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It is a mountain pass located in the Western Ghats in Pune. A drive through these roads should rejuvenate your senses.
Malshej Ghat is a mountain pass in the Western Ghats range in the Pune district. Malshej Ghat is known for several types of avian population and particularly known for flamingoes. We camped there for the night on the banks of Pimpalgaon Joga Dam near the MTDC resort. Campsite: 19°20'00.9"N 73°48'52.2"E
9th July was the date when i decided to finally get onto four wheels and drive off to an undecided location with my beast all tanked up and ready for yet another adventure / thrilling / scenic drives.It wasn't raining heavily and clouds seemed to have given us respite in Mumbai. It was apt time to get out and drive hoping to get lesser traffic and mesmerize my eyes with the beauty that beholds in onset of monsoons and i wasn't left disheartened. Amazing landscape encountered during the whole drive.Route taken:- Panvel - Asangaon - Malshej and back (160km one way) there are many different routes one can take. I choose for this specific route as i had to get delivery of my SLR and also pick up some things from decathlon. The drive started at around 10 in morning (which was a very bad idea) and i got stuck in traffic all through the drive till Kalyan phata. Management of traffic on this route is pathetic and kills all the fun one may have planned. Road conditions on few patches pathetic (near Biwandi crossing, near Kalyan phata, village road SH222 has few patches, Malshej ghat road). If someone wants to drive please hire a self drive car or maybe travel locally as the road condition on the ghat is not good, lot of bad potholes and visibility at peak of rains is almost nill.
Having five days a week working and being an avid traveller, I always look  forward to weekend to explore new places.  Against my basic instinct, I didn’t go out on Saturday but I had to go on Sunday since I am not the one who can be hooked at home when there is every opportunity to go out. Due to one day in hand, I thought of exploring Malshej – a mountain pass in the western ghats range of  pune district in the state of Maharastra.This place can be reached through Thane and Kalyan from Mumbai. It is about 60 Kms from Kalyan and 130 km from Mumbai. There are numerous state buses which goes to Malshej ghats. By Car, it takes  three hours to reach depending that you keep your blinkers on and don't stop at numerous Dhaba's which make you salivate and gives you a gastronomic high!!.Expecting it to be like any other hill pass and at the same time not being much talked about, I didn’t foster any high hopes. But to my amazement , road from Kalyan to Malshej is well maintained(stress free driving) and the topography is awesome,  added benefit being less crowed,  serene and picturesque. There are various waterfalls, big and small , we enjoyed bathing under them( Carry extra pair of clothes) . There are numerous viewpoints with breathtaking  view  and fills with joy and delight. There is a saying “a thing of beauty is joy forever”.Monsoon season is best time to visit because the weather gets pleasantly cool and when you experience such weather afteroffbeat humidity of Mumbai, it takes you to  some different level of awesomeness. There is a vast and clean lake which makes the place more scenic. Pimpalgaon Joga Dam is also one of the attractions.If  planning to stay overnight one can consider  Flamingo Hill , a resort run by MTDC – Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation and few private resorts (near the dam) . Eating options are very limited but you can enjoy Maggie, roasted corn, boiled corn, vada pao , boiled egg, scrambled egg, omlettle  and of course tea and coldrinks on the road side (I did eat all this, no exaggeration)  After spending good 3-4 hours we were Mumbai bound again. It was short and refreshing trip. One must experience it.Signing off to explore other beauties in the hinterland of Maharashtra
Beauty of this place is just breathless. Waterfalls all round and so many colors of green will just remind you of "Hulk" (jokingly). Air is amazingly fresh and good to take in. One will literally drive into the clouds and touch them, feel the little drops of water touch you and lift you to completely next zone. Kudos to the ST bus drivers who transport people via this route. It's very much prone to land slides and water gushing over the roads. Nature at it's best and we don't do justice to the place, by parking cars on road sides (instead of designated parking spots), cross the roads without giving head to traffic, eat own stuff or stuff sold by sellers on the route (throw the waste on road assuming it will be cleaned) .The drive though was peaceful once i crossed Bhiwandi and onto the Nashik highway. (i still don't understand why toll is collected in Mumbai area roads are bad, infra is pathetic). Series of straights and winding roads through some of really good agricultural land lead me to Malshej ghat.From start of the ghat till the very top you will see unruly people parking their cars on road sides and enjoying the waterfalls besides the road. Best thing about Malshej is you don't need to wander off to find a good waterfall as it gives you various kinds of waterfalls and it seems like a "buffet of waterfalls" is being served.
MALSHEJMalshej Ghats is located about 2 hours from Mumbai, and the road goes via Kalyan. The drive once you get out of city limits is green, fully (in the monsoon seasons especially!). Though in the monsoons, half of Mumbai is there too! We stopped at a stream flowing there, and generally trekked up next to it! Was interesting, going up next to the stream itself, and trying to avoid getting wet. And avoiding water snakes too!Once you reach Malshej though, there are hajaar waterfalls there, with multiple hajaar people! Its actually crazy, how everyone is there in the waterfall, with not enough water to even cover those many people! Its actually putting off also!The Malshej Ghats is a small stretch of the roads where you get a view of the hills around and there are numerous waterfalls around, and all Mumbaikars are there, dancing in the rainfall with music and drums. There actually was a road jam also in the small stretch on the hills. The view from there is good though, and you can actually see waterfalls spraying into the air and vanishing as clouds!The whole area is covered with clouds everywhere, on the road, on the pathways, everywhere during monsoons. There is a MTDC resort also located at the top on a meadow type flat area. The resort had horrible food though! But when we were there we had to wait an hour for the lunch, wherein we walked around and it rained from above and below and there were clouds and rains, and so we loved the food too! The walk through the rains and clouds was good, but too cold. There are a couple of treks to do nearby, Shivneri fort and Harishchandragad, but since we did not have enough time, we couldn't do that. Last we went to this lake, serene, calm and with green views around. All in all again a nice weekend out of Bombay.RATANGADThis trek is on the Nasik highway, near Igatpuri. Its about 2-3 hours away from Bombay if you leave on time. There is an old south Indian temple at the start of the trek (surprising to find a South Indian temple in Maharashtra). You can also get someone to cook tasty poha and vada pau for you there. There is also a step well there, something similar to what have seen in Ahmedabad.The trek is about two hours or so and at the top of the trek is an old fort. I actually did not complete the trek, was too hot and sunny. (that too in winters!). But is a nice trek with good views around and with the small fort on the top.
Malshej Ghat (माळशेज घाट) is a heaven abode full of natural beauty With uncountable number of waterfalls to beautifully structured dams and steep, lofty forts, the ghat is a perfect place for nature lovers delight. The 5Km long Pimpalgaon Joga Dam built over the mesmerizing Pushpawati River and particularly known for flamingoes this is one of the main attractions in Malshej Ghat.&t=4s
There are a lot of beautiful places in the world. But those beautiful places has different beautiful faces. This is what I found during my recent ride to Malshej ghat. It hardly 120km from mumbai and this place looks too too too beautiful during monsoon. But I have been to this place during autumn. After doing a lot of ride for which we had to pass through lonavala, one of my friends suggested this time we will choose a place for which there no need to go through lonavala. Other friend suggest Malshej. I was a bit reluctant in the beginning, as I was not aware how this place would be in summer though it looks awesome during monsoon. Thought of giving it a chance and believe me it was the most smoothest ride I have ever done. The day was fixed but obvious it was a Sunday and it was planned that we would leave early so that we can ride back by evening. And you all know there no word as early in Sunday. We were late not much but by an hour of our decided time. We planned were to assemble and we met at the decided place and our ride started. The road were absolute beauty were we could easily cruise at 100-110 + kmph. We didn't even get a single pothole or rough patch. We took the bhiwandi- asangaon-murbad route without getting inside kalyan. Enroute We stopped at a hotel called Shiv sagar few kilometers before a toll naka which leads to Shahpur for breakfast. The food served was really good, especially the filter coffee. We continued our ride, till Shahpur it was a good 4 Lane neatly laid highway. Then we entered the murbad route. Even this road was too good with the landscape and it went through villages at certain places. This was a kind of single lane road but one could easily ride at 100kmph. Overall the whole route was so scenic that we had to halt at many places to click some photos. After a number of photo stops we reached the tip of the Malshej ghat. The mountains here reminded me about my solo ladakh ride as some part resembled exactly the same. The view from the top was too good. We sat down there for sometime and had some refreshments and of course some photo shoot. As we had to return before evening, we started our ride back. On the way found one person selling cashew fruits. So brought some for me. Even while returning we halted at few places to click some photos and to check fellow riders are in track with us. By 5pm we were back which was 3hrs more than our calculated time. But we really spent a quality time which will be a part of our memory forever and ever.
