We started our Trek to Harishchandra Gadh at around 4 PM with lot of enthusiasm and along with our host - the clouds!The climate was amazing and we were all very excited.We all started the Trek in three groups with lots of zeal and energy! First group consisted of the most enthu and experienced lot walking the fastest, the second group included me and the third group was made up of slowest but equally enthu guys!We were around 40 including about 25 guys and 15 gals.There was a 39 year old lady also whose energy and will i really appreciate. She had decided to come for such a difficult Trek!
After walking for about half and hour, the jungle started.The greenery was all around and Rain was also accompanying us!The path was through bushes and Trees.There were so many different kind of plants, flowers, insects, trees etc. I felt like I was truly playing around in the lap of Mother Nature! The ground was not straight. We had to walk through Stones of different sizes.(Thank God inspite of them being big in size, they were rounded and not sharp or rough!)About one and half hours we walked and climbed up and walked through this green forest (my group had only stopped once in between at a very scenic location to take some pictures among the yellow beautiful flowers which were present on the whole path of our trek all around).The forest was lovely, dark and deep!
I still have the memory of that ambience there in the forest while i was enjoying the walk, afresh in my mind . Our first 'padaav' came after about two hours since we had started !The first group was already there waiting for us.We rested for a while and the last group also reached.We took some rest and clicked some pictures.The climate was very foggy and result of pictures also was not very clear due to mist and the rains.
Now started the difficult phase of our trek.There were rocks, wet rocks with rain water flowing through them and some of them even wearing clothes of slippery Mosses! Some of the Rocks were steep and there was no support at all where we could hold something in order to stand or easily walk. We had to pass them very carefully with each others help.And let me tell you people were so supportive to each other.We four guys were from Mumbai and the rest of the gang was from Pune but we didn't at all felt like we were not part of their group! We gave each other hands when needed,showed others how to put the step and what precautions to take while crossing a difficult patch. We didn't use any rope.(I guess first group had a rope and a few of them might have used but in our group nobody used the rope while climbing up). At around 3-4 spots there were railings of iron provided for support but they didn't decrease the risk at all.We just felt little comfortable due to their presence.And they were not present at, all the dangerous spots. Some of us were falling and getting up again and again falling! Some of us even repented for coming to such a dangerous journey!(But I am 100% sure they were not serious!)Some of us even cried...(girls of course!)On certain points the rocks were so steep and the way was so narrow that just one step to the side and you will reach the bottom in no time!The valley (actually not valley but it didn't look any less dangerous to us!) was so scary that while writing this also when i recollect the memory of those places, a thrilling sensation passes through my body!And same kind of so many spots we crossed! We reached a spot which was like a flat small maidan and the view from here was Spectacular! The whole Sahyadri Range was visible (now this is a bit exaggeration!) and the beauty..My God ! I can't describe it in words...!The colour in that evening sky was totally different...Scattered clouds only increased the beauty of this scenic picture!
We all felt so fresh and good at this place that we were now again charged up for the further journey. We started again, walked a little and finally at around 7:30 PM or so we reached second 'padaav'. It was almost dark.Rain was intermittent.Clouds were playing around us (or we were playing around in the clouds!)I jokingly said 'Hum baadalo ke bich hai to chaand bhi yahi kahi aajubaju me hona chahiye!' and Lo! I caught the glimpse of Moon! It was looking so silvery and beautiful! And before I could show it to my other friends it was hidden behind thick fog! It was playing hide and seek with us! We rested for a while took out Torches and after a few minutes our third phase of the marvellous trek started.
(Read the overnight Trek experience along with a few more beautiful pictures in my next Blog, third Blog in this Trek series...Till then ciao!!!)