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Mullayanagiri Trek

Known in the world for quality coffee estates of the Western Ghats hills, Chikmagalur in India’s south is no lesser a mountain destination than your average Himalayan hill stations. Chikmagalur is home to the Baba BudanGiri ranges of the Western Ghats with its highest peak being the Mullayanagiri Peak. Salubrious summers, green and resplendent monsoon hues, and surreal misty winters make Mullayanagiri irresistible in all seasons and for all moods. At an altitude of 1,930 m, the successful ascension of Mullayanagiri is something to boast about in the trekking circuits, if you are sure of your experience and fitness, go for it we say! The trek route passes by the beautiful Bhadra Forest Reserve and offers campsites on hill slopes overlooking absolutely mesmerizing, sublime views. Sightings of elephants or bears are commonplace in these hills, so contain your excitement and remember to be cautious! More fascinating aspects of the Mullayanagiri Trek includes sudden mists sweeping through the slopes and reducing visibility, steep and exhilarating 60-degree inclines, a cave fount halfway to the top with insides full of colorful mineral deposits, and stretches of coffee plantations and dense woods.

What is Mullayanagiri Trek?

An arduous nature trek in the hills of Karnataka, Mullayanagiri is no fit for novices but packs in a great deal of excitement for the seasoned and fit trek enthusiast. Well connected to Bangalore by bus at a distance of 280 km, the base camp for Mullayanagiri Peak trek is conveniently accessible all times of the year and makes for a perfect long weekend adventure of the city limits. The Mullayanagiri trekking trail zigzags amidst coffee estates and thick deciduous forests typical of the Western Ghats. There are sharp and steep 60 degree inclines to negotiate on the way up, thus hiking up the trek challenge level. Halfway to the top, you will come across a mysterious cave infested with flocks of bats. Go and explore inside to see a myriad color on the ceiling of the cave formed due to many years of mineral deposits. Treats in views from the top includes glimpses of Bababudangiri peak, the highest in the region. Perching at the top, there is an ancient Shiva Temple with a storied past. The tomb of the Saint Mulappa Swamy who meditated in the nearby cave is located at the peak. The entirety of the BabaBudangiri Range is considered a holy place for both the Hindus and the Muslims. Here is where the saints and pirs came to mediate. Collecting these ancient spiritual lores adds a different tone to the Mullayanagiri Trek.

Why Should We Go For The Mullayanagiri Trek?

  • Feel the joy of trekking the highest peak in the Baba Budan Giri Range of the Western Ghats.
  • Snaky trails pass through the forests near Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary, taking us to the top, starting from the village Sarpadhari which literally means ‘serpentine’.
  • Sufficiently steep parts to negotiate for those who love a challenge. Expect 60 degree vertical inclines.
  • Mysterious caves with mineral deposit lining reflecting myriad of colors-- something to photograph!
  • A couple of statues of the Nandi bull, shrouded in the green shade of the forests on the way up-- these relics signify the spiritual importance the region upholds.
  • Shiva Temple and the tomb of the saint at the top of the hill.
  • 10 kilometers ahead of Mullayanagiri, passing through ridges, hills, and grasslands, the way to Baba Budangiri is visible, you may take this trek on the same day if your choose.
  • Manikyadhara Waterfalls on the way down-- a sight to behold!
  • Camping on the windy slopes of Mullayanagiri hill top can be thoroughly enjoyable, except in the monsoons.

How High Is the Mullayanagiri Trek?

One of the highest in the Western Ghats hills, elevation of the Mullayanagiri peak is 6,330 ft. The fourth highest in the Nilgiris, this peak is celebrated for its steep inclines and recommended for trekking only to seasoned mountain goers.

When to Visit?

June to September is a great time to access the Mullayanagiri hill side. Rains frequently lash the slopes of Mullayanagiri during this time, the hills, making the hills come more alive and greener. Sufficient rain gear will allow you to trek enjoyably, making the most of camping in the windy slopes. Winters too are equally wonderful, the weather is cool and pleasant in the day, while turning slightly chilly in the nighttime.

How to Reach?

By Air: The nearest domestic airport to Mullayanagiri trek is located about 180 km away, at Mangalore. The nearest international airport is the Bangalore Airport, located 287 km away.
By Rail: To access the Mullayanagiri trekking route by train, you should reach either Mangalore or Bangalore railway station, and travel by rail from thereon to Tarikere rail head, the nearest one to Mullayanagiri base camp.
By Road: Chikmagalur, located 22 km away from the base camp village is connected by KSRTC buses to places within the state and the bordering states.

Are There Any Shops Available On the Mullayanagiri Trek?
Shops are sparse on this trek route. All purchases should be concluded at Sarpadhari.

What to Pack for the Mullayanagiri Trek?

  • Large or medium size backpack, and a duffle side bag for extras
  • Water bottle
  • Sun hat
  • Warm cap
  • Base layers
  • Fleece jacket
  • Outer jacket
  • Rain jacket (essential for the monsoon months)
  • Sturdy trekking shoes and a pair of floaters
  • Flashlight
  • Trekking pants, several pairs
  • UV-protection glasses
  • Thermal socks

Is There Any Possibility Of Altitude Sickness?

Possibility of altitude sickness can be ruled out of this trek. But, it is important to have good physical strength and endurance to enjoy this arduous trek.

How Busy Is the Mullayanagiri Trek?

Being close to Chikmagalur- one of the touristy towns of Karnataka, this trek is frequently opted by visiting people. You are going to find the trail moderately peopled during winters and monsoon.