Very close to the main city of Mumbai, this is a place of extreme natural beauty in the form of hills, waterfalls and green valleys. These make this place a part an important part of the list of places near Mumbai within 200 kms. You can stay here at the MTDC Hotel and enjoy spectacular views of the ghat waters rising during the monsoon. Malshej is also known for the variety of birds and flowers which can be best viewed from the Harishchandragad Point.Distance from Mumbai - 127 KmsSavarkut Village:Savarkut village, about 130 kilometers away from Mumbai and is yet another place that makes it to the list of places near Mumbai within 200 km. This place is resplendent with water activities as it is situated on the banks of Vaitarna River. White water rafting, boating, kayaking and water rappelling are some of the sports that this place offers. You will soon forget the worries of your city life when yu step on the soil here.Distance from Mumbai - 130 Kms
Malshej Ghats, MaharashtraIt poured a bit and then came thrashing down presenting us with some panoramic views of multiple waterfalls, foggy pathways, explicit landscapes, and some solitude.
Malshej GhatMalshej Ghat is my one of the most favorite mountain pass in the western ghats ranges in the Thane-Pune. Malshej Ghat is nestled in the lofty rugged hills of the Western Ghats. The most beautiful thing is it is the home to hundreds of different kinds of flora and fauna especially the avian population such as quails, rails, flamingos, crakes, and cuckoos.Malshej Ghat is around 130 KM in North of Pune. There are various valleys around the Malshej which attracts many trekker and travelers. Good season to visit at Malshej is monsoon months of August to September.
Climbing the summit or Kalsubai peak is one of the best things to do in Indore as it is the topmost peak in Maharashtra standing with a height of 16446 metres. The whole hilltop is a chunk of the Harishchandragad Kalsubai Sanctuary. A village called Bari is where the route to the summit starts, followed by various trekking routes, the animal tracks in the route gifts a thrilling atmosphere to the climbers. Local guides are available throughout the year who help the visitors in climbing the summit. The route to the peak is very well marked and perfectly guides the trekkers. It is one of the most thrilling as well as enjoyable place to trek. The Kalsubai temple is situated in the summit of the peak, only three people can sit in this temple at one time. When one reaches the summit apart from the temple, the hugely spread out backwaters of Bhandardara also attracts the attention.
The majestic Kalsubai peak in all it glory covered by clouds, drifting apart at sometime and again covering it back. Few shots later, walking again.Up the hill, what we could see was white times infinity. Fog. Clouds. Drizzle. Wind. And in all this came the ladders! Wobbly as they are, one-at-a-time climb on the ladder, less support, you start thinking about all the things you had ever wanted to do in life. There are five such ladders en route the top. On one of them, despite people shouting from behind, mid way i stopped, just because i saw this (see below). Spectacular. Whatever settings I had on my cam set already, couldn’t sit there changing them. The pic didnt come out in the perfect way, but it was what it was.On the way up, there were many such spectacles to see, mighty waterfalls to see, wind to be blown by, drizzle to get soaked in and the adrenaline rush that gives you the push further!It took around three hours to climb to the top of the not-so-arduous trek. The weather made it happen quick without taking much halts in between, except for one where we had kanda-bhajis (yes, there is a small stall that pops out of nowhere on the way up).Up above, it was all windy again. Literally had to bend and hold on to something to stop yourself from getting blown away. And also it was all white.When we just reached there, just getting assembled, all 39 of us, there we witnessed it. The clouds gave way for the sun to shine on us. Just a 30 second window, not much. But everyone was mesmerized! Oh what a scene. And then it was back to the winds and rains galore.
Its been seven months and five days since the last time I went trekking to Prabalgad, on a cold wintery night (havent made a blog post about it though). Fast forward to July 27, 2014. It was set. Finally after office, summers, heat and all other things sad, it was time for some action. Oh yes, it had started to rain well here and it was the perfect moment to go trekking.Kalsubai, the name i had heard during my college years and i had yearned to go there since. Being the highest peak in Maharashtra, it had intrigued me a bit. It may be punitive compared to all the other peaks elsewhere, (just 5400ft) but yes, for a regular-go-to-office-guy, it does sound exciting! This time, I had decided to go go along with a group named Trek Mates India, nice fun people they are, organizing treks in and around Mumbai and also big trips.Journey started at around 12 midnight. A bus full of guys and gals, singing their hearts out (although I don't like that stuff being an introvert, I like to keep to myself). After around 3-4 hours of bus travel, when did we end up at the base village, Bari, didn’t even realise it. Pitch black outside where the bus was parked. Acloudy night, even the moon was seen nowhere. A light drizzle had just started and I could feel the wind blown into my face as I just got down from the bus. Aah. This is gonna be awesome, I told myself.A 15 minutes walk in the darkness and we reached what looked like a rest house. Unloaded our bags, took only whatever we needed and got ready for the actual trek. Post breakfast and a formal introduction round, we started walking. Weather was just perfect, drizzle, wind, fog. The trek started. It was a walk from the village, walking through mud, wadingthrough water, again some mud, slippery, slimy, but yes, it was good. And that moment I stopped in my path. Just to take in the vista that lay in front of me.This trip was first published on Life at 18mp.
Just like in our bhimashankar trip, I could see the sunrise at my right side. It’s indeed quite a view, regardless of how many times you see. Tushar and Avinash zoomed away, the moment we entered the highway, and I stopped at the mulund fly over to take a photo of the sunrise. Later on, I met them at the Mulund check post, they were waiting for me there. I didnt stop, and seeing me, they also sped up. From there, up to the Bhiwandi bypass road, we covered in one stretch. It’s not much of a distance also, but the rising sun on my right side was getting more and more beautiful and brighter. When I crossed the IRB toll post, and reached the bridge, I could not control any longer. I stopped there to take a snap, and it indeed came as a very beautiful one. I had to cross the road to get a good shot. When I was coming back, I saw that Avinash and Tushar were chatting near the bikes, and Avinash was combing his hair. I wondered, he is going to put the helmet back in less than a minute, why is he doing this now??? But throughout the trip, my question remained unanswered, and Avinash kept doing this every time we stopped the bike.After the photo session, we started moving again. I was feeling hungry, and so do other two. I suggested that we should have breakfast from a hotel named 'Dhara's zest', where we had during our Trimbakeshwar trip. It’s the only good one I could remember in the nearly by area for nearly next 30 kms. Tushar and Avinash immediately accepted, since they have not been there before.On the way, at Anjur phata, and at Temghar, where the road splits into Bhiwandi and Kalyan, both Tushar and Avinash were a bit doubtful about which way to be taken. But I knew the way very well up to Bhandardara, so, we did not have to ask anyone. After some 15 km from Temghar, came our 'Dhara's zest'. We occupied a seat nearer to the window, and asked for menu. Avinash was the one who first took the menu, and then with a disgusting smile he handed it over to me and Tushar. We looked at it, only to find there is no item which costs less than Rs. 40. I was wondering, three months back, the rate was nearly 10 - 15 rupees less, is this the new year bonanza??? Anyway, we decided to have our breakfast from there, and I ordered for poha, and Tushar and Avinash went for upma.Forgot to tell you one more thing, this Avinash boy, came for the trip with just 20 rupees with him. I was wondering what does he think of himself??!! Luckily he didn’t get lost anywhere, good for him. After having breakfast, I suggested that we should buy some water bottles, because we got a really hectic trek to be done. But Tushar and Avinash were already having two bottles of water, with each of them, so, we didn’t have to pay for that.After having breakfast, we started moving without delay. Avinash and Tushar went a little ahead of me, and I used to get very much behind because I stopped at one or two locations for taking photos. Then I start moving after photography, and in around four to five minutes, I used to come across Avinash, who stopped his bike for taking a 'urinal' break. Then after passing urine, he would take his comb from his bag, look at the rear view mirror, and the start adjusting his hair, as if, he is there for some photo shoot. Anyway, in the entire journey, Avinash had 'a lot of urine' to pass, which indeed left me and Tushar confused!By around 10, we reached the beginning of Kasara ghats. Both of them were already waiting for me at a dhabba, and seems like we all three were sharing the common feeling, losing the sensitivity of one's ass. And indeed it was getting quite hot, which spiced up the feeling. We had a tea, and I and Avinash had some pakoda from there. Tushar was reluctant to have any oily food, since he had some throat infection.To begin a conversation, I asked them, if they had been to any ghats before. And both of their reply was 