Trust me every last man who likes hiking is always curious when it comes to climbing higher altitudes and specially when you know that the one you are going for is already glorified as the higbest peak of the state... so there comes kalsubai in my mind, the highest peak of Maharashtra.. And I am sure when plan was made every person in our group had it in their minds as well.. But then you need someone who is already been there to guide you along the path and ofcourse to handle loads of responsibilities.. So all the planning and execution was done by Omkar, Rahul and Bhagwan... We owe a lot to these guys.. Thank you so much. So our plan began with the group of 36 trekkers gathering together in a nice and comfortable traveller on a night of 30th november at around 9:30 pm. So we hit the road for the base village Bari which is nearly 170 km from our start point which was Akurdi. Singing, dancing, chatting made us forget the time and length of the journey, and at around 2:30 am in the night of 1st december we reached our base village Bari. I dont need to tell you the route and thanks to google maps for that.. People in the village were so kind and helpful that even in the middle of the night with damn cold weather they opened their doors welcomed us and helped us out with drinking water and initial route to start our hike.. Omkar made all the arrangements of the next day lunch after return from the summit in the same house . you will get many such homely mess there ready to serve you. Omkar and Bhagwan made us aware about all the instructions and precautions and we were off to climb at around 3 am..
We bagan to hunt down our path to summit. I remember it was as dark as hell that nothing was visible without an aid of torch. All I knew was we have to reach that point of summit where an electricity bulb was glowing. I am sure you know that there is a temple of goddess Kalsubai and an electricity bulb was part of that temple. After an hour of hike we stopeed for the camp fire and it was the most beautiful part of our trek.. Omkar sang something which we had to follow along with some kinds of act.. For a while we just had become kids doing those acts.. Well I am not going to tell you our song, its deep secret and comes out at the time of camp fires only ;).. many out of our group were taking their first hike and I was surprised how enthusiastic every last one of them seemed to me. They were tired but no one wanted to give up.. We have been telling them about the sunrise story all the time that if you made it you will witness the first ray of sun in the state and probably thats the thing which kept every one moving..
I was walking pretty ahead of many people so that every time I saw large gap I could use it to stop and howl at those bright stars. There were thosands of them and every last one of them was trying to glow brighter than everyone else.. A kind of race you know.. They were like pulsating white light bulbs decorated up above everywhere in the sky.. I remember the game I used to play in a mean time like line game joining the stars and making pictures and objects from those. And hell.. there was nothing that I could not imagine in those stars.. Everything was possible to visualise up there. Although climb is not so tough, You will find three ladders in the way and trust me their every step is made of two inch width and sharp notch and there is a chance you slip off those steps.. you slip and you break its that simple up there so better be careful specially when you are hiking in the night. When we were almost up there, summit still was far away from our reach considering time constraint. It was almost 6 am in the morning and I and few of my friends were much ahead of others, and last thing I said was " I can't miss this opportunity " and few of us just started running. We ran, we tired, we pushed ourselves and then we made it. Now what if I tell you our mother Earth seems much red and beautiful from that altitude during the sunrise that you cant figure out anything less than the burning sun's red colour and the horizon( geography term ) that appeared to be huge wall or wall of waves propagating from all around you which too appeared so damn red in the east that you could imagine a red hot liquid is just coming to get you under it.
Right above us we saw a clean and polished blue sky which you could imagine as a blue pacific ocean had just shifted from ground to the sky. Soon enough birds started playing their morning music chirping all around us and making us feel welcome to heaven and making us forget all our fatigue. I dont know what they were singing, but whatever it was, it was amazing. And I really dint want to know why was so much rejoice in their voice, you see few things are better left unsaid and unknown. I believe it made me happy and I appreciate it. that's it. After an hour every last one of our group made it to summit and enjoyed the view of nature.
There was something everyone did achieve and was showing up on every one's face, I believe it was satisfaction..
We got to see the surrounding forts from up there. Harishchandragad fort, ratangad fort and the one which every hard core trekker dreams to take, the great A.M.K (Alang, Madan, Kulang). Ajoba gad was looking damn cute as well. We also traced ratangarh to harishchandragad via katrabai pass route. We were having feeling to visit them all at once.. Of course we didn't go.. but we will be going there, I will be going there .. you know SOMEDAY.. :).
So we had our group pics and thank god Tanuj and Rahul clicked some amazingly beautiful moments up there as well as in base village. We all owe a thanks to these guys.
So then the time came to start our descend. The worst part of any trek for me is to have to go back down there away from that peace in that messed up world. But you have to go. you have to keep moving thats what trekking is about.. So carefully we got down back to the base village which cost us merely 2 hours.. By 12 pm we were down in the village.. we washed ourselves and had our hands on the food those kind villagers cooked for us.. When you go trekking to kalsubai, dont forget to ask villagers about the story behind the kalsubai peak, trust me they will tell you everything very curiously and in detail that its worth listening. On way back our home we also visited Bhandardara dam which is also visible from up there from the kalsubai and looks very beautiful. We did some boating thing there. Soon we hit back to our road and reached our destinations at around 9 pm.. I assume it was one of the nice treks I had. You better go there and have look at it once.. I hope I have managed to depict its beauty enough that you will realise it when you actaually show up there..
- Pratik Shaha
some useful information:
place- Kalsubai Peak
base village- Bari
Altitude from sea level- 1646 mtrs (5400 fts)
route from pune- narayan gaon- Aale phata- Sangamner- Akole- Bari
distance- 170 km
nearby places worth visit- bhandardara dam ( shendi gaon).
Thank you.... :)