Satdhara - An unknown treasure of MP

4th Jan 2019
Photo of Satdhara - An unknown treasure of MP by Divyansha

The road - well, the actual one is very smooth and great for a long drive, can lead you places you can only dream of. The heart of India has many wonderful places to offer to an inquisitive and travel-freak eye. Off the road to the main destination - Pachmarhi - is the heavenly place called Satdhara.

To reach it first map out a way to reach to the heart, Madhya Pradesh, then move on to locate the aorta, Panchmarhi, and if you can't just find a way to reach Pipariya of the Western Central Railway then drive-thru is all you have to take care of. The road from Pipariya is very straight, no pun intended, till Matkuli and with the start of the Tiger Reserve you take the road not taken, on your left to Jhirpa.

A drive through the reserve which tests your driving skills and your eye power to spot a wild animal will mark the finale when you spot the tiny board on the ground on the right side of the road. It locates itself around 5km from the dwellings of Jhirpa and indicates that the heavens are on your right to 2km.

The road seriously less travelled will be sighted and tested now. Vehicles will low ground clearance- beware and ones with high- don't be an uppity nose, help around. The YHA-made (unsure) hut and a one-room-toilet stay welcomes you along with the ever present temple of one the uncountable gods. Walk up to the rails and see for yourselves and judge (as we humans always do) the place you spent so much sweat (hopefully not much money).

The beauty and transfixing grips of what you see when you look down from rails are tied to the season of your visit.

Summers - less water, apparently sparse forest

Monsoon - all at prime

Winter - best and you get to enjoy all the seeable features of nature.

But then it's only fair I mention the other sides of your visits

Summer - be happy you get to be IN the water

Monsoon - hats off to you for reaching here through the road not taken (muddy and slippery)

Winter - all see no touch (try removing those thick layers in your mind)

Well, the name Satdhara means "7 streams" but the locals say it was originally called Shatdhara, "100 streams". I personally agree with the locals and I guess you might too if you visit now. It was the start of summer in central India in March when I visited, the 3 main streams were up and running and with terrain in mind I do think that #100 is possible easily.

The falls are hard and fast, making sharp cuts and edges on the rocks. The water, surprisingly cool for a harsh summer noon, was welcoming me with both arms open asking me to skip everything and jump in. But beware, the surface hidden beneath is a treacherous one made of rocks and not sand. Thus, I would suggest you stow you diving devil and swimming sass and watch out. Because every wrong move you make here will have to be paid in by your blood and muscle (literally).

The falls are the beacons for the soul of a hydrophilic traveler like me so there is no way for one to even try and resist the temptation. The will test all your love and fear of water and then reward you with the unique nature's medicine to alleviate all the pains you took to reach here.

Maybe you too can find that little cozy corner behind the falls and get to live a stress-free moment like me. Try to meditate in there (no it's not crazy at all) and you will experience the nature in its rawest form. You will be able to hear the mighty white waters and feel their thunder on the stones under you.

And when you do get out of there do try to climb the rocks to find what's on the other side of the fall. You will encounter another similar strip of rocks in the way of Denwa river coming from Pachmarhi but this time our close friends, monkeys, would be the ones enjoying.

Do all you want to but don't try to sit in the tempting cut-out at the mouth of the fall. I did that and I clearly remember the rush when I tried to get out of it (against the flow) and the mighty falls decided otherwise. Well, nothing disastrous happened or how else would you be reading this but try not to imitate your adrenaline-driven writer.

All I missed was the forest and greenery so plan your visit accordingly and enjoy the best this unknown land has to offer.

3 main falls during summer high

Photo of Satdhara, Madhya Pradesh, India by Divyansha