Wolf Riders: Tiger Cave near Mahabalipuram, Tamil Nadu

Since the previous post at the end of the year, I started getting a bit more active w/ photography. Nothing really creative or artistic; just keeping a camera around and taking pictures whenever I was hanging out with friends for weekly dinners and the like. Yeah, lots of pix one wouldn’t give a second glance to. I did manage an occasional decent candid, mostly portraiture.

A back injury in the last week of May rendered me bed ridden for about a month. Riding the motorcycle was out for another month after. I found myself definitely ruled out of a trip to Ladakh in July, not that my workload wouldn’t have already done it for me. Being stuck in bed and prohibited from getting out and about just made me want to do it more. So after physiotherapy and another month of back rehab, I was able to ride once again. And it was time to plan a trip, albeit a short one. There aren’t a lot of good roads around Chennai. Usually, one has to head south towards Mahabalipuram / Pondicherry.

Not all that much better from afar though.

Scouring the web, I found Tiger Cave. I recalled seeing signs for it on  a couple of trips to Mahabs and beyond, but never stopped to take a look. Reviews were mixed and photos looked okay. I figured I’d risk it. Worst case, it’d be like a breakfast run to Mahabs. DC & VA decided to join in. I also wanted to test out my new mirrorless camera, the Canon EOS-M. I charged the batteries, but couldn’t find the new lens adapter I’d gotten from the US. That would’ve allowed me to try pairing my trusty EF 18-135 3.5/5.6 to the EOS-M. Darned thing was buried amongst the small hill of other stuff brought by my cousin.

The Master Plan

Depart 5 am from Sangeetha Restaurant in Gandhinagar, Adyar. If you’re not at the departure point on time, just catch up with us at Tiger Cave.
Arrive Before 6 am at Tiger Cave for sunrise photos.
At Tiger Cave Spend 2 hours at the cave and surrounding beach areas. Leave Tiger Cave at 8 am.
Breakfast 8:30 am at Mahabs Adyar Ananda Bhavan,
Return Leave at 10 am from Mahabs,
Arrive 11:30 am in Adyar.

Late start

I was hoping to leave at 5 am, but enough small things went wrong and it was 6 am by the time we left for Tiger Cave. The sun was just coming up when we left, which meant that I wouldn’t be able to capture sunrise photos. Oh well, so much for planning.

We got there at 7 am, by which time DC was already hungry. The only thing on his mind was om-nom-nom-nom-nom… 😀 Finding the cave was rather easy. There are a couple of signs a kilometer or so before the cave, so it’s hard to miss. We parked the bikes and walked to the fenced off enclosure. I have to say, while well maintained, it was a tad disappointing. Other than the main cave, there were a few rock structures. The carvings on the main cave were rather worn. As such I’d have to say a trip for the cave specifically isn’t worth it, but as a brief 15-30 minute stopover on the way to Mahabs, it’s fine. We grabbed breakfast at Adyar Ananda Bhavan (A2B) in Mahabs before heading back home. Wrapped up by 10:30 am.

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