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Night Trek to Sarasgad on 05th June 2016  1

A trek after a long time, to take a break from the routine is the best way you can possibly cut the chaos. So on 05th June 2016 midnight 00:00 am I along with 8 other mates left for a night trek to Sarasgad near Pali, Ballallehwar temple which is about 10 min walking distance from the base of the Sarasgad fort.

 

The Journey:

 

At 00:00am sharp me, Siddhesh, Chetan, Girish, Chaitanya & Dharmesh packed our bags in the vehicle & left for Mcdonalds near CST station to pick up Priya & Anangha. Priya had already reached the pickup point early so she put a message on the group, but there was no sign of Anagha. We reached CST@ 12:20am, 5 min. late then scheduled, Priya quickly jumped in the car & then we started calling Anagha, she was not reachable, her cell phone was switched off, we tried for almost 15 min to contact her but was of no use so assuming that she might have slept, we left CST hoping  that she might call back. Dharmesh stepped on the pedal as we had to more people to be picked up from Dadar. Reached Dadar at 12:45am and the last 2 members of our gang Winnie & Ashish hopped in. Hidden Trekkers Sarasgad (1)Immediately the journey began heading straight towards Pali. Took one tea halt near Vadkal Naka and resume. After crossing about 10km after Vadkal and we had a new company to join us…….. RAIN RAIN RAIN RAIN started off as a light drizzle only to grow into a thunderstorm, it was welcoming & soothing. The lightning in the sky every 0.01 second, the heavy downpour which limited the visibility to less than 10ft & music inside the car by our DJ Chaitanya made the journey even more joyful.

 

About Sarasgad:

Hidden Trekkers Sarasgad (87)

The journey is still on…….., so just thought of giving you some details about Sarasgad Fort & it’s surrounding. Sarasgad Fort doesn’t have much of documentary evidence about its history, but it hold a lot of importance strategically as it was a fortress to watch over Pali and surrounding area, as it is around 20 km away from Sudhagad Fort which was once considered to be made the Capital of Maratha Empire. Hence it is important in its on significant way, which is supported by the fact the Shivaji Maharaj spent 2000 hones (currency of that time) just to reconstruct this fort. It can be seen from the roadway which passes right through the Pali City, and can be identified easily.

 

The Night Trek:

Hidden Trekkers Sarasgad (69)

Finally we reached the base village of Sarasgad Fort. Everybody started gearing up for the trek, wearing shoes, checking torch lights, water available etc. Started the trek at 04:30am sharp, we wanted to reach to the top before 06:00 am, to capture sunrise which was scheduled for 06:07am. So the speed was high, line up was me followed by Winnie & Ashish then Priya followed by 3 boys and backed up by Chaitanya.

After the first 5 min we started gaining height, the climb was steep through bushes and shrubs, but the route was pretty clear with markings at regular intervals. I, Winnie & Ashish were travelling a lot faster than the others, so had to keep a regular check on the guys. Chaitanya and Priya needed rest so we took the first halt after only 15 min. of climb. After drinking water, we quickly resumed, had chances of shower, and so had to rush. After climbing and waiting, for about 45 min. we reached the rock patch, the rock was a bit slippery due to the rains, so proved to be a bit scary and problematic. None the less everybody somehow managed to climb the patch by each other’s help. We reached the caves near the steps to the”Dindi Darwaja”. Took some rest and drank water and early morning for started covering the whole fort from all the side, we could see it coming from a far distance and within seconds it was all around us.

Hidden Trekkers Sarasgad (4)

Everybody was asking me 1 common question, i.e. “Niche jaane ke liye koi aur rasta nahi hain kya?” (Isn’t there any other route to descend from here?). I smiled and politely replied “NO”

After gathering their wits we approached the steps that lead us to the main entrance of the fort, 2ft in height, 2ft. in breadth & 4ft in length, these are by far the biggest rock cut steps in Sahyadris, though some steps are broken and you have space to put just foot on it, they take their toll on your legs while climbing and give you a chill in the spine while descending.

The steps leading to Dindi Darwaja
The steps leading to Dindi Darwaja

We crossed the main entrance and the sky had already started to brighten up with light, so there was a sense of hurry to spot the rising sun from the top. I, Winnie, Ashish, Siddhesh & Chetan was one team who started rushing towards the top, crossing all the caves and climbing a small rock patch at the end to reach the summit. Chaitanya, Priya, Girish & Dharmesh were tired to the core and were coming slowly. So I came back to the team lagging behind, much to my surprise they were nowhere to be seen. The first team was safely sitting at the summit, but the Chaitnya & co. were missing. I came down all the way where I had last spotted them,  then it clicked that they might have taken the route to the right which goes around the pinnacle and joins at the last rock patch.

