Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Day 12: Hiking and enjoying the mountains on our last weekend here

Our last weekend started early. At 6am we left UTC and started a 4 hour bus ride to a coffee plantation in Sakleshpur.
Our last weekend started early. At 6am we left UTC and started a 4 hour bus ride to a coffee plantation in Sakleshpur. If you sat in the back of the bus, every bump in the road felt like a huge jolt. This was made even worse because of the many speed bumps on Indian roads. To me, the bus ride felt like a rollercoaster.

Finally, we arrived at the coffee plantation and we were able to enjoy our time away from the city in lush Indian forests. After settling down at the estate we were staying at and playing a little bit of cricket, our host took us on a tour of the coffee plantation. We got to see acres of coffee plants, and see how shade grown coffee is cultivated.


Later, we all went on a hike up a mountain. The climb was mostly steep rock but the reward was definitely worth it. A Hindu temple sat on the peak and the view was absolutely amazing. We were able to see miles of dense forest. I remember thinking to myself that I was looking out at the country of India itself.


We spent a while on the top of the mountain taking plenty of pictures and just hanging out, then descended and rode back to the estate. By then it was late in the day and before dinner our host was able to set up a campfire for us. Our group sat around the fire and, like a cliché, told ghost stories.


The next day, some of our group went on another, shorter hike, that gave us another view of miles of forested mountains. After breakfast we left the estate and bought locally grown coffee with chicory. Then we visited ruins of a church that was annually flooded by a nearby river. It was amazing to see how much the river could flood and how much rain must come in to achieve that. Afterwards, we all loaded back onto the rollercoaster bus and headed back to UTC.




-- Lydia E.

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