This time, during the Diwali break, my family decided to visit the Jim Corbett National Park in Ramnagar, Uttarakhand. The Distance from Gurgaon was 300 kilometres. We decided to stay at the Corbett Anand Amod Resort at Dhikuli. We started at 4:15 a.m. and reached at 11:30 a.m. The journey got delayed because of the Traffic Jam a couple of kilometres before the Brajghat Bridge on the Ganga River at Garh Mukhteshwar.
On reaching the resort we quickly checked in to our rooms and then rushed up for our lunch as we had booked our safari for 2:30 p.m. that very day. To our pleasant surprise, the first animal that greeted us, that too immediately after entering the park premises was a spotted deer with antlers!
The Sambur Deer is a larger kind of Antelope and the National Park is teeming with Sambur Deer. This is a relatively shy animal and I found it difficult to photograph it from a distance. The moment we tried to get close to it, it fled into the undergrowth.
Apart from the deer and monkeys, we were rewarded with sightings of Wild Roosters and Khaleej Pheasants. The Khaleej Pheasants were relatively shy and by the time we reached them, they were hidden within the foliage!
The last that I saw such handsome roosters was when I was in Ethiopia many years ago. The male roosters can be very colourful and the driver of our jeep told us that the male rooster has feathers of seven different colours!
The hen, unfortunately, is not as good looking as the male rooster. Nevertheless, I guess they both make a good pair, a loyal pair as such. I was able to take a couple of photographs of the hen from close to where the rooster was.
Apart from the birds and fowls, the grasslands are worth a view. The grasslands stretch into the horizon reminding one of how vast the world is and how small, we human beings are! There are spots in the National Park where you can alight from the jeep and walk on the ground. These are designated spots close to the watchtowers.
Towards the end of our safari in the National Park, we were able to spot one more deer, an elusive dog-sized deer known as Kakkar or Barking deer. It moved too quickly for me and the driver could not stop the jeep in time. Nevertheless, we were able to get a fleeting glimpse of one more species of deer.
Our safari in the Jim Corbett National Park had taken about two hours. We had reached the park gate at three and were out by five in the evening. It would also be advisable for visitors to carry binoculars, although the same are available on hire at the entry gates. Moreover, visitors to the park should have warm clothing on as it can become a bit cold by five in the evening in the month of October. Wearing caps and shades might help from the dust that might be caused by numerous other vehicles on the track.