The trip to Skandagiri is one of the most popular among the “Pancharis” (Nandi Giri, Chandragiri, Skandagiri, Brahmagiri, and Hema Giri), or five peaks in the Chikballapur district.
Skandagiri is also known as Kalavara Durga because it is located in the village of Kalavara Halli. The Papagni Mutt, located on the slopes of Skandagiri, is one of Karnataka’s oldest mutts.
The walk begins in Papagni Mutt and leads to the summit, where the ruins of a fort from the 18th century can be found. Tipu Sultan conquered the fort, which belonged to a local ruler, and later used it as a stronghold to fight the British. Tipu Sultan, on the other hand, was defeated in 1791, and the fort was surrendered.
As a result, it is an excellent year-round walk for both novice and experienced trekkers, and it can be finished in 5 hours (2 hours to ascend and 2 hours to descend, with an hour’s stop at the peak).
Many renowned figures, including Jawaharlal Nehru and Sir M. Visveswaraya, visited and praised Skandagiri hill during their visits to the Nandi Hills during British rule.
Skandagiri is located directly behind Nandi Giri, making this hike unique in that it provides close-up views of Nandi Giri from the summit. Saurabh Sawant contributed to this image. The trail features a unique mix of rocks, boulders, and mud, as well as dense foliage. Only a few hikes allow you to walk between rocks, hop boulders, and enjoy a muddy track with trees in the background. Skandagiri provides all of this for a trek so close to our natural home.
Ruined fort walls, pillars, and carved stones from the 18th century can be found at the peak. Saurabh Sawant contributed to this image. The Shiva Temple at the summit, with its intact idols, is a stunning sight. Devotees who climb to the top to see Lord Shiva’s idol continue to worship Him in the temple dedicated to him at the summit. For a fort whose surrounding structures are in ruins, this is a unique sight.
Until today, devotees worship the idols of the old Shiva Temple at the peak. Saurabh Sawant contributed to this image.
The summit offers a spectacular view of the surrounding hills and Chikballapur town. From the top, you can see the surrounding hills, including four of the five “Girls,” as well as forests, villages, and the town.
Information on the Trail
The trek begins in the Kalavara village of Papagni Mutt. Chikballapur is 3 kilometres away. The hike can be broken down into three sections: the first is a flat trail walk from Papagni Mutt to the Forest Checkpost, where one must register before beginning the trek. To reach the first rest stop, the second stretch climbs gently but steadily through dirt tracks and rocky portions. On slippery, muddy, and rocky terrain, the final stretch leads to the top.
Trek distance from Rest Point I to Skandagiri Summit: 900 meters
Duration of the trek: 40-50 minutes
Rest Point I’s GPS coordinates are as follows: GPS Coordinates of Skandagiri Summit: 13°25’18.8′′N 77°40’59.6′′E GPS Coordinates of Skandagiri Summit: 13°25’03.1′′N 77°41’01.3′′E
The trek’s final section becomes more difficult, with steeper ascents than the prior sections. This is the section of the Skandagiri trip when you are most likely to sustain an injury.
On this walk, make sure to wear sports or running shoes with a good grip on slick mud conditions. On slick parts, trekking shoes with hard bottoms are ineffective. A different perspective Saurabh Sawant contributed to this image. For the first time, after around 20 minutes of ascent, you will come upon the fort’s ruins. There are fort walls, abandoned pillars of what appears to be a house, and several granite slabs with inscriptions… These ruins make us wonder how people managed to live here in the 18th century!
Walls of a fort from the 18th century that has been broken down. Be extremely cautious here, since a slight slip to the left will result in a 100-foot plummet to the ground below.
Before the ascent, a view of the rough part. Soon after passing over the rocky part, you’ll come upon ancient shrine-like constructions with stone steps. This gives us another look into living in the eighteenth century