Kudremukh National Park is in Chikmagalur (district) in Karnataka. It offers the visitor 600 km² of undulating mountains and tropical wet evergreen forest. It is noted for its scenic beauty. Owing to the dense forests, sighting wildlife can be challenging, though the area is rich in wildlife. Nonetheless the drive through the forest ranges can be enchanting and exhilarating.
It began its existence as a Reserved Forest in 1916, and was designated a national park in 1987. Kudremukha means 'horse face', and is in reference to the appearance of a mountain peak in the park. Kudremukh (Kannada: ಕುದುರೆಮುಖ) also spelled Kuduremukha is a mountain range in Chikkamagaluru district, in Karnataka, India. It is also the name of a small hill station town situated near the mountain, about 48 km from Karkala and about 20 km from Kalasa. The name Kuduremukha (as it is known by the natives) literally means 'horse-face' (in the local language Kannada) and refers to a particular picturesque view of a side of the mountain that resembles the same. It was also referred to as 'Samseparvata', historically since it was approached from Samse village.
The town of Kudremukh is primarily an iron ore mining town where the government run Public Sector Kudremukh Iron Ore Company Ltd. (KIOCL) operated till the last decade. Three important rivers, the Tunga, the Bhadra and the Nethravathi are said to have their origin here. A shrine of goddess Bhagavathi and a Varaha image, 1.8 m within a cave are the main attractions.
The Tunga river and Bhadra river flow freely through the parklands. Kadambi waterfalls area definite point of interest for anyone who travels to the spot. The animals found there include the malabar civet, wild dogs, sloth bear and spotted deer.
Flora and fauna
- Malabar civet cats, wild dogs, sloth, and spotted deer.
March to May - Temperature 23°C to 25°C (summer season).
June to October - Heavy rains. Not at all the time to visit Kudremukh (rainy season).
November to February - Temperature 19°C to 25°C. Best time to visit Kudremukh (spring season).
There are no direct bus service by KSRTC from Bengaluru to Kudremukh. KSRTC has buses to Horanadu and Kalasa from Bangalore one can get down at Kalasa and take a taxi or another bus to Kudremukha.
Sugama Travels have direct overnight bus service from Bengaluru to Kudremukha. Book your tickets one day in advance over phone at +918026918896.
There are private buses from Mangaluru (Mangalore) to Kudremukha.
There are no trains to Kudremukh.
Fees and permits
Permits can be obtained from Kuduremukha town, at the Reserve Forest Office, opposite the Police Station. It costs ₹200 for the permit and ₹75 as trekking fees, with which they shall arrange a trekking guide if there's a group of people.
The Office is also a good place to gather information about the trek to the peak and accommodation facilities.
The best way is to use the local transport available every 30 minutes or hire a taxi available at the bus stand. The taxi drivers are very well versed with the beautiful places around.
Water Falls : Kadambi Water Falls, Hanmangundi Water Falls.
Natural Swimming Pools : Green Spot, MedCamp Pool.
River Originating : Varaha Thiratha, Ganga Molla.
Nature Resort: Provided by the Forest department.
Estate : Coffee estate, Tea estate on the route to Kalasa.
First Bridge, Second Bridge
Climb the Kuduremukha peak, which stands at 1894 metres above sea level and is situated between Kalasa and Kuduremukha town.
From Kalasa town, catch a bus to Baalegal, where one can see a big sign saying "trek to kuduremukh peak starts here". From this point, one has to walk up to Mullodi village, which is about 12 km. From there, one starts the trek into the national park and after crossing a couple of bits of the Shola forests and a couple waterfalls, one would come across Lobo mane and the Ontimara (the lone tree), from where the peak is clearly visible.
You can buy the freshly made best quality tea and coffee powder. If you are lucky you could get best quality spices for a very low price.
Local vegetarian food served at home stays and restaurants.
Since Kuduremukh does not have many accommodation options, it is best to stay at nearby towns.
Kalasa has a few accommodation options, of which the Yatrinivas is a trusted chain. Rooms range from ₹300 for a single room to ₹850 for an A/C room. The town also has a few restaurants and bars, apart from other departmental stores.
However, if the main goal is to go trekking into the national park and climb the peak, one could stay at Samse town or further up in Mullodi village, where there are a few guest houses. However, note that there are no other facilities in the village apart from what these guest houses provide you. One such guest house is Satish Mane, which seems to be a popular destination. It can accommodate up to 40 people with outdoor tents facilities and 3 meals provided. Contact: Satish: 09481074530
Camping at Kudremukha peak is not allowed by Karnataka forest department (Aranya Elake). Start your trek early in the morning to return by dusk.
Kudremukh is a ghost city where numerous buildings and facilities were abandoned after the mining was abandoned in 2005 as per the Supreme Court directives. Bridges and buildings can suddenly collapse, look for rusted metal and don't forget to take your TT injection. Do not venture to Kudremukha peak unless a local guide accompanies you for trek, there chances of being lost in the wilderness. Follow the rules imposed by Karnataka forest department to keep away from littering of plastics and other non bio degradable wastes also to avoid fire. Carry a torch (flash light) with dry battery cells, water, whistle, some edibles for the trek. Rain coat should be carried during rainy season because it rains heavily in the region.