THE LAST ROCK PATCH
THE LAST ROCK PATCH

So I quickly rushed back to the base of the rock patch and with next 2 minutes they appeared from the route which I thought they would have, after discussing what happened and laughing over it the we all made it to the summit where others were waiting as they could not see sunrise due to extreme cloud cover.

Hidden Trekkers Sarasgad (11)

After exploring the top, the Shiva temple, the dargah, the completely dried out lake, enjoying the view of Tail Baila and having some snacks. We started descending. The descend was also as eventful as the ascend, both the girls choose to slide down all the way, Dharmesh also joined them, slipping, talking, jumping , running, laughing finally we made it to the base in 1 hour. We freshened up, had breakfast, visited the Ballaleshwar temple & started off on our return journey.

Hidden Trekkers Sarasgad (21)

Reached Mumbai at around 01:45 pm as planned.

 

 

Overall a beautiful experience as trekking always is…….

 

Thank You

 

Vaibhav Gurav

Sandhan Valley – An experience  0

महाराष्ट्रातील गड,, किल्ले अन घळया,,
आहेत खूप मजबूत,, सुंदर अन देखण्या त्यातीलच एक आहे संधान व्हॅली,
जिचा थरार आहे खूप भारी..

 

मुंबईहून निघताच पोचलो आम्ही सम्राद या गावी,,
तिथूनच सुरु झाली आमची खरी तयारी..

 

चहा, नाश्ता करून सुरु केली चढाई,,
पाहतो तो समोर छोटा ओढा दर्शन देई…

 

तिथे होते आमच्या सारखेच
दोन तीन ग्रुप,,
त्यांच्या सवे झाली
अवघड वाटही,,
एकदमच सुखरुप….

 

तेव्हाच घडले खरे
माणुसकीचे दर्शन,,
एकमेकांना साथ देत होते
अन करत होते,,
पाण्यातुन चालताना
संरक्षण…

 

जरी नसलो आम्ही ओळखीचे
तरी वाटले एकदम सखे सोबती,,
त्याच प्रवासात मग
खेळलो आम्ही साखळी साखळी..

 

नंतर चालू झाले रॅपलिंग,,
जणू की आमच्या ताकदीचे सॅम्पलिंग..

 

जेव्हा सोडले हात-पाय,,
आणि दिलं स्वतःला झोकून,,
तेव्हा कळलं की,
दऱ्या डोंगर चढणं
असतं खूपच कठीण..

 

पण हे जो पार करतो,,
तोच असतो खरा शूरवीर
बाकी सगळे नुसते असतात,,
बघे आणि सलामीवीर..

 

ह्या थरारात पण
एक वेगळीच नशा आहे,,
ते सांगण्यापेक्षा
अनुभवणं खूप जास्त
छान आहे..

 

-Trupti Wagholikar

Sandhan Valley – Something for everyone…  41

Trekking for me is just another opportunity to be with my friends and make new frnds in due course. This recent trek came suddenly and everything fell into place to make it possible. But all credit goes to just one person,Tushar Phope 😊. His constant persuasion and nagging was the reason I could come for this trek and gave my final call a day before the trek.
We started late night on Friday, and reached the base camp by 6am. On best thing happened was that I met my college frnd Mohammed Husain Bharmal after a long time. After quick rest we had our breakfast and we were off for the adventure of life time. The first water patch where I was adamant of not letting my shoes get wet went well as I traversed thru the rocks and crossed on to other side. Pat on my back 😋 Again supported by Tushar. Then came turn of my frnd Mohammad and his experience of scuba diving at the same spot 😋
After there the crowd witnessed three Vasudev’s (Lord Krishna’s father who carried baby lord Krishna on his head and crossed the river). As Me, Tushar and Vaibhav held our bags on our head and crossed the second water patch with water upto our chest level. And then the beauty of human nature of helping, as other groups entered water and formed a chain to pass the other bags from one end to another.
Then the most glorious moment of the day, as we got the first glimpse of the valley and mark my words it was beautiful. Passing thru the valley clicking photos and selfies, we reached the first rappelling point. The sheer drop of 70 ft. was terrifying but confidence booster were our leaders Vaibhav Gurav and Tushar who made it look easy and gave others the courage to do it easily. It was my first experience in rappelling and it was awesome. Thanks team Hidden trekkers for the same.
After that point we all were confident and it could be seen in everyone’s eyes. Enjoying the valley view and another two points of climb down with just a rope to assist we finally reached our camp site. No luxury rooms, no five star hotels, but a simple tent and five billion stars to gaze. I dnt remember when was the last time I looked up at sky, but its was at that moment I just laid down and admired the beauty of nature. Exhausted with approx 10 hours of walking, we ended our day.
Next day we woke up early and assisted the villagers to make tea and our favorite breakfast “Maggi”. After that we headed for another village and reached the point in 2 hrs. Lunch served by them was delicious. Sweet dish was Pepsi cola which I had after long time. Made me go back the memory lane and remind me of my childhood. After lunch we finally bid adieu to the valley and the villagers and returned back to Mumbai.
In all a great experience, would recommend everyone to do this trek at least once in life time and most preferably with hidden trekkers. Their expertise and their candid nature makes all the difficulties run away and boost one with confidence. Enjoyed with vaibhav, Hrudaya Wadkar and Tushar, met old friends like Mohammed, made new frnds like Sameer, vaidehi, trupti, Manali, Hussain and dawood. Love u guys and cya soon for our next trek with hidden trekkers.

