Jim Corbett Tiger Reserve
A tale to be told by my favourite – ANDREW SAMUEL
If you haven’t gone over the other blogs do have a look – http://lostloveadventure.com/kaziranga-one-horned-rhino/
Ever since I saw a tiger and also an elephant in a zoo during my school day excursions that time I was only 14, it was my dream to see face to face this majestic fearless animal in its own home environment in the jungle. The dream was buried deep down in my heart and left frozen. Many years passed completed my impending educational careers and took up a job in Mumbai and later on in Pune.
Since a photographic passion was instilled in me at a very young age when I was placed in Pune city, I had a good like-minded photographic passionate friends group. We used to have great weekends which were mostly spending capturing the city.
And it was at this time I proposed a tour to Jim Corbett Uttarakhand and the idea was immediately greeted and welcomed with good enthusiasm by my group of 12 friends. Hence, I made travel Itinerary and all the other arrangements of booking travel tickets, accommodation and Safari Bookings etc at Corbett National Park.
Slowly my dream was coming to life which was buried deep down in my heart from its hibernation after almost 35 years roaring full-throated.
ITINERARY OF THE JOURNEY:
So we started off in right earnest and all the group members arrived from their various hometowns and assembled at Delhi Nizammudin Railway Station at 7.15 AM as our predetermined assembly point and we proceeded directly to Ram Nagar in our pre-arranged cars. After stopping on the way for your breakfast on the way, we arrived at Ramnagar (Pictures of Ramnagar Bazaar)..we had our sumptuous lunch at Ranjeet Singhs Corbett Motel (Ranjit Sigh Bhist is a thorough gentleman well built and very tall handsome, who was our guide and Gypsy operator).
Our First Safari 29 March 2014 – Saturday After lunch at Ranjit Bhist’s beautiful Resort, we travelled in our open Gypsy to the Resort inside the forest, The ride itself was beautiful and it was almost 16 km deep inside the thick majestic Corbett Forest. Riding through valleys along the River Ramganga which flows down from the Mighty Himalayas. Passing through very interesting beautiful landscapes with the cool azure cloud covered misty blue mysterious Himalayan mountains as the backdrop. The ride itself was so overwhelming and I was able to capture the whole beauty in my camera. Amzing birds and wild life all around. It has been a breath taking experience at every moment.
Finally after reaching the resort BIJRANI FRH Corbett reserve which was built by the Britishers in 1928. We reached the majestic Bijrani built like British Era Mansion with 9 palatial well furnished spacious bedrooms with a magnificent view of the Forest through the large windows and nicely tastefully decorated with beautiful curtains. With all the modern amenities you can ever think of surprisingly right in the middle of this gigantic Himalayan Forest. After all the hustle we settled down in our allotted accommodations and we were set out for our first evening safari with great anxiety and suspense wrote in our chilled faces…
The Naturalist cum Guide of our gypsy took us around thick meandering rough terrain and jungle road along the Ramganga River hoping to spot the Pride of Corbett Tiger.
Just when we were losing our patience suddenly driver stopped our Gypsy and leaned outside and he noticed the Pug marks of the Tiger which was very fresh and he surmised it is Ram Ganga Tigress.
We all exclaimed loud and the Driver Pandey warned us to keep silent and informed us that the tiger is around close to us behind the thick growth. Our entire group seated in 3 different Gypsies were completely terrified tongue-tied and excited at the prospect of sighting the TIGRESS..and we were eagerly waiting with our abated breath. Just then we all heard some suspicious rustling of bushes very close to our Gypsy and all of a sudden our guide screamed in a soft voice “Tiger Tiger on the right side emerging from the bushes” and there she was just right in front of the jungle path. Majestically without any fear crossing the path and just ignoring our gipsy lamp; disappeared in the thick growth… oh-oh, it was a wonderful sight indeed.
Immediately our guide drive drove the vehicle quickly and stopped it exactly where the Tigress had crossed the road.
And we all looked at the left side of our gipsy. There she was, the Queen of the Corbett sitting under the shade of the tree and relaxing, and we were so close that if she twitched her full grown beautiful tail, it could have touched me as I was sitting on the side seat just behind the guide. And I was so tempted to just jump down and hug this beauty since it was so close just few feet away that I could hear it’s harsh breathing and smell. It’s like a heavy, the musky smell on her fur. Tigers do not smell bad and sometimes they just do smell pungent. It was an exhilarating mesmerizing scene indeed and we all were so engrossed and drenched in this magnificent scene and after few minutes another great magical the scene opened up slowly. The Majestic Queen slowly turned her mighty large head and looked at me straight into my eyes. And my blood froze and my tongue tied and my mouth gone completely dry. After soaking ourselves in this once in a lifetime, an opportunity of sighting this majestic Queen.
We moved on our Safari through rough Jungle path and slowly reached our resort relishing the magnificent Himalayan landscape. The setting sun painting the sky with multiple magical colours and hues.
We had our rest and had our yummy dinner inside the forest..and enjoyed our night out sharing our experiences. We were cautioned not to venture out of our room as the wild animals will be close to the Resort house roaming around.
We all got up early at by 4.15 am and it was very cold and chilly
And as the gipsy took us in a different route and we were enthralled with the wonderful sounds of many birds ..endemic to Corbett and other migratory birds. As the sun gradually started to rise with its glorious golden rays of lights. We noticed plenty of bird activity around us and we were so lucky to witness a celestial dance by the Peacock all in its splendour.
After relishing in this mesmerizing celestial dance, we slowly drove down along the Ramganga river to our resort and relaxed for some time and we had our sumptuous delicious breakfast. After a sumptuous lunch, we set out for our evening Safari not knowing what is in store ahead of us in this mysterious Himalayan Mountainous and great Corbett forests.
As our Gypsy was slowly moving on the rugged jungle path and around a bend, suddenly guide stopped the vehicle and there we saw and Ram Ganga tigresses walking slowly towards our Gypsy, boldly without any fear. And we were all thunderstruck, all our senses froze and our mind became numb with the sensational sighting.
The majestic Queen slowly and resolutely, dutifully, firmly, unwaveringly without any fear in her eyes walking straight towards our gipsy and stopped suddenly. Looking around and smelling the air for some scent. wow, it was an amazing thrilling once in a lifetime experience and it was such an unbelievable scene unfolded in front of us. The Majestic Queen suddenly decided to rest right in the middle of the dusty rugged road and giving us all a glorious pose as if it is modeling for us..woah this was such a thrilling experience indeed.
I would love to Go back and experience it all over Again