Friday, November 20, 2009

Idukki - the complete picture Part 3

The Arch Dam Experience

Once we started our journey after a heavy and late lunch, we thought that we might be just visiting one or two spots and then will be heading back to our homes. But the most tremendous part of the journey was yet to come.

From Cheruthoni, there were two roads, one southwards towards Kulamavu and the other North wards towards Kattappana. The hotel guy had told that there is a view point 2 Kms towards the kattappana route and another one 2 kms towards Kulamavu route. We decided to first go northwards and then come back and go southwards as it is our return direction.

As we progressed towards the kattappana route, we found that there is nothing special around, the area was more or less populated too with some houses around. We were thinking on lines of what will be view point which he mentioned.

Suddenly I saw something on the right side. Two gigantic rocks and a big construction between them. Oh yes it is the arch dam, the famous arch dam of Idukki. We could not stop their since it was a narrow road. Just proceeded ahead to search for some parking space. But we saw a sign post pointing to the arch dam and a road on the right side. Parked our vehicle their and decided to trek up the small hilly road.

We could see the big rock at a distance.

The road was real nice with a rich diversity of the plant life. Saw this tree striving in a rock

This flower even though small was found plenty here adding a color to the ambience.

After climbing up a little high, turned back and could see a good church in the hills opposite to the main road where we parked our vehicle. I could see the church more clearly through my camera lens than using my naked eye

We could see a house built amongst the thick greenery in the adjacent hill. A wonderful location that is for a house

We seemed to approach an open sort of area and suddenly we all were awed by the sight in front of us. It was huge, it was magnificient, it resembled a spreaded neck of a snake, standing tall at almost 550 feet it is the IDUKKI ARCH DAM.

Idukki Arch Dam

We saw a gate where there is a warning sign of not to tresspass. We did not proceed further, but it was learnt from a local that, if we had permission from state govt authorities we could get inside.

The shape of the dam is arched as the name suggest. The arch is not only in the horizontal direction but also in the vertical direction. Hence it is a double curvature dam. This dam has to hold huge amounts of water on the other side. The pressure which the dam will be facing is enormous, but the design has ensured that pressure won't be applied on the walls eventhough the walls are not quite thick. It seems that the two mountains on both sides, (name kuravan mala and kurathi mala) will be bearing more pressure than the arch dam. A tribal chief helped in identifying this location and his story about the legend of kuravan and kurathi hills resulted in naming the hills.

If one goes near the foot of this magnificient structure and look up we won't be able to see the sky on top of us, because of the arch. So rain water do not directly fall into the sides of this wall. The area in the wall which gets wet during rains are the black areas as is evident from the above photo.

After experiencing the breath taking view of this engineering marvel we were wondering on where to go to see the reservoir side of this arch dam. The view point which the hotel guy mentioned in the cheruthoni - Kulamavu route might be this. So immediately we proceeded to find the spot, not sure if it will give the reservoir view.

Again we found a sculpture like rock on side. It truly looks like a Lotus bud.

Once we passed cheruthoni, superbly maintained roads welcomed us. Wonder how we have got such good roads in this part of the state when the heavily used urban roads are in a very pathetic condition.

The beautiful trees on both sides was giving amble shade and adds to the scenic value too

After 2 kms from cheruthoni, we were making a turn to the right when we saw a board and an open gate on the left side. The board told about a guest house and viewpoint, but there was no one to ask for any info. Out of curiosity we just went inside, but nothing was in site. At one point there was an intersection, one road was going down and another upward. We took the upward route and reached near a building. Voila towards one side we could see the reservoir. A local fellow informed us that we can walk our way up the park to get a full view.

Once we walked up we could see that we are in for a visual treat if the view which we were getting now is an indication.

Idukki - the complete picture Part 4 Click here to view the reservoir from top station.


Prasanth - പ്രശാന്ത്‌ said...

nice pictures,location! said...

Thanks prasanth for dropping in and ur comment :)

john titus said...

hey this was amazing and helpful..i'm from idduki and i never knew u ..they got so much to see thank u so much for sharing.! i'm takin a expedition shortly in october the whole of iddukki planning to start from madurai then to munnar then to peermade and back thro kumili.!!


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