Rajmachi Fort & Caves Exploration

Monson Mania – Trekking Boys to Rajmachi fort – GHAC rock
Thanks to GHAC and the Organizer Dr.shri for conducting a wonderful event to explore the forts and cave in Rajmachi. In GHAC event page before the event date, so many people showed their interest to join with us to explore the forts in Lonavala.  But, many of them were not able to turn up due to work schedules and other inexplicable reasons.  They really missed the natural world and the wonderful experience we had.

We are here trying to share our experience to help you set your plans perfectly well in order to explore this place.

We are a team of nine boys with little knowledge on trekking and many of us were new to GHAC club. Before hand, our organizer had given us some very useful trekking instructions, things to bring, route plan, what to do and what not to do etc.  We were pretty much clear with how we were going to spend our two days there.

We started off with all inexplicable enthusiasm:

The day undoubtedly and uncontrollably arrived as the time was rhythmically moving on without any ounce of stoppage and as always in simpler words. We all started our journey by catching the Husain sager express on Friday afternoon from Hyderabad.  We all knowing each other and luckily, for the very first time there was no girl in our team.  We became so very closer in short span of time that we were not able to feel any type of formality or strangeness among us.  To keep our busy throughout our journey, we began playing games like UNO,  Dharamshala rts, Counting Mind etc

Reaching our destination – the next day:
Next Day Morning, we reached Pune at or around 2:00 am and from there we caught another train to Lonavala Station. We all had improper sleep during our journey but were able to have found ourselves a bit energetic by reaching the station at or about 3:00 am. It was drizzling and we thought to go by auto-rickshaw to avoid getting drenched in the rain but they were charging very high (even for a smaller 4 km distance!!!). We decided to walk for 4km towards Tungarli Dam and it was early morning, so we were ambling along, warming up ourselves a bit as we had ample amount of time.

None of us were aware of the route to dam and there were many diversions on our way.  We took help of the pedestrians on the road (even a funny incident happened between our organizer and a drunkard man.

Essence of the trekking – reaching the dam
Dam was on small uphill and the place was covered with the fog. The area there was lush greenery of the grass reflecting the brightness of the light on the trek path and we have not used much of our torch light to move towards the dam.

We reached the dam in the morning at or around 5:00am and were even a bit confused with the route which leads to the Rajmachi fort. We decided to explore the dam till the fog cleared away. We were just anxiously waiting for the warmer day light.

Fort Covered with Clouds
Our actual trek started early in the morning at 6:30 am. Rajmachi Fort was about some 15 km from Tungarli Dam.  Rajmachi is a small village in the rugged mountain of sahyadri  in india.  The trek was easier and the surrounding scenic view of the Sahyadri Mountains is speechless. We were breathing fresh air and trekking on in the mountainous area. The top of the hills was covered with clouds. The fog was showering on us, the light breeze, flanking Greenery and the mountainous area with the water flowing from the mountains really forced us to stay a bit longer there and capture everything in our camera.  

Flying Fox
After 3 hours of continuous trekking
After 3 hours of perpetual trekking in the mountainous area, we found few guys at the edge of one of those mountains beside the water stream and a small hotel nearby. The guys were from local village and their team name is Rajmachi Adventurers. They were busy with the equipments to setup the flying fox and waterfall repelling for cooperate event (they conduct rappelling event for minimum team size of 20 people).

We followed the water stream till the edge and it has 150 fts drop waterfall then water continuous floating for a distance and again has a big waterfall which goes into the valley (It is risk to reach the second waterfall in monsoon season).  We were lucky to have reached the place at the time of set up and had a good deal.

150Ft Water Rappelling
As they were setting up the equipments, we got time to order noodles and pakodi for breakfast. We all started doing the first adventure activity, i,e flying fox… it was a new adventure sport for us and for the club too. We had a wonderful experience and felt flying like an eagle in over the waterfall of Sahyadri mountains (150ft waterfall rappelling can really be the life time memorable rappelling for all of us).

Trekking towards the village fort:
We continued our trek to the fort and heavy rains starting hinting us frequently and trek route become difficult and damp path however we have managed to reach the rajmachi by 5PM. We can see the two forts from the villages which were built by Emperor Shivaji during 17th century. The taller one in the east is Shrivardhan fort and the other in the west is Manaranjan fort. The taller one was covered with cloud and we couldn’t able to see the high of the fort. We walk up to the top of the hill and the place was amazing with historical monuments, a large caves, secret exit gate, water storage tank, walls etc from the top of the fort we can see the panoramic view of the mountains. Clouds arrested the Sun and day has become dark, rain hitting us and the rock path were sleeper while descending to the village. 

Manaranjan fort.
We ordered a dinner and engaged room for night stay, but most of them exhausted and disappointed for not visiting to the second fort due to darkness. After 6:30Pm suddenly Sunrise up and clouds run away, the day light came out and reflect on our face and made us smile to run to the Manaranjan fort. We got 30 minutes of light to explore the fort and we descend down in the darkness with torch light. We found a krait snake (venomous snake) on our trekking path.

Next day morning, we took the route directions to kondhanecaves but unfortunately we are trekking to the wrong trail which leads to lonavala. We released and communicate to the villages to guide us till the caves. It was completely down hills and curved edges with deep drop. It took us 4 hours to reach the cave. The Buddhist caves on the western slope of Rajmachi plateau (at present known as Kondhane caves) were carved in the period around 200 BC. We have fun at waterfalls and explored the caves and trekked from jungle stream to reach nearest village Udhewadi.tavelled to karjat station and next morning Hyderabad.
Sahyadri mountains

How to reach: From Hyderabad we have train facilities, bus and flight services to Pune and Mumbai. From there we can local train to lonavala. 

Things to bring: trekking shoes with ankle support, first aid kit, rain sheet and torch light.

Food and Restaurants:  food and stay is available in rajmachi and Udhewadi village. It is was the famous trekking spot for nearest city and energy food stalls you can find many on the trekking route
Cost: unlimited veg food with two eggs is 100 INR and night stay per person is 30 INR  

Permission: Rajmachi entry fees is 5 INR for the maintenance of the fort 

Trek level: Easy to medium and the best time to visit is between September and February


Prasad N said...

Good description..keep them coming.

Tadakala Rakesh kumar said...

Good bro...... If possible take me with you.......

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