"Manas National Park" State of West Bengal Off The Beaten Path Tip by parthad

  One horned rhino seen from elephant
by parthad
 
  • One horned rhino seen from elephant - State of West Bengal
      One horned rhino seen from elephant
    by parthad
  • A tiger sen while jeep safari - State of West Bengal
      A tiger sen while jeep safari
    by parthad
  • Beautiful landscape - State of West Bengal
      Beautiful landscape
    by parthad
  • Bodo girls showing tribal dance - State of West Bengal
      Bodo girls showing tribal dance
    by parthad
  • Banana raft ride - State of West Bengal
      Banana raft ride
    by parthad
 

I had reached that evening to Manas Jungle Camp at the fringe of the core area of the protected rainforest. We had reached late for making a trip into the National Park. Once, the Manas Wildlife Sanctuary was a premier wildlife habitat with more than 100 species of mammals and 42 species of reptiles. Birdlife was prolific.
The Elephant Safari
Our elephant ride began vary early in the morning when heavy fog had made the Manas National Park mysterious. The ride begins from Maozigendri viilage and continues for about 90 minutes. Elephant began taking us through tall grass into the Manas Tiger Reserve?s gentle slopes at the foothills of the Himalayas. Located in the north-eastern state of Assam, it is the only tiger reserve of its kind in the entire northeast. Our mahout took us close to the crystal waters of the Manas River demarcating the Kingdom of Bhutan with India. We saw two vultures and an eagle circling overhead. A few swamp deer ran away. Tigers had come to drink water at the Manas River and our guide picked up fresh pug marks of tigers. This made our heart race in anticipation of sighting tiger, ferocious yet shy and elusive biggest cat of the jungle.

There was a low growl from a thicket. Our elephant stopped on the track. The mahout?s trained easy picked up the well camouflaged but shining skin. He pointed the spot out and we, too, picked up the yellow and black stripes. Then the most dramatically, the tiger emerged out of the thicket and in a flash jumped across the track and disappeared into denser bush. Marcus?s camera had picked up the dramatic moment.

The morning was very pleasant. We were enjoying the scenic beauty of the mixed deciduous vegetation found in the park. Broken tree branches signaled elephant territory and we saw elephant families. Sambhar, the largest Asiatic was observing us from a distance. A herd of hog deer came closer. The two rare simian, Golden Langur with its long tail, sat on a tree.

Through the swamp, elephant took us to close one-horned rhinos. Generally un-perturbed, mother rhinos with baby showed restlessness. Mahout took the elephant away from them. We saw a rhino bleeding from its back. Conclusively, it had a fight with a tiger. Mahout told us that it was female rhino and when the tiger had attacked its baby, it had charged the tiger and the tiger had charged back commencing a fight. No full grown rhino is ever attacked by tiger.
In the mist, couple shadowy buffalos were moving away from us. A few rare Hispid Hare run on the turf seeing our elephant. Pigmy Hog and Wild Boar sneaked in and out from bush.

Birding was great, too. We saw a huge Indian Hornbill flying over our head and Pied Hornbill resting on a dried up branch of a tall tree. Water bodies had the Riverchats, Forktails, Cormorants and Ducks like the Ruddy. Elephant ride was over in 90 minutes.

Boat safari:
After breakfast we took to a boat safari to see animals from our boat but lesser number animal are visible from the River Manas, which was compensated by grand views of the Himalayas. We saw a few Gangetic Dolphins. We also saw deer herd drinking water. Egrets were trying to fish. A Secretary Bird flew away seeing us.

Returning to the Jungle Camp, we planned to skip the road safari and attended busied us in completing writing of our trip. Marcus was busy compiling his ecological studies of the Manas. He had with him a smokeless incinerator, a small yet effective item to burn forest and human refuge without smoke being emitted, that he demonstrated to the villagers.

There was a tribal dance in the evening and little later we joined a puja where a bodo family worshipped the family god. The night was again mysterious and mystic. Some where a hyena laughed or a leopard coughed. A tusker trumpeted. Night birds often broke the silence.

Road safari:
Next morning, we were out for a long drive into the Manas National Park. We moved along the Manas River. Near the river, we met off duty Gogol carrying only a 6 feet bamboo stick. He asked if we wanted, he call a herd of elephants close to us. We did not believe him. Our driver, Asgar Khan explained that the former poachers and even the new forest guards had astonishing relationship with wildlife and if Gogol wanted, he could shepherd an elephant herd to us from jungle. We declined his offer. Since the area covered by driving around is much more, we were better introduced to Manas?s stunning pristine landscapes at the foot hills of the Himalayas. We could see efforts to remove UNESCO?s stigma ?a heritage wild if in danger? by the government and NGOs bearing fruits.

