The Deccan Plateau

I should be less happy to show you these photos of the Deccan plateau than I am..or at least, I think so. It really shows the nature and character of my cycling tours that I dashed thru the city-states of Mysore and Bangalore and got back to the rural inida that I love so much. In many ways it was silly! it had taken me three weeks of riding south thru the Western Ghats to reach Mysore; and as enthralled as I was by the mansions and temples and architecture, I wanted to get back to the rural lanes and roads I loved so much. The deccan plateau, loveable by a geologist like me, is a high dry plain with quite a variety of weird features, such as these rock/boulder formations; and quite a few wonderful camping places as I show below. I knew I had truly fallen in love with India when I cycled thru this region and got such simple pleasure as these distant views of hills, fields, and a gibraltar wannabe!

I was traveling in India from Mid december to late Feburary; and at this time the planting and irrigating is going full guns. I am sure it must look different in the hot or rainy season; yet, surely these palms and this small pond would beckon even more in the hot weather of May than now? Even so they beckoned enough, and I camped on a small bluff above this farm. Sometime I would camp in the fields themselves if they were lying fallow. This was not always as pleasant as at first glance: the rice paddies were very heavy and hard with dried clay, and unbelievably bumpy when ya finally stretched out to sleep that night.

I had much better luck at these sort of camping spots, which were along the side of all the roads. I almost expected to see a 'home sweet home' sign! Or perhaps I should put one up myself. A ncie view, a few trees to shade me, provide a place to lean against while I wrote in my journal; some branches to hang up my drying clothing. What more couold anyone want; and India has always prided itself on showing travellers the simplicity of living! I would often lie down at a place like this an hour before sunset; cook dinner while I listened to the BBC on my shortwave radio; and hear news of the wider world as I drifted off to sleep in the calm air of evening.

Not as clear in the photo, but the mountains in the distance resembled Gibraltar.

Rice paddies or similar fields made inviting campsites from far off; but they were often rock hard and bumpy close up.