Clouds zoom in and around
Mesmerizing the soul
Hills nâ€™ Valleys rise nâ€™ fall
Entrenching the mind
To the Emerald horizon
And the life between
I surrender to you
Oâ€™ Divine Gopala!
There is no doubt that anyone who visits this place will fall in love with it instantly. Himvad Gopalaswamy Betta is covered with mist for most parts of the year and hence the first part of the name is â€śHimvadâ€ť meaning mist and the presence of the ascetic ancient temple on top dedicated to â€śGopalaswamy/Lord Krishnaâ€ť forms the second part of the name and the third part is contributed by the fact that it is a hill/Betta, which is 2800 feet above sea level. The place is surrounded with a lot of greenery which is very soothing to the eyes. You can visit this region to see the temple, herds of elephants, and expect a lot of fog.Â If you have ever dreamt of walking into the clouds or touching the cloud, then this is the place to realize your dreams and be literally on cloud 9! The branches of trees are covered with sphagnum moss and many species of Orchids endemic to Western Ghats are embedded in the moss-covered branches.
Himavad Gopalaswamy Betta, is a hill (betta in Kannada) located in the Chamarajanagar district of the state of Karnataka, at a height of 1454 m India and is extensively wooded. It is also the highest peak in the Bandipur National Park. It lies in the core area of the Bandipur National Park and is frequented by wild life including elephants. Dense fog predominates and covers the hills round the year and thus gets the prefix Himavad(in the native language of Kannada) and the temple of Venugopalaswamy (Lord Krishna) gives the full name of Himavad Gopalaswamy Betta.
The hill is home to wild animals like Elephants, Gaur, Sloth Bear and the elusive Tiger. There are places uphill where you get a birdâ€™s eye view of the forests below, so while driving up or downâ€¦. stopâ€¦get out of the vehicle armed with camera and binoculars and screen the forests below. Some Times, the elephants are visible even to the naked eye. It is fascinating to see the Elephants from above move with their little ones slowly eating their way into the forests. We have also spotted Sambar, Gaur and an abandoned Tiger cave.
These regions were a favorite hunting ground for the Mysore Maharajahs and their British guests. The royals have built a guest house on top of the hills and there are some rare pictures of the Maharajahs and their guests with their prized huntâ€¦the tiger.