Camping Precautionary Measures

If you are planning to camp out or hike in areas you are not very familiar with. Be sure to take extra precautionary measures to avoid possible sickness and danger especially if there are kids tagging along on your outdoor adventure. Camping is not only a ‘candy’ for those who are seeking an adrenaline rush but it is also a way of relaxation for those who have been working so hard all their lives.

It is during this time when you can take a closer look at the natural beauty of mother earth and smell the roses along the way but you have to be sure that you pack all the necessary things you will be needing during your trip. Stuff like portable camping stove to cook or warm your food, bottled water for drinking, energy drinks, first aid kit, a blanket to keep you warm at night and an insect repellant to keep the children’s skin free from insect bites.

The world health organization has reported that fifty percent of travelers, which also include the campers, have suffered diarrhea during their tips. It is therefore advisable for you to take a sufficient amount of potable water during your camp to avoid getting sick. Killing the bacteria or microbes in the water is one way of making sure that you will not get diarrhea. If you have a portable camp stove with you, just boil the water for five to ten minutes before drinking the water. Also, be sure to properly wash fruits and vegetables before eating or cooking them.

Animal encounter is one common problem a camper dreads but this can be avoided by planning your trip. If you are going to an unfamiliar place be sure to research about it in the internet. And when planning your camping be sure to check the weather schedule to avoid getting stranded on the mountains because of bad weather. It would also be best if you could take a battery operated radio and a cellular phone just in case there is an emergency you can call for help. And, you better check your tent before you head out for an adventure to make sure that it is in good condition. Tent is a camper’s essential because it is where you can take a rest after a long, happy day.

If you want a memorable camp be sure to prepare ahead of time and bring the essential camping gear with you to keep you safe and happy on your adventure.

Fifth Wheel Toy Haulers For Your Next Big Adventure

Fifth wheel toy haulers are the perfect combination of RV and cargo trailer.  They can have all the comforts of a motor home or camper trailer with an attached garage for your “big toys” – ATVs, motorcycles, classic cars, etc.  5th wheel toy haulers allow you to utilize your big toys away from home while maintaining all of the comforts of home. 

Fifth wheel toy haulers come in a variety of styles and levels of comfort, all depending on your needs.  Some toy haulers are garages with convertible living space. They include beds that pull down, fold out, or hook up to the ceiling, and a small kitchenette.  Other toy haulers have separate living quarters with attached garages.  Depending on your priorities, you can have more space dedicated to the garage or more space dedicated to the living area.  In either case, your living amenities are generally in the front of the trailer and your cargo space in the back.  In the living area, you will generally find a sleeping area, a kitchen, a bathroom and plenty of storage space.  There is also usually some kind of table and eating area as well as air conditioning and a furnace.  More luxurious units have a generator, satellite TV, a stereo system, DVD player, and even satellite internet. 

The cargo space is usually between 10-14 feet and has a ramp door that folds down to allow easy loading and unloading of your toys. You can customize your cargo space with shelves, cabinets and racks, and even a portable gas pump so that you are always ready for your next adventure.   

Toy haulers come in both drivable and towable units.  Towable units give you the flexibility to have an around-town vehicle that can detach from your trailer, while, drivable units provide the ease of only maneuvering one vehicle.  Another advantage to the towable models is that they are easier to maintain.  If you choose a drivable model, you have the option of either a Class C or a Class A.  Class C models are built on a van frame, generally use gasoline, have higher fuel efficiency and include a bunk above the driver’s cab.  Class A models are built on a bus frame, generally use diesel fuel and tend to seat more but sleep fewer than the Class C. 

Before purchasing your used or new toy hauler, do some research to figure out what you want.  If possible, you may even want to consider renting one to make sure it fits your needs.  When you are ready to make a purchase, check out your local classifieds, as you can often find a good deal on a used RV from a private seller.

Top Places to Visit Around Bangalore – Weekend Getaway and Day-trip Holiday Spots

If you are in Bangalore and have gone on weekend trips from here, you would know that finding good destinations and planning a trip is not an easy job.

Check out 4 weekend getaway and day-trip spots from Bangalore in the article below. These destinations are for all kinds of travelers – for the adventure seeker, family vacations, fun outing with friends, bike and car trips….you choose.

