Trace The Footsteps Of Veerappan On This Unique Trek Through Chamarajanagar, Karnataka

From Bedaguli to Jodigere, M.M. Hills to Nagamalai, embark on a journey of discovery.

by Mallika Khurana
Trace The Footsteps Of Veerappan On This Unique Trek Through Chamarajanagar, Karnataka

Veerappan, the notorious bandit of Karnataka, left an indelible mark on the region, his exploits becoming legendary tales of poaching, smuggling, kidnapping, and evading capture. Koose Muniswamy Veerappa Goundan, commonly known as Veerappan (1952-2004), held sway over the Chamarajanagar forests for decades, instilling fear and fascination alike. His death in a 2004 encounter marked the end of an era characterised by his elusive presence. The incident also opened the trails of the region for the public to explore and appreciate.

Unravelling Veerappan’s Legacy In Karnataka

trek trail
Photo Credits: Wikimedia Commons

During Veerappan’s reign, the forests of Chamarajanagar were inaccessible to the public, cloaked in mystery and danger. However, with his demise, the Karnataka government embarked on eco-tourism initiatives, opening up these once-forbidden territories to urban adventurers and nature enthusiasts. Now, what was once Veerappan’s domain is awaiting exploration, offering a glimpse into the enigmatic landscapes in which he once roamed.

In Chamarajanagar, nestled within 2.75 lakh hectares of forest, lies the Bandit Trail, a collection of treks waiting to be discovered by intrepid travellers. These treks promise an immersive experience, revealing the secrets Veerappan once guarded fiercely.

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Thrilling Treks Await In Chamarajanagar’s Forests

Bandit trail
Photo Credits: Wikimedia Commons

Bedaguli To Jodigere

Take a 2-day walk through 9 kilometres of wet deciduous and sola forests to get to Jodigere from Bedaguli. Discover Veerappan’s hiding places and escape routes by venturing deeper into the forest. Three forest divisions converge as you travel through the rough terrain, passing anti-poaching camps along the way. 

Jodigere To Bylore

Navigate the 22-kilometer trail from Jodigere to Bylore, immersing yourself in the Mystery Trails of Karnataka’s forest department. Trek through the Kollegal and Punjur ranges, putting your endurance to the test on the steep ascents and descents. Stop along the way to take in the charming village scenes and refresh yourself with a peaceful stream. Even though the route is difficult, you will gain a sense of accomplishment and get to see some wild places.

M.M. Hills To Nagamalai

Travel to Nagamalai, the former refuge of Veerappan, as you explore the holy hills of M.M. Hills. Hike amid lush surroundings, seeing unusual rock formations and historic temples. Admire the magnificent views of the Cauvery Basin and the lush forests that stretch as far as the horizon as you ascend the hills. 

Bheemeshwari To Chellure Hill

Embark on a trekking adventure from Bheemeshwari to Chellure Hill, a 7.5-kilometer trail teeming with natural beauty. Cross the River Cauvery and traverse the Chellure Hills, surrounded by lush greenery and rocky terrain. Experience the thrill of a boat ride amidst pristine landscapes, immersing yourself in the wilderness of Karnataka’s hinterlands.

Yerekem Halla To Gopinatham

Embark on a challenging 8 to 10-hour trek to Gopinatham, the birthplace of Veerappan. Journey through dense forests and rugged terrain, retracing the footsteps of the infamous bandit. Explore the rural village, now a small-time tourist attraction, and pay homage to fallen heroes memorialised along the trail. 

As Veerappan’s legacy fades into memory, these treks stand as testaments to resilience and the enduring spirit of exploration.

Cover Image Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

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