Day Trip to Sariska Tiger Reserve- Tigers & More (Part III)
Link to Previous Posts in this Series
As we’d started our day quite early I started to feel a bit sleepy & hungry. The plan was that we’ll proceed to Gulmohar Resorts in Viratnagar have a quick bite, rest for a couple of hours and be back in time for the afternoon safari. The Resort was approx. 25-26 Kms from Sariska Forest Office.
Another disturbing development happened in the meantime. The villagers had started to gather around the entry gate and were threatening to blocks vehicles from entering the forest. We could see a lot of police presence around the area too. The forest officials too, weren’t sure whether they would allow the afternoon safari.
Gurudutt told Hari Singh that whatever decision is taken, which was scheduled to be taken around 2PM, he would let us know.
If it was decided that the park was closed for the evening, we thought that we would continue towards NH8 from Viratnagar, exit at Shahpura and continue towards Delhi.
At approx 2:15PM we received a call from Hari Singh and it was good news. He said that they(Forest Officials) would allow the vehicles to go in a convey. Wasting no time we started back towards Sariska at 2:17PM and were at the Forest Office at 3:00PM. The protesting crowd had increased in numbers. Being a little weary we inquired how would the vehicles enter the park when the main entry has been blocked.
Here the DFO had a trick up his sleeve. There’s another entry to the forest from behind the Reception Center and Staff Quarters of the Forest Office. All the vehicles were told that they should go from there and it was a direct entry into the jungle, smart move in my opinion.
We went to a big water body, Karna ka Baas and saw many variety of birds here. Don’t remember their names now and as they were quite far off for the comfort of my puny little zoom lens, so I didn’t even attempt.
Thereafter we visited a number of watering holes in anticipation of spotting a resting tiger but were disappointed.
At one of these watering holes ‘Tarundi Watering Hole’ I spotted this ‘White Breasted Kingfisher’ and managed these shots.
It was 3:59PM we decided that rather than trying to spend our remaining time roaming around the jungle it would be a better idea to try our luck again at the ‘Ghaakna Watering Hole’ the place where we saw ST3 in the morning and bide our time there.
Enroute we saw this male Cheetal ‘Spotted Deer’ and really liked his antlers. Quite magnificent I think.
This one was eager to be clicked & I happily obliged
So was this one
And these as well
This fellow was busy getting his ears cleaned by a bird perched on his head. I couldn’t clearly see the bird but if I remember it’s a ‘RufousTreepie’.
While the female waits in turn
We reached the Ghaakna Watering Hole and met the tracking party of ST-3. They said that she hasn’t moved since morning, though they didn’t have any visual on the Tigress. The last sighting was the one we guys had seen in the morning. Also the ‘Radio Collar’ on ST-3 had become defective and wasn’t working.
The forest officials believe that ST-3 is pregnant so they don’t want to take the chance of shooting and sedating her to change her collar. However I learn’t from Gurudutt and Hari Singh that the Forest Officials have been narrating this story since the past couple of months and if ST-3 was indeed pregnant it doesn’t appear visually.
We were again joined by 4 more gypsy’s but all was quiet. We waited there for a long time and by 6:00PM the other vehicles left, we however waited for some more time. Just in case.
The time to exit the forest was 6:30pm and 10 mins before we started to move towards the exit and came out at 6:30PM.
The route for the Evening Safari
2013-04-21 Sariska Evening Safari – Google Maps
Time for a group picture.Picture courtesy Gurudutt B.C.
Left to Right: Harbeer (my brother), Gurudutt, ShahidBhai and Yours Truly.
It was time again to brave the rear seat of the Bolero. On our return journey we came via Alwar- Tijara- Bhiwadi- NH8- Manesar- Gurgaon.
At Bhiwadi be halted at Haldiram for dinner. As none of us had eaten lunch we were all quite hungry.
From Bhiwadi we took the ‘Dharuhera- Bhiwadi Bypass Road’ and joined NH8. After moving a couple of Kms on the highway we encountered a major jam about a couple of Kms before the defunct Bilaspur Toll. We were stuck here for a good 40-45 mins. When finally the vehicles started to move forward it was discovered the 2 trucks had broken down one after the other and that too on a diversion.
God knows when this mess of NH8 will be sorted out.
Map of our return Journey
Sariska to Gurgaon
Finally we made it to Shahid Bhai’s house at 11:45PM. The moment I got off from the Bolero, I was like NEVER NEVER EVER AGAIN.
If I’m again given a choice of traveling in a Bolero or cancel my trip, I would prefer not going than to having endure traveling in a Bolero again and that too in the rear seat.
I’ve done Delhi -Ahmedabad 4-5 times, a distance of a shade less than 1000 Kms for 14-15 hours at a stretch. I’ve never felt this tired even then. Hell, I even traveled from Delhi to Bhuj 1230 Kms for 22 hours straight but this 330Kms To and Fro to Sariska on a Bolero beats all that. The moment I sat in my vehicle I started to feel a sense of touch and feeling coming back on my bums.
To wrap it up, it was a fantastic trip nonetheless and Myself and Harbeer thoroughly enjoyed it.
And if it wasn’t for Gurudutt and ShahidBhai it wouldn’t be half as much fun. Thanks very much guys for making this trip. We thoroughly enjoyed it.
Till the next trip. Bye for now