1. Rajesh R
2. Deanish M A
3. Ravi Kumar Boyapati
Date: 15th August, 2021
Mode of Transport: Tata Tigor
It was 6:15 am and we are already late to go to new destination post lock-down. This time it is a trek to a less unknowing fort by the name Gummanayaka. This is located in the border of Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. I had no idea on where about the destination and it was Deanish M A who did all the research about the place.
The fort looks deserted since very few people visit this place and when one Google searches for a nearby place from Bangalore, it hardly shows up in the first page. The fort looked like well guarded with multiple layers of defensive walls. This concept of multi tier fort walls is seen in almost all the forts in Karnataka. By the view of the ruins at the base of the fort, it looked like the fort was breached (at least the lower half) as one can see Indo Islamic architecture (not sure about this). The front gates are getting renovated and we can see a huge iron gate being put up.
In some places of the walls, one can see stone inscription of images along with Kannada words(which was not clear). The fort is a located in a small hill lock and the trek is easy, though it can be confusing for the climb. Initially we started the climb from the rear end of the fort (next to a lake). This is do-able but we climbed mid way and came back. Rajesh sat below in the base and took a power nap.
As we climb the stairs, we arrive a T junction, wherein right leads to the temple and the left leads to a room (assumed granary during those days) which had only a window and was closed from all sides. This lead us to a dead end. Further down this, there was a deep gorge with a water pool, one of its side was the big stone. Above which is the fort walls stands erect. As we started exploring the area, Ravi and myself were lucky to see a big monitor lizard therein. But to our excitement as we shouted to call in our travel mates, it moved below the bushes and we were not able to spot it again. I repent till this day.
As you take the temple road, you get the stairs which leads you to inside the fort walls. Inside the fort walls, a huge area welcomes you. One can see only a room and rest all of the place was empty. We were not sure whether there was no construction or it was all destroyed. The fort had it’s own rain water harvesting. Water is being collected is small rock gaps. The view from the top is breathtaking. One can see multiple surrounding hills and provided a a good view of the far approaching enemies at those days. This is a very easy trek but lonely and can be ascended in 30-45minutes without breaks. It is advisable to go in groups.
There a small boulder in the middle and we climb up to see the view as well.
As we took a walk around the fort walls, we were able to see around 8-9 water bodies in the surrounding areas. And as we see the gorge from above, wherein we saw the monitor on the way up, we were able to see one more. This was a smaller one but this was too far to be captured in camera.
All images are captured by Deanish M A. The Indo Islamic architecture by Ravi K B.
The place is around 121 kms from Yelahanka New Town. We hit the NH44 highway till Bagepalli, from where one needs to take right. But we took a right just before this, via a village and were welcomed by an arch. This is not advisable as the village roads are narrow and it took us more time(it seemed). Continuing on this, we reached the Chelur Bagepalli highway. Went on till we reach the Gummanayaka Village after a diversion on the left. Roads are pretty good till the base of the fort.
On the way back,we had lunch at Suresh Gowda Milatry Hotel in Devanahalli. This places serves awesome mutton biriyani.