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|Year and Month||March, 2010|
|Number of Days||Three day trip|
|Crew||4 (Amal of Lakdasun, Myself & two local Guides)|
|Accommodation||Idikatupana Ambalama(Erathna trail) & Erathna temple.|
|Transport||Public Transport and three wheel rides|
|Activities||Hiking, See Wildlife, Photography, Scenery & Waterfall hunting|
|Weather||Heavy showers on day one and a continues drizzle on day two|
|Route||Awissawella -> Deraniyagala -> Uda Maliboda -> Pandeniya -> Madahinna( Erathna trail to Sri Pada) – > Idikatupana -> Adams Peak -> return back on Erathna route to Adawi kanda -> Erathna -> Kuruwita -> Bopath Falls -> ColomboTotal distance of the trails: 21Km|
|Tips, Notes and Special remark||
Photographs by Amal & Ashan
|Comments||Discuss this trip report, provide feedback or make suggestions at Lakdasun Forum on the thread|
This was a trail that I was looking forward to do since I have done the other two main routes previously (Palabathgala & Hatton). All started when we met on 21st of march where I got to know many members of Lakdasun out of them Amal who is a member came up to me and asked me “are you planning to do the Uda Maliboda trail?” so that was the initiative for this journey! .
Both of us met up at Avissawella at 6a.m and we were lucky to catch the 6a.m. bus too. After arriving at Deraniyagala we had breakfast and bought the essential we needed and caught the 7.45a.m bus to Uda Maliboda. At around 9a.m. we met our guides who we did contact previously.
Let me explain the route from Uda Maliboda. After passing Uda Maliboda tea factory we continued further until we came to the Corporate shop where the road divides in to two, We took the one to the right which had a sign board saying To Dikellakanda & Eli Hatha. We continued on this road and we did cross the Naya ganga Sapaththu palama. The journey was an uphill three wheel ride where at some places we had to get down and push the three-wheeler too. The road is not suitable for vehicles with poor ground clearance. After passing the Dikellakanda School and traveling further up we came to place which had a name board saying 9Km to Sri Pada.
We arrived at Pandeniya oya and met some UOM guys doing the same trail. From here onwards the journey was trough the Wilderness of Adams Peak sanctuary. The foot path was very clear because locals have cleared the path during the initial months of Sri Pada season. The first part was parallel to the Pandeniya oya but eventually we were traveling uphill and away from Pandeniya oya. After climbing up few hundred meters we came across the first water stream out of many where we rested and started removing the Pests called leeches and yes the numbers were high because it has rained on the previous 2 to 3 days. We did meet up with the previous group again at this point who were suffering with leech attack as we did!
The journey was getting tougher and as the steep slopes seemed like never ending. My wildest guest is we were traveling uphill on Heen Piduruthalawa Mountain. And suddenly out of no where the rain poured down heavily and it was thundering too & the worst was the Guerrilla Leech attack. The leech attack was unbearable but we didn’t want to waste time on them, we did remove them when ever we stopped by a water stream for a rest. The two guides who came with us said that they have never encountered an attack like this. After about 2Km we came across an elephant path way / Elephant feeding ground close to the upper reaches of Heen Piduruthalawa, We were bit worried because there were fresh elephant dung all over the place and seen many false tracks made by elephants but we were fortunate not to come across these giants. The journey continued further on a flat terrain and then it was a downhill journey. The rain had seized a bit but the leech attack was continuing even involving our head, neck, chest and other areas of the body and there was one even on my lip.
We came across a stream which we thought was Seethagangula but it was too small to be Seetha gangula but guess what Seethagangula was only less than 2o meters away from this stream. We were happy that we reached Seethagangula because it’s only less than 1Km to go from here onwards. There were arrows on the rocks of Seethagangula showing the directions towards the foot path which was on the opposite bank and 50-100m upstream. We continued uphill trough a dense Bamboo jungle where we had difficulties to see few meter in front of us because of the thick mist cover which had settled down, but however after 1Km we reached the Erathna trail. We went down the trail until we reached Madahinna where we had some warm food and said good bye to the guides who came with us on this 4.5hr 5-6Km journey.
Since it was raining we wanted to find a place to stay at night so we climbed up until we reached Idikatupana Ambalama where we stayed until dawn, We also did come across the other group who did the same trail as us and guess what two of them were Lakdasun members . The hall was packed and it was very difficult to sleep with all the singing and playing of drums by young groups who has forgotten the purpose of Adams peak hike. At around 5a.m. the skies were so clear and the moon was covered partially by clouds just above Kubudiyaparwathaya and in backdrop was the coastal Galle road lit up far away & on the other side it was Adams peak Mahagiridhabaya lit up perfectly but unfortunately we did not have a good camera to capture these wonderful sights. So if you are planning to spend the night on this trail try and choose Indikatupana Ambalam on a Full moon day!
Next morning it was time to climb up but I decided to wonder around rather climbing with the crowd but Amal did climb up while I was exploring Seethagangula. At around 3p.m. we started to descend though it was drizzling and it was a continuous down hill journey. We did come across few “Dansal”
For more details about this trail please read this trail guide. We arrived at Waranagala at around 6p.m but since it was dark we did not attempt to visit Waranagala falls, instead we continued downhill until we reached Adawikanda at around 7.45p.m. I must say the last 8Km’s was a mirage for us! From there we took a three-wheeler and reached Erathna temple where we stayed that night. Next morning we left to Kuruwita where we had breakfast and left to have a glimpse of the famous, commercialized Bopath Falls but we forgot to visit Dodan falls which was close by too. After that we returned back to Kuruwita and set ourselves towards our home sweet homes!
Quote: Bopath Falls
The Bopath Falls cascades in the shape of a bo (Ficus religiosa) tree (hence its name) and is the most comprehensively studied fall in Sri Lanka. Its source is the Kurugana River that later joins the Kaluganga River at Kurugaomaodara.
The average temperature of the area is 26.9 – 27.8 degrees Celsius and the annual rainfall of the fall’s catchment area is 5080mm. The mean speed of the flow is 6 cubic metres per second. The upper reach of the fall is made up of granite and biotite virin, and is covered by sand. The water from the fall irrigates the paddy fields of the Udakada and Kuruwita areas.
The surrounding plant and tree life includes attikka (Ficus racimosa), kumbuk (Terminalia arjuna), midella, dun (Doona spp), para (Wormia suffruticosa), ginihota (Cythia spp), rathmadiya, ketala (Lagenendra oveta), Beduru (Dryneria spp), orchids, varieties of meewana (Madhca) badal, hanassa, makulu and beduru. Animal species include wild boar, Meemina deer and reptiles, and the water is home to many species of fish including bulathhapaya, lellu, magura, korali, sonnu and eel. In addition to its rich bio-diversity, the fall is also steeped in folklore. One such story tells how a youth from Colombo made a pilgrimage here, and on losing his way was helped and sheltered by a local village girl.
A love developed between the two and she became pregnant before his departure. He left, promising to return but never did. Overcome with grief, she took her own life by plunging into the fall. Villagers say that her ghost (which appears as a floating blue light) haunts the fall.
Another local belief is that a treasure trove lies somewhere within the fall and that one thousand human sacrifices are needed to retrieve it. Bopath Falls is in the Ratnapura District, Kuruwita Divisional Secretariat at Agalwatte village. Take the road from Columbo to Ratnapura and turn left along Devipahala road. After 3km the fall is reached. (The Dodam Falls is located close by).