Chethalayam, Kidanganad, Kerala 673592, India
About Chethalayam Waterfalls
A seasonal waterfall deep inside the forests of Wayanad.
Chethalyam Waterfall is one of the lesser known and smaller falls in Wayanad. At a distance of 37 km from Kalpetta and 12 km from Sulthan Bathery, this beautiful waterfall is located in Kidangad, towards Pulpally from Sulthan Bathery. Far away from the bustling towns and cities, the waterfall is one of the most peaceful spot in the area.
Chethalyam is a seasonal waterfall. It tends to dry up during the summer months (March-June), and becomes active for the rest of the year. This is a lovely place to visit, especially for hiking enthusiasts due to its beautiful and sometimes extra ordinary views. The ideal months to visit the waterfall will be from September to February, post the monsoon season.
The hike to the waterfall
The entry point of the spot is around four kilometres away from the waterfall. Your vehicle has to be parked there and then you have to start walking through the small road. After about two kilometres, there is a tribal village and then the deep forest starts. Thirty minutes after the village, you will reach the waterfalls.
The location of the waterfall is close to the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary which is inhabited by spotted deer’s, Sambar (a large deer native to the Indian Subcontinent), Gaur (Indian Bison), elephants and sloth bears among many other, including predatory animals. The surroundings of the waterfall also offers many vantage points for bird watching.
For many people, the long hike to the waterfall will be the best part of exploring the area. The woods are thick with plenty of birds and butterflies, and if you get lucky, you may also spot some wildlife as you walk through four kilometres of the trail. Great many trees stand over the grassy landscape throughout the trail and green valleys and great climbs extend far and wide.
The view of the waterfall
Nearing the end of the hike, the waterfall comes to view all of a sudden. The cascade, hidden inside the thick cover of bushes appears only at a close range of a few meters. Water splashing down the rocky face of the fall is red and muddy in the rainy months from June to August. Though the waterfall gets to its full glory in monsoon, leeches are in abundance during that time.
The water clears up post monsoon wearing a completely different colour frilled with white lather. And after the small interval in which it is perfect and clear, it slowly reduces to a tiny trickle before it finally dries up in the summer months of April and May.
While you are here, do bring some food items so that you can have something on the way back after a tiring day of hiking. There are no shops in the vicinity so it will be hard to get water or snacks if you run out of them. With no crowd or traffic, you can enjoy the place for yourself immersing in the pristine nature.
Getting to Chethalayam Waterfall
Chethalayam Waterfall is located at Kidangad, 12 km from Sulthan Bathery to Pullpalli road. The nearest towns are Sulthan Bathery (11 km). The nearest major railway station is in Kozhikode from where there are straight buses to Sulthan Bathery. Kidangad is accessible from Sulthan Bathery and from Kidangad you have to hike up or hire taxi to reach the entry point of the hike.
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