Saturday, December 22, 2012

Unforgettable Trekking Trip From Vizag Beach To Kalingapatnam

The moment when orange coloured sun stopped chatting with the ocean and steered its steps to touch the sky, the moment when I started my journey from the golden beach of Visakhapattnam (Vizag) to 150km away Kalingapatnam. It was not an idiosyncratic aimless roaming of mine but focused walk towards 5 days approximately to another town of Andhra Pradesh, crossing many beaches and villages. I Started from the West and was heading towards North.

Vizag beach
I packed my rucksack with dry food, water, sleeping bag and tent. It was a high tide time, and fascinating to watch ferocious waves thundering upon rocks with no one dare to challenge the mighty ocean. It seemed a usual walk but I was walking alongside the coast line to cover some 150 km on feet, and I knew it was not so easy. I was refreshed but only headache where to crash for the night. There were muggers in this route who could lift your camera, your laptop and even your money; I had to be very careful about how to deal with rogues around. After a few hours some sort of tiredness casted upon my face, but beauty of the ocean and serenity along with continuous thundering waves motivated me to walk more.

From Kailashgiri hills
A brief interruption by two policemen en route checked my identification card and questioned me some routine questions ‘from where’ ‘to where’ and ‘why’. It was a bit difficult to communicate because of language problem, but we could manage with Hindi. I was also questioned by some morning joggers and couldn’t escape the stares of local fishermen and village boys. 

Fishermen's hope
Anyways, I was walking, overlooking fishermen, villages, palm trees, boats ready for morning fishing chores and other people. It was 1 PM I reached Rishikonda beach, it was around 8 km from Vizag beach and it took more than 8 hours to reach there. Nearby Ramkrishna beach is a bigger one but because of countless rocks and water current nobody really dares to float in the ocean, even Rishikonda witnessed infamous accidents but still it was well crowded and flooded with swimmers, water skiers and wind surfers. This beautiful beach is guarded by rocky hills and palm trees, it seems nature in her peculiar style crafted a curvature on the beach, meeting with friendly hills at a point where ocean waves come in a while and have a brief chat with those two. 

I bought some idlis from nearby beach vendor and finished my lunch. I thought to spend my night in Rishikonda because it was better to stay in hotel than a village. Next day, I started refreshed with new enthusiasm, still a long way to go but with a bit smoking and a little pause for photography and notes was a cool experience. It seemed an eternal walking alongside Bay of Bengal, mountains and huge casuarina forests. Only difficult I faced was the language; sometimes sign language, and sometimes with Hindi, I managed two bottles of portable water from fishermen. Far away in the sea a bunch of seagulls were hovering around a fishing trawler, trying to find the opportunity to steal their meal.

This day, I decided to spend in the village. I went to a village and asked if there was any place to spend the night. They were looking at me like an alien, but the word ‘tourist’ worked like a magic. Some small children wanted to see my camera; I clicked a few photos of them and easily gelled with them. 

Fishermen coming back home
Third day started with a little ease because I somehow knew how to manipulate villagers and escaped from rogues. I met a guy around 14-17 years age named Murti, he was a fishermen and went to Mumbai sometimes for fishing. I made friendship with him and asked me whether he could take me with his boat and led me to the ocean and taught how to fish. He readily agreed and took me to the ocean; it was a fantastic experience on a handmade boat with a teenage fisherman, realizing how small we were in front of this vast water pool. After returning I tried to give him a Rs. 100 but he was very reluctant to take it, but in the end I just pushed that note into his pocket. 

After five days of walking, finally I reached Kalingpatnam beach, a small town in Andhra Pradesh once a busy sea port and settlement of many European merchants. For the first time I saw a lighthouse and a Buddhist stupa on a beach. It was a successful adventure trip but couldn’t be possible if unknown villages and villagers wouldn’t help me out. The unforgettable word in the title is not for my adventure but my gratitude towards those poor but hearty people.

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