'no'. And then Avinash said, he had been to Mahabaleshwar before, via Pune, and claimed that he did it in the night. It was hard for me to believe, but anyway, I suggested them to ride safe, especially Tushar, since it's his first experience. Then came Avinash's suggestion that we should have done this trip in night, and started our trek in the morning. Then I replied, I could have done it alone, but can’t depend on you two to do this entire biking in night. Avinash wanted to counter it, but Tushar also supported me saying that he is too afraid to climb the ghats in night, and Avinash had no other option but to be quiet.After the tea, we started climbing the ghats. Kasara is just wonderful as always, with deep twists and excelent road. I have been through this ghat for some 5-6 times, all at different seasons. The only wish I had, and I still have is, if this ghat has been a bit more lengthier, I would have been able to enjoy biking to a greater extent. Right now, if you manage to go at a speed of 50 kmph, withought stopping, the ghat will get over in nearly 5-6 mins.At one location, where you can cross the railway tracks, I stopped, and since the other two were trailing, they too stopped. We managed to take a group photo from there, and later on, they zoomed away. I was still slow, stopped again at some one or two locations, and took some more photos. They were already waiting for me at the exit of the ghat, waiting for me to guide them through proper way. After some 20 km from the ghat's exit, came ghoti, and we took our right turn to Ghoti - Nagpur state highway, the same old route which we followed while we were going to Aurangabad. During our course, one Bulletteer overtook me, and he had all his baggage tied to his bike with rope, wearing a very nice biking jacket, and gloves, I thought he is the real tripper!After crossing some 4 km through the same way, we took our right turn to Bhandardara. Till now, the route was by heart for me, but now, I had to ask. I stopped immediately after the turn, and asked route to a native. He said Kalsubai is nearly 20 km from there.Time was almost 12.00, and my plan was to start the trek by 12.30. After some 10 km, Avinash stopped again, for a 'urinal' break. I wondered, from where does this fellow get so much of urine to pass?! During that time also, the renovation of roads were going on, and some half portion of the road was being renovated, which was started during my bhandardara trip. I told them that, this was the road by which we travelled during our bhandardara trip, that too at night 08.00 hrs. Then our 'baccha' Avinash interfered, and said, it's no big deal, I have climbed the entire mahabaleshwar ghat in night'. I didn’t say anything against him, and just replied, 'good for you'.When we started moving again, we started to cover the ghat to bhandardara. A small one, but it’s quite dangerous for a beginner. Avinash was leading, and at one hair pin, one Innova came against him. Poor fellow, seems like he was quite terrified, and had almost lost the control, and the bike went outside road. Luckily, he didn’t fall, and after the Innova crosses, he started again. I was right behind him, and could see the entire thing, and seeing his reaction, I thought, has he really covered that mahabaleshar thing or is it something else???We went for nearly 22 kms, and since I stopped at two locations again to take photos, I was lagging behind. I was moving steadily, and then I found both of them are coming back, towards me. Immediately I knew that we took the wrong way, or went much farther from where we should have stopped. I took a u turn, and followed them. The village road to Kalsubai was nearly 4 km behind us, and we missed it, actually, anyone would have missed it, not just us, because there was no noticeable road, but just a small tarred passage. The only thing which would make it notice is that, the big entrance board kept at its beginning, but that was towards only one side, so when we were moving towards bhandardara, we missed it.We took the village road, and were moving at our normal speed, but it was indeed quite high for that small way. I was in the middle with Avinash leading. Suddenly from nowhere, a small kid came in front of his bike, he very much applied brake, but the bike didn’t stop immediately due to its momentum, and he turned left so as to avoid the kid. The kid then again, came to his left, right in front of his bike. He turned right, and the kid to right. At this, the bikes weight came onto his right hand, which has already gone through a 'break' history once, nearly 5 months ago. He had no other option but to let it go, by that time, I reached near him, parked my bike, and went to him, and asked him to drop his bike slowly. He dropped it, without causing any damage to the bike. I helped him to lift it again, and we checked if the kid is alright. All I could find was, some of the native had scolded him very badly, and he went to his home crying very heavily. We were lucky, that both the kid and the bike, and Avinash were safe.Our destination was hardly a km from the accident spot. We placed our bikes at a dhabba, which claimed to be the parking lot. We ordered for food also from there, so that they can keep it ready when we come down.The beginning spot of Kalsubai was a plain village. We had to cross the village to start our trekking. Since two of our bottles were empty by that time, we got the same filled from a house in the village itself, on our way. The dhabba fellow offered us the aid of a guide at a cost of Rs. 200, but I turned it down. We had plenty of time and it was only 12.35. We could find the way by ourselves.Forgot to mention one thing here, Avinash wanted to have a pair of shoes very badly for trekking. A week before our trip, we had been to some shops, trying to find some shoes for him. But he is not ready to pay for anything and wanted a shoe at a range of Rs.400 - 500. I told him that he won’t be getting any, but only thing he did was to waste my time also. Now that he couldn’t find one, I had an old spare shoe, which I bought in college. I told him he could use it, if he wanted to. The day before the trek, he came to my home, and he liked my shoe and took it. So, when we started our journey, I and Tushar were expecting him to wear that shoe, but he came out with sandals. I asked him why, and he replied he would wear it when we do the actual trekking.So, now the actual trekking started, we asked him, when he is going to wear the shoes. He said, after we climb a bit more height. Then we started throwing jokes at him, and the best was, Tushar said, after some time, he will wear the shoes on his hands, so as to get more grip!When we started, our speed was indeed high. We could cover a lot of distance in a short time, and it was not so steep also. But as we proceeded, the steepness was increasing and we were getting tired. Mathematically speaking, if you draw a graph of energy against time, then the curve would be an asymptote to the time axis. Avinash was taking continuous breaks, and Tushar and I had to wait for him many times. But still, the trek was much easier compared to Ratangad, or at least that what I still feel.After every 15-20 mins of climbing, we used to take a break of 5 mins, or put it in other words, we had to take a break of 5 mins. In between, there were people who were selling lemon juices, so as to quench your thirst, and to charge you up. Throughout the trek, Avinash was our best time pass, and me and Tushar stripped him to the maximum, that at one point, he straight up ran away from us. For the next one hour, he didn’t talk to us, and was moving very lonely. He was not walking with us but either behind or in the front. But of course, being emotional is not something which was going to work on us, and I wondered, even after having a life at engineering college for four year, his ego hasn’t come down....what a pity.....we both were and are damn sure he is going to come across much worse situation in BPCL, if he continues like this.After an hour and half's trekking, we came to an open ground, which could be considered as a halfway to the top. Tushar was almost done and sat on the ground, and said he can move no more. I too was in the same condition, but the beauty was that, Avinash just stopped for a minute or not, and afterwards, went to a corner away from us, and then sat there. What a boy, we thought. After some 15 minutes, we started moving again. And after some five minutes, we came across a boy who was selling this lemon water. I wanted to have it, and when I asked Avinash, he said he also needs one. So, we ordered for two. The boy prepared it and gave us, not the lemon water, but just sugar water. Also, he hasn’t cleaned the glass properly, so there were traces of leaves, and small sticks in the water. I filtered them, and drank it, and asked the boy to be more proper next time, while Avinash, scolded the boy, seems like he vented out his entire anger against us onto that boy, and threw the water away, and again scolded the boy. Woah! That was too much, he could have done it to us, but that small boy, and his face became so white, when I looked again.Well, I wanted to console that boy, but that would not have helped him much. We walked again, and this time, we have to climb even a steeper way. The way was becoming almost vertical, and our trekking was getting the shape of rock climbing. Many times, we had to use both of hands also for the same purpose, and many times, the way was so slippery that finding balance was difficult for us. Anyway, after an hour long trekking again, we came to such a position that we could see the peak.We again took some rest there, and there was a well in that area. We washed our face and hands, and needless to say, the water was so cool and refreshing, it indeed boosts our energy to many folds. We also filled a bottle with that water, and it was almost quite clear. I wanted to upload that photo, but the pose gave