Wido, our previous Vice President had interest in exploring the fort hills around Bengaluru. I had similar interest, it was not difficult to connect with each other in the age of social media. This time when he was in Bengaluru, we planned for a day trip to one or more of the many fort hills near Bengaluru. He had a long list and basically had to select one of them!!
|Madakashira fort seen from the road|
After picking up Wido from the airport, we decided to head to Madakasira fort. We took the longer but faster route via Devanahalli->Chikkaballapur->Bagepalli->Penukonda->Madakasira route. It was interesting to cross over at Andra Pradesh after Bagepalli and enter into Karnataka only to enter back to Andhra after few km!! As we neared Madakasira, the fort loomed in the background of the town. To get to the nearest point of the fort entry, I ended up getting into a narrow road to reach a dead end. It was hard to take a U turn, so I had to reverse my car and on top of it there was no place to park. Luckily the people in one of the local house asked me to park in front of their house.
After parking the car, we crossed the gate which looked like an isolated remains of the fort. Walking through narrow streets, we reached the base of the hill started our climb to the fort.
|Gate of the fort at the base|
The well laid steps guided us throughout the climb. It was steep and rocky at most places but thanks to the steps, the climb was pretty straight forward. Very soon, we crossed the first gate of the fort.
|Climb to the fort|
This was the place with huge vertical rock towers which seemed impossible to pass though but the steps were carved in between those huge rock walls. At some places, the rocks looked unstable and ready to fall any time. That was not promising and we hoped that they stay intact for the duration of our trek!! The climb was quite steep at this place and we gained height very quickly.
|Steep climb between rock walls|
Here we met a group of local people who were also climbing the fort. The kids in the group were excited to see Wido and wanted to take a photograph with him. Wido was used to such requests and he happily obliged!!
|Wido with kids|
Very soon we reached the top portion of the fort. There was a small natural pond and a temple dedicated to Shiva. Nothing much we could derive from the remains of the fort. It looked like it was used for storage of weapons and grains and might have not served as the place for people to stay. That was my interpretation.
|A small pond at the top|
The top portion of the fort is quite large and many parts are still intact.
We still had not reached the topmost point where a small temple was located. This stretch was risky as it involved crawling over bounders. I did not feel comfortable climbing that final step. Most people from the local group and Wido went higher up to the temple.
|The highest point in the fort|
The views from the fort were amazing which was as expected. The vast plains, the Madakasira town and couple of Burj’s were visible from the top.
|View of the plains from the fort|
The fort had turned much better than our expectations. Satisfied with the visit, we started climbing down. On the way we found a boy who was very thirty and tired. We gave him our water bottle and asked him to use it for the rest of his journey to the base. Few minutes before we reached the base, we heard an animal crying. We could see some people shoring stones on an animal. While we tried to get near the place and enquire, people were not answering our questions. We were simply not welcomed. Well, some things are not under our control especially when we are at unknown place.
|At the top of the fort|
On the way back, we did a quick visit to the Burj. It is better to park vehicle in front of the Burj and walk. There was lot of space in front of the Burj.
|Burj as seen from the fort|
While we could not get any historical information about the fort, the following information was obtained in internet. “In 1728 AD this region fell under Marathas, and Morari Rao the Maratha Chief was said to have built the fort and a palace here. The fort is situated on a preciptous rocky hill. The outer fortification looks as an irregular horse-shoe and the citadel is at the summit of the hill. One of the two paths which leads upto the citadel, near the old city gateway which is of massive stones, with ornamental brick and plaster parapet in the Indo-Saracenic style. Each side of the entrance is flanked by a small circular bastion. In 1762 AD the Musalmans seized the place but were rejected out two years later. They regained the position in 1774 AD and in 1799 AD, it fell under the British with the defeat of Tippu Sultan.”
|With Wido (Photo courtesy: Wido)|