Beautiful Markonahalli Dam

Wednesday, November 23, 2011 / Posted by Sharat / comments (9)

Can there be a dam with the gates always open and still the dam holds water to its capacity? "YES" says Sir M. Vishveshwaraiah and Ganesh Iyer!!!  Welcome to Markonahalli Dam !!

Situated around 100kms from bangalore, Markonahalli Dam is relatively unknown dam to bangalorians considering the speciality it possesses. Markonahalli Dam is a dam built across the river Shimsha and hemavati in Kunigal Taluk of Tumkur district. It was built by Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV, the king of Mysore under the guidance of his Diwan, Sir M Visweswaraiah in 1940. The main person who executed this unique project was Sri Ganesh Iyer.

This small whole controls  siphon!!

Always open gate. Courtesy: Ravikumar

The dam has 4 baby siphons and 2 big and 10 mini wood siphons which is designed in such a way that when the dam reaches its maximum capacity these siphons naturally allow water to pass through ever open gates!! Unlike usual dams where the crest gates are always closed to stop the flow of water, in this dam its always open and still the water doesnt flow unless the dam is full!!

 The technology behind these siphons is simple. Siphons are the only way for water to pass through. And these work on the simple principle of air flow. The air hole shown in the picture is always closed and when dam reaches its capacity water is forced to pass through the siphons since there is no way for air to enter except the closed hole!! Hence this dam requires no actual maintenance!! And the water in the whole dam can be cleared within one and half hour!!!

The watchman will explain you all the things about the dam if you give 10Rs per person. The time we visited was just perfect (Nov 20th) as we could go inside the dam to a water level, stand on the water and see the siphons internal structures!! I don't think there is any other dam where we can do the same.
only way for water to pass through
Going inside dam

Fish cultivation

Photo taken at water level inside dam!!

A security at the dam informed us that no major equipment has gone to repair in the last 70 years of its existence!! I wonder how many of the so called modern dams these days are of this quality!!

Sunset @ dam
Copyright protected !!
What a way to spend an evening!!

  The dam is a beautiful place to visit as it has scenic beauty. Sunset seen at this place is awesome. Wonderful colors just after the sunset refreshed our mind.  Its preferable to visit the dam in the evening  to see its natural beauty.

Who would not like to take girlfriend to this romantic evening? :P
How to reach:

Dam is near Yadiyur. 100kms away from bangalore. Take left 3kms before Yadiyur on NH48. Travel 6kms and reach the dam. Roads are just fantastic and easily accessible.
Do carry eatables if you want to spend more time at the place because there are no shops available at the dam place.

Bangalore -> Nelamangala (take left towards mangalore) -> Kunigal bypass -> take left 3kms before yadiyur. -> travel 6kms and reach the dam

Last but not least , Do not Spoil the place with plastics and bottles!!

Last Note: There is one more dam called Hirebhaskara Dam or Madenur Dam in Linganamakki backwater(near Sagar in shimoga district) which has the same technology and built by the same team of Sir M.V and Ganesh Iyer. The specialty of that dam is that every year during mansoon and most part of the year, the water is over the dam (19ft over dam when linganamakki is full) and still the dam is in condition!! Only during the summer the dam is visible. And no need to mention that the dam is not working since the linganamakki dam was built with greater height which makes this dam to submerge during mansoon.

For more photos:

View Larger Map