1. Innovative Film City

Innovative Film City is an amusement park located in Bidadi, about 50 Kilometers outside Bangalore. It is one of the new theme parks that arrived in Bangalore in 2008. Don’t be fooled by the name though.

This theme park has attractions such as a wax museum, dinosaur museum, a special section called ‘Cartoon city’ for kids, a mirror maze, 4D movies and more. Tickets are a bit pricey though. You’ll have to shell out between Rs 300 – Rs 1000 per person depending on what attraction you want to see inside. There are decent food courts where you can have your lunch or grab a bite.

If you want to spend a fun weekend with your friends or family, Innovative film city is definitely worth a visit. Leave early and you can spend a whole day here.

Duration: 1 day Approximate Budget / person: Rs 500 – Rs 1000 Distance : 50 Kms Which route is it on: Bangalore – Mysore highway How to reach : by bus, car, bike Road condition: good

2. Yelagiri Hills – Getaway from the city madness

This less popular hill-station is located near Krishnagiri town on the Bangalore-Chennai national highway. It is about 150 kilometers from Bangalore and around 250 Kilometers from Chennai.

Yelagiri Hills is not your typical touristy destination; this place is meant for those who wish to getaway from the regular monotony of the cities to just relax for a couple of days. The hill station is at a height of about 900 meters (around 3000 feet) and the weather is pleasant all year round.

The main attractions are a lake where you can go boating, Swamimalai – a trek of 3 Kms uphill takes you to a small temple and panoramic views of the mountains. There are plenty of hotels (many which call themselves as resorts) in Yelagiri. Tariffs start from about Rs 400 and goes upto Rs 4000 for cottages. Book at least a week in advance. The hotels get crowded during weekend and holidays.

Duration: 1 – 2 days Approximate budget / person: Rs 1000 – Rs 2000 How to reach: by cars, taxis, buses, train (until Jolarpettai or Tirupattur) Road condition: good

3. Hogenakkal Falls

Hogenakkal literally means smoking rocks (in Tamil). The falls comprise of a numer of smaller waterfalls that make up the beauty of the place. Hogenakkal is located in Dharmapuri district and is about 120 Kms from Bangalore. Perfect for a day-trip, you can drive to here over a Saturday and get a day’s off to unwind.

The most popular activity in Hogenakkal is the hot oil massage. For about Rs 50, local masseurs give you a 5-minute full body massage. Though it seems quick, this short duration is enough to loosen tight spots in your body. After the massage, a quick shower under the falls is considered to be therapeutic.

You can also take a ride in the famous ‘theppa’ or coracle boats which take you around the Kaveri river that forms Hogenakkal falls. You can also taste local delicacies of fried fish, paniyaram (rice cakes) or Poli (Indian sweet).

Staying options are minimal in Hogenakkal. Hotel Tamilnadu, run by the Tamilnadu tourism department, is the only decent one in town. During the tourist season (September – January) you may need to book in advance. You can also stay in Dharmapuri where staying options are better. From Dharmapuri it is a 50 Kms drive to Hogenakkal.

Duration: 1- 2 days Budget / person: Rs 1000 Which route it is on: Bangalore – Krishnagiri (Chennai highway) – Dharmapuri Road condition: Good

4. Talakadu and Shivanasamudram – Submerged in time

Shivanasamudram (sometimes called Shimsha falls) is home to a couple of lovely waterfalls while neighboring Talakadu preserves history in the form of submerged temples. Located about 150 Kms from Bangalore and about 70 Kms from Mysore, Shivanasamudram and Talakadu are both popular picnic and weekend spots. You can reach here after taking a turn after Maddur on the route that goes to Kollegal.

Shivanasamudram Falls actually consists of two separate falls called Gaganachukki and Bharachukki. Shivansamudram is also the site of Karnataka’s first hydroelectric project. Both falls carry the waters of river Kaveri from a height of about 90 meters.

Of the two falls you can enjoy Bharachukki most as it can be reached by a flight of steps near the falls while Gaganachukki falls is off-limits. You can take bath under the falls or spend some time frolicking in the pond near the falls. Both falls are located about 5 Kms between each other. During the monsoon season, the falls are in full flow and present a majestic sight.

Talakad is about 20 Kms from Shivanasamudram is famous for the submerged temples that is believed to emerge once in 12 years. Situated on the banks of the river Kaveri it is now a popular picnic spot aside from being a pilgrimage center.