by my friend Avinash was so embarrassing that it was like he stepped into a pit full of shit.After half an hour trekking more, we reached the top...top of Maharashtra....but we felt like top of the world...the view from there was splendid...we could see entire bhandardara, arthur lake, and the dam, and a lot more other places, which we didn’t know the name. I hope I must have seen ratangad also from there, but I couldn't identify it. There is a small mandir of Goddess Kalsubai on the hill top. Also, there was a chain game in there. The chain, is metallic, and is something like 30 meter long. You throw it downward, with one end tied on to the hill top. Then you have to pull it back, in one stretch. Not so tough, since me and Avinash could do it very easily. Also, at the hill top, Avinash met his old 'tiger', the doggie which he left at raigad fort. (The dog was indeed different, but Avinash knows only one name for every dog and bitch he sees). I told him not to entertain the dog so much, because he something goes wrong, we were not even in a position to run. We will have to jump, but to where, and who will dare to?Fortunately, nothing went wrong, and the dog was there with us till we reached the bottom. After spending some half an hour on the top, by 15.45, we started our way back to the bottom. Now we are already tired, we felt like every step we are taking, is a big hit to the head. Our legs were shaking and have lost the capacity to absorb shocks. We were really feeling that we were taking more time to get down, than to climb up. Once I fell, my feet slipped at the slop, and twice Avinash fell. Tushar was still standing tall, and was the toughest among us.When we reached down, we moved to the parking lot, and asked the dhabbawala for the food which we ordered. He said that non-veg will take some time, since it has not been prepared yet. So, we all three had veg lunch only, at 17.30 hrs. The food was not so good, but not so bad, but it was highly rich in chillies, and Tushar was burning. He drank nearly two glasses of water. Later on we decided to have a slice from there, but they had some local brand. Upon drinking it, it tasted like the have crushed the mango bite candy and dissolved it in water to make a mango drink...!!!Well, the overall food and parking cost was Rs.200, quite high for the kind of food we had, I would say. Since it was already about to be six, and we had nearly 160 km to cover, we didn't delay ourselves much.On the way from top itself, Avinash was saying, he feels a volcano is getting developed in his stomach, and need to attend the call. We both told him to get the job done in the open, and we still had nearly two bottle of water to spare. But he was not ready. He wanted a proper toilet. So, when we started our bikes, he said, wherever we stop to fill petrol, he would go for toilet. Because in highways, petrol pumps indeed have such facilities. And mine was about to get empty, but I was waiting it to become in reserve so that I can calculate the mileage.When we started, I was trailing both of them, as it was getting dark. And in no time, Avinash very much zoomed away. As I already said, Tushar didn't want to cross the ghats in night, but when we reached Kasara, it was already night and I was right behind him. The way he was overtaking other vehicles was indeed very dangerous, he was not overtaking through right side, but through left side. And when he was trying to do it on right side, he was getting very slow to turn, that the vehicles behind him was creating a confusion for him. I could the this entire play right in front of me, so, I had no other option but to keep trailing him till the ghat ends. It seemed like he was very much afraid to travel in ghat, because his speed was in 30s, and after some two three minutes, we met Avinash also, whose speed was even less. I guess they were coming in 3rd gear, for so slow was their speed. Anyway, the point is, they made it safely, even if it’s their skill or for the skill of other vehicle drivers.After crossing the ghat, I found a good HP petrol pump, and stopped there, so that Avinash can release the pressure. When I went to the pump, he asked, 'why are you going there', and I said' for your job', and he was again asking, 'Don’t you need to fill petrol?', and I said 'No, I am still in main'. He again asked, 'If you don’t need to fill petrol, why have you stopped here?’ And now I got angry, I asked him, 'Do you need to go to toilet, or not?’ And he had to say 'Yes', because that was his inner condition. Even at this stage, he was shying to go to the petrol pump personnel and ask where the toilet is. I had to do it for him...what a boy! And after getting his job done, he said he had a great relief, of course, it happens to everyone, isn’t it? But before we started from there, he also said, 'We did a very good job while coming down the ghat'. I didn’t say anything, but just gave a very sarcastic smile.Afterwards, within a km from there, my petrol tank got empty, and I had to put it in reserve. I calculated the mileage, and was happy to see that I got nearly 42 kmpl, the one which is claimed by company itself, I got it even after two years. I went on for another 60 more kilometer in reserve, and found another HP pump, and topped up my tank. Tushar and Avinash zoomed away again, seems like they have grown up in the entire 3 hour journey, and I reduced my speed further to 50 kmph, since I didn’t have to keep up with anyone now.We had a plan of having dinner at BTC, at Sanpada, one of my favourite, but later on, I thought, I would skip my food for something light. I reached home at around 22.00 hrs, and I guess Avinash and Tushar must have reached almost at the same time.That was the end to the greatest trekking I ever had, but still, if someone ask me to rate which is tougher, I would say first is Ratangad, and second goes to Kalsubai, and Daualatabad fort for the third place, provided you do it in the month of April.The more places I see, the more I want to see. It’s always like that I guess, not just for me, but for everyone.
The Journey Day 1 (10th July 2015) The journey actually began at home, packing necessities for the upcoming trek. Wind-cheaters as it was monsoons, home made food, ready to eat food, snacks, biscuits and whatever came to our mind as it was our first trek and the excitement was endless. We all left our home around 10pm and the futher action was to gather at Thane railway station to board the Mahanagari Express(11093) which was to arrive there at 00:48hrs. Then we met at Thane railway station and introduced ourselves to each other except Vaibhav who knew all from both ends and we waited for train... Day 2 (11th July 2015) The train arrived on time, we boarded the train and managed seats in general compartment. As it was a short journey of about 100kms and to save money we preferred general section. Kalsubai peak falls on the border of Igatpuri under Ahmednagar district, so the nearest railway station was Igatpuri railway station and hence we concluded to go through Igatpuri for Kalsubai peak. Kalyan station passed and after little sturggle in general compartment as the time passed we reached Igatpuri station at around 03:00hrs in the morning.
Kalsubai is the highest peak of the Sahyadris in Maharashtra with an elevation of 1,646 mt & is located in Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra. It was a beautiful Saturday morning that I set out on my first trekking adventure. It was a few years back, but it was like tasting blood & the mountains keep calling me ever since. This was a monsoon trek & the weather was just awesome with lush green bushes everywhere. The minute I boarded a train before dawn I knew I was heading for an amazing adventure. Once we started, the path was mesmerizing with flowing streams & a beautiful landscape around us. Rains lashed us every now & then which seemed like a breath of fresh air.After a 6 hrs hike uphill, we reached the Kalsubai peak. I have never felt that kind of happiness before. Cold breeze, standing on top of a mountain peak and looking down at the valley beneath us – It was pure bliss & a moment of nirvana for me.
Kalsubai Trek is up in the bucket list of many. You can start the trek from Bari village and it would take a little more than 4 hours to reach the top. The amazing trek to the Sayadri's Mt Kalsubai at the height of 5,400 ft can be your chance to conquer the highest peak of Maharashtra.Click here to read more on Night trek to Kalsubai
There were many stories of why the peak is named as Kalsubai. The most popular one was that the Kalsubai was a housemaid who resided in a nearby village village called Indore (not the Indore city in Madhya Pradesh). She had suddenly disappeared near the mountain while trying to escape employer's torment. And it was believed that she resided at the peak and the locals believe that there are her footsteps on the path enroute to the peak.
Though it is the highest peak in Maharashtra, locals trek this peak quite often to offer prayers at the temple of local deity at the top. The place is commercialized with tiny shops offering nimbu-pani, vada pav and maggi all the way.For more details you can check here
Trek to Bhimashankar and you earmark your endurance levels. Meditate under the waterfall of Gupt Bhimashankar. Summit Mount Kalsubai and you can brag about conquering the highest peak of Maharashtra.
-KALSUBAI -situated in Maharastra it is called "Everest of Sahaydri". This trek gives view of rocky terrain, Kalsubai temple, Backwaters of Bhandardara, range forts such as Aundha, Ramasej, Kulauq and more. Trekking is for a day and arranged from Pune, Mumbai. The best time to trek is from June to Decmber. ESSENTIALS TO CARRY-Torch-Plastic bags to cover the rain hitting the bag-Energy powders. Trekking is also back packing and exploring. Many a times travelling gives a new direction to our soul. India a land of bountiful nature makes trekking rejuvenating and peaceful.