Elephant safari is a novelty though some animals are visible as elephants walk through elephant grass but to me a vehicle is more interesting as it covers each nook and corner of the wilderness. We saw large number of rhinos and deer including sambar. Birding close to the river was satisfying. When we were close to Bhutan Himalayas, stunning natural scenery greeted us. We knew nothing so beautiful can be ?in danger? list. ?The Manas National Lives? is the motto.
The Elephant Safari
Our elephant ride began vary early in the morning when heavy fog had made the Manas National Park mysterious. The ride begins from Maozigendri viilage and continues for about 90 minutes. Elephant began taking us through tall grass into the Manas Tiger Reserve?s gentle slopes at the foothills of the Himalayas. Located in the north-eastern state of Assam, it is the only tiger reserve of its kind in the entire northeast. Our mahout took us close to the crystal waters of the Manas River demarcating the Kingdom of Bhutan with India. We saw two vultures and an eagle circling overhead. A few swamp deer ran away. Tigers had come to drink water at the Manas River and our guide picked up fresh pug marks of tigers. This made our heart race in anticipation of sighting tiger, ferocious yet shy and elusive biggest cat of the jungle.

Sighting a tiger in wilderness is difficult and sheer luck. But if you are lucky you might view the most splendid sight of the animal world. We had that luck. There was a low growl from a thicket. Our elephant stopped on the track. The mahout?s trained easy picked up the well camouflaged but shining skin. He pointed the spot out and we, too, picked up the yellow and black stripes. Then the most dramatically, the tiger emerged out of the thicket and in a flash jumped across the track and disappeared into denser bush. Marcus?s camera had picked up the dramatic moment.

Through the swamp, elephant took us to close one-horned rhinos. Generally un-perturbed, mother rhinos with baby showed restlessness. Mahout took the elephant away from them. We saw a rhino bleeding from its back. Conclusively, it had a fight with a tiger. Mahout told us that it was female rhino and when the tiger had attacked its baby, it had charged the tiger and the tiger had charged back commencing a fight. No full grown rhino is ever attacked by tiger. But where was the baby rhino? We tried to locate it and failed till we saw four vultures devouring a carcass of small rhino. The female rhino was at a 100 meter distance and looked sad. We saw many rhinos.

In the mist, couple shadowy buffalos were moving away from us. A few rare Hispid Hare run on the turf seeing our elephant. Pigmy Hog and Wild Boar sneaked in and out from bush.

Birding was great, too. We saw a huge Indian Hornbill flying over our head and Pied Hornbill resting on a dried up branch of a tall tree. Water bodies had the Riverchats, Forktails, Cormorants and Ducks like the Ruddy. Elephant ride was over in 90 minutes.

Boat safari:
After breakfast we took to a boat safari to see animals from our boat but lesser number animal are visible from the River Manas, which was compensated by grand views of the Himalaya that we saw from the river. We saw a herd of elephant close to the Manas River. Multi-coloured pebbles of the River are an added attraction. We saw a few Gangetic Dolphins. We also saw deer herd drinking water. Egrets were trying to fish. A Secretary Bird flew away seeing us.

There was a tribal dance in the evening and little later we joined a puja where a bodo family worshipped the family god. The night was again mysterious and mystic. Some where a hyena laughed or a leopard coughed. A tusker trumpeted. Night birds often broke the silence.

Road safari:
Next morning, we were out for a long drive into the Manas National Park. We moved along the Manas River. Near the river, we met off duty Gogol carrying only a 6 feet bamboo stick. He asked if we wanted, he call a herd of elephants close to us. We did not believe him. Our driver, Asgar Khan explained that the former poachers and even the new forest guards had astonishing relationship with wildlife and if Gogol wanted, he could shepherd an elephant herd to us from jungle. We declined his offer. Since the area covered by driving around is much more, we were better introduced to Manas?s stunning pristine landscapes at the foot hills of the Himalayas. The semi-evergreen forest?s Terrestrial Eco region stands out in the Bramhaputra Valley. We could see efforts to remove UNESCO?s stigma ?a heritage wild if in danger? by the government and NGOs bearing fruits.

Elephant safari is a novelty though some animals are visible as elephants walk through elephant grass but to me a vehicle is more interesting as it covers each nook and corner of the wilderness. We saw large number of rhinos and deer including sambar. Birding close to the river was satisfying. When we were close to Bhutan Himalayas, stunning natural scenery greeted us. We knew nothing so beautiful can be ?in danger? list. ?The Manas National Lives? is the motto.

Contact Global Hop Travel,
698 Biltmore Drive Bartlet, IL 60103, USA
Phone: 00-1-630-837-4998
www.globalhoptravel.com

Phone: +919903063117
Website: http://www.globalhoptravels.com

Was this review helpful?

  • Written Mar 22, 2008
  • Send to a Friend
  • Add to your Trip Planner
  • Report Abuse

Comments

parthad

“See new-do new”

Online Now

Male

This member has not been ranked.
No VT rank yet.
         

Have you been to State of West Bengal?

  Share Your Travels