MYSORE: The spectacular water falls at Shivanasamudra has attained its full splendour, thanks to the release of water from the Krishna Raja Sagar and Kabini reservoirs.
Sequestered amidst rocky terrain and dense vegetation, the breathtaking falls comprising Gaganachukki and Bharachukki – also known as Bluff – is situated close to Asia’s first hydel power station commissioned in 1902.
Now that both the dams are full to the brim and water is being released, the combined outflow from the two reservoirs is 1,15,000 cusecs all of which flows into the Shivanasamudra or the “Sea of Shiva”. The inflow into the KRS on Wednesday was 64,722 cusecs and the outflow was 62,287 cusecs. The inflow into the Kabini reservoir was 52,942 cusecs and the outflow was 53,067 cusecs.
The catchment area of the Kapila is in Wynad and flows from Kerala and the Cauvery originates at Talacauvery in Kodagu. They converge at the Sangam in T.Narsipura which is about 40 km from the falls.
The deafening roar of the flow is accentuated at the point where the river plummets into deep gorge from nearly 300 feet and hits the rocky surface below resulting in clouds of vapour and foam, and is a feast for eyes. A visual splendour that is best savoured during peak monsoon, Shivanasamudra has always caught the imagination of travellers since the earliest days.
They have been lavish in their praise of this natural wonder in which the Cauvery branches of carving a riverine island and the western branch of the river makes a rapid descent and is the Gagana Chukki that is easily approachable via the power station or through another approach via the Phir Ghaib’s tomb, popularly known as the Darga.
The Bara Chukki is the rapid descent made by the eastern branch of the river and provides a wonderful sight and is about a mile away from the Darga. Now that the Cauvery and the Kapila are overflowing, the water gushes down the steep rocky terrain in an unbroken sheet of water falls that is almost a quarter mile broad.
In the centre of the falls is a deep gorge in the form of a horseshoe.
Apart from the waterfalls, the island is a renowned pilgrim centre and is also known as “Madhya Ranga”. “Adi Ranga” is Srirangapatana and “Antya Ranga” is Srirangam in Tamil Nadu and there are celebrated temples dedicated to Lord Ranganathaswamy at each of these three riverine islands, and hence, is popular among the pilgrims and tourists alike.