A Tale of a Royal Tigress from the Wilderness of Ranthambore National Park

There will be a story to tell by a wanderer after encountering the raging beasts of Ranthambore National Park. The first excitement embarks upon the whispering woods that are followed by keen winds while tracing on the wheels. The jungle safari for the day comes to an end but still you are seeking to inhale the wild breath and you stay back for the next morning wheels to cut across the off ramp. The Ranthambore National Park welcomes all but only few lucky ones do get a glimpse of those beautiful beasts.

Machli Ranthambore

The tawny coated feline with black stripes, the tigers usually prefer to stay within their respective territories, but there in Ranthambore National Park, these wildcats has got some interesting stories to roar. Over the years the Ranthambore National Park has witnessed increasing number of travellers. You may wonder who these travellers are and where they come from. They actually include people from different corners, domestic and across the border. Little travel for camping and many seek to explore the jungle for days whereas few travel ceaselessly to be lucky once and for many an only safari is a grapevine.

Likewise one among the story tellers a traveller who sighted the ferocious glory of Ranthambore National Park is DAMN LUCKY! What could be his reaction after tracing and capturing the pride of Ranthambore? Simply WOW? Well, things will be absolutely numb. His eyes are going to bulge out and jaws are going to break. Now he has something to think over after acquainting the ‘lady of the lake’, Machali. The fish shaped marking on the left part of her face, her muscular and majestic look and her dominance at the whole Ranthambore jungle, makes her the royal tigress.

It was in the late 20th century when one such happy-go-brainsick jungle-plorer witnessed His Highness and hit the legendary fight with a 14 foot long crocodile. Let’s cut back to the scene. What could have happened? Machali, who dominates the glorious palaces, lakes and fort of Ranthambore, was attacked by a crocodile when she was lingering around the lake. Machali with her intense strength, flexible movements and dominating nature dragged the crocodile down to eternal rest. Holy Moley!!! That legendary fight made ‘Machali’ famed among the wildlife lovers.

Over the years since 1997 wildlife explorers shot many documentaries and short films on Machali and her dominating stories have been penned on wildlife books and magazines. Today she is one of the wildcats who is the major attraction in Ranthambore National Park. Machali has not only been dominating the wilderness of Ranthambore but also the CLICKS of thousand wildlife photographers.

Today, Machali has grown old and has lost almost all of her teeth and most of her territory as well. ‘Satara or T 17’, a.k.a. Sundari, one of Machali’s female offspring, dominates the entire territory once reigned by Machali. ‘Athara or T 18’ and ‘Unnis or T 19’, the other two female cubs of Machali dominates their own territories, Phool Kot and Lakkarda respectively. Machali also gave birth to Bamboo Ram, a male cub, who died of old age, Jhumri, a female cub and Jhumru, another male cub. In 2005, Machali again gave birth to two cubs, Sharmeele, a female offspring and Bahadur, a male offspring.  But still Machali’s roar and the legendary fight resounds at every nook and corner of Ranthambore.

In fact that was a true story of Machali from a traveller’s diary. Today wildlife lovers still seek to capture such jaw breaking wild peek from the outburst of Ranthambore National Park. Nonetheless the forest department also provides comforts, luxury and budget, to leisure travellers. The Vanya Vilas, Khem Vilas, and Tiger Den Resort offer affluent luxury withal modern amenities. The Ranthambore Tiger Reserve Park, located in Rajasthan, is easily accessible by road and the nearest airport is the Jaipur International Airport that is approximately 170 kms away whereas the Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi, is approximately 260 kms away. Jaipur and Kota are the nearest railheads.

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