Our friend Yogi, who had come from Chennai for one week to cover as many trekking areas as possible, wanted to do 2 treks in one day. We extended it to 3, and planned to visit 3 forts, Kalavantin Durg Prabalgad and Kalaburj.
It has one of the riskiest climbs. Although the actual climb is not long, but it has very steep stairs, with few steps’ heights reaching almost to your knee. These stairs are cut through the mountain itself.
The Durg sits on a broad base and goes straight up. Once you reach the top, it offers you a beautiful panoramic view of the valley which looks very beautiful.
HOW TO REACH:
If you are planning to go by public transport then you will first have to reach the nearest railway station, Panvel, from there you will get regular autos to Durg’s parking. From parking, you walk up for 3kms to the base village and start the actual trek. Along the way, you’ll have places to eat and stay.
If you are going by your own vehicle then put “Kalavantin Durg Parking” in Google maps or click here.
All of these three share the common starting point.
Entry fee: ₹50/person and you have to make an entry in the register while going up and coming back. This fee will work for Prabalgad and Kalaburjas well.
Best time to go: Any season except monsoon
It has one of the toughest climbs. The actual climb starts after walking for around 1km from the base village. The incline is tough because it has no flat path in between. There are rocks all over the ascent which will take a toll on your legs. Have an ample amount of water with you and some chocolates. Once you reach the top, you need to walk for around 500m to reach the actual spot with the flag and idol of Shivaji Maharaj. From the point, you can have a very good view of Kalavantin Durg along with the valley and be amazed by the beauty of it. A very big advantage is, the guides there have marked the whole way superbly, so you won’t miss the route. You can enjoy the bonfire and camp at the top.
HOW TO REACH: Same as Kalavantin Durg as both of these share the common parking place.
Entry fee: ₹50/person and you have to make an entry in the register while going up and coming back.
Best time to go: Any season, but prefer the winter season
It shares the climbing route with Prabalgad. Once you reach the top, you’ll see a board with instructions. Path to the right will lead you to the Kalaburj and it’s around 2.5 km from the board. The route is well marked, just follow the trail, red ribbons, and white marks. If you’ll go just after the monsoon season, you can enjoy a dip in the open water. It wouldn’t be as clean as one might expect but will surely be refreshing after the tough climb. Reach to the saffron flag and enjoy the view of the dam and valley.
How to reach: Same as above 2.
Entry fee: Same ₹50
Runner’s View: A complete loop of Kalavantin Durg Prabalgad and Kalaburj will be approximately 16 km with a total elevation gain of 780 m.