A lovely evening,tall mountains in the background,lush greenery all around,bright sunshine,an amazing rainbow and the hand of a beautiful girl inur hand,isnt it a very romantic setting,not to be when u r finishing a tedious trek.Yes a trek it was toKalsubai(tallest peak in Maharashtra).It all started when I got a suggestion from one of our expected group members.Unfortunately she couldn't make it to the trek but we pay her tribute for it as the trek was not on our original list.So we started on 25th Sept night at about 9'o clock.Actually we were supposed to have dinner.But then there was high disinterest shown from a generally committed friend.I managed to sneak into a restaurant and hv some rice.I wasant tht hungry but had to pass time.I also managed to force my friend to grab a bite.Meanwhile a guy came there searching for us.He was a friend of one of our friend.Well if I go like this I myself may get confused.So d names,me S,my friend K,our friend D,her friend C and our other 2 frnds P and V.It was K's plan to meet at Vashi at around 9 and hv dinner.Nyways d post is ntbout d dinner.Miss D who was our trek leader reached d scene at about 10.Poor C had been w8ting for us since 8-8 30.I was although not fascinated by d nos was happy enuf that at least 6 of us made it.We moved 2 Thane at bout 11.We had a train 2 Kasara which was around midnite from Thane .We had a lot of fun in d train.We entertained ourselves & a few others by playing cards.Time passed by a whisker and we reached Kasara by 2 30 a m.We started searching for any vehicle that would take us 2 Bari.We got 1.But rate was equivalent 2 a return flight.The plan was immediately dropped.D suggested we go further to Igatpuri whr there was more probability of getting a vehicle.We hopped on to a train in an illegal way.We dint hv ny other option.We reached thr by 3 30 and walked our way down an isolated lane which would hv other wise been a busy 1 had we gone thr some other time of d day.We spent some time in a small temple besides d bus depot.The temptation for playing cards was resisted by us as we were in d temple.We got d bus by some 5 30 and were on our way to Bari.We took a nap on d way and when we woke up we saw the picturesque scene with the sun coming out of d mountains in a hazy setting.We were enthralled by the site.We reached Bari by about 7 and got the 1st site of our Destination.It was high as we had imagined and thought would be tough enough to climb .It wasant .We set out for the trek grabbing a quick bite at some poha laden with worms and of course a sip of lemon tea.The trek was easy but tedious.We had climbed some 500 ft when d first signs of fatigue emerged and it was no other miss K.Hands on waist she stood as if there was nothing else left in this world.I had expected this to happen,although not so early.With a look of discontent I inquired whether evrything was f9.With a slight grim on her face she said she s f9.I was concerned about reaching d top.We moved on.It was father than we thought.Meanwhile a cloud on the opposite side caused an illusion that made us believe it was a higher mountain than d 1 which we were climbing.We got over it and continued.Soon we reached the 1st man made intervention to the place,a ladder.We all climbed it with ease.Me and K were soon left behind by the others as we were quite slow.It was evident she was struggling.To be very frank evn I was struggling after d long hectic week,but it was not as evident from my body language as it was from her.But even after all this her determination to reach the top did not shatter 1 bit.Hats off for that.I have seen so may people give up but she didn't and I thought it was a great quality to possess.Nyways moving fwd we reached a well from where the top was visible.It was like a pit stop.By this time the others had already reached d top.I dished out some water and splashed it on my brow.It was cool and refreshed me to carry us both furhur,some 200 ft 2 go.Our fatigue was overcome by our jubilation to reach the top.Finally she made it despite of the hitches,we made it.I shouted a cry of joy.Yes we were there,top of Maharashtra.I paid a tribute to d 1 who gave this idea and regrets for all those who couldn't make it to such a wonderful place.We sat together in peace for some time observing the enchanting view of the surroundings.After having a brief photo shoot we opened our lunch boxes.We had cumulatively brought at least twice the amount of food we would hvrequired.Nyways we made our best efforts to finish as much as we can,but all our efforts were futile.The sun was already on our head by then.We wanted to rest but there was no place to relax under shade.So we decided to move down.Our way back was a long 1 but we were confident we would make it preety soon.So we made a move.It was decided K would lead us followed by the others,but d order soon reversed.And by the time we approached the well on d way they were already thru to the resting place.We reached d cool shady place some 10-15 mins later thn they did,and hardly got to rest as P was pushing us all d way.I was a bit jittery,may be nt as much as K but was still feeling d heat.I almost slipped twice-thrice.To make things worse a cloud hovered above us for about a while and then finally poured.We were unprepared for d sudden downpour.I quickly put my mobile and cam in d plastic bag to avoid them from getting wet.But d shower stopped as soon as I put it in my bag.And to our surprise we saw a stunning view.There was a rainbow right across d hills in front of us.It was as clear as we used to draw in our childhood days.It was an enchanting site 1 which I would nt forget throughout my life.It gave us a puff of energy to move fwd.We reached d base again by about 5 pm and rested for sum time.We caught a bus to Kasara and a train back to Mumbai.Yet another incredible trek.#trekincredible#feelincredible
After weeks of empty promises, waiting for us to actually decide on a place. One night, the gods of free time shed their blessings on us and all of us were free on the same day. So the night before we call it, me along with my roommates and finally decide to go to Kalsubai. We contacted ShadyTents for tents, which later we changed to sleeping bags thanks to our budget. We contacted a few more friends for info and also added to the travelling party. At that time we didn't realize that since so many ideas were thrown around, everybody was working on a different frequency. Thanks to which each of us had some interesting revelations, during the trip.Being the Kings of Thrift, all of us went in search of bike rentals. A friend had informed us that there was a better place to hire than online. So taking his word we sent one guy to pick the sleeping bags up, while we went in search of bike rentals. On reaching the spot we realized that the only bikes to be seen were either being repaired or had been dismantled. There was a slight problem on the info that we had received. The person had last used the services 5 years ago. When we reached the spot all we found was automobile repair shops. Pissed at having traveled extra for naught, we then headed for our friend's place, to search online once again. One of his roommates owned a car, we figured it would be convenient if we could borrow it. We convinced him so well, that he and a guy who just happened to be there, also decided to tag along. We were glad at least one problem was sorted out, despite having an extra person. On being asked the location, we told him we'd be relying on google maps.By the time all of this was set including the bags being brought, it was 8 o'clock. We had a late start because we tend to wake up between 12:00 pm to 02:00 pm. We decided that we would have dinner en route. We didn't realize till a while before our trip that there were 6 reasonably built and tall guys that are going to be fit into one Brio. It's ok for small journeys, but when you are taking a 3hr trip excluding the time spent in Mumbai traffic, you would forget what moving your legs felt like. We stopped at a dhaba to eat dinner at 12 o'clock. We sat and we stretched to check whether everything was still in place. The happiness derived from the stretch, smoke break and the trip made us eat a lot. The problem with that was that we still had 2hrs of that journey left. We stuffed ourselves back in the car filled with cigarette smoke, twisted limbs, loud music, full bellies and a trek to look forward to.On finally reaching the destination, at 2 o'clock in the morning. We parked the car outside something that looked like a village. Fortunately for us, some villagers were awake enjoying their mid night tobacco. Not knowing where we were exactly, we asked them about the trek and they were kind enough to lead us till the starting point. Right there and then it suddenly struck the guy with the car that we would be going for a proper mid night trek. The fact that many ideas were passed around, he had no idea what the actual one was. He was under the impression that it would be an outing, in some place high up in the hills. Then he anchored saying that he wasn't expecting this, so we left him and the guy that tagged along, over there with a sleeping bag. Later on our way down we were informed that early in the morning he was woken up affectionately by a stray dog.We started our journey up, armed with 2 water bottles, the flashlight in our cells and 2 sleeping bags. The path seemed incredibly easy initially, a bit too easy. The path was wide and not very steep. Only later we realized that we were not climbing a peak, but had accidentally strayed on to someones field. We walked back to the start and looked for something to guide us, when we noticed one incandescent bulb at some height. Hoping that was at the top of the right peak, we started our march to the top again, towards our North Star. Under the assumption that it would be a fairly easy trek and that we would be riding bike I had worn jeans and boots to the trip. I was harshly reminded how wrong I was. I barely had any grip, I was uncomfortable and since we had aimed to reach the top by sunrise the smoke breaks weren't that often. I had always believed that solo trips are better than group trips, that night I was glad to be wrong. One shouldn't compare the two as they are like apples and oranges, each with their own charm. I was lagging behind, but was encouraged to keep climbing and not stop. It brought me to a point that when they would take breaks to take pictures or a have a smoke. I would still be climbing slowly but steadily, in spite of my cell losing its charge and I was unable to see clearly till my eyes adjusted. Towards three fourths of the distance we had missed the sunrise. Only then were we ably to see how far had we climbed, through old and broken ladders and also by how much had we missed the actual trail. Certain people having spent the night there, had started early in the morning and were already catching up to us. One villager, bringing lemonade had overtaken us having started in the morning. Towards the end with only one ladder separating me from my goal. I finally decided to take a break. Some of my friends had opted to go another way to take pictures. I enjoyed the view of what I had accomplished with a friend of mine, both of us exhausted yet happy . The water was over but we had found an old well which didn't seem like it was used for ages. We debated with ourselves whether our thirst outweighed our health. The break would have lasted longer had not a girl suddenly walked up to us. My friend having his pride continued his march, while I being a true feminist and too tired walked right after her.The top was spectacular, you could see all the hills surrounding the peak completing the horizon. The cold blast of the wind was refreshing, and made us want to nap beside the temple. We soon gave up on that plan as it was too windy. Plus its rather inconvenient to nap while tourists are roaming around you. Under the morning sun we were finally able to see our last and final mistake. We had come in the wrong season and everything around was dry but still beautiful. We sat on a ledge slightly below the temple to rest, smoke and nap away from the crowd starting to gather. After having some lemonade from a local, that charged it depending on the height he sold it from, we began our descent. The heat in the morning made it even more uncomfortable than the ascent. Too tired to care anymore I slid almost all the way down, occasionally running on top of rocks unable to stop. My legs were shaky and I was drenched it sweat. Once at the bottom all my friends and I looked forward to the trip back just for the AC in the car and so we headed home. In a much quieter way than we had started owing to the fact that most of us had fallen asleep. It was humbling to know that it was of a moderate difficulty must'v been my smokers stamina that made it a pain.An impromptu journey, with its fair share of problems due to lack of planning. I'm still fond of that trip, as all the problem we had faced added a certain charm to it, under the starry night. Without it, it would have probably been as monotonous, as the lives we were taking a break from.
