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Rajgad - The king of all forts


Tripoto.com
Duration: 1 Day
Expenditure 500

I was staying in Pune with a friend for a couple of days. It was the month of June and monsoons had just about started. On a whim, we decided to go for a hike and kick start the first one of the monsoon with Rajgad, “The king of all forts”. The fort is aptly named as it is so vast that it can’t be seen completely in a day. Usually trekkers camp here overnight so that they can continue the exploration on the second day. We came back the same day.

Photos of Rajgad - The king of all forts 1/8 by Gopal Venkatraman
Photos of Rajgad - The king of all forts 2/8 by Gopal Venkatraman

There are multiple routes to the fort but the most trekked one is from Gunjavane village through Chor Darwaja. There is also another route through the Gunjavane Darwaja, but it requires rock climbing skills and can be tricky in monsoons. We went via Chor Darwaja. Gunjavane village is located around 60kms from Pune. By car, it took us slightly more than an hour to reach the village.

Photos of Rajgad - The king of all forts 3/8 by Gopal Venkatraman
Photos of Rajgad - The king of all forts 4/8 by Gopal Venkatraman

The trail starts off through an easy uphill path through a forest. We reached a plateau soon enough and had some lemon water. We could see the fort from this plateau. The trail further continues to the forest and comes out in the open at the base of Padmavati Machi. The steep part of the trail begins now. It is a continuous uphill climb. The last portion involves over climbing on massive rocks before entering through the Chor Darwaja. There are however railings to assist climbers.

Photos of Rajgad - The king of all forts 5/8 by Gopal Venkatraman
Photos of Rajgad - The king of all forts 6/8 by Gopal Venkatraman

The fort was just massive with a dried up pond nearby. There were many lookout points. The Bale Killa (The top most point of the fort) required a further climbing. We decided to skip it as there were many places to explore on the fort. We walked along the edge of the fort and reached a ridge line. We sat at the end of the ridge taking in the beautiful views. Clouds slowly started ascending and the place was slowly getting foggy. The Bale Killa was completely engulfed in clouds. We walked to a small hill and just laid down on the rocks while the clouds passed through us. It was surreal.

Photos of Rajgad - The king of all forts 7/8 by Gopal Venkatraman
Photos of Rajgad - The king of all forts 8/8 by Gopal Venkatraman

There was a group volunteering to clean up the fort and they were asking trekkers to carry plastic bags full of filth to the base village. Each of us took one, which we regretted in hindsight. They were quite heavy and descending with them was a bit frustrating. We dumped the bags in a dustbin at Gunjavane village. It had been a long time since I had trekked and my calves were sore after the trek. But like they say, no gains without pains.

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