Well some plans need to be cancelled for the better ones to be fulfilled !!
Our earlier plan was to go to Jaipur with our parents but they backed out at the last moment ! Me and my sister had almost given up hope of going anywhere this weekend when we thought of going to corbett ! Without going in to too much details of booking,we booked a “hotel” named Corbett Gram Vikas Samiti ! And asked the manager there to book a whole day safari for one day !
Excited as hell ,we left by Ranikhet express from Delhi to arrive at Ramnagar at 5 am! We decided to take a bus to our “hotel” situated 30 kms from the station. But the buses didn’t start till 6 am. Hence we ended spending an hour at the bus stop observing a curious dog trying to catch a mice & sipping hot tea ! It wasn’t as disgusting as it sounds ! :-P
Well we boarded our bus and reached a spot called Chhoti Haldwani ! It was a desserted location with only farms and small shops selling tea in sight,with a board of eco tourism gram pointing downwards towards a road slightly downhill.
We started with our two bags in the direction and all we could see were village houses with farms behind them ! When suddenly we came in front of a cottage marked Diner with our guide cum helper cum cool cum manager standing there to receive us.He showed us into our cottage with NO TV !We were bit apprehensive about it but were really spellbound by the farms in our backyard!
We freshen’d up n left to see the corbett museum. It was ok ! We both are not museum people especially when there is no one to explain !
After that Pandey ji,no similarity to Salman Khan wat so ever, our guide for a trek of 3.5 km to corbett falls !PandeYji were explaining everything to us in detail right from farming of litchi to trees planted by jim corbett himself ! Corbett falls were amazing and the dangerous trek to reach its origin was exhilarating ! the journey back was also amazing. Though we didn’t spot any animals besides an occasional bird !
In the evening we decided to go for another trek,this time the greater distance of 9.5 km throug brahmbuh trail. We left at 3.30 pm ,walking in the jungle all alone, just the three of us n the only noise(a lot of it)being made by our feet stepping on the dried leaves strewn all over the floor of the jungle ! Well will not give more description,will just tell u wat we saw !
Peacock dancing in the gorge,a neelgai,barking deer,elephant’s footprints,tiger’s clawmarks on the tree ,grassland where Jim corbett shot 7 tigers together,brahmbhu temple and 6 peacocks taking flight together suddenly on being disturbed by our noise. Though the trek was tiring the thrill n adrenaline rush we got from it can’t be duplicated anywhere ! We reached hotel, tired & drained of energy .We slept at 9 only after tea n dinner as we had to wake up early morning the next day !
Next day we woke up early in the morning and left for Ramnagar for our safari. There we were greeted by our guide Bhupinder n driver Waseem ! We left for the entry into jhirna zone at arnd 6.As we entered the jungle,we were entertained by both Bhupi n Waseem by various tails of sightings of tigers by the locals n their subsequent chases by the beast! Before entering into the tourist zone,we decided to borrow binoculars for Rs 250 for the whole day which in retrospect was worth it ! As we entered jungle we saw signs of elephants which had passed through on the previous night bt weren’t present anywhere near as of now !
As we were looking at the various birds and photographing them,we were on the lookout of the king of the jungle (though it wasn’t our main priority till now).We spotted many other animals as well like Monitor Lizzard, spotted deer, barking deer,common Langur,wild boar etc.
Suddenly our guide asked for our binoculars to see mammal walking far away on a blocked road with so much charm n elegance. For a second I thought it was jackal ! But on zooming in using my camera we were shocked n elated to realise that it was a LEOPARD ! Leopard sightings r pretty rare ,n I always had a desire to see one in the jungle !even more than a tiger! Happy we headed back to the FRH as it was time for the safari’s official close for break !
In the break we lay on the grass beneath the huge banyan tree listening to old songs ! We left around 3 for the evening Safari, with expectations of spotting tiger n elephants !
As soon as we were in the jungle we were surprised by sudden noise on the right side and suprised to see a huge tusker standing just few feets from us. The poor chap was as sacred of us as we were of him !he ran away inside before we could photograph him !We started towards the watch tower near the huge spring ! As we were heading there we saw a small herd of elephants walking in the grassland towards the spring.We headed further towards the stream.after few meters only we were surprised by another herd of elephants on the left side of us munching away the trees in the jungle.we decided to head toward the stream n wait there for a while.while we were waiting near the bend,we realised that we were actually blocking path of the elephants & hence decided to move little ahead to be surprised by another herd of elephants coming from behind us.we were cornered from all sides.the new herd had a one toothed tusker with a small elephant cub with small tusks !With our hearts in our mouth we saw all the herds slowly descend n reach down the stream n meet each other as if they were long lost relatives ! ;-) we also saw how the 3 tuskers were checking out the females n then disappearing in to the thicket !
After watching all this drama we decided to move on in search of the tiger ! Though we didn’t spot a tiger after that but apprehension & hope n the jungle environment we experienced during the search was enriching experience.
We reached arnd 8 at our cottage ! Next day we left for delhi by the morning train which leaves at 10 to reach delhi at 4 .
Lastly I must say it was an amazing experience ! Though for the next time we’d like to stay in Frh in middle of jungle,the experience of staying in a village was also great! corbett is an amazing place to unwind ! But please don’t go there just for purpose of sighting the tiger ! Go for a jungle experience n if u spot tiger,take it as bonus !