#SwipeRightToTravel It was one crazy night when I and my friend decided to trek Kalsubai mountain and accordingly we started at 1:35 AM from Kalyan. We reached Kasara at around 3:00 AM and to my surprise, I met one of my CRISIL colleague,Mr. Kanan Moopnar from Rating Administration Team, Mumbai Crisil House who was on his way to Nashik with one of his friend. Both of us exchanged greetings and then parted ways for our individual journey.At Kasara station, first roadblock was negotiating with the cab driver for travelling to Bari Village(The base village for Kalsubai trek) and none of them agreed to take us. So, the first step of adventure began by spending 5 hours at Kasara station which was chilling but exciting. Finally, after enquiring from local people in the morning, we boarded first ST Busat 7:00 AM and travelled for around 1.5 hours before reaching Bari village.We checked into Hotel Kalsubai owned by Mr Kundalik just to make sure that we had a place for dinner and sleeping after returning from the trek. We barged into the room, dumped the stuff not required and started our journey to Kalsubai at around 10:45 AM.We started ascending Mt. Kalsubai at around 10:45 AM and it took around 4 hrs to reach the top including sufficient pit stops. There are lots of stalls in between where the villagers selllemon juice, wafers, tea, biscuits, etc. We chatted with most of the vendors and asked them about their business, what challenges they faced while doing it, and how much income does their business generate. We were amazed with the gesture received and satisfaction they had by doing/ earning whatever they can. We reached the summit at around 3:00 PM and it was a great feeling as we knew that we had ascended the highest peak in Maharashtra which is also called “Everest of Maharashtra”.There is a temple also at the summit (Kalsubai Temple)and according to the locals it is named after the lady Kalsu who came to that area in search for work.After working forsometime her employer then tried to harass her by forcing her to get married to someone because of which she fled to Bari Village and the peak got this name. From the top we saw backwaters of Bhandardara Dam, Mount Ratangadh and beautiful scenery of Sahyadri range.After spending about an hour at the top of Maharashtra, we started descending at around 4:00 PM and reached the base village by 7:00 PM. We celebrated Diwali with village children,fired up some crackers and had a nice dinner. The night grew pretty cold so we lit a bonfire and enjoyed chatting with locals over there along with the owner of the hotel.Next day, we got up all tired but satisfied and had our breakfast. At around 12:00 noon weleftthe hotel for Mumbai. We decided to make our journey more exciting and hence avoided bus and shared cabs. We boarded a goods carrier rickshaw till Ghoti Village and then boarded a Truck for reaching Asangaon Railway Station. Thereafter, we boarded the local from Asangaon and reached Kalyan at 4 PM in the evening.Itwas great place to Trek as well as to stay overnight and the best part was the cool weather, which remains the same throughout the year, and mind you “No Mosquitoes At All”.Feel free to call me on 09867921016 in case you need any more information related to Kalsubai Trek.Happy Trekking!!
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First Sunrise of 2016 from Top of Maharashtra !!कळसुबाई शिखर(ता . अकोले, जि . अहमदनगर )"अरे वैभव , बरं झालं फोन केलास ; मी करणारच होतो 31st चा काय plan आहे? कळसुबाई ला येशील का?" - सौरभ .साल २०१६ या नवीन वर्षा च स्वागत - आणि Mumbai Travellers ची 4th Anniversary, असा दुहेरी योग.Finally - ऑफिस मध्ये शिफ्ट वगरे सगळा manage करून सौरभ ला होकार कळवला. आता नवीन वर्षाच्या पाहिल्या ब्राम्हमुहुर्ता नंतर होणाऱ्या नारायणाच्या दर्शनाचे वेध लागले होते.कळसुबाई! … ५४०७ फुट (१६४६ मीटर ) उंच असलेलं, हे महाराष्ट्रातील अत्युच शिखर, ईगतपुरी - भंडारदरा या मार्गावर असलेल्या 'बारी' या गावाजवळ आहे.१० नाही, २० नाही तर आम्ही तब्बल १०६ लोकांनी 31st च्या रात्री हा महाकाय सर केला आणि नवीन वर्षाच्या पहिल्या दिवशी सुर्य - नारायणाच्या आगमनाचे दर्शन घेतले.अर्थातच पुर्व नियोजनासाठी सौरभ आणि जोगी जी यांचा आधीच बारीला मुक्काम होता, आणि साहजिकच इकडील सर्व व्यवस्थेचा भार हा करीष्मा आणि मयूर शिंदे ऊर्फ मामा यांच्या खांद्यावर होता. आज पर्यंत फक्त Phone आणि mails वर communication झालेल्या करीष्मा आणि जोगी यांना मी प्रथमच भेटणार होतो, त्यामुळे ती एक आगळी - वेगळी उत्सुकता माझ्या मनात रमत होती.तर …. ३१ तारखेला संध्याकाळी जवळपास आम्हा १०० लोकांचा लवाजमा कसाऱ्या हून बारी कडे रवाना झाला.बरोबर ५ वर्षा पुर्वी काही स्वप्न उराशी बाळगून Mumbai Travellers या कंपनी चा उदय झाला आणि 31st - Night Trek to Kalsubai & First Sun Rise of New Year from top of Maharashtara! अशी प्रथा च ३१-डीसेंबर २०११ पासून सुरु झाली. पुढे जाऊन या प्रथेच परंपरेत नक्की रुपांतर होईल या बद्दल शंकाच नाही.'विराज खोरजुवेकर ' एक आगळ - वेगळं नैसर्गिक व्यक्तिमत्व, या माणसा मुळेच माझी आणि Mumbai Travellers ची ओळख झाली. गेल्या तीन - साडेतीन वर्षात MT बरोबर अनेक इवेन्ट स झाल्या. अगदी पाहिल्या दिवसा पासुन इथे परकं असं कधी वाटलंच नाही. पुढे याच प्रवासात - वैभव खैरे , कौस्तुभ सावंत , किरण माळवी आणि काही भन्नाट Travellers यांच्याशी ओळख आणि मैत्री झाली.कळसु आई चा आशीर्वाद आणि मुंबईकरांच भरभरून प्रेम लाभलेल्या Mumbai Travellers ला पुढील वाटचाली साठी - आम्हा पुणेकारांच्या भरभरून शुभेच्छा ! :-)शेवटची Batch घेऊन मी बारी ला पोहोचलो. आमच्या आधी आलेली मंडळी विश्राम घेऊन जेवणात मग्न झाली होती. आम्हीही मग जेवणं आटोपली.… गोरक्षच्या घरास आज जणू काही सोहळ्याचे स्वरुप प्राप्त झाले होते… घटीका जवळ आली होती …. count down begin … आणि बरोबर १२ च्या ठोक्याला १०६ travellers चा एकच निनाद … "Haaapppy New Year !!!" … मग काय … Crazy introduction round …. Cake cutting …. शुभेच्छांची देवाणघेवाण … एक आनंदाई वातावरण .… 'इलाही … मेरा जी आये -आये … " या travellers song ने आम्ही कार्यक्रमाची सांगता केली व इंदोरे गावाकडून येणाऱ्या नवीन मार्गाने आम्ही Trekking ला सुरवात केली .आमच्या पैकी बऱ्याच मंडळींचा हा त्यांच्या आयुष्यातील पहिलाच ट्रेक होता - 'First Trek आणि महाराष्ट्राचा Everest' असा किताब त्यांना बहाल करुन …. दत्ता , अमोल कदम … यांच्या टीम ने छेडलेल्या मराठी गाण्यांच्या मैफिलीत आम्ही आगेकुच करत होतो.किर्र - अंधार … डोंगराच्या कातळावरून होणारा शिस्तबद्ध ट्रेक आणि प्रत्येकाच्या हातातील टॉर्च या सर्वांच्या संयोगामुळे झालेल्या रांगत्या दीपमाळेच विलोभनीय दृष्य ! :-) … वा … वाह … क्या बात !!पहिल्या थांब्यावर सौरभ ने सांगीतलेली कळसुबाई ची कथा कानात साठवून आमची पाऊले पुन्हा शिखराच्या दिशेने झपझप चालू लागली. आकाशातील जळ्मटं हळू-हळू वीरत होती आणि बोचरी थंडी अंगाला आता वाऱ्याच्या झुळकेने शहारे आणत होती.नजर उंचावली … आगदी थोड्या अंतरावर पिवळ्या , लाल , पांढऱ्या रंगाने रंगवलेलं लहानश्या शिखरावरील कळसू आई च छोटंसं देऊळ, ब्रह्म-मुहूर्तावर भास्कराने उधळलेल्या केशरी भंडाऱ्यात उजळून निघालं होतं . याच कळसू आई च्या आशीर्वादाने नवीन वर्षाच्या पहिल्या सूर्योदयाच्या दर्शनाचा योग सिद्ध झाला होता.सन १८६० मध्ये Arch DiCken Gale या इंग्रजाने भर रात्री कळसुबाई शिखर सर करून सूर्योदय पहिला होता आणि इथल्या अचाट नैसर्गिक सौंदर्याने त्याचं भान हरपलं होतं आणि म्हणूनच या पट्ठ्या ने कळसुबाई चा उल्लेख - 'King of Deccan Hills' असा केला असावा.आदिदेव ! नमस्तुभ्यं प्रसीद मम भास्कर ।दिवाकर ! नमस्तुभ्यं प्रभाकर नमोस्तुते ।