Treks are usually unique. Not only the place but also even the whole experience is always unique. To put it straight Rajmachi was not just a trek but a complete adventure.
An adventurous trek in the rains
Another weekend and another monsoon trek in the sahayadris. I was sure it would be rocking especially considering the rains were here in full swing. The destination this time was Rajmachi, which has twin forts at the top.
I traveled from Mumbai to lonavala. Didn’t have a clue about people who would be joining in for the trek. Seeing the trek group (me, Amit, Anand who was wearing just slippers, Anu and Amit’s mother) I thought it wasn’t going to be a gruesome trek. I thought it would be more like a trip/picnic (a fun day out).
A gypsy was waiting for us at the Lonavala ST stand
We would be going by jeep to the base (Rajmachi – ‘machi’ is a place at the plateau of the fort). Therefore, it would save us the long walk but then we would be missing the opportunity to get wet in the rains.
The ride in the gypsy starts…
We all got into the gypsy. It was difficult to fit into the gypsy considering a couple of heavy weights (yes including Amit). The person driving the gypsy started the music at full volume. The volume/noise was near deafening. Initially it was getting into my brains but later I liked it. I guess it was trance from my very limited (negligible) knowledge of music.
The dirt track begins
After a short ride towards Rajmachi, the dirt track began. Due to the rains, the track was sticky and at some places, it was so sludgy that if one stands he would have his feet shin deep in mud. It was exciting. The driver of the car was none other than Afzal Khan (also know as Afzal Paani).More about him here. It was an 18km ride to Rajmachi. It was full of turns, streams crossing the track and slopes (where sometime we had to get down and walk). One stream was a feet deep and had enough force. Seeing Afzal maneuver the car through the rocky terrain of the stream was an experience in itself. There were times when the back portion of the gypsy would wobble on the mud.
Yes, finally we started our trek (Amit’s mom stayed at the base). The trek was not strenuous at all, as we took a ride to the base but the scenery it offered was breath taking. Greenery everywhere and pure white streams of water add to it the occasional drizzle and wind.
Food in treks is always special. It surely tasted different. The menu was Nachni chi bhakri, paneer burji, usal, kanda, loncha, thesa, dal ani bhat (read in marathi).
Ride back to Lonavala
Ride back to Lonavala was roCkinG ! This time we (Amit and me) were on the back of an open Gypsy and Amit was shooting Afzal maneuvering his car on the track.
Imagine a dirt track racer on the highway and the road. May be u guessed wrong. On the road he was completely chilled out, no hurry no speeds anything. However, whenever he would get a chance to show his skills in maneuvering the car through the traffic he was spot on. He was driving his car as if we would ride our bike through the traffic.
All in all a complete experience!
Pictures taken from Amit’s camera can be found here.