Adventures in Antargange
Antara Gange is a mountain in Shathashrunga, 65 km away from Bangalore near Kolar. It is house to seven villages on it. It’s beauty lies in the intricate network of tactfully balanced volcanic boulders and rocks that has created cave like formations making this a great place for heavy duty exploration.
The bottom of the mountain is strewn with 500 steps that lead the way to Kashi Vishweshwara temple,which is an attraction in itself. This temple is surrounded with water coming out from the mouth of a stone bull all year round. This water comes from underground but no one knows the actual source, which is why this place is called Antargange which translates to ‘Ganges of the deep’ in Kannada.
Once you have crossed the temple, the challenge awaits you. It is advisable to go in groups with atleast one who has done the rocky trail cave exploration before as many who have gone there have to say that the path is confusing.
Since the caves are formed by boulders laying against each other in a random fashion, it is hard to guess what comes next and you quite easily lose track even though it is well marked out, especially at night.
Cave exploration will have you crawling, squeezing, crouching and pushing yourself up a boulder and in between cracks. In some stretches the crevices are so narrow that only one person can go through. The route is twisted like a maze and will test your endurance, agility and team skills.
After you have managed to successfully make your way out of the caves you will find an open trail. After a short trek you will reach the top of Antargange. Refresh yourself and await the sunrise by laying on the rocks or just lose yourself in the spell binding glory of the vastness of the horizon ahead of you.
The way down is a different route that leads back to the temple and if you are lucky you will spot peacocks early in the morning.
Although not technical, this trek is intense and requires you to be prepared in-terms of physical fitness, wearing the correct shoes and outfit, carrying enough water and a torch for safety purposes. You may want to avoid this trek in the monsoons and summer afternoon as the rocks get very hot.
Antargange’s rocky terrain is definitely a unique experience that one enjoy especially since it is so close to the city.