अशी मनोमन प्रार्थना करून रविराजांच दर्शन घेतलं! या अभुतपुर्व दर्शनाने, रात्राभराचे जागरण आणि ट्रेक यामुळे आलेला शीण कुठच्या-कुठ पळून गेला.शिखरावर चढुन गेल्यावर शिखरमाथा आगदीच लहान असल्याचं लक्षात येतं, डावीकडे जेमतेम १०' X ८' आकारच दगडी बांधनीच कळसुबाईच मंदिर आहे. दरवाजा अगदीच कमी उंचीचा असुन देवळात जाताना बसुनच जावं लागतं, देवीची शेंदरी मूर्ती साडेतीन फुट उंचीची आहे. मंदिराला घुमटाकार कळस असुन या गाभाऱ्यात एक लाकडी काठी आहे, नवस फेडण्यासाठी म्हणून लावलेले लाल वस्त्रांचे तुकडे आणि हिरव्या बांगड्या या काठीला लटकवलेल्या दिसतात. मंदिरासमोर ध्वज लावण्याचा ओटा आहे. शिखरावरून चहुबाजुंचे नैसर्गिक सौंदर्य मनाला वेड लावुन जाते.उत्तरेस नाशिक परिसरातील - रामशेज, डेहेर यांच्या मागोमाग सप्तशृंगी, मार्कांड्या, धोडप, चांदवड … तसेच हरिहरगड, ब्रम्हगिरी, अंजनेरी, घरगड व त्रिंगल वाडी या रांगा दिसतात. उत्तर-पुर्व दिशेस - बितनगड, औंढा, विश्रामगड (पट्टा), कवणी. दक्षिणेला - रतनगड, अलंग-मदन-कुलंग आणि दक्षिण-पश्चिमेस घनचक्कर व हरिश्चंद्रगड नजरेने टिपता येतात.भंडारदरा आणि घाटघर धरणाचे back water शिखरावरून न्याहाळताना जणू काही आपण Google Map scroll करत आहोत असा भास होतो.शिखराच्या पायथ्याशी एक विहीर आहे आणि पाणी काढण्यासाठी एक पोहरा देखील आहे. ईथेच आम्ही आमच्या डोई -खांद्या वरचं ओझं हलकं केलं आणि म्यागी व चहा वर ताव मारला. :-) … आत्माराम शांत !!आता शिडी च्या मार्गाने आमचा परतीचा प्रवास सुरु झाला होता.खाली दृष्टी जाताच नजर फिरेल अशा एका अरुंद घाळीवर तब्बल १८० पायऱ्यांचा लांबलचक शिडी चा टप्पा पार पडला होता. आता उजवीकडे वळसा घेऊन खाली जाणारा हा टप्पा अमंल कठिण होता. पुढे गेल्यावर अजुन एक १२-१५ फुटांचा शिडी चा मार्ग देखील पार पडला. कळसुबाईच पायथ्या नजिकच मंदिर अजुन अर्धा तास लांबणीवर होतं. पावलं आता जड भासु लागली होती, वेग सुद्धा बऱ्यापैकी मंदावला होता. दजर-दरमजल करत मंदिरा जवळ पोहोचलो.मंदिर एकदम ऐसपैस, आवारात भला मोठा पिंपळ वृक्षं असुन बसण्यासाठी मोठा पार आहे. अजुनही काही बडे वृक्ष या आवारात आहेत. इथेच थोडा वेळ विसावलो. वाऱ्याची झुळूक आता हवी -हवीशी वाटत होती, अंगावरच स्वेटर तर केव्हाच दूर झाल होतं.गोरक्षच घर ! दोन्ही खोल्यांमध्ये जेवणाच्या पंक्ती बसल्या होत्या, जेवणं उरकत होती. कसाऱ्याला जाण्यासाठी आमच्या गाड्या आधिच येऊन उभ्या ठाकल्या होत्या. १०-१० च्या ब्याचने सर्वांचा निरोप घेत आणि … "मिलते है यार… फिर किसी ट्रेक पे । " असं एकमेकांना वचन देऊन प्रत्येक जण मार्गस्थ होत होता.आठवणीचं गाठोड घेऊन मी ही निघालो.… गाठोडं कसलं शिदोरीच म्हणावी लागेल!या संपूर्ण प्रवासात… सौरभ, मामा, जोगी, करिश्मा, अर्जुन पाजी, देवेंद्र, दत्ता, अमोल, स्वप्ना, हिमालय, वर्षा, शुभम, चिन्मय, हर्षित कहि MBA व CA चे विध्यार्थी यांच्या बरोबर झालेली चर्चा, विचारांची व अनुभवांची देवाणघेवाण … काहि विनोदी क्षण, जोगी च झालेलं आधार कार्ड :p यांना उजाळा देत होतो….परंतु … Event Successful झाल्याचा सौरभच्या डोळ्यातील आनंद व राम-पहाऱ्यातलं प्रभाकरच रूप मात्र नजरे समोर अजुन सुद्धा तसंच आहे.“We can only appreciate the miracle of a Sunrise if we’ve waited in the darkness.”#mumbaitravellers #sunrise #kalsubaipeak
To summit the highest peak of Maharashtra is a dream for every Maharashtrian trekker. It was there always in my bucket-list & eventually got a chance to surpass, so did. If you want to put an end to your acrophobia, go Kalsubai! The endurance was really on a testing mode right from the word go.The vastly spread out backwaters of Bhandardara attracts ones attention from the top. Peak Kalsubai is a small plateau and offers a commanding view of nearby forts and Bhandardara dam.All said & done, when I rest myself on those Flood Basalt rocks to catch one of the most beautiful sights one can ever have on a full-moon-windy-night, the spellbound heart was pumping like never before. Feat achieved!!! (Y)(PS - It's a mobile click)
After an early check-out at about 9am, we enjoyed a buffet breakfast at Yash Resort nearby. We decided to check out the remainder of the places on our list before starting on our return journey. We passed by the Kalsubai Peak on our way to Wilson Lake and Umbardara Viewpoint. The place looked ordinary at first - it appeared as if there wasn't much to explore. We realized how wrong we had been - the view of the valley from the height was totally worth the long journey. One of the interesting features was the difference in temperature - while the viewing area enjoyed the shade and was very cool, the place near the car parking spot was swelteringly hot. After a small photo session to capture the moment we aimed tiny pebbles at the valley, trying to cover maximum horizontal distance possible. I was happy with my performance, as the last pebble I aimed went pretty far. The last place on our list was the Ghatghar dam and KokanKada. Personally I enjoyed KokanKada hilltop a lot more than the dam, as the hilltop gave us a very picturesque view of the whole region. After relishing onion pakoras with tea we took the Ghoti-Shirdi Road to reach NH-160, and retraced our journey back to Mumbai. Here are a few quick tips for those planning for a trip to Bhandardara. The best time to visit Bhandardara would be after the monsoons or during the winters. The weather is pleasantly cool during the winters. MTDC Resort is one of the best places to stay and offers really beautiful views of the Bhandardara Lake. Keeping that in mind book well in advance. And if you manage to get a room there, do remember to collect the refundable deposit during check out formalities. I noticed that many people usually end up forgetting to do the same. Navigating the roads can be a task after the monsoons. Be prepared for a bumpy ride! The closest petrol pumps are 20km away. So if you intend to go for sightseeing, it's better to refuel before you reach the hill station. Based on my experience I would not recommend trying the restaurant at MTDC Resort more than once. We got a good breakfast buffet package at Yash Resorts nearby. Carry Odomos or other mosquito repellents, as mosquitoes are a nuisance especially in the evenings. There is only one bank present in the area. Owing to demonetization, the bank had been closed for about 10 days at the time of our visit. Additionally the lack of a POS machine at the resort added to our cash management woes. Thus ensure that you are carrying adequate amount of cash with you. I personally suggest requesting the services of a tour guide to optimise your time while sightseeing. The services are reasonably priced, and are customizable to suit your needs. The localites serving as tour guides are usually present at the resorts. Discuss the package and the pricing beforehand. Instead of covering all the tourist spots in one day, try spreading the schedule over multiple days. There will be ample time to enjoy individual tourist spots. Our guide took care of the bonfire arrangements for us (and we had gotten the barbecue stuff along with us). Personally I didn't enjoy the bonfire and barbecue experience much. However, the experience might vary depending on the average group age, group size and the time of the visit (peak or non-peak season) If you are going from Mumbai, Igatpuri lies en route. Manas Resort is a great place to stop for a meal. We stopped for lunch there on the way back and the experience was totally worth it. This post was originally published on A Roller Coaster Called Life.
