Tuesday, October 9, 2012

61) Savandurga trek & Manchanabele(Manchinbele): (30/8/2012)

Place: Savandurga trek & Manchinbele(Manchanbele)dam.
Distance: 45 x 2 = 90kms.
Directions: Bengaluru – RRDC – Big Banyan tree – Manchinbele - Savandurga.
Particiapants: Deepak (Deepu) > Datta (Dattu) > Ashok(K-350) > Karthik (Sp).
Bikes: Zeus > Pulsar.
Previous visit: Muthathi & Kanva.
Budget: Rs 110/head. 

This has to one of the best scenic & well-known trek around Bangalore. With Manchinbele & T.G reservoirs nearby, ascending the hill is a sheer pleasure. As this monolith is very close to the city it is one of the most frequently visited hillock.

Savandurga (4022 ft) is the largest monolith in Asia, next being Madhugiri (3930 ft) [Top 2 largest monoliths of Asia are in Karnataka, had to be a great state]. We had trekked Madhugiri a few weeks before this. Savandurga is such a prominent monolith, it can seen from a distance of 50-55kms. The below photographs were taken form Agara(25kms away) & Ittamadu(55kms away). This hillock can also be seen from Kanva.


As far as the planning goes, till date I watch the sun set on this monolith from my terrace. It had been about 3 years since our visit to his place, and last time we couldn’t climb as a couple had committed suicide and there were police all over the place. So it was time to conquer it this time. With Dattu, Deepu & Ashok on the confirmed list we were all set to go.

Yeah I was up at around 06:00, had a cup of coffee, did a few push-ups & was all set to head out. The others arrived about 07:30, after a formal greeting we left Bengaluru.
TIME: 07:45 hrs

RIDE 1: (Bengaluru – RRDC – Manchinbele)
This was about 30-35kms stretch. As it was a weekday, the signals were jammed, but we made it out of the city is short time. As we joined Mysore road(SH-17), it was pure sailing till RRDC where we took a right deviation & continued till Big banyan tree. As we had seen this place 10+times, we decided to skip it. So we continued to reach Manchinbele.
TIME: 08:45 hrs


It had been quite sometime since we visited this beautiful place. Trust me the first glimpse you get of this place is simply superb. Savandurga can be easily spotted from here. The weather was perfect, neither too hot, nor too cold. We pulled over for a few minutes & continued further.

RIDE 2: (Manchinbele – Savandurga)
This was about a 10kms stretch, with patchy roads. As we left Manchinbele, we continued till the next village where we took a right deviation to enter forest kinda stretch. During our last stretch the entire forest was on fire due to a forest-fire. Riding on the road with the both sides of the road in high flames is something we had done last time. So we continued further to reach Savandurga.
TIME: 09: 30 hrs


We took about 1.5 hrs to ascend the hill with sufficient breaks. The whole climb is on the rock face which offers a pretty good grip. There is no necessity of guides as there are clear yellow arrow marks, which leads you till the top. I've divided the climb into 3 stages: i) first fort wall; ii) second fort wall; iii) Puddles stretch.

i) First fort wall:

The ascent to the first fort wall is the initial stretch. It takes about 10-15mins to cover this stretch, but the terrain is pretty steep. As clouds had covered up the sun, it was cool & we ascended quickly to reach the first fort wall.
TIME: 09:45 hrs


ii) Second fort wall:

The second stretch is a little less steep when compared to the previous stretch. But as we started from the first fort wall, the clouds cleared up & sun came directly above us. So we went into a canopy shade for a 10-15mins rest.
As the heat died down we decided to continue again. And as we did the real beauty of this trek began to show up. We could see both Manchinbele & T.G reservoir afar amidst the lush green terrain. We have been to both of these waters, but never have we seen it from this angle. After 15-20mins we reached the second fort wall.
TIME: 10:15 hrs


iii) Puddles stretch:

After resting for sometime at the 2nd fort wall we continued along it. This stretch is the least steep stretch, which made our progress so much better. We spotted a lot of puddles on top. We did make a lot of stories about them, which kept us well entertained. But the highlight of this was Dattu's dialogue “hey what if somebody drowns in this, what people will say?? He climbed & Savandurga & drowned on top? :P”
Damn all his jokes kept the spirits up as we continued further to reach the ruins of storage places from where the Nandi statue which marks the top can be spotted. We continued further, squeezing through the bushes & boulders we made it to the top.
TIME: 11:00 hrs



The wind speeds here were way off the charts. Just standing up straight became a challenge. We removed our shoes and bags, put one dive in front of the Nandi & then took a quick nap. We started throwing stones in front and guess what; it would actually hit the person behind us. Such were the wind speeds. After about an hour at the top we wore back our shoes & got ready for the descent.
TIME: 11:45 hrs


The descent was much quicker as no breaks were taken. We took about 30-40mins to reach the foot of the hills. As we left the top, we reached the storage building in a matter of minutes. After that it was literally walking down speaking to each other & cracking jokes. With Deepu leading the way we reached the 2nd fort wall in a short time.


From here we decided to take a short cut just, instead of following the arrows, we decided to head straight down the steep terrain. This cut short a lot of time & ground as we made it to the 1st fort wall to find our new friend.

A dog was sitting in the shade waiting for some company to take him down. So accompanied with a good guide leading the way, we reached the foothills. As we were just about to leave, we gave him some biscuits for taking us downhill.
TIME: 12:30 hrs


RIDE 3: (Savandurga – Manchinbele – Bangaluru)
This was a 40-45kms non-stop stretch. We did this with a few stops as we spotted chameleons, mongooses & lots of birds in the forest stretch. As we reached Manchinbele, we had one last look at this beauty. Promising her a return we continued to reach Mysore road. From then on it was pure sailing to reach Bengaluru. We went to our regular adda “Hoskerehalli Donne Biryani” for some heavy lunch.
TIME: 14:30 hrs


Until next time Cia \m/




  1. HEy guys can we hav swimmin der in the water seen in d pics !! IS it safe in the sense too deep or somethin !!

    1. Hey there,do not swim at these waters,it is very unsafe..Contains lots of deep pits..plus the water isn't that clean as well..

  2. Is camping allowed on top of the peak? Or can we stay at the kallu chappara?

    1. Im not very sure, but i have seen people start from the base in the evening and stay overnight on the peak.


  3. This was so helpful! Especially since you mentioned the time taken to reach each checkpoint.

    1. Hey cheers there. Hope you climbed it as well!!

  4. Does this trek require a permit? Me and my boyfriend want to do this trek in daytime but feeling a bit apprehensive of getting the permit from Police as we don't want them to bother us. Did you need a permit for a night trek?

    1. Night trek is banned for sure. But Day trek little restriction is there since few idiots goofed up last month. My suggestion is keep a PLAN B and go to this place. I am planning to visit one next month myself. Cheers!

  5. Replies
    1. Hehe, your appreciation & feedbacks is my "BIBLE" :)

  6. Dear Karthik,
    Did u visit it recently? How are the conditions?..I mean do they allow day trek..nice status BTW..

    1. Last i had been is 2016. Should go once again! Missing the place haha!

  7. Dear Karthik,
    Did u visit it recently? How are the conditions?..I mean do they allow day trek..nice status BTW..

    1. Yes, i heard day trek is allowed. Thanks :)

    2. Did you encounter any cops en'route? We are planning to go there this weekend, but we do not have a license.

    3. Had been there this year March. Then it was banned for somedays. But heard it is reopened for morning treks. So, keep PLAN B and go. And about licence, leave early return by late noon. Cheers!