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Monday, 10 June 2013

Contrasting Trips to Sinhagad, Pune

Two amazingly contrasting trips to Sinhagad Fort in Pune within a year, and I can't help but compare the two. Probably the only two common factors in both the trips were: 
a. Presence of Aniruddha
b. The place where we had our afternoon lunch, the hut which sold the very filling Pitla Bhakri.

Last July, on my first ever visit to Pune, former colleagues Ruju and Aniruddha had accompanied me to this picturesque and historical fort, and amid incessant rains, we had taken a bus ride from Swargate Bus Station at Pune to the foothill of Sinhagad. From there, a jeep ride ensured that we were at the entrance to the fort and we did quite a lot of exploration on the hilltop, exploring the unimaginably fresh greenery and breathing in some of the most refreshingly clean air you can ever come across.

It was greenery all around. We could not see soil anywhere. All the hills all around were covered in green and soaked in mist. Sometimes we could not see anything that was 3 metres away from us. It was as though we were walking in the clouds once we were on top. What a great experience!

This time though, it was in the middle of a raging summer, and we, Aniruddha, Vipin and Guru, went to the foothill in Aniruddha's car, and trekked to the top from there. We started early in the morning, stopped at Khadakwasla for a couple of nice photographs, and carried on. Sinhagad looked barren. It looked as though there was not a single green plant around across the Sahyadri range. Although it was a planned trek, we were not prepared for the terrain we came across. We had probably underestimated it a bit, but we had reached the hilltop within an hour and a half nonetheless, my indigestion issues and Guru's adventurous detours notwithstanding :).

Irrespective of whether there was greenery or not, the atmosphere on top, the strong cool breeze and the clean air was pretty much the same, and it was as enjoyable as the previous trip. Adding to the occasion was Vipin's exhibition of his newly learnt talent of playing Flute. All in all, a couple of memorable experiences...

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