The lush green grass covering the mountain while the clouds surround it, the water flowing through making its way to the bottom to join the river, small crabs leaning their way in the flowing water as I make my way to climb the highest mountain in Maharashtra. "Phew! Finally atop the mountain"as I exhaled my knees were crunching with pain. But none of that mattered cause of the mesmerizing feeling I got at the very spot. The feeling of clouds hugging you whilst wind blowing through your hair, almost made me forget my knee pain & that all my clothes were soaking wet.We started our trip from Mumbai and reached Murbad in 2 hrs. We stayed overnight at murbad. The next day at 7a.m we left for Bari village. As I loaded the location to Bari village google maps showed two routes, one via Mumbai-Nashik higway via Igatpuri & the other via Ghatghar. We preferred the route via Ghatghar, much to our surprise we reached a dead-end at Ghatghar. So we turned back and went via Kasara to Igatpuri and finally we reached Bari village by 12:30p.m.The trek to Kalsubai mountain starts from Bari village. You have to park your vehicle at Bari village and start walking from there. Parking is free of cost, be sure of not being fooled by the local people who try to charge you for parking.Our trek started at around 1p.m. It was raining and we were already soaking wet. The ascent from Bari village to the top is very steep. Its more of climbing than walking. Steep slopes slippery route, stone stairs & iron ladders such was the route. Almost the entire trek it was raining mild to heavyThe initial route is muddy as we went higher we found stone stairs unevenly constructed and at an even higher point we were faced with iron ladder which were too small to step on. There are many stalls at various spots on the mountain that provides you maggi, tea etc. As we covered half the route we stopped at the local stall to have tea and bhaji, all our clothes were wet and we were longing for heat. We had tea and started our trek again. Half-way through the route as the clouds were moving, pleasing our senses to show us the beautiful view of the village.After climbing the final ladder we reached the top at around 4p.mOn the top is the temple of Kalsubai. The story that is told and retold by the local villagers goes like this. There was a house maid named Kalsubai that use to stay in nearby Indore village. One fine day frustrated by the person whom she worked for she left the house and came to the mountain. She went missing after she came to the mountain. This story gave the mountain the name Kalsubai and the villagers built the temple in her memory. Coming down from the mountain took 2 hrs. We reached by 6:30 and left the village by 7
* COMPLETE ITINERARY GIVEN AT THE END *A long 4 days weekend was around the corner because of Gandhi Jayanti holiday on Monday 2ndOctober 2017. So me and my friend Pragvansh Patil were having a chat about making a plan to go some place and take a break from our daily routine. At that time going to Kalsubai was on my mind and as soon as i told him he agreed to it immediately (Rarely we say no to each other's plans). So the planning for the trip begin. He made a proper itinerary of the trip within a hour. Also three more people Aniket Bahira , Hitesh Ladva and Prashant Phadke ( Pashu Mama😉) joined us on the trip. I was excited as I didn't knew anyone of them and we were going to meet for the first time.
KalsubaiKalsubai Peak is a mountain in the Western Ghats. Its summit situated at an elevation of 1646 meters (5400 feet) is the highest point in Maharashtra which earns it the much-glorified title of the ‘Everest of Maharashtra.’The peak attracts a large number of trekkers and devotees determined to scale the mountain.To reach the summit, there are well-designated trekking routes.The most popular route is through the eastern mountain face taking off from the base village Bari.
Tackling the steep slopes, dense jungles, unbearable heat, incessant rains, diseases, landslides and wild animals that define the Western Ghats was an ambitious endeavor. The railway track was achieved by an amalgamation of the best of engineering expertise, machinery and skilled labourers toiling under inhospitable conditions. The majority of the workforce consisted of mainly South Asians who were involved in the daunting task of digging and moving earth and rock. At the peak of its construction there were around 16000 people, hailing from Afghanistan to Ceylon, employed in the Ghats.
Tackling the steep slopes, dense jungles, unbearable heat, incessant rains, diseases, landslides and wild animals that define the Western Ghats was an ambitious endeavor. The railway track was achieved by an amalgamation of the best of engineering expertise, machinery and skilled labourers toiling under inhospitable conditions. The majority of the workforce consisted of mainly South Asians who were involved in the daunting task of digging and moving earth and rock. At the peak of its construction there were around 16000 people, hailing from Afghanistan to Ceylon, employed in the Ghats.
Best pick for Maharashtra: Hikes Around SahyadrisYou might love or hate Mumbai rains but you can't miss out on the numerous hiking trails in the Western Ghats that unravel their best during the rainy season. August is a suitable month to go for short hikes around the Sahyadris. Take a trip to Dudhsagar and trek through the Mahaveer Sanctuary, visit Kalsubai, Harishchandragad and other hikes to regional forts. You can dedicate this month to explore these short hikes easily accessible from Pune and Mumbai.Read More: Short Hikes Around Mumbai That Can Fit Your Weekend Plan
9. The Western Ghats – nature vs developmentThe greenery of the Western Ghats along the west coast of India cannot be overstated. It is home to various kinds of animals and plant species. The adivasi people have also been living in this region for hundreds of years. But in the name of development, many areas of the Ghats are now exposed to builders and naturally, this threatens the basic core of the region. For example, the Mumbai-Pune expressway, which is praised by so many of us, cuts right through the hills affecting the bio-diversity of the forested land.
5. The Western Ghats"Which covers border of GUJARAT, MAHARASHTRA, South of GOA, KERALA, TMAIL NADU, offers you the range and breath taking variety and expanse of one of India's most pristine part of forest" Best time to travel - Through out the year ( preferable June-March)Connectivity - Easily reachable Via all sources ( preferable by Road )
Western Ghats, The Sahyadri; call it as you desire but one of the most iconic and historical mountain range of Indian Subcontinent, diverse in its biological flora and fauna running along the west coast of India, it is a mind boggling feat of nature and for nature lovers it offers a passage back in time to how nature is supposed to be in all her grandeur. As i move to the fourth article in this series I would be taking the reader to one of the top waterfalls in terms of beauty in the Western Ghats, hidden in the mountains near to a nondescript village known as Kigga.
A sceluded area, which is even out of the list of the bundle horsemen, this place provides beautiful views of the surrounding valleys. This is a small place and it should literally be avoided after dark due to the scarcity of people as well as transport options. The view of the toy train running on a narrow track from top of the hill to Neral is a very happy sight. The views of the whole town of Neral is clear from this low mountain point. The little bit of climbing proves to be an energy booster here.
Mount Barry, a lofty precipice located at the distance of just 5 kilometers from Matheran is one of the most favorite tourist destinations around this dandy little hills station. Highly exalted amongst the vacationers for its enrapturing panoramic beauty, Mount Barry is extremely popular for the mesmerizing prospects it offers. From the top of the Mount Barry an aerial outlook of the downhill town Neral can be perceived while the adjoining Matheran Peak also looks staggering from here. The most noteworthy attraction of Mount Barry is the fantastic sight of the Matheran Toy Train slowly traversing through the verdurous woods and striding up the Matheran Hill beheld from here.
This is the best point for me. There is a 40 feet tower on top of the hill and from there you can get most astonishing views of hills, clouds and water bodies.