Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Sinhagad Trek


Well folks this is short blog. So be happy :-)

One day, we (Suni, I and my colleague at office) decided to go on a trek. There is an old historic fort not far from where we live, its called Sinhagad (or loosely translated Lion Fort). Situated on the Bhuleswar range of the Sahyadri Mountains in western India near Pune, its about 1300 meters above sea level. Finally 7 of us made it to the top!

I always prided myself to be a tireless trekker. However this mountain, although not arduous, gave run for my money. I had to take frequent 5 minute breather at regular intervals to make it through. In the end I made to the top of the mountain in about 1hr and 35 minutes. My son, Adi, fared much better – he made it in 1hr and 20 mins!!

We decide to take all precaution, so we had our sunglasses, trekking shoes, caps, 1.5 litres of water per person (I was carrying 5 bottles of water in the back pack!) and Snickers & chips (which I need not have bothered, as you will see below) .

Although this trek is pretty gruelling (it does test your stamina and resolve), its still a called – a “Gujju Trek”. Its an intersting story why its called a gujju trek. The Gujaratis in India are called gujjus. They are known for 2 things – one is for their Food and other for their stinginess. So whenever they travel, whether alone or in group (mostly in groups, so they can avoid any extra cost of travelling alone), they are known for getting everything packed from home and eating all the way through the entire journey (this way they avoid wasting any money in buying things on their way and they are always well fed throughout). This trek gets its name Gujju Trek, because you will find a small shanty hutment stalls every few hundred yards, which will serve you refreshments. So, if you choose to, you can have refreshments in all these stalls you want and by the time you reach to the stall, you wouldn't have broken a single drop of sweat and be as fresh as if you have never left home :-). So you would be well fed as a Gujju! hence the name Gujju Trek :-)

Now to interesting part - a surprise!– I decided NOT to carry a camera! Can you believe it!! But as they say, a camera always follows a photographer :-) (don’t ask me who says it – i have no clue!). My friend had got his PnS camera Canon Powershot D10. Its a lovely little camera, fantastic JPEG processing engine and weather proof to boot! I was pleasantly surprised by the image quality!. So this will be my first blog with a Non-Olympus camera :-)

Here are some pics after we reached the top.

Soon after we reached the summit IMG_0454
In front of the fort entrance


At the restaurant inside the fort. There are number of local eateries inside the fort. All of these are well kept and serve local maharashtrian  food. The food includes Chaas (spicy buttermilk), Kanda and Alu Bhajji (Onion and Potato batter fried), thecha (hot chilly and garlic chutney), bhakri (local bread) and pitla (made from chick peas flour). Here is Suni getting Chaas.
This is also a very good example of how NOT to take a photograph! Notice all the sun+shadows on subject’s face? Nothing can make a picture worse than that!


All of us waiting for Food to arrive. Hungry as hell (you can see from their faces)!!
There it is – the lovely Kanda bhajji and Alu bhajji!!

Anu – this and the next few pictures are especially for you!! Smile
More food!! IMG_0463
Yummy!!! finally the photographer gets his share! Smile IMG_0464
Enjoying!! IMG_0466
Food done – now for bit of family pic!  
Suni inside one of the empty  hutment stalls having a kulfi (homemade ice-cream)! IMG_0470IMG_0467
Nice scenery! IMG_0472
All pics are taken in native JPG. Only Contrast, vibrancy and cropping adjusted in CS4 IMG_0473
Shivaji was the king who captured this fort from the Moghuls. This is Shivaji’s bust. IMG_0474

A lovely way to spend your weekend!