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near Vajapūr, Mahārāshtra (India)
Blog post links:
Part I: https://nomadosauras.com/2018/09/16/chanderi-fort-trek-panvel/
Part II: https://nomadosauras.com/2018/09/16/chanderi-trek-vangani/
Chanderi fort trek (till cave)
Base Villages: 1. Tamsai: 16 kms from Panvel (South-west route)
2. Chinchavali: 10 kms from Badlapur/Vangani (North-east route)
Difficulty: Moderate till the Cave for experienced trekkers
Risk Factor: Medium. Do not attempt to climb the pinnacle without professional guidance.
All ratings are for winter trek.
Rating guide: https://nomadosauras.com/guide-for-the-blog/
Route: Panvel-Tamsai-Col-Chanderi Cave-Col-Chinchavli-Vangani
Ascent from Tamsai: Panvel-Tamsai-Col-Chanderi cave.
From Tamsai, walk north along the paddy fields for 400 m before turning east (right with your back to Tamsai), where the trail cuts through fields in Chanderi’s direction. Afterwards, the trail circumvents base of the unnamed hill on left before reaching a stream (dry except in monsoon) and then cuts across one of Mhasmal’s spurs to enter dense forest. Following this, a steep climb leads to the col (~3 kms from Tamsai) where Chanderi stands on your right (east) and Mhasmal on left (west). An easy grade rock patch with a bit of exposure but excellent holds is all that separates you from the Chanderi Massif. Once at the base of the massif, turn right and pass a water cistern to reach the cave.
There are two phases of the Chanderi trek from col-
1. Cave: Moderate grade. A steep climb from the Chanderi-Mhasmal col ends at the cave with a peak elevation of 2185 ft.
2. Peak (not attempted): Very Difficult grade. Please remember that descending is always more difficult before attempting this section.
Ascent from Chinchavali: Badlapur/Vangani-Chinchavali-Col-Chanderi cave.
A solitary broad trail climbs up the plateau from Chinchavali. The gradual climb leads you to a flat, clear trail due south that traverses the plateau to culminate in a dry basin, about 3.5 kms from Chinchavali. Look out for markers from this point onwards. The route sometimes climbs through and at other times, alongside the gully (Naal) to end at the col. Turn left (east) for Chanderi and follow the route to cave as mentioned above.
Total Time: 11 hours (of which active time: 7 hours)
Food and Water: Potable water available in a difficult-to-reach water cistern at the southern end of the fort. Rest of the water cisterns have been contaminated by plastic waste. Carry atleast 3 litres of water per head during winters.
Accommodation: Chanderi Cave
Night trek: Not recommended
Best time to visit: Preferably winter. Please do not attempt this trek in peak monsoon.
USP: Chanderi cave
Transport options: ST buses (aka Laal Dabba) run a couple of times between Panvel ST depot and Dundra/Dundra Fata. From Dundra, one can proceed to Tamsai by sharing Tumtums. The most convenient option would be to hire a Tumtum directly to Tamsai from Panvel.
NOTE: If you plan to attempt the trek without professional guidance, please consider hiring a local guide from the base village.
The information provided here is for informational purposes only. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore, strictly at your own risk.
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