Thursday, February 07, 2013

Atop an elephant

I took this while on top of our elephant!
The ladders are set....

That's me on top of our elephant named Pavan.
Shail was the naturist who came along with us.
Kanha National Park from the plateau.

Here's my diary entry that day.

29th Jan 2013

I have spent a beautiful morning at the Kanha National Park. Latika, Nanda and Mr. Nath, Shail, our guide and I set off this morning and entered the Mukki gate at 6:30 am. The sun was rising on one side while we drive into a huge setting moon as the mist was rising. Spotted deer and Barasingha greeted us right away. At 7:30 we climed atop 2 elephants. Latika and Nanda on one and Mr. Nath and I on the other. It was so magical sitting on that majestic creature.Our Haathi was named Pavan. We first cut through the grasslands and then went straight into the Sal forests with bamboo and tons of lantana which has gone rampid.

We lumbered along on a dried up river bed and there were tiger pug marks galore. Then we headed into the jungle, those mammoth beasts bulldozing through the thick green foliage, grabbing grass and bamboo along the way to feed themselves. One elephant even tucked a little stash of grass between his tusk and trunk to eat a while later!

It was glorious! To see the forest from a different perspective. Little fungus shelves on tree trunks, and dodging upper level branches. We were in a little sunny maidan when we heard a tiger and immediately headed that way. They were close, because there were fresh pug marks on top of the elephants footprints.

We didn't get to see that tiger but the elephant ride was exhilarating and we did see lots of wild life. Plenty of deer, sambar and Barasingha, two jackals, storks and herons, a beautiful eagle on a lone bare tree, some stunning old trees and nature doing what she loves doing best. So wonderful!

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