The temples in Talakadu were built by the Hoysalas who were staunch devotees of Lord Shiva. Five such Shiva temples were built in honour of the god. A fair is held once every 12 years to honor the lord. The last such fair was held in 2006. There is also folklore that Talakad was cursed to turn into a mass of sand by a woman named Alamelamma, in the 16th century.

You can visit Shivanasamudram first and then come to Talakadu, see the temples and go for a swim or just chill out in the waters. Water is shallow, but there are weeds and sharp stones which some may find irritating. Catch the sunset here and head back to Bangalore.

There are no good restaurants in Talakadu. It’s better to pack your lunch and have it in Talakad. You will find a lot of monkeys around, but you can eat if people take turns to guard from the monkeys. You can fit Shivanasamudram and Talakadu in a 2 day trip – Spend one day in the nearby Ranganathittu bird sanctuary and Srirangapatna and the next day here.

On your way back you can find good number of Dhabas and restaurants outside Maddur on the highway. You can stopover here for dinner while coming back to Bangalore

Duration: 1 – 2 days Approximate budget / person: Rs 1000 – Rs 2000 How to reach: by cars, taxis, buses. Private transport is the best option Road condition: From Bangalore – Maddur, you will find excellent roads. The road from Maddur to Shivanasamudram is in a pathetic state. Leave early in the day to avoid truck traffic and leave before dusk as it can be uncomfortable driving in the dark from Shivanasamudram to Maddur where you hit the highway.

Make Life A Daring-Do Adventure

Too much comfort in our lives and work is as unhealthy for personal growth as too much risk and danger. The key to taking risks is to learn the 7 keys of personal change.

1. First Change Yourself. When we find ourselves in an unsatisfactory position that is due to circumstances beyond our control, such as a job we no longer enjoy or people we no longer like, most of us try to change the situation. We complain, moan, criticize, judge, and condemn. None of which works. That’s because there is only one way to change an unsatisfactory situation. And that’s to change ourselves.

2. Let Go Of Old Positions. When we stay entrenched in old positions, even if they are no longer relevant, there is no possibility of change or improvement. That’s when it is time to take a risk. That’s what Mikhail Gorbachev did in the 1980’s when he recognized the changes in the world around him. In his meetings with the US President Reagan, Gorbachev took a huge risk in offering a one-sided reduction in nuclear weapons. The risk meant the ending of the arms race and with it unprecedented changes in the history of the world.

3. Think Like A New Start. When we start a new adventure or a new enterprise, there is a buzz about us. We’ve all felt it. It’s like the first day at a new school or a new job. Sadly, we soon lose that feeling beneath familiar routines and habits. In taking personal risks, we can re-discover it. As Ray Kroc, founder of McDonalds said: “When you’re green you grow; when you’re ripe, you rot.”

4. Re-Invent Yourself. Real personal change comes when we do more than just learn a few new skills and habits. It comes when we re-invent ourselves. Re-inventing ourselves is a way of casting off one identity and putting on another. Tom Peters goes so far as to say that the imagination and zeal to regularly re-create yourself is the definition of greatness. And it doesn’t have to be something you do just a few times in a lifetime; it can be something you do each new day.

5. Manage Your Own Morale. Taking risks is fraught with difficulties and dangers but we can keep going if we learn how to manage our own morale. The keys to morale management are working on your belief that things will turn out positively in the end and creating a support system to help you through tough times. This can be your own support group, the inspiration of people who’ve been there and done that, and keeping the whole process light.

6. Step Back. When we take risks, it is valuable to be able to distance ourselves from what we are involved in and take an objective position. Here we can see what is going on without being in the fray. When we do that, we can accept criticism dispassionately and not personally. It’s also the place we can go to take a breather and chill out.

7. Be Willing To Fail Before You Succeed. All risk carries with it the possibility of failure. Fear of failure is one of the chief reasons we hesitate to take risks in the first place. But we can overcome the fear of failure by making friends with it. As William Faulkner says, there is far more to learn from failure than from success: “To try something you can’t do, to try and fail, then try again. That to me is success. My generation will be judged by the splendour of their failures.”

Taking these 7 steps in personal change assures you of moving assuredly out of your comfort zones. When you do, you’ll find that the old comfort zone has now expanded and what once looked like a danger zone has now become a place you feel safe with.