If you’re looking for a fun location to head off too, which is possible for most members of your group, look no further. Naneghat is where you want to go. Naneghat also holds historical significance as one of the important trade routes connecting the Deccan Plateau with the Konkan. This is an easy hike and has much to offer for a variety of interests.
As the name suggests, this is a pass connecting the Deccan Plateau with its lower-lying neighbour, the Konkan strip. Consequently, this is a well used trail for locals to commute and it is a common sight to find local livestock clumsily navigating the steep and winding route on our way.
Naneghat is said to have been constructed by the Satvahan dynasty that ruled this region from 100BC to 300AD (approximately 350 years). The purpose of this pass was to connect Junnar, their chief town with their ports at Kalyan and Nalasopara. The main cave contains an inscription (in the Brahmi script prevalent in those times) informing us of thisw and giving further information about the Satvahan Dynasty.
We begin our trek from a village called Vaishakhere on the road going from Malshej to Murbad. Around two km or so before the village, our dirt trail forks off to the mountain. Above us, we see the Nanacha angtha (Nana’s thumb) marking the direction we have to take. Centuries of use have marked this trail very well, and it is indeed a wide ‘highway’ of a trail, that cannot be missed. An easy, but relentlessly upward route takes us to the main cave at the pass on the right of our trail in 2-3 hours. This huge cave is flanked by water tanks and provides a convenient place to stay in.
The trail here is flanked by steep rock walls and an untiring wind we are at the pass. As we go through, we come into a huge open plateau the deccan. on our left are the remains of an old building and compound and on our right, some more caves dot the mountain. one of these houses an old idol of Lord Ganesha.
We can climb up from here to reach some height on the Nanacha angtha, that had been marking our destination on our way up. The view from here is incredible. This is also a perfect place to spend time in the evening watching the sun go down.
When you query to go to Naneghat with us, please be sure to mention interests your group has. We sometimes take along guides that can add another dimension to our experience of the Sahyadri. Nature guides, snake experts, history buffs, photography enthusiasts, star gazers…. What is better than Naneghat in its ancient splendour? Its Naneghat marinated in a flavour of your choice.
Instructions for participants on Monsoon Hikes. Please do read them before heading out.