This is what usually almost all trekkers do. But once you reach the ever enchanting KUSALLI Falls near Shirur in udupi district, you must never listen to your mind, in stead try to cross over to the otherside, and you will find the water falls in many stages, with multi dimensional appearance.
This is what makes Kusalli falls special. Many trekkers after tiresome hike, likely to miss this scene simply because, its hard to even imagine that there would be much more to relish upon.
Our journey: We ten people went out last week for this amazing spot called Kusalli. The falls lies beside a small village called Toodalli, so some people call it as Toodalli Falls too. Shirur is 130 KM away from Mangalore. While on the way to Bhatkal in national highway-17, you will reach Shirur and in the town divert in a small road to the right to reach toodalli. We went there by a Cheverlot Tavera, which is very convinient for long distance travel.
We had started early morning from Mangalore, and condition of national highway was worst, which makes any journey a struggle, many of us later realised that the trekking was far easier than the vehicle journey!
We reached toodalli, and there we saw a narrow but concretised road holding on, some passers by asked us to proceed on the road to visit the falls. The road ends in Kallikone a small village. We met a farmer there named Isak. Isak called his servent Krishna and asked him to assist us in reaching the waterfalls.
Krishna uninterestedly took up the sickle from the house, and asked us to follow him. We changed our costumes, so as to face the attack from leaches. Even our cab driver showed interest and started with us.
The trek consists of journey inside thick jungle. A walk of almost 90 minutes takes you near the falls. We had to keep checking our feet for leaches. This path to waterfalls is new one, earlier trekkers had to take the river path and had to jump over the huge rocks. Rakesh Holla who had been to the falls few years ago told us that the journey earlier was very difficult and there was always a risk of skidding over the rocks.
We strolled amidst jungle and the sound of waterfalls was clearly audible, which made us to push up legs in a hurry to have the glimpse of falls as quickly as possible. At last around 11.30 a.m, I heard Abhi and Balakrishna shouting out of joy. Yes, they reached the falls and were thrilled of the scene, others too joined them.
Waterfalls : Kusalli falls is still pure and not littered, which made us like it very much. We five friends led by Rakesh crossed over to the otherside of the falls and started to mount up to 5th step of the falls. The rocks were very slippery, but we managed to reach the forest once again beside the falls. Within next 30 minutes we were atop 5th step of Kusalli. We filled our hearts with the beautiful scene of the green valley from there. When we turn.....Oh we were stunned. 5th and 1st stages of the falls were roaring.
The place is very open, and filled with boulders of various sizes and water gushing from the sides. We took enough photographs, then crossed the water stream and reached a pond. Holla told us that would be the ideal place for swimming. Within a minute we five were in the pond. The long swim in the icy clean water was mesmerising...believe me you will not be ready to come out of the pond.
Suddenly mobile in my bag over the boulder started ringing, people below calling us for lunch. Mobile network is available in and around that area, which is pretty helpful. We had to return, but Holla told, after November one can try to reach the next 4 stages of the falls, eventhough the attempt would be risky. It will surprises one that in kusalli between 1st and 5th stages, there are still 3 stages, which you can't see unless you go up the 5th stage.
We bid adeu to the gorgeously jumping 1st stage falls of kusalli, took her glimpse to our mind and with a hope to reach her next time, got down to the feet of the 6th stage. Our mates had already finished their lunch and taking a siesta.
Precautions: Never try to play in the rocks as there is always a risk of slipping. Dont try to go up to higher stages if you faint. Take food, dont litter the spot. Enjoy the trek.