Ten of us set off early on Thursday morning to go to Betelpuram, a 3 hour drive over narrow windy roads: seven boys from grade 8, two chaperones and one guide. After arriving at the tiny village of Betelpuram, we put on our pretty heavy backpacks and started on our 2 hour uphill hike in the hot sun! Once we got there, lunch was waiting for us. That is the one luxury we have: we don’t have to cook! A local couple does the simple cooking and the boys love it. As it was so hot, we spent most of our time at the river, where a deep natural rockpool was a great place to jump into and to splash around in. We saw many types of butterflies and Karthik, a butterfly specialist who had joined us on the way, had taught us the different names. After sunset, the boys played cards and after dinner they made a bonfire and although it was still quite warm, it was nice to sit around. A very special feature of this spot we were staying is that it is the habitat of the giant grizzled squirrel, which is becoming quite rare nowadays. It showed itself early in the mornings, right next to the hut where the boys were sleeping.
All in all, we had a great time and I’m sure that we would all like to go again next year!
Elly O, Middle School Hiking Coordinator