Lohgad - Visapur Trek


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February 17th 2013
Published: February 19th 2013
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Late Saturday evening, we (My wife & I) decided to go for a trek on Sunday. Rajgad and Visapur were the options. I had already been to Rajgad 3 times. So Visapur it was! I looked up on net for some info. But most of them were long and descriptive blogs. I was looking for specific details. Hence this blog. We trekked and had a lot of fun. We missed a couple of times. But this blog is only about specific details 😊 Maybe I will write a detailed one when I get some time (I have been writing blog on my year long travel for two years now). There are different routes to go to the top. I will only describe the one I took So here goes:

A couple of things before you go ahead:


• We drove to the village at the base (Bhaje).Hence I don't know about public transport. However mostly people get down at Malavali railway station and walk two kms on tar road to Bhaje village.
• We went in February. A lot of things change in Monsoon: It is definitely more beautiful. But it is crowded too. The trails may have gone for a toss (esp the one from Bhaje caves to visapur) with mud and water. However, the trails may be well-marked too. A lot of groups go in monsoon and hence mark them. Caves timing may be differet. There may be more options for eating.


The drive

Pune (Warje) to Bhaje Village:


• Take the bypass and get on to old NH4.
• Take left at Karle exit (it is about 5-6 kms from Kamshet, a very easy to miss turn. It has a small board right before the turn. But easy to miss again. Keep looking)
• Go straight, cross the railway tracks, take left, take the bridge over the expressway and the road will end at the bhaje village.
• There is a parking place at the village. He will charge about 20 (or more-less, depending on his mood)
• It is 60 kms from Warje to Bhaje Village.
• You need to order your lunch if you want it in the noon. You won't get anything otherwise (happened to us!).


The trek till Lohgad Village


• There is straight trail that goes to the twin Visapur-lohgad forts.
• In 10 mins you will get a board for Bhaje caves. You can climb up the steps and at some point just take left and find the zig-zag trail going up to Visapur. But it is very confusing. I won't reccomend.
• The caves have a gate and they caharge tickets. At 8.00 am, the gates were closed. So don't waste time and effort going up the caves (we did!)
• Take the trail near to the steps and go straight ahead.. it is fairly straight-forward .. and in fact a motorable road.. I think within a year it will be a tar road. However, you can take shortcuts and miss most of the road and motor cycles (we did and it was fun!)
• After some time, you will find a tar road (it seems the road connects to lonavla) , that you can't miss. A km on this road will take you to a resort under construction. Here you can take right for Visapur. There are no markings.
• If you are hungry (like we were) you can go a half a km ahead to lohgad village and eat and come back.
• A trail to Lohgad trek goes from here. It is a straightforward steps route and hence we opted for the more intersting Vispur.


The trek from Lohgad village to Visapur


• After the left (when you are coming from Bhaje), go on the trail for 15-20 minutes. There will be a hut on your left. Take the left trail.
• Immediately there will be a small waterfall (it was dry in winter) on your left. There may be some markings there. Take the waterfall.
• Do not take the more prominent trail (we did) .. you can go on that trail for quite a long time and reach some village (we almost did).
• Take the waterfall route.
• This is a tricky route with number of small trails branching out. Keep left and take the trails that go up.
• At one point there will be a clearing and you have to climb up from the water fall. It is not difficult (atleast not in winter).
• It will take 30 mins from the turn to Visapur (if you are moderately fit and don't miss the trail)


Visapur


• On the top, its vast. But, it is all open and has some overly sensitive cows..
• There is no drinking water on the top (We were told there would be, but we did not find anything besides some cesspools. we ran out of water.)
• Its vast and I have no idea whats there. What we did is take left when you reach the top and follow the wall. It will take you round the fort. The wall on the other side of the fort has some nice views of lonawala, e-way and all. It is fine to spend some good time. Not so much at 12.00 pm though.


Visapur to Bhaje via Bhaje Caves


• There is a shorter route from Visapur to Bhaje caves. It is difficult to find since the top is so vast and there are hardly any runis. Look for the normal chor darwaja kind of features which you will find in other forts. There are proper steps and there is a hanuman carving in stone with some cave-rooms kind of structure. You will have to go down on that trail.
• Remember, the village that you see when you come down is not Bhaje village. You will have to come to a point where you have to take left. this is tricky and depending on your experieince of trekking in sahydris, sense of direction and luck, you may find it.
• I am saying this, as we met six guys, who were hoplessly lost, they had started for lohgad and somehow they ended up on the trail to visapur on the other side!!
• The trail is shaded by shrubs, some small trees. nice to walk.
• Keep on walking till you find a cluster of few houses. Ask them how to get to the bhaje caves.
• The ferociously barking, unchained dog won't bite or chase (it did not bite or chase us).
• You will go through endless zig-zags and join somewhere on the steps to bhaje. If you have the enthu you can go up the steps and see the caves. (I did not and my wife had already seen them. Hence we opted for the nimbu paaniwala a few steps down. We were badly dehydrated)
• There was no lunch as we had not ordered. Hence we had to resort to one of those over-priced punjabi dhabhas on the old NH-4. (Seriously i dont know why they are so famous that people come all the way from pune..)


Did not take my camera. Took the photos from wife's mobile phone. She claims they will shame my camera.

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