The Hoysala hunt continued with two new places added to the list, thanks to Twitter. Technically, there was just one – Aralaguppe, but the place was close to Turuvekere, and a bit of digging showed me two other places there.
This time S joined me for the ride, and we left at aroud 7:45 AM from my place, me on the Bull 500, and S on his Electra. For the second half of October it wasn’t too cold. We did the usual route of Tumkur road -> Hassan Road and the usual breakfast stop at Swati Delicacy before Yadiyur. After Yadiyur, there was a right to be taken towards Turuvekere. Right after the turn we were greeted by a pristine B road. Two lanes width, just about wider than that, and going all the way in that condition to Mayasandra where we had to take a right and then a left to avoid going towards Gubbi. Turuvekere was reached at around 10:15 AM.
The first temple on the list was a Chennakesava temple, from around 1260 AD. Unlike other Kesava temples, this wasn’t too ornate. It didn’t have much carvings outside, and the ASI or PWD had also done a shoddy job with some concrete support at the top. Continue reading “Day ride – Turuvekere and Aralaguppe”→
Despite having done a bike ride to and from BR Hills a few days back, having the whole week off meant that another was always on the cards. This time S signed up. I had come across the Jain Basadi of Kambadahalli from @drvivekm‘s instafeed. Googling revealed that this was one of the oldest structures standing in that area, having been built around 900-1000 AD. Most of the Hoysala temples tend to be a few centuries younger. The oldest would be the ones on top of Chandragiri in Shravanabelagola. It’s also been a while since I went there!
Anyway, the start was later than my preferred pre-7:30 AM. Winter and S having to ride all the way from beyond Indiranagar meant that an early start wouldn’t be feasible. We left from my place at 8:25 AM and rode down to Swati Delicacy near Yediyur for the breakfast stop. Despite being heavily crowded we managed to find a table, and I didn’t have to fight for an own table as is the case when am on solo rides.
Post breakfast we rode down towards Hirisave and took a left where it said Bindiganavile. There was also another board saying “Kambadahalli 19KM.” These days when roads get widened and people end up losing the old sign boards and milestones, it was a welcome sight! The road alternated between awesome, ok, okayish, to watch-out for potholes without ever degenerating to a bone rattler. We reached the road from Belagola to Nagamangala and took a right there. A road went to the right which announced Kambadahalli at 1 KM, but we did not take that. The next right had an arch with Jain insignia and icons all over it. This was our turn. Within a Km of this turn, the Jain structure loomed on our right.
After a good 6 years of using the good EOS 450D I upgraded the body to EOS 750D. Not having had a chance to use it for anything major other than shooting my posing cat, I wanted to ‘blood’ it soon. I hadn’t been to Somnathapura, ever, and this is also the season in Srirangapatna. With issues about food and the lack of options cropping up, I cropped the trip down to just Somnathapura. Anand also duly signed up and we set out in the morning at 7:30 AM. The route was via Kanakapura as Mysore Road was expected to be bad, this being a long weekend and all, and also boring, this being Mysore Road we’re talking about. The only concern was the road condition from Malavalli onwards.
Vasu’s at Kanakapura was reached, breakfast of hot Masala Dosas had and we set off. It looked like we’d reach there around 10 if the road conditions were good and 10:30 if bad. Thankfully, the section from Malavalli to Bannur is freshly laid. After Santhemara work seemed to be going on, but that is also where we had to turn off towards Somanathapura. The rest of the journey was thankfully good and we reached there by 10 AM.
This being a Saturday there were a lot of school trip vans, and a lot more tourists in general. It usually gets clubbed with Srirangapatna and its palaces and other stuff, being only 30-odd Kms from there.
Somnathpura is much larger than the other smaller temples I’ve been doing the past year or so, but smaller than Belur and Halebidu. Maybe almost the same size as Belur, but Belur also has a much larger courtyard. The sculptures are similar to Halebeedu with 7 levels of moldings followed by the main friezes in the middle. Belur has around 3-5 at most places.