After Chunchi falls we went back and took the same road to go to Sangama. Sangama is about 22 km. from Chunchi falls. After half an hour drive we reached there. Sangama is the place where river Arkavathi merges with river Kaveri.
We crossed the Sangama and then took a bus to go to Mekedatu. From Sangama, Mekedatu is at a distance of about 5 km. The ticket price (to and fro) for the bus was Rs. 40 per head. The route was a uneven and there were lots of rocks. While sitting in the bus it felt like the bus will just fall from the hill anytime. Luckily that never happened and after a struggling 15 minutes ride we reached Mekedatu.
From Sangama about 5 kilometers downstream, the river Kaveri flows through a deep gorge so narrow that one would think that a goat can leap across it (Mekedatu means goat’s leap in Kannada). Of course, it is not really so narrow and no goat commonly found in that part of India could cross that distance in a single leap. The name comes from an incident which is believed to have witnessed by herdsmen in that area a long time ago. It is said that a goat being chased by a tiger made a desperate attempt to save its life by leaping from one side of the gorge and managed to cross over the raging river below, whereas the tiger did not attempt to replicate this feat, and abandoned the chase. The point where the goat leapt has widened since then from erosion caused by of the river Cauvery. At Mekedaatu, the Kaveri runs through a deep, narrow ravine of hard granite rock. The river, which is more than 150 meters wide at the confluence (at Sangama) flows through the hardly 10 meters wide gorge at Mekedatu. One can see the ferocious flow of all that water, displaying Bernoulli’s theorem.
There is also some mythological significance to this place. The goat (meke) that is believed to have lept across the Kaveri was Lord Shiva in disguise. On both rocky precipices of the gorge, one can find strange holes, whose shapes resemble goats’ hooves, though several times larger. It was thought that only divine goats could have marked their footprints in such hard rocks.
- River Kaveri at Mekedatu:
- Effects of erosion: