Locomotoring

Seven continents, seven seas, seven billion people and seven thousand good eats …

Posts Tagged ‘Hiking and walking

Coronation Park, a story of indifference

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Coronation Park

Coronation Park

When the decision to shift the nation’s capital from Kolkata to Delhi took place, this spot was proclaimed to be the site for viceroy’s residence. George V’s coronation as the emperor of India was commemorated here. Then the story of neglect began. The site was deemed unsuitable and the residence of Viceroy was eventually built at the site of Rashtrapati Bhavan.

The park reminds me of my school park – large, open, not very shaded, spottily grassy. But that is where the similarity ends. At dawn, no groups of people gather about for a yoga class or a laughing club session. At dusk, young lovers don’t come here in search of intimacy.  Grandpas don’t come here for their evening constitutionals. There is no chaiwala or any one else selling snacks. Really, nothing is happening here. There appears to be a single caretaker who lives with his family, he may very well be self proclaimed one. He doesn’t seem to be doing anything either.

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Written by Som

January 13, 2009 at 1:53 am

What keeps me going back to Death Valley

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Storm approaching salt flats of Death Valley

Rain approaching salt flats of Death Valley

What a beautiful, serene, solitary desert this one is. It is also the driest, hottest and largest national park. People have indeed died here although not in recent years.

My first trip to Death Valley was on a Thanksgiving weekend. We had started from Bay Area a little after ten. Nearly 12 hours later, we drove into Stovepipe Wells Village. They had given our room away. We had called at least twice that evening to let them know we would be arriving late!

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Grassy Knolls of Skyline Ridge

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Russian Ridge Open Space Reserve

Russian Ridge Open Space Preserve

Russian Ridge Open Space Preserve. That one is a mouthful. Never found anything Russian about it. It is a bald hill in the midst of not so bald hills, full of dry grasses early in the winter, tall green grasses in the peak of winter and then full of wildflowers in the spring. There are other grassy knolls along the Skyline Blvd but this one is prettier than most. The parking site is a “vista point”. From here, you can see most of the Bay Area including the Bay and the bridges across the bay, which is more often than not, covered in smog.

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Written by Som

December 31, 2008 at 7:29 am

To leave only footprints behind while rafting through Grand Canyon

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Campsite at Grand Canyon

Campsite at Grand Canyon

Over the years, I have flown in a small aircraft over Grand Canyon, taken a helicopter tour, hiked parts of the canyon, driven through parts of it, stayed nights there, done some touristy things, and rafted through the white water rapids of Colorado river. It is the last I want to share with you today.

Two of us had started at the South Rim main visitor’s complex at 5:00 a.m.. Six hours, 9 miles and 5000 ft descent later, we had joined our rafting group. We had hiked before, rafted before but it was our first camping experience. We were looking forward to eight days in the Canyon. Our group consisted of six raft boats with a guide each and about 6 people to a raft. All except our raft. Our raft was thinly populated – us, our river guide and a lot of camping gear. Little did we know then.

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A hike on a mid-summer day

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A leaf on the trail

A leaf on the trail

Purisima Creek trail, a trail through a cool moist canyon is especially delicious on a summer afternoon. I love the towering redwoods, the sound of the creek, the ferns growing along the trail and the wild flowers. I like the challenge of the 1000 feet elevation change and the relative isolation of its 8 miles. I even like the 5 miles of winding Black Mountain Road that connects Woodside to Skyline Blvd.

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Written by Som

July 21, 2008 at 9:35 pm