Into the Sahyadris: Ajoba Trek

22:12:00 Charles Wood 0 Comments

At 4500 ft, Ajoba is one of the highest peaks of Maharashtra. Ajoba means "Grandfather"in marathi. There are two treks here, one to the Ajoba top and the other one to the Luv-Kush caves. The direction for both these treks are different and this post describes the trek to the Luv-Kush caves.

[table color="theme1"]
[row] [col]Location[/col] [col]Shahapur, Maharashtra[/col] [/row]
[row] [col]Base Village[/col] [col]Dehne[/col] [/row]
[row] [col]Height[/col] [col]4511 ft[/col] [/row]
[row] [col]Difficulty Level[/col] [col]2/5[/col] [/row]
[row] [col]Duration[/col] [col]2 Hrs[/col] [/row]
[row] [col]Season[/col] [col]Monsoon / Summer / Winter[/col] [/row]

[item title="History"]
According to Hindu Mythology, it is believed that Luv Kush were born here and Valmiki their grandfather trained them. There is Valmiki Ashram midway through the trek where the samadhi of Valmiki is kept. There are caves of Luv Kush with their cradle known as Sita Cha Palna in Marathi.

[item title="How to reach"]
By Train: Reach Asangaon station on the Central Railway Line. Take a Bus/Rickshaw to Shahapur village. The base village is called Dehne which is 40 kms away from Sahpur. Jeeps are available which take you to the Dehne village.

By Car: Reach Lonavala and proceed towards Aamby Valley. Take a right at the Y junction, the straight leads you to Aamby Valley. Continue on this path till you cross the Salter lake. You should reach Ekole village in about an hour. The road between Salter Lake and Ekole village is in poor condition.

[item title="The trek"]
The Trek starts from the Ekole village. There is a trail running parallel to a fenced property which takes you to the fort. The start of the trail is right at the start of the village and perpendicular to the road that brings you to the Ekole. The initial 10 minutes are a gradual climb. You reach a temple halfway from the village to the fort. There is a board which mentions the history of the ghangad fort here.
There is a trail next to the temple that takes you to a gate which is in ruins. This is the entrance to the fort and it takes about half an hour to reach here from the temple. The gate leads you to a cave which can house upto 40 people. Towards the right side of the cave you have a flat surface which is a good spot for camping. To the extreme right of the fort is huge slab of stone resting against the mountain.
There is a ladder towards the left side of the cave which takes you to a trail that in turn takes you to the top of the fort. The ladder has been installed recently, the only way up otherwise was to climb with the help of a rope. The last part of the ladder is tricky, as there is a narrow foothold with space only to keep the front part of your foot.
An exposed trail continues from here that takes you to the top. You will find several water cisterns here. There are steel ropes attached to the side of the wall of the mountains which aid you in climbing up. One has to be very careful on this part.


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