Exploring the north side of Arunachala

by

We spent the last year exploring the southwest and south sides of Arunachala. Now, after moving further around the Holy Hill, we are closer to the north side, and for the next months we will be doing more explorations on this side of the mountain.

The north side is not as well known as the side of Arunachala around Ramanasramam and Arunachaleswara Temple. We had found ‘mountain guides’ that could take us into unknown areas on the well known side (if we needed help). On the north side so far we have not found any skillful guides, so just have to explore ourselves. This adds to the sense of discovery. 

To help us in this search, I have used Google Earth, and tried to find and mark trails and landmarks. Below is a view of the map I am developing.

northside area

Below is a close up of the area that is covered in this posting. The big tree is near the center of the map. You can see that the trails go further up Arunachala – we do not yet know just how far up they go. The promontory is to the left, between two trails.

Big Tree closeup

This is a closeup of what is mainly the section of the Inner Path we call “The Elephant.” The tank we call the Northside Basin is in blue to the left.  Trails I have found in the satellite photo (and sometimes have verified by walking) are shown in olive color. The Inner Path is in red.

Recently we have been exploring the area in the center of this map. After you pass by the Northside Basin, there is a rock promontory that juts out from Arunachala.

Here it is from afar, to the left of The Elephant’s trunk:

HPIM7305

As you get closer and closer it becomes the main nearby feature of the Holy Hill.

We have been exploring on the other side of this promontory.

When we first went into this area we saw village women carrying down bundles of long grass stems. They were coming down the trail on the other side of the promontory. We went into this area and were able to get a good shot of this side of the promontory. With the rocks here it is quite picturesque.

HPIM2541

The satellite photo shows a path that goes a lot further up the mountain. We will get to know this area better in the next few months.

To the left (from the photo), there is another small ridge. I have been exploring in this area a couple of times. In it I have found the biggest tree I have found so far, and what looks like the base of another trail that goes further up onto Arunachala.  A part of this shows in pink on the map, since I really am not sure of the trail.   

I got to this, starting from the post that marks the start of the “Trees” section of the Inner Path.

HPIM2645

The Inner Path goes straight ahead. I turned to the right, and looked back towards the area from which I had just come. There is another post that marks another trail.

HPIM2644

The rocks atop the promontory can be seen from the trail.

HPIM2637

In the  distance, a tree rises above the rest of the forest.

HPIM2631

Following the trail, I  get closer …

HPIM2624

And closer …

HPIM2617

Until I get to a rocky clearing, where this tree rises from the left.

HPIM2603

To the right, amidst the rocks, looks like another trail up the gentle hillside. 

HPIM2610

Before I get too far up the trail, I  see a big rock, with what might be what passes for a cave around here (a sheltered area under a rock).

HPIM2573

I climb up the rock to get a view of the surrounding countryside.

Here is the big tree:

HPIM2580

Arunachala above me, the peak enshrouded with clouds…

HPIM2588

…and the area surrounding the Inner Path on this part of it. The forested area between the Inner Path and Pradakshina Road is in the center of the photo, with buildings that line Pradakshina Road visible in the distance.

HPIM2589

The satellite photo shows two or three trails that go from this area further up Arunachala. These will be explored in future postings.

Related postings 

Inner Path – The Elephant
Under the loving gaze of The Elephant
Inner Path – Trees

Advertisements

Tags: , , ,

One Response to “Exploring the north side of Arunachala”

  1. arunachalaheart Says:

    Hi Richard,

    You live an amazing life in the bosom of Arunachala. The pics are simply amazing. Because of you I am able to get unknown and unseen darshans of Arunachala.

    I want to post a small article about you in my blog

    http://www.arunachalaheart.blogspot.com

    title of the article : The Explorer of Arunachala.

    Can you please send me how you got interested in Arunachala and what made you to take up residence there.

    Any interesting incident also would be nice.

    please mail the details to my email

    arunachalaheart@gmail.com

    thanks for sharing…

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: