Rajgad Fort Trekking – A elated experience

Trek: Rajgad Fort, Gunjavane Village.

Participants : Rahul Bagal , Subhash Darade , Vishwas Lacca & Sandip Daware.

Route: From Pune drive towards Satara on Pune Bangalore highway. Take right turn near Nasarapur Village. This turn is about 20-25 Kms from Pune. Ask for Gunjavane Village or Rajgad fort “Chor Daravaja” path.

difficulty level: Medium to Hard  – Bale Killa & Last 100 meters to  “Chor Daravaja” is hard to climb. Rest trek is moderate.

On the way to Rajgad
Subhash, Sandip & Rahul

As per plan  we started from Pune at 6:15 AM in the morning on two bikes. We took a quick breakfast at  Nasarapure.  Roads are in quite good conditions. We took a couple of breaks on the way. From Pune it is about 45 KMs of drive & takes 1.5 – 2 hrs to reach the base village of Rajgad [Gunjavane]. Reached base village Gunjavane at 8:30 AM.

Whenever we go for the trek we always start the travel early in the morning. This saves you from traffic & you have plenty of time at your disposal.  When we were planning for treck; we were really not sure how much time this fort would take to climb. There are many informative blogs on Internet but the time required to climb the fort depends on that particular day’s conditions & your group’s energy level.

When we reached base village Gunjavane, we talked with local villagers to get more information about the village. As per them, there is no hotel/household food provision so one has to carry the food. But if there is a bigger group you can order food at base village & they supply you the dinner/lunch at the top of the fort. You have to pay a premium for this service 🙂

I decided to track the route using GPS on my Android phone ( Google Nexus ).  I used Offline logger app to track the route. This app allows logging your GPS location with latitude-longitude & altitude. Later I exported GPX file & created a trail on everytrail.  Every trail shows your GPS locations on a Map & photos can be geolocated based on timestamps.

We started hiking at 8:35 AM. There are many small ways to go to the fort.  Better we ask local people to choose one. It was slippery & muddy for first few hundred meters. Then the way was good.

Below are some photos of this trek.

The road to Chor Darawaja is a long way but not very difficult initially. My GPS trail shows it is about 4 KM of a walk to reach the Chor Darawaja.  Last 100 meters of climbing is 75 degree & you have to hold railing  & climb carefully.

We reached at the fort at 10:25 AM.  We saw a villager & couple of groups from Mumbai on the fort. The Villager was selling curd. We had a chat with him. Few villagers come to the fort to sell curd, food for breakfast on weekends. Generally, no one comes on the fort on weekdays. [ Imp point to note if you are planning to go on weekdays].

We spent time near old broken palace, temple, “Sadar”. We reached BaleKilla . But the way was too tough to climb & it was all cloudy. So we decided to skip “Bale Killa”  for this time due to slippery way.

We had lunch in the “Padmavati Mandir”. That time it was raining heavily.  We started return journey to the base village at 1:30 PM.  We did a careful & slow walk to avoid any slippage & injury.

Reached base village at 3:30 PM. A clean water river was flowing at Gunjavane.  Reached Pune safely. It was very rainy, cold & windy while driving back to Pune on bikes.  After such cold & shivering travel, the warmth of home feels invaluable !!

More Photos @ Picasa album: https://picasaweb.google.com/112408778094002998694/RajgadFort#

As per my GPS logs: Minimum height for this trek was 2339 ft  &  Maximum Height: 4240 ft.


Update :

Aug-2012- Again we had fantastic trek of Rajgad fort. I have posted a video 16-minute video of this trek on youtube. This is HD video of a trek from Chor Darwaja way- Gunjawane Village. We also visited Balekilla, Suvela Machi.

URL of Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7uCu_iJYhmk



Rajgad trek Plan

Date of Trek : 27th August 2011.

Rajgad – King of all forts is at about 40km south west of Pune and is at a height of 4514 ft. Rajgad was home for Shivaji for over 25 years till he became Chhatrapati. The height of Rajgad from sea level is 4250 feet and offers spectacular views of Sahyadri Mountains.

Route :-
PUNE – Nasrapur Phata -Pali – Gunjawane

Useful tips:
Difficulty level is moderate.  3 1/2 hours via Gunjawane. The highest point of Rajgad is Balekilla which is a fort on Rajgad. Take plenty of water and some energy drinks with you as the trek is a bit tiring.
Places to see at Rajgad:
• PADMAVATI MACHEE: This is where you will find the Padmavati Lake, Chor Darwaja, Gunjawane Darwaja, Daru Kothar and a flag hoisting place.
• SANJAVEENI MACHEE: Machees were created so that soldiers could respond to an immediate/sudden attack. You can walk between the walls of this Machee.
• SUVELA MACHEE: Home of the leader Tanaji Malusare was here.
• BALE KILLA: Highest point of rajgad. You will be able to see the entire fort from Bale Killa.

Reference : http://www.oocities.org/trekforts/f_raj.html