We did not start cycling from Santampara as such. Just after Santampara there is a 5 km stretch where wild elephants roam around even during day time. Too risky to cycle through that terrain. So Rejit uncle dropped us at Aana-Eranghal Dam ( roughly translated- elephant sighting dam ). The dam was awesome.. seriously.. From there we set off toward munnar at around 10 am. The plan was to leave Munnar for Adimali atleast by 3pm. So we set out. For 90% of the route from Aana-Eranghal Dam to Munnar, we were travelling through tea estates. Its one hell of an experiance to cycle 25 kms through tea estates. Much better experiance than travelling the same route via a car or a bus . On a cycle you can feel everything around you the best- we could even feel the deep cliffs as we went past them. We could feel the depth of the cliffs when we look at them from our cycles and image the fall if we fell into one of them. Anyway we did not fall into any of them. On the way we passed though a small section of the road (it supposedly highway ) known as the 'GAP'. The road becomes single lane over this section and the cliff becomes steeper but the view is mind blowing. On the other side of the GAP was tea estates . GAP was the highest point of the journey 1800m above sea level. From GAP road, the ride is downhill again through tea estates. Brilliant downhill ride. All of sudden we had this feeling- we deserve this downhill ride for all the efforts that we put in to get to this point. The downhill is video taped. Need to do some processing before I can upload them.
We got to Munnar town at 3:20 pm. According to plan we were supposed to leave Munnar town for Adimaly at 3 pm. Fearing we might get late, and with 35 kms to the place we are staying, we set out immediately. This 35 kms is the distance that we covered in half and hour. We were litterally flying on a cycle.. At some points we were doubtful if the cycle would break up into pieces while going downhill that fast . We were going at more that 60 kmph. Pure joy. Pure estacy after all that climb. Getting high but getting low. On the way downhill we meet two other cyclist from Banglore. The were riding from someplace in Tamil Nadu( I forgot the place :P) and I presume they must have come up via Marayoor supposely another brilliant route. If we had take that route it would have taken us to TN ( so lite only... we were going home..) They were also camping at Adimaly. We could not ride together for long as we had to take a detour to get to Neerajs uncles place where we were camping for the night. With the little chat we had with those two we realised that they were camping at random places like schools etc at night ... cool...
We had some difficulty finding Neeraj's uncles place ... particularly because there was a number of uphill climbs to get to his house. Those uphills were seriously not welcomed after all that downhill ride. Like at Erumely the uphills where very steep as we were then travelling through village roads. Village roads go over a mountain to get to a place. We started laughing our asses out seeing the uphill.. for no reason (technically we were supposed to cry but donno why we just laughed like mad men and then cursed the mountain). Finally we got to place we were staying at about 5 30pm . 1 and a half hours for climbing 15 kms. The next day is the last day of the trip and we will be going home, covering the rest of the distance , what ever is left on day 13.