Wild Wonderful Karnataka
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A little about us :
    Wordsworth was looked at as a utopian idealizer to express his love to nature. Well, looking at the present trend of mediocrity one can practically reach next to idealism. Keeping this in mind we at trek2clean have made a humble initiation. Our focus since beginning of the year 2003 has been to give something back to the nature by way of making trek/tourists spots cleaner than their current state. Your contribution can be form physical help while cleaning, to financial, inputs in any form, to contacts, to just being there. If you feel our movement guanine enough, idea appealing enough then be a part of the manpower, cause thatís the least one can give back to the mother nature.
 
Our Mission :
    To clean nature spots and to free them of pollution, to make it a better place to visit and† live / life† thereby making a difference in the way we care for our future, through a lot of passion,† organization and honesty.
 
The Crusaders:
    Rakesh, Sheila, Venki, Subram, Bindu, Sandeep, Madhavi, Ravi, Manju, Akshay, so on...
 

These are the projects undertaken by the group till date :
  Shivagange
Siddarabetta Success Story


















The battle at Shivagange:

Breakfast at Dobbspet and a few minutes later the van turned left into the road towards Shivagange. Very soon a huge monolith loomed in sight. The uniqueness of this one was that half of the rock was like any usual hill, while the top half was one steep boulder jutting out into the sky, like a Shiva Linga.

The mission was simple, yet strong. The Trek2Clean group of 22 has descended on this place - to clean it off its plastic and nonbiodegradable waste.†

Shivagange has three temples.

The first one near the base is an old one, built in granite, easily accessible by steps and kept reasonably clean by the temple authorities. A deviation to the left from here, and we crossed a relatively flat stretch of rock. The temple tank with its green water and other smaller hills were visible in the distance - colorful in the bright sunlight.

A little up the hill we passed a Mantap on which was a big white Nandi. Further ahead, was a tiny shack, set in the shade of gulmohars, the blooms of the trees a bright red as compared to the duller brown of the surrounding rocks.

The next stretch had a higher incline, and led to the second temple, in the middle of the hill. Here, in a cave, is a hollow in the rock was a natural source of water - aptly called "oLakal theertha" - Water inside the rock. Next to this was another temple to lord Shiva.

Near these temples were a number of shops selling various eatables, packaged water and soft drinks - contributing largely to mounds of plastic all around the place. A large number of† monkeys added to the problem, snatching bags and bottles out of people's hands and scattering them around. Identifying this as one good place for cleaning, half of the volunteers stayed back here with implements and sacks to clean up this region.

The rest of us pressed further towards the peak. Behind the temples, another path led us first to another cave temple, which had a small pool inside - a rain water catchment in the rocks.†

The† climb got steeper, we passed a couple of shops, and more garbage, and presently we were at the bottom of the final rock - a sheer vertical climb up the rock.†

Crude steps were fashioned into the rocks, and railings were provided - but the steps were worn smooth with time and the railings had rusted badly, exposing jagged edges. We were nimbly trying to climb up, remarking on the risks, when we spotted with shock, pilgrims coming down in sarees and slippers.†

Each step in this wonderful climb revealed new scenery - of the surrounding landscape - distant lakes and hills, the village below and the steep rock on top. At one point we looked up and were flabbergasted to spot 2 bells in the bottom side of the cliff at the top - some one had actually dared to fix a couple of bells into the rock, at least 500 feet from the ground below. This sight prompted some to remark that the only way one could ring those bells would be to try long distance target practice.

We passed another mantap, and the final few steps later, we saw a Nandi(Bull) carved into the top of a 20 foot huge boulder the shape of a tear drop. This lone Nandi stood sentinel for the 2 temples on the top of the mountain - to lord Gangadhareshwara - a variant of Shiva.

Quenching our thirst with fruit juice and spending a few minutes overawed by the view from the peak, we set to work. We identified a pit - a natural hollow behind the temple as the most littered location and started collecting plastic from there, while the others went around the peak and slightly below. Keeping a sharp eye for monkeys trying to get at our bags, the group toiled long and hard, unmindful of the hot sun.

In the mean time, the group at the middle of the hill was also laboring hard, trying to bring about a semblance of cleanliness to the region surrounding the temple. Here thought the task was tougher because of the sheer volume of the garbage. The fact that most of the garbage was stuck inside the countless thorny bushes compounded the difficulty. Fortunately,† we had anticipated this and carried simple hooked rods and a few other implements to make the task easier.

After about 3 hours of garbage collection, the group at the peak together and compacted the different bags of plastic into lesser number of bags. After many glasses of tasty buttermilk at the shop next to the temple, we started for the base. On the way, another group which was working behind some rocks joined us, and the entire group descended.†

We stopped at the shops, to explain to the curious owners, our mission behind this garbage collection drive, and what role they should play in keeping the hill clean.† A couple of trekkers from Bangalore who were sitting nearby were inspired by our talk, and requested us to provide a couple of bags. They claimed that they also wanted to be part of this movement and that they'd do their mite - bringing a smile on the faces of our volunteers in the realization that we'd created a small awareness.

The entire group proceeded down to the base of the temple. The temple authorities, whom we had informed before hand of our mission, had arranged an excellent lunch. It was pretty hot and we decided to stay in the choultry after lunch - playing games and making buttermilk, while a few weary souls snored peacefully.

Soon it was time to go back up and continue the cleanup. About 6 of us started back to the temple at the center. Just as we reached, the winds picked up, the clouds closed in and a downpour ensued. A few of us welcomed the rains and got wet while the pilgrims scurried for cover. It rained hard for about half an hour, and as we started for the base with our implements, the whole scenery had changed... in the distance, water puddles in the fields and the roads shone like silver coins, and the earth has acquired a darker brown hue.
We dumped our bags into the vans and started back to Bangalore, a chill pleasant wind lifted the spirits of the group.†

It was the second battle won, after Siddarabetta. The war against plastics in nature spots continues.

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Contact Us
  email : trek2clean (at) hotmail.com
Rakesh : 98451 99202
Shiela : 98452 66175