Periyar Tiger Reserve in Thekkady, Kerala is a tropical evergreen forest located high up in the Cardamom Hills of the southern Western Ghats of India. An overnight train to Madurai and a three-hour taxi ride later we were in Periyar one cloudy Saturday morning.
On the way there, I excitedly tell P about the night trek organized by the Periyar Forest Department where visitors can join the regular forest protection party as paid volunteers. They have three slots; 7pm to 10pm, 10pm to 1am and 1am to 4 am where groups of 5 to 6 volunteers accompany a forest ranger on his daily beat. Our Bengali middle class risk-averse cells are suitably assuaged and we opt for what appears to be the least perilous of the three, 7pm to 10pm. Continue reading “Into the night in Periyar Tiger Reserve”