 

-Vijay J Pednekar

Great Job….Team HT  0

One of the most awesome trips i have ever been
The guides have awesome knowledge and their team handling skills easily reflects the amount of experience they possess .
Also it has one of the most affordable prices in market and hence one can expect a 5/5 experience going with these guys looking forward to attend more trips.

 

-Hussain Daginawala

Trek to Sandhan Valley……  0

“Sandhan valley” my first trek was great and with hidden trekkers was like an icing on the cake. It was awesome trekking with u guys. Expressing my experience in words is far more difficult but it was a great adventures experience. The support and encouragement u guys gave us has created a large interest in trying such adventures treks in future. Looking forward for many of the treks with u guys. Thanku so much for everything. And would also like to tell people who are intrested in experiencing treks with hidden trekkers, pls be tension free nd come forward nd join the hidden trekkers. Thankyou

 

-Vaidehi Saitawdekar

5 stars to Team HT  1

One of the most awesome trips i have ever been
The guides have awesome knowledge and their team handling skills easily reflects the amount of experience they pocess .
Also it has one of the most affordable prices in market and hence one can expect a 5/5 experience going with these guys looking forward to attend more trips.

 

-Hussain Daginawala

Trek to Kohoj Fort- My First  1

I had been to this place with HT team. First ever trekking experience of my life. N lemme tell u guys, it was jus mind blowing !!!… Though, being a beginner, it was quite tiring for me by the end of the day, but these guys were super awesome. They were so kind n helpful, so so encouraging, that i never felt like giving up.
I loved the etiquettes/rules u all follow…great coordination …srsly hats off !!! And, the feeling of being at the peak point jus cant be described in words… Thanx a ton Rohit, Vaibhav, Hrudaya, Jesal, Manjiri and Aditya for this wonderful experience… Really looking forward for the next event from your end..

 

-Sayali Tharval

To Protect the Dhak Bahiri Caves  0

Last time when we visited Dhak Bahri Caves in June-15, the foul condition of the caves was an eye opener for us, which was an inspiration for this trip to be planned. We couldn’t see the distressful state in which the cave & the property inside is were in. Hence we pledged to comeback again & make an attempt to bring this eternal beauty of nature carved out by almighty himself, to its original condition.

We planned this trip purposely in Oct-15 as to avoid rains, but for oursurprise God had set some other plans for us…

02nd Oct 2015

First Day of the trip started up early in the morning and took the first train to Karjat. Ascend was planned from Sandshi but not by encircling ‘Kalakrai”, instead we opted to cut through the forest and directly climb the rock phase. Oct. heat took its toll initially. But then for our surprise as we reached the base of the rock we were welcomed by heavy rains which made the ascend even more challenging. The weight of bagpack, heavy rains, water running downhill right into our face & the slippery rock you might have imagined now what was the condition.
Slipping & standing we inched forward & finally reached the cave.

03rd Oct 2015

The day had to start early, as there was lot of work to be done we first targeted the utensils & then the silt & dirt in the cave. The conditions of the utensils was more then pathetic. I cannot even explain how irresponsible & moronic people can behave. Phorotographs of the same will give you a clearer idea as to what we wanna say. Rains continued to accompany us in our stay. Creating different landscapes every minute. It was a complete contrast view inside & outside the cave.
After cleaning about 300 nos. approx utensils, we were exhausted by mid day. After a short break we started cleaning the silt & the dirt in the cave, which also took its toll wink emoticon
Finally having completed the work & satisfied with the result had a self made feast in the night & a good sound sleep.

04th Oct 2015
Last day of the trip. Had some finishing touch to be given to the cave, some litter here & there some left over, some wrappers etc. Cleaned that & then the descend..

Guys we request just one thing, we know that there are some morons in our society who cannot differentiate between picnic & trek, their own house & a site of national heritage. We want to address this message to that group of indiviual as mentioned above. Pls try and learn fast & peacefully how to respect the places of national heritage, maintain its glory & serenity.

For those who have realised.. Thank You.. and for those who are still having deaf ears & blind eyes towards this issue..
PLS BEWARE..

If we sound offensive by this msg, we intentionally take the honour of doing so.

JOIN HANDS IN PROTECTING OUR PRIDE, OUR HERITAGE, OUR DIGNITY.

