washed our faces. But, the water was very very cold. It was the month of March(usually summer) and it was around 3:30 PM, still the water was ice-cold. Our first goal on reaching there was to eat something after this long, tiring travel. We went to the dormitory which was lined with 15 beds on each side, kept our baggages and rushed to the dining room and had a tasty lunch(atleast it seemed so).


After lunch we were lazing in the lawn, and took out a small trek. We did walk for around 45 minutes and reached a bigger stream. That trek was good, even though not tough as we were the only human beings on that vast expanse of mountains. The weather was pleasant. Spent some time there and then returned to the cottage. It was around 6:30PM and only then we started the feel the cold. Hot tea and even hot bonda awaited us. Gulped the tea and started preparing for the campfire. The cottage had a well laid out concrete pit for the campfire. By the time everything was ready, it was around 7 PM and it was very cold. As usual, we guys had drinks(to shoo away chillness), sung, screamed, danced around the fire making weird steps and sounds. It started getting late and the ones steady(without the influence of drinks) dispersed unable to bear the cold. Ones who could, stayed on and on and on till well past midnight, had our dinner(!) and went to bed. By this time all the alcohol got drained and we could feel the chillness which increased with time. Had a good sleep and got up the next day for a foggy morning. The mountains looked even more beautiful. All that struck to our mind was to do nothing but laze around immersed in the serenity of this place. To compliment this weather, the hot tea arrived and guys couldn't stop with one.

Outside our cottage!!!!!

To be continued here

No comments: