2010 in Pictures - The year that Rocked! :)

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The year could not have started on a better note. It was New Year's eve and a full moon night. The breeze was cool enough to be pleasant. Me and my friend were having a cup of tea at the small highway joint while the bus stopped for a small break. Next two days spent in Karwar, Goa and Gokarna were as legendary as ever! This New Year’s Eve I will be sitting under the vast open and starry skies of Great Indian Thar Desert. That is also going to be legendary as ever! 

Reminiscing the events of 2010, I have to say it was a very very eventful year with lot of important milestones that I personally felt took me a bit closer towards realizing my dream of becoming a full fledged traveler. Let's see how events unfolded over the 12 months of 2010.  Click on the images to read the detailed blog post if published.

January - 

Like I said, the year started on a rocking note when I spent two days along the coastline of Karnataka and Goa. In two days we covered 220kms of coastline visiting seven beaches ranging from Colva in Goa to Maravanthe near Kundapur in Karnataka.

One weekend in nature didn't satiate my wanderlust as expected and the immediate weekend I escaped to the mountains of Tadiyandmol for a small yet rewarding trek. The clouds below my feet experience that I longed for ever since I knew of Western Ghats was fulfilled after a year of evasion. This trek also remains memorable for I introduced my friend from office to my world of trekking in this trek. From what I could tell she did enjoy the experience. :)

Later that month, yet another trek to Kodaikanal beckoned and I was up for another adventure in the high hills. Kodaikanal was instrumental as I met few people who would later turn be good friends and interesting contacts with whom I am still in touch. The trek was amazing in its own right with stories to tell but you've read about it already. 

That was the end of a splendid January.

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Golden Beaches of Gokarna

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Golden sunset from Tadiyandmol

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The Green Slopes of Kodaikanal
February - 

Then came February with the promise of an adventurous three day foray into the forests near my home ground which I never knew existed. Chennai Trekking Club aka CTC had discovered trails to explore the seldom ventured forests of Venkateswara National Reserve and it had also been two years since CTC was founded. To celebrate the joy, 17 of us decided to spend three exciting days wandering in the forests near Tirupati and what a revelation it turned out to be. I also met more interesting people in this trek. Mission Accomplished.

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Colorful Pools of Venkatweswara
March – 

This was a rather busy month with no trips or treks but something else occupied most of my time. I was about to take the big step. I finally decided on buying a DSLR and it was crazy research time. Lots of surfing on the net and looking for ways to get the DSLR imported from US as soon as possible took away my time but in the end it all fell in place when a trek friend said she was coming back from US the next month. It was a momentous decision in every sense. 

April – 

April was rather empty if not for the one trek that I had gone for rather unexpectedly which turned out to be good as I met friends after ages – one and a half year later, five months later and so on. April was also instrumental in starting my journey towards being a photographer with the new DSLR finally in my hands. I bought a Canon EOS 500D and life has never been the same since.

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Venkateswara, I come back again.
May , June –

By far my most favorite months of the year. The maiden trip with a DSLR in hand was undertaken this month to Mysore and its surroundings. I just loved the experience of shooting like a pro lugging around a heavy camera. 

This was the time after much deliberation when I finally managed to convince my family not to go to Singapore and instead spent two weeks of bliss exploring the northernmost frontier of our country – Ladakh! This was the second time I am returning with family to the land of high passes and the familiarity already made me feel at home. This time I was also better armed with a DSLR to capture my love for the mountains. Needless to say, this was a legendary trip with lots of adventure and exploration.

June was also special because I published my first article in a magazine on Chhattisgarh, one step closer to being a travel writer. :)

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Maiden trip with DSLR - Shivasamudram Falls

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The roads of Ladakh

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Brilliance of Ladakh
July – 

July was special as it turned out I would come to meet new friends from Bangalore unexpectedly. After much consideration, I agreed to join a trip to Valparai trip with few people whom I had never met before. The person I knew was just an acquaintance but the desire to see Valparai propelled me to join the journey and as it turns out none of them were psychos and I am now good friends with all of them. The trip to Valparai was definitely memorable in more ways than one.

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Goats around Aaliyar, Valparai
August – 

August was as adventurous as it could get. It started with a spontaneous monsoon trip to Goa with the friends that I mentioned above and that was super fun. The crazy bike ride to reach Dudhsagar falls, the freaky nights we spent drinking beer along beaches, the awesome rides in the rain – everything about that trip is the stuff legends are made of, trust me. ;)

Mid of August, with the same group I joined yet another three day exploration of Venkateswara reserve forests and that helped me warm up for something big to that was to come next month. As always, I met more people here who are good friends now. 

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Goa Rocks!

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Venkateswara Rocks too! :)
September – 

There, the most unexpected and the most wonderful month came up with many surprises and adventures. I had never thought of a trek to Himalayas already after my last years Roopkund and this year’s Ladakh expedition. But here I was, on am exploratory mission in the high Himalayas. The trek was nothing short of spectacular and Himalayas were as awesome as ever. I did make some good friends on this trek which had an eclectic mix of people. 

As if that was not adventure enough and I made my own plans to visit the awesomeness called Spiti. This was yet another remarkable journey to the remote corner of India. The landscapes were out of this world and we did manage to see nature’s fury as well. So glad to have made this trip. 

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The most awesomest campsite ever - Alyas, Kugti Pass Trek

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Descending Kugti Pass into Lahaul

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Gateway to Spiti
October – 

October I thought would be somber with so many trips that year already but alas I forgot how inviting monsoons can be around Western Ghats. An invasion into the leech territory of Brahmagiri left us itchy for sure but the greenery made all of it worthwhile. The trek was delightful with more friends and new interesting acquaintances. 

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Lovely Irupu Falls in morning light

Later that month I also met bloggers Lakshmi and Vamsee in person. Yet another interesting start towards meeting more interesting and likeminded people. 

November – 

Come November I swore to myself that I am not going to move out any weekend. I promised myself that I’d sit home and put up my photography site, write all the pending journals and things like that only to break the promise big time! November was hectic as hell but I enjoyed the adventure just as much. I went for three consecutive splendid long awaited treks - Kodachadri, Ettina Bhuja to Ombattu Gudda and Vellarimala .Discovered a new adventure club, met more friends, had super fun and good adventure. The three treks were tough and posed different kinds of challenges. 

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Green Fields of Kodachadri

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Ettinabhuja Peak

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Olichuchattam Falls of Vellamrimala
December – 

This month will be legendary for sure. I am going to trek in the Great Indian Thar Desert. That sentence has such a nice ring to it I am sure I will have great stories to tell once back. Since I am off in a week it only made sense to put this post together now.

Looking back at things, the year couldn’t have gone better. I made so many new explorations, took some spectacular shots, made some amazing friends and I even published an article. Zindagi rocks! 

Have a happy New Year Folks!  
And if you will, tell me how great your year was. 

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12 comments

  1. This is an awesome read. Nice to see how the year 2010 was for you in words and pictures.
    Have a great 2011 N

    -Shiv

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  2. out of the world,mind blowing.........superb!

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  3. WHAT A YEAR!! If I had some free time, I would sit and count the free weekends you had in a month. My god!! You were on a roll this year.

    I am so happy that I know people like you who travel as much/more than me. It makes me feel normal!

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  4. Wow, u had an eventful yr! Brilliant pics, gr8 memoir :).
    Would love to know how u find time to do so much travelling. :P

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  5. Superb...
    Hope coming years will bring more colors to your life and more places and images for us :)

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  6. Me too speechless... So many places, all in an year... May you travel much more in 2011

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  7. awesome! the only thing missing is islands maybe...andaman in 2011?

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