Sunday, 8 July 2012

Jim Corbett National Park

Captured this deer herd at Dhikala. 

After I came back from my trip to Jim Corbett, I noticed a change in me. I could identify the sounds of birds around me. Yes! Every day when I got up in the mornings, I could identify sounds of the birds chirping in the area!!. I actually started noticing the presence of fauna and flora around meJ

I call it the magical influence of my Jungle trip to Jim Corbett National Park ;). Spotting different species of flora and fauna,very rare, yet particular to different zones and seasons in Jim Corbett was the highlight of my trip here in the jungle. So much so that while on our way back to Delhi, I spotted the common kingfisher 6 times (sitting on the wires in the open field). The experience of observing nature from so close did leave a mark in my mind  that I immediately sat and started writing my thoughts in my journal.
Found this kingfisher sitting on a dead tree base in the dry river bed. The tree base was also a fascinating subject to observe upclose.

Like any other jungle safari, this was a trip worth remembering! Sighting a tuskar( that too a mast elephant) beautiful peacocks, tiger pug marks, elephant herds, Langoors, spotted deers, barking deer, goldern maashi, long horn bill etc and many other rare species of birds, made me wonder how misterious and beautiful nature is. Looking at wildlife from this very near for the first time made this to be an experience worth remembering for me!What I realized at Jim Corbett is that Jungle Safari is not just about spotting a tiger BUT  is also about experiencing and discovering the Jungle itself. It's air, rough scenic beauty, sounds, taste and not to forget the 'fearful feel'!! ;) Yes! walking in the woods, not knowing what will come from behind or what will pounce on you or for that matter, what can you capture in your camera or spot with your binocular....All this gives you a different kind of thrill. Like, while on safari walk we spotted an elephant herd across a dry river.We had to quietly move back into the forest on the other side of the river bed, so that we do not disturb them.
Quietly observing the elephant herd from across the dry river, I could capture only this glimpse of an elephant 

Or walking on the same path where tiger had walked a few hours or may be a days earlier. Looking at fresh tiger pug marks early in the morning our guide told us that the tiger had recently been here and had walked towards a particular direction. Our guide could tell us what the tiger ate last when it passed through that particular area (Finding a dear nail, small bones or animal hair particle in a dried tiger faecal matter) So identifying the foul smell in that area (smell of tiger kill) looking at pug marks, listening to tiger roar, a dear/ sambhar or monkey call- are all tell-tale signs of a tiger presence near by.

The resort that we stayed at was inside the buffer zone and daily we could hear calls, tiger roar past midnight. It was as if, the tiger reminded us that it was nearby ;). Very diligently, all tourist activities are generally stopped after 6:30 pm as the animals, especially the flesh eating animals become active after dark. (All carnivorous creatures hunt after dark) The retreat's fences are also solar electric so that tiger or any other wild animal does not venture inside the resort or other human habitation near by. Spotting huge tiger pug marks ( sometimes male and sometime female) early in the morning was our favorite daily activity during our stay there;)

After reaching the resort in the afternoon, we planned on having a walk inside the forest in the buffer zone. No! no! ....we were't brave enough to venture out alone, but with the nautralist that the resort provided...hehe!
As you walk on the dead leaf bed of the teak plant spread all around you, looking at the foot marks of the elephants and pug marks of the tiger! You realize that you are actually walking in the woods. The crisp sound of large dry teak leaves in the otherwise silent forest gives you a jitter for a while. As you come to understand that you are alone in there and on your on. While walking on the same path where a tiger had passed hours ago made me imagine him sitting nearby and watching us from a distance...
Well,by now you can very well understand that this was my first jungle experience on foot and vulnerable! but believe me it didn't turn out to be that scary ;). The sound of dry leaves does give a chill through your spine for a while in the otherwise silent forest. Thanks to our naturalist, who was leading our walk, was an expert and ensured that we returned back to the resort on time before dark. We took a two and a half hour walk in the jungle that day. The elephant herd that I mentioned in the above paragraph was spotted during this walk only.They were unaware of us and were busy grazing in the trees. Watvhing them from so close was worth taking that walk.
I was trying to take a picture of this tiny bird that sat on the dry branches of a  dead tree  in the river bed

Day-1- Sitabani: Day one was a lazy start. After we had our breakfast,we decided to take a drive to ‘Sitabani". Drive to 'Sitabani' triggered our interest in Birds. Yes, for the first time we took notice of the tiny creatures chirping and hopping around us and on trees
On our way to and fro from ‘Sitabani’ we captured many birds on camera like-purple sun bird, ducks, wood pecker, sandpiper and peacock,and hence started the affair with  bird watching at JC. At ‘Sitabani,’ is a very small temple of devi Sita which is being preserved by archeological survey of india. It also has a water resource from which flows continuously, the fresh sweet cold water.
To me travelling on the entire stretch to sitabani was more enjoyable, rather than being in sitabani.The entire 40 km stretch from ramnagar had lots of trees on both sides with a river stream flowing on the  left side. Since it was 'tarai area' so the view turned hilly as well. After we came back to the resort in the evening we felt that although it was a lazy start for the day (with sumptuous breakfast & quality time spent at the spa) but it was a perfect day spent.!
Indian Black Drongo, I feel blessed that the picture came out beautifully ;) 

After an early dinner we went off to sleep as we had to wake up at 3:30 am next day for our jeep safari to 'Dhikala'.


  1. I thoroughly enjoyed your post and I celebrate with you your awakening to those aspects of nature you describe so beautifully. It's a real gift to be able to feel the way you do. You're obviously also a person with soul. Thank you also for your visit to my blog and your kind words.

    1. Thank you for visiting my space Don and for your kind & encouraging words. Nature does this magic of influencing our thoughts when we are even a l'll bit closer to it. I enjoy being influenced by this magic:)

  2. I have subscribed to your blog. Look forward to further posts.

  3. No wonder Jim Corbett loved living there!!

  4. I have been planning to go there for so long, but somehow or other, I miss it. Hope you had fun. Loved the Kingfisher's shot.


    1. Thank you Himanshu:) Yes I had a good time observing and being with nature so close. Hope that you get to go there sooner!

  5. Really Amazing Post Related to Corbett.


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