Dayanad Kashyap

Lataguri - Nature Interpretation Center

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Lataguri is a small town located in the Jalpaiguri district of West Bengal. The village is located outside the Gorumara National Park. Permits for entering Gorumara and Chapramari Wildlife Sanctuary are given from Lataguri. The village also contains a "Nature Interpretation Center", which gives information about the flora and fauna of the area.
My experience :
I, along with my friends, got an opportunity to visit Lataguri Jungle once just before the monsoon few years back. Unfortunately, permits were stopped due to the start of pre monsoon. But somehow our group managed to find few local people from that area and a very good driver who knew each and every corners/roads of the jungle. 
So finally, we were all set to explore the jungles of Lataguri. But the roads were not very smooth. We had to cross a small river and some rock occupied roads. Luckily we were in a Thar and an Audi Q7 which made possible to cross those obstacles. Finally when we reached there, villagers warned us to be careful as a group of around 32 wild elephants just entered the village and could be anywhere. We were dead scared and stopped our cars at a point & started looking around. Waiting for few minutes, suddenly we saw them passing the road from one side to another. We were thrilled and very happy to see such huge sized wild elephants in just a distance of around 50 -100 metres including some baby elephants with them. Almost all of them crossed the road leaving a baby elephant behind, I guess by mistake. One huge elephant came back and escorted the baby elephant to cross the road and joined the group. 
That was really a lifetime experience. Got goosebumps when saw them in large numbers but was really scared for a while thinking if they would have attacked us, then we had no clue where to run. One should really try visiting this place if you are an Elephant lover and wanna experience this adventurous feeling. 
In the image is that baby elephant who was somehow left behind and was frightened to cross the road alone as we were there with our vehicles.

Story by Dayanad Kashyap

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