Few hours in a drizzle of Olu -petals.
We were beaten by sun rays showed no mercy. But in the next moment we were covered & protected by an umbrella woven with crowns of trees. Rubber was introduced to Sri Lanka by English in 1876. From the day it introduced as a crop, Rubber plant has been served the country for not only earning of coins, generating a culture of cultivation. Meanwhile rubber is known as the only crop which served the environment much the same like a forest. As like providing evidence for the same, the atmosphere of our surrounding became more & more fresh & comfortable in each kilometer
This was the last day of year 2009. Four of us, Buddhika, Saman, Werasinghe & me were participants of the journey. We were moving towards “seaforth” from Yatiyantota. The jeep was driven in low speed to enable passengers to explore the beauty of the environment.
The road was driven along the valley of We-oya (River). Many seasonal waterfalls at road sides enhanced the beauty of the environment. Houses, boutiques and many other buildings used in rubber processing met on our way; memorized sceneries in movies of 1960s.
Having traveling nearly an hour we came to the first travel location of the day. It was the wooden bridge at Amanawala village. The bridge was consisted with a number of wooden sleepers. When we drove through the bridge; it emitted a sound of “Daka doka”. At the end of the same, our jeep was parked at the edge of the cliff. The bridge was important not due to this “daka doka” song, because of having the 5th highest waterfall of Sri Lanka, the OOlu falls. Since it was formed with a branch of WeOya stream a tributary of Kelani River, Olu fall was considered as the highest fall in Kelani River. The fall expanded to the both side of the bridge.
The fall cascaded to several. Because of the huge height, there were no provisions to taste the beauty in full, unless it observed from the mountain opposite to the same.
A villager directed us for a safe pool close to the “thunmodara” (3way junction) where the Olu fall meets her bridegroom “way-oya”. Having hours of cool dip with them, we said good bye to the couple newly wedded, since we were in a thought of exploring Weweltalawa, one of the highest rain receiving area out of the country.
We had to drive few kilometers back to reach the junction where the narrow estate road was started. Since it is a private road, you need to get permission from the tea factory at the said junction. Otherwise you may have to return from the road barrier located in a distance of few kilometers upwards.
The road was well paved but narrow, hilly and bendy required very good driving skills to pass the hair-pin bends at a single attempt. Cable trolleys use for transporting tea leaves from hilltops to collecting centers made the scenery much interesting. We were passing high restricted area of the catchments of the We-Oya. Finally we reached the end of the restricted area, it was Wewelthalawa. That was a nice plane; surrounded by ranges of mountains covered with velvety tea plantations. Climate of the plane was much similar to Nuwara eliya. Since the area was in a country side, there was no human sign at the plane except few buildings (it was a full moon day also).
The ITN/SLBC transmission towers were clearly visible to the plane, though they were located in a distance not less than 5km to Wewel-thalawa. They were how attractive was we were compelled to drive towards the same. Up to 2 or 3 kilometers it showed not much tough drive. But the final two were really tough. Finally we were at the police post of the summit of the mountain. As per the police offices there, we were so lackey to be there in such a clear surrounding. Most of the times, the area was fully covered with thick mist. How ever in a clear day you can see up to the Western horizon (Colombo city) from there.
We left the place at the dusk. Powerful fog lamps helped the driver to find the correct path. We were blessed by the “Unduwap” full moon with drizzle and dewfalls periodically, until we reached Yatiyanthota.