On 7th March, I went on a night trek up the tallest peak in Maharashtra, Kalsubai with #treksandtrails. At a height of 1,646m, it towers above the surrounding mountains. This trek included a lot of first times for me. I ask you to sit back, relax and read on as this adventure unfolds. #kalsubai
8:30pm = Got Ready
“Change,” my father shouted from the bedroom. I put down my book and rushed to my room to change. I slipped on my USPA t-shirt, newly purchased trekking pants and trekking boots. I put on my watch so that I knew the exact time and shouted, “Ready to go.”
8:45pm – 12:20am = Journey to Kasara
My father, my mother and I took an auto-rickshaw to the Western Express Highway Metro Station. This would be my first time on the Mumbai Metro Service. We were supposed to be met by a friend of my parents, Rajesh. We took the Metro to Vivo Ghatkopar wondering why it was called “Vivo Ghatkopar” not just Ghatkopar. When we reached the station, mom solved the mystery. “Vivo” was the phone brand. Rajesh uncle met us and we realized our train to Kasara was a little delayed. We got on at 10:10, 5 minutes the scheduled time. After 2 hours and 5 minutes in the train we arrived at Kasara station.
12:30am – 03:30am = Introductions, Jeep Ride to Bari Village and pre-Climb Instructions At the station we met our group and got introduced to our trek leaders. We got assigned jeeps I was with my parents, Rajesh uncle, 2 men, 3 college kids and our guide Sangam. The jeeps ride was very long almost 2 hours and, on the way, we were quizzing the guide about the climb. One of the college kids turned around and asked me “Where are you from?” “Mumbai,” I answered. “Where in Mumbai?” he asked. “Goregaon,” I replied. “Where in Goregaon?” he asked. I asked a question of my own: “Do you want my address?” that made him a bit embarrassed. I learned the lesson, “Never tell strangers your address” On the way we stopped for ten minutes at a tea-shop were we ate popcorn and biscuits and the adults enjoyed some tea. After those 2 hours we arrived At Bari Village. Here I realized that I was the only child in the whole group. A sheet was passed around for us to fill in our details. we were given glowing wrist bands so that they knew we were part of the group. We put our headlamps on and we were ready to start our trek. .
3:30am – 6:55am = Ascent
Initially the trek was easy and we were going very quickly, our first break was at a temple where the actual trek started. We were climbing in the dark with our headlamps guiding our way through the darkness even though it was almost a full moon night the headlamps helped. and it began to get tougher. We struggled past rocks and the steepest of steps you would need to use your both your hands for this type of step, this is when a headlamp comes in handy. We reached the first of 4 ladders that we would have to climb along the way. The 3rd ladder was the longest and most imposing of them all. It was basically a metallic ladder placed at a steep acute angle. There was a traffic jam blocking everyone and everyone had to wait for a while before they were able to start climbing. The ladders were easy to climb but we constantly ran into road-blocks like people who walked up facing backwards or took breaks mid-climb. Luckily, we were carrying water that was enough for the 4 of us but if you want to travel light there a people who sell mineral water at stops throughout the climb. We were still half an hour away from the summit when the sky started lighting up and we were worried we wouldn’t make it the top in time to see the sun-rise but we kept going and reached the last ladder which was a simple climb after the 3rd ladder that we climbed.
7:00 – 8:00 = Time spent at the summit and breakfast
It is very cold and windy at the peak so we were all bundled up in our layers We waited for a while to see the sun come out from behind the clouds it was a truly beautiful sight. We clicked some pictures and then, we were all rounded up for a team picture behind the temple on the top of mountain. Right when the trek leader was going to click the picture a man selling tea crossed the frame saying “Chai Garam” which means hot tea in Hindi, we all had a hearty laugh. We all climbed down to the breakfast point which is half an hour to 25 minutes away from the peak. We were all served poha but I am allergic to it so the tour leaders arranged for freshly cooked Maggi for me to eat. I suggest you bring your own snacks to eat after breakfast as the portions are quite small.
8:00 – 10:30 = Descent
The way down was similar to the way up, but in daylight. The ladders feel more scary in the day as you can see all the way down where you will fall in case your feet slips. The third ladder was super scary as there were monkeys to deal with as well. You should not hit the monkeys or bother them in any ways.
Earlier we had been warned of the monkeys and told to keep our food wrappers and such inside our bags and not on the side pockets. We all skidded and fell but I fell the least with only 1 fall while Rajesh uncle fell the most with 5 falls. And this was with our trekking poles. We all used one pole each so we could use the other hand to steady ourselves on the rock wall. We kept walking and walking, and the steep steps felt even more painful while climbing down. The last part was long and tough but we struggled to the end.
In my opinion this is a trip worth taking. It is best to do it in the late winter season as the sun will beat down less powerfully and there is no chance of rain. Even though monsoon trek is very popular the path will be very slippery so I wouldn’t suggest that for it will be more dangerous.
Go And Make Sure To Enjoy The View.