Dhak bahiri trek is a very exciting trek in the Sahyadri mountain range. This fort and Bahiri caves are popular among adventure lovers due to its challenging yet thrilling trek route.
Location Address: Near Sandshi village, Karjat taluka, Raigad district, Maharashtra.
Best Time To Visit: October to January is the ideal time to do this trek. Avoid this trek in monsoons and rainy seasons. The route becomes muddy & slippery in monsoon season; sometimes you can also get trapped between water streams from Sandshi side. And due to a steep climb, it becomes difficult to do Dhak bahiri trek in the rainy season.
Dhak Bahiri Fort Information:
The pair of Dhak fort and Bahiri caves is situated in the Karjat region of Raigad district in Maharashtra. Both places are situated on the same mountain near Karjat city. The name Dhak Bahiri is derived from the name of fort Dhak and Bahiri Caves (which means Bhairavnath). Dhak bahiri trek is one of the most difficult treks in Maharashtra. It is counted among the difficult treks like Alang-Madan-Kulang, Lingana, Vazir Pinnacle, Harishchandragad etc. The fort stands a height of 2700 feet & offers quite challenging but exciting trek.[caption id="attachment_1762" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Approach on 70 degree steep rock patch![/caption]
Dhak Bahiri Trek
There are 3 different routes to reach Bahiri caves. Various hikers and adventure enthusiasts regularly use all routes. It takes around 3 hours to reach the top from all routes. Trek route involves dense forest, steep approach, rocky terrain and rock climbing so it is not advisable for first-timers. Try to start the trek in the early morning because sunlight heat ups the rocks in the afternoon.
It is better to have a guide with you as the route is confusing as well as passes through thick forest. You can get a spectacular view of the surrounding mountain range from caves. While doing Dhak bahiri trek, one can observe various peaks in Sahyadri Mountain Range like Karnala, Manikgad, Duke’s Nose, Bhimashankar and 2 peaks of Rajmachi Fort: Shriwardhan & Manranjan.[caption id="attachment_1761" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Magnificent view from the caves![/caption]
Dhak Bahiri Caves
At the end of Dhak bahiri trek route, there are 2 big caves of Lord Bhairavnath. Local people consider these caves as a place of holy pilgrimage. Bahiri caves lie in the center of the mountain while proceeding towards the Dhak fort. There is a temple of Lord Bahiri(Bhairavnath) inside caves. Many local people sacrifice animals like goat, sheep, and hen to this deity as a part of their belief.
Water tank and few utensils are also there inside these caves. The water is drinkable however, it may not be suitable for everyone so it’s better to carry your own water. This is an ideal spot for those persons who want to enjoy adventurous natural rock climbing & technical climbing.
NOTE: Sometimes, the Poojari inside caves does not allow girls to enter inside caves. In that case, there is some space near Caves where girls can stay. You will get the same view from that place as that of caves.
[caption id="attachment_1763" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Steep climb on last rock patch.[/caption]
Dhak Bahiri Trek Routes
- The 1st route goes from the Sandshi village on Karjat side. You can take ST Bus or 8-Seater rickshaw from the Karjat to Sandhshi
- The 2nd route goes from Jambhivali village. ST buses to Jambhivali village are available from Karjat.
- The 3rd route goes via Rajmachi Fort. As you proceed towards Rajmachi from Lonavala, there are various waterfalls and a water stream. After crossing the water stream, you can see 2 different turns. Right diversion from here leads to Dhak bahiri and left diversion leads to Rajmachi. This right turn meets the Wadhap village after few time.
Trek ends in the caves and people avoid going on the fort top, as there is nothing to see. There is a permanent rope attached to the last patch of the Dhak bahiri trek. Rock-cut steps, a steel wire, and a wooden ladder are there along with the rope at the steep patch. You can take the support of these things to reach in the caves.
There is a ridge between the pinnacle on the left and the Dhak Mountain on the right. In the midway between Dhak fort and Bahiri caves, there is this beautiful rock pinnacle. Only professional/experianced hikers and rock climbers can climb it. You need to have advance rock climbing equipment to climb on this rock pinnacle.
As per historians, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj had once visited holy caves of Bahiri and offered the golden plate to the deity. The people did not know this fort for many years. Dhak bahiri trek route was re-discovered by Sir G.N. Dandekar, a noble historian of Maharashtra. Today, the fort is in ruins and there is nothing to see on the fort. There are some cooking utensils inside caves. Anyone can use those utensils for cooking their food. However, as per local people, you should clean those utensils and put back again. Otherwise, the person who tries to steal them goes through the trouble or dies.
Elevation: This fort lies at a height of 822 meters (2700 feet) above mean sea level.
Difficulty Level: The Dhak bahiri trek falls under the category of Hard grade trek. The final patch involving rock climbing is bit difficult and not feasible for everyone.
Entry Fees: Not Applicable.
How To Reach:
- By Road: ST buses and 8-seater auto-rickshaws are available between Karjat and Sandshi village. The first bus from Karjat ST Bus depot leaves around 07:00 am and 8-Seater rickshaws remain available throughout the day on Karjat station west side. ST buses for Wadhap village are also available from Karjat.
- Nearest Railway Station: Karjat railway station on the Central Railway line is the closest railhead to reach Sandshi village. You will get Buses & