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SALHER(5140ft), SALOTA FORT(4986ft)
17/18th March 2000
Parshuram Temple @ Salher Fort         One of  the beautiful fort which I ever seen in my trekking life after Rajgadh. Salher an Historic fort. It is place where lord Parshuram did his Tapashcharya. His mother Renuka Mata. Both of these temple were build on this  fort. The highest fort in Maharashatra & Second higest peak in terms of  hight in Maharashatra after Kalsubai. This fort was taken by Chatrapati Shivaji in 1671 &  Moughal attacked on the same fort in 1672. Almost 1 Lac Soldier participated  in this war. 10000 died in this battle & finally  Chatrapati Shivaji own the battle. In 18 century Peshwa occupied this fort &  latter by Britisher's. So this is the short History of this fort & hence this was my another long awaiting dream to visit this fort.

On 16th  March  2000 night we started from State Transport Bus(ST) at  12:30pmfrom Mumbai Central Bus Depot. Since it was continuos holiday there were heavy rush in  the bus. My co-trekker Milind initially denied to  travel by this & he forced me to plan the travel by some other mweans like by Train & all.  But I was very  much determined to go for this place. We found a some good hint from the kind Conductor of that Bus to ask the driver  if  allows to sit in  the drivers cabin. I sparkled by this hint & immediately without wasting a second caught hold of the driver. I requested him when he was cleaning his front glass of the body. He took one glance of we two seeing our need & watching our tight pack Rucksack. He took some time to see nobody around  us & forwarded  his  thought of getting something extra in terms of money. So their was no thought to pay whatever cost since the  aim was  to go & get  it done. Also it was affordable to  us &  was  not that heavy. So without thinking any  other thought we  started to  upload our sacks & occupied the sits which  was not that comfortable but it  was OK. 

As bus started at 12:30p  we were sharing our past experiences sitting in the front cabin. A nice night view of Mumbai  Nasik root we got. We did plan for three  forts in the vicinity of this area  called Salbery region. Those three fort were Salher, Salota & Mulher. Since this was our first time we was not sure whether we can make it or not with reference to our economical situation. Any way we reached Nasik at 5:30am of 17th March & just we were sipping cup of coffe in the cold, the announcer announced an  ST bus was on the to leave Nasik for Pimpalner  via  Satana. Though the  bus was full we decided  to go since  the next  bus  we  can't take  a chance  when it will come  & all. We travelled in  the Bus alost  one hr.  standing since the  bus   was too full. We  left Nasik for Satana  at 6:00am.  We reached Satana at 8:30am.
From  Satana  we  took another bus which was heading towards  Salher village which was our proposed destination  to start ouut trekking. We reached Salher at 10:00am. After spending considerable rest & gathering the required info of the  root &  returning travel arrangement we decided to complete Salher  & Salota both the fort in one go. We started from Salher village at 11:00pm The root is exposed as well the Rock cut steps is an easy climb but tiring too since it's little verticle.  We found 3 gates initially entering the fort.  As we moved further we found  a big Man  made  lake. & Temple of Renuka mata. Above this there are  3  caves with Ganesh Temple. Since we are yet to reach the topmost point I was  little reluctant to spent  time in the vicinity but my co-trekker made me to think over it & we took 10 min. to spent time  near this beautiful Kund. In the middle one pillar is standing. It is one of the largest of it's kind I've ever seen in my trekking life we were fascinated by the beauty of this lake. On the right side the mountain exists where the lord Parshuram's temple exist which is one of the highest point of this fort & second highest peak of the Maharashtra mountains. On the left heading towards the Parshuram Temple one can  see Mangi-Tungi Pinacle which is standing like guards of Sahayadri. On the way ahead  one can  find two big ruined construction looks like main courtyard. After 15 minutes we reached on  the top of the fort  Inside the temple rockcut footprints are their. On the east lies Salota fort & on the same line ahead lying Mulher. As I reached on the top at 1:00pm I started watching the next root where  it goes  to Salota. Watching from  the top  it wa  very much scary since next to the root was  lying just ahead a fall of almost 800 ft  down. From top it's one of the breath taking view, one can see all peaks & fort standing all  around. Anyway we took some rest on the top. After doing considerable map reading & then our Lunch. We started our next trek to Salota fort.

Another fascinating root which lies  left while climbing towards Top of Salher Fort. We started at 2:20p  from the temple. We are supposed t o  reach  a col between Salher & Salota. On the way we found almost 17-18 rock cuut caves & a seenic view. It's on the other side of the fort.  It was cool atmosphere. At the edge of the strait road the rock cut steps took us to the col. I was cursing myself since  I could not catch them in Camera  though I was carrying one  without Camera Reel. We  thought we can get it either  at  Nasik/Satana or  at  the Village. But it  was our  bad luck which made  us  to think another trip to  this place with more  preparedness. We was following one of book which we trusted & we tried to  follow as  it was explain in the book. We could not found  the first gate of the fort, though we took one c  opl  e te round of the Salota moutain. It took one hr. to take round this  scary mountain. We travelled on the  slippery footpath. Really it  was scary once we saw the  same root from top. It was our bad  luck we could not found t he root.  So at the the last of our trial we found the root but we  was not sure to go  or  not. As soon we decided to descend down we was taking a glance where that Salota cave might exist. We was standing in the col between two forts. Just I got a look of some construction. Oh!  We both breath out a tiresome Hoosh!  It was 4:15pm Even though if we thought to visit back  it was  not possible  to make  it & come  back in the  day light. So  we decided to descend to a village Waghambe which lies on  the  left of the col heading towards Salota, also  a  village  called Maldar lies  on  the  right of the col. It took one hr. to reach Waghambe. Though we decided to  visit Mulher we  had  second thought which made us to return back  to Mumbai since economically we under estimated the fund requirement. So we decided to reach Salher on the same & then next day morning to Nasik from  Slaher by  ST bus which starts from Salher via shortcut. But as soon we reached Waghambe we heard  Bus typical sound which is coming towards waghambe from Salher. We ran their & fortunately  in time. Again the ST Bus was full with locals as  usual our past experience we took  the driver cabin  as our cool way to take rest since we  was swating heavily. Our  lips were dried indicating signs of dehydration. We requuested the bus  driver to stop for a  while since our water bottle  were alost empty while descending from Salota to Waghambe  on the way. Litterlay  I drank almost one litter of water. But it was quite satisfying trek both we found  since we didn't wasted our valuable time on the  way waiting for transport  &  all.  Also it was my dream to visit the highest mountain fort of Maharashtra. We left Waghambe at 5:35pm & reached Satana at  7:15pm. We  got a nice sleep out of  our triesome trek, makes us  fresh enough  to travel our next journey heading to Mumbai. We had some food & making ourself fresh during  the waiting  time  for Satana-Mumbai bus. At 9:00pm we  left Satana  to Mumbai  & the  next day  morning we  were at  our respective home  at  around 5:45am. It was overall time optimization as well a   satisfaction of visiting  Salher make us to think revisit  these forts with  more prepairdness & some  more crowd. So guyes see you then  if  interested to join my plans  do keep in  touch.
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