The 60m fall derives its name from a nearby tea estate. It is served by a brook beginning at Kalugaldova on the southern slope of the Bathurugala Mountain (1047m). After being joined by numerous other small brooks, the water winds its way through the mountain jungles to Wewell Dola, where it forms the Walawe River. This is met by the Heendole stream before forming the elegant fall.
The upper reach of the fall is home to species such as elk, sambur deer, wild boar and reptiles. The lower reaches are abundant with water leeches. Thereafter, the water cascades from a rocky ridge giving rise to the small Halketiya Falls.
Even in a drought the water continues to fall as a small stream, and due to the moisture, even as the midday sun shines overhead, a damp environment prevails. A hydro-electric power station has been built by damming Alupola Falls in Bellangama, and the power generated is used by the Wewell Watte Tea Factory. Water is also supplied to the government tea factory. However, mining around the fall itself has damaged the aquatic eco system and if steps are not taken immediately to remedy this, the fall may be destroyed. On a number of occasions, sudden water surges associated with the fall have occurred, causing several deaths.
Ratnapura is the nearest city to the fall that is situated on a tea estate bordering a stretch of the Sri Pada Jungle. Take the road from Ratnapura to Bambarakotuwa and Wevel Watha, which then winds through lush plantations and the villages of Kudamagaka, Ravuladola, Pollwatte and Rilegama until reaching the Egarasland and Halwatura summit junctions. From here, turn left and follow the short winding road to the twin falls. Due to the difficult terrain, a four-wheel drive vehicle is the best mode of transport. The Ratnapura rest-house is 27km away.
Source : www.srilankanwaterfalls.org
February 14, 2007