 

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.1085078808176638.1073741837.236441759707018&type=1&l=6450269303

 

-Vaibhav Gurav

Tandulwadi Fort – The Forgotten  0

Yet another awesome experience with Hidden trekkers…

Wanting to get closer to the nature we went for a trek to Tandulwadi Fort. It’s a stop-over fort and is in the middle of deep forest. Nearly 1900 feet high, the fort is surrounded by mountains and forest from all sides.
We started off our journey from churchgate station early in the morning heading towards Saphale station… then from Saphale to the base village by a private Rick… It is also called Tandulwadi..(I guess the fort is named after this village)… We could view the fort quite clearly from here… it looked lush green and beautiful…
We then geared up ourselves to start the ascent… It started from a small pond outside the village..the way was quite muddy through a dense forest but the directions were quite visible..it lead us to a plateau where we relaxed for a while and a series of photos went on…everyone trying to capture the beauty around…Without delaying any further we started the last leg of the trek…which was very steep and rocky..this is the final 125 feet to reach the top…it takes through 7 man-made tanks of water…
The blowing wind..green sorrounding, tall mountains and the view of river Vaitarna flowing on 3 sides… it was just too perfect to believe…
Soon after reaching the top and getting done with our photography, we had some snacks and started exploring the fort…
The cool wind makes us feel fresh despite the tough climb. There are lots of cliffs around the fort. Some have naturally created water reservoirs.
After spending nearly 2 hours on the fort, we started descending…the descent however seems to be simpler always, we reached the base in an hour patting our backs to complete the trek flawlessly and feeling content.

Tandulwadi fort was another beautiful mountain that we got to explore and it was a day well spent.

Thank you team Hidden Trekkers…!!!

feeling awesome.

 

-Pallavi Gurav

My Trek to Kalavantin Durg..  0

Trekking, for me, is all about being one with Mother nature, about feeling the wind, rediscovering myself, making new friends, and about enjoying freedom
So trek to Kalavantin was something that I couldn’t miss…

On reaching the base, one shout from our Guides….and all eyes looked up to catch the first glimpse of Kalavantin Durg – the beautiful sister fort of Prabalgad. They explained us the structure of the peak and told us about where we would break for lunch and some much needed rest.
All of us then were set to start the trek…
To reach the peak, was the ultimate goal for the day.

It started with a muddy path…then a rocky patch…finally, we reached a point on the mountain that had stone steps carved all the way to the top. Climbing these steps was more than a stamina test due to its unevenness and steep height..Soon enough, we noticed the stone steps coming to an end.
Now the last leg of the trek (and the most difficult one) was still pending. Rock climbing. The peak was nothing but giant rocks placed together, with no path to climb. There were a few cracks and dents on the stones that we thought we could use to climb up the peak. So while one of our guide trekkers climbed up to check how feasible it was, the rest of us looked on with bated breath. Once he reached the peak safe, slowly, one by one each one of us climbed up the rock with the help of our other guide trekkers, who took all the precautions to make us reach the peak safely.
Words cannot describe the feeling of elation on reaching the peak. The orange flag..the surrounding mountains..the blowing wind..all just too perfect to be true.
What followed was quick resurfacing of water bottles, cameras and a series of photographs! (Everybody wants to remember the wonderful time spent on the peak!)
While we sat there, enjoying the magnificent beauty from the peak, plenty of travel experiences were shared, jokes cracked, photos clicked and philosophy discussed. Then the ‘Shivstuti’ done on the peak was a moment of pride, and it took us back to the memories of Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.
Later, even before we realised, it was time for us to start descending.
Soon, the trekkers disintegrated into small groups and started on their journey to Nilesh Dhaba on the machi for lunch was organised there..On reaching the dhaba in no time did we finish the lunch and finally started to descend from the dhaba, Descents are always quicker than the climb. They’re a wonderful opportunity for introspection, and give us some good time to spend with ourselves. We were familiar with the mountain by now, so climbing down wasn’t as difficult.

Kalavantin was a unique experience..it was one more beautiful mountain that we were fortunate enough to visit and it was a day well spent in Mother Nature’s lap.
Trekking is not so much about reaching the peak as it is about enjoying and feeling happy about every moment spent in freedom.
At Kalavantin, we crossed all barriers, pushed ourselves to the limit, hugged the wind, saluted the mountains, touched the clouds, experienced heaven, felt Mother Nature’s loving care.

A big thank-you to the team Tushar Phope Vaibhav Gurav Bhavesh Malgundkar Rohit RJ Gdp and Vaibhav Sandu for an awesome trek to this heavenly place. It would have not been possible without your expertise, guidance, safety precautions and the efforts that you guys took to keep a huge bunch like ours safe and sound.

Thank you, Hidden Trekkers

 

-Pallavi Gurav


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