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|Year and Month||September, 2014|
|Number of Days||one|
|Crew||3 (Nishan, Myself and our trishaw driver )|
|Accommodation||Waishyakadana building Kandy|
|Transport||Public transport and trishaw|
|Activities||Hiking / Scenery / Trekking / Photography|
|Route||Kandy -> Rikillagaskada -> Kandy -> Mahiyangana -> Monaragala|
|Tips, Notes and Special remark||
|Comments||Discuss this trip report, provide feedback or make suggestions at Lakdasun Forum on the thread|
Perfect weather conditions in hill country means it’s time to do some hikes. I just had to pick up two places in my list and execute. First day it was Hanthana range and few of my lakdasun friends did accompany me on that superb hike. For my next day execution Only Nishan said yes. So next day early morning both of us got in to a Padiyapelella bus and headed towards Rikillagaskada where we had our breakfast. We were going to climb a unique mountain range in the central hills. Kukulagala which overlooks Rikillagaskada town like a lonely giant. Been an isolated mountain from others makes it a perfect outlook point in this region. I knew this mountain was special since the first time I saw it two years back. As usual there were no literature on it but Google earth and some map reading gave me two routes to access this.
From Rikillagaskada we hired a trishaw to get to our destination. The road that we took to reach the lake close to Udawatta which is close to the summit point was miserably terrible. The trishaw driver did some great 4wd stuff to take us there through Wewethenna watta. The ride through the pines plot was simply awesome. We did note the towers close by but since we decided to climb up from the lake we proceeded until we reached it. We halted at the lake and went towards a tea patch where we found some Forest department guys planting trees to help the mountain range gain its past glory. They showed us a foot path which took us to the edge of the pines plot where the rocky part of the mountain could be found. After a short walk through the pines we reached an open area with splendid views there is a clear foot path from the towers side which leads to the summit and we stuck to it. We had to tackle many boulders before reaching the summit point of Diyathalawa which is also known as Kukulagala.
The first thing we noted was the engravings of few foreign Surveyors during the early 19 hundreds. It’s fascinating since I have come across C. Erskine’s name previously too when I hiked Kokagala at Padiyathalawa. This guy continues to impress me; he must have had a totally different view those days compared to what I had on that day. As I guessed this mountain is so unique that even surveyors used it as one of their measurement points in the past and even in recent history. This triangulation point was the perfect lookout for us who wanted to enjoy few beautiful reservoirs from bird’s eye perspective. The summit must have had a mountainous forest long ago and some flora found on top of it justifies the theory. Tea and pines had played there role in destruction of its native habitat and formed this totally foreign landscape which we see on this present day.
Let me try and summarize what we saw starting from Kandy side we saw Hanthana, Hunnasgiriya , Gombaniya, Knuckles, Theldeniya, Victoria reservoir, Meda maha nuwara kanda, Nawanagala, Dothalugala, Dumbanagala, Kehelpathdoruwa, Yahangala, Hunnasgiriya, Kokagala of Padiyathalawa, Mahiyangana side, Randenigala reservoir, Loggal oya reservoir, Sora bora wewa, Madulsima range, Namunukula, Narangala, Bandarawela side, Rikillagaskada town, Padiyapelella, Walapane side, Hanguranketha, Maha kuda gala and Ragala range, whole of Piduruthalagala range (different view), the gap where Mandaram nuwara is located, Delthota side and many more landmarks which I cannot recall. We spent some good time on top of it before deciding to call it a day and descend.
While descending we came across some locals who were climbing up with two monks to place a flag post. They had taken a difficult route from the forest below the pines and their faces confirmed it. When we got to the bottom we were greeted with a hot tea cup by the Forest department guys and ended up chatting with them for more than half an hour before departing towards Rikillagaskada. We said good bye to the trishaw guy who became good friends with us and he was even reluctant to take the hire fees because he enjoyed this hike more than us. After returning to Kandy both of us departed towards our homes with some wonderful memories of Kukulagala.