Sunday, 15 April 2007
Periyar Tiger Reserve
Our three day walk in the hills was a definite highlight of our time in India. It was just the two of us, a very official Park Ranger with a gun, a local guide, a cook and a couple of raft paddlers / wood gatherers.
It was the start of the dry season so the lake which in the wet season reaches the treeline was quite low so much of the walking was in the river bed. Periyar is a man made lake which provides water and power to Tamil Nadu.
We would walk in the morning, and rest in the camp during the heat of the day before going out walking again. One day we also went on a long bamboo rafting trip (Amy's arms hurt!).
The park is home to lots of animals - samba deer, sloth bears, bison, boar, elephants, kites, giant squirrels, monkeys, bats, mongoose - which we saw ... and leopards and tigers, which remained hidden.
The guides were really good, and let us have lots of time to watch the animals as well as explaining some of the local cultural things. We were also fed like kings!
Paul walking in the lakebed
Bamboo raft to the camp site
Camp site by the lake
We followed this group of elephants from the trees for almost an hour. You can't see but there was a super baby one which hid in the legs of the others