The Western Ghats also known
as the Sahyadri Mountains, is a mountain range along the western side of India. It runs north to south alongthe western edge of the Deccan
Plateau, and separates the plateau from a narrow
plain along the Arabian
Sea. The range starts near the border of Gujarat and Maharashtra, south of the River
Tapti, and runs approximately 1600 km through
the states of Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala ending at Kanyakumari, at the southern tip of India. About sixty percent of the
Western Ghats are located in the state of Karnataka.
feature which dominates Maharashtra most is the Sahyadri. From time immemorial
these mountains ranges have largely contributed to shape the life and the
culture of the region. The Sahyadri with numerous easy and difficult but all
delightful is a veritable paradise for trekkers as well as a climber.
The rugged topography of
the Sahyadri provides a rich wide choice of fascinating spots connected by
narrow unfrequented trails, that skirt the fields and thread the extensive
forests far from rails and roads and thus away from the smoke of factories and
the nauseating crowds. These tracks have all the allurements of beauty flung on
all sides, the scenes awe-inspiring in their solitude and stature, to entice you
deeper and deeper into the dens of its enchantment.
Once a man found
a track in Sahyadri, he can never keep away for long. The Sahyadri germs once
caught, works inside like a relapsing fever, it just bides its time before
breaking out with increased virulence. It is an all time obsession.
Apart from the natural grandeur, the Sahyadri is also
studded with innumerable hill forts, marvelous ancient rock sculptured caves,
sanctified shrines of pilgrimage, huge manmade lakes and of course a galaxy of
formidable forbidding pinnacles.
October to march is the most congenial period for long
treks in these great escarpments of Deccan, since the rains recede by September
and after the month of October heat, the cooler season sets in. The post monsoon
freshness and the vitality of nature pervade the landscapes at this time. Even
monsoon hitting the region by mid-june with showering rains, rushing streams,
flooded rivers, waterfalls all around dropping over the mountains walls and
above all, pinnacles playing hide and seek among the moisture-laden clouds,
offers a unique charm to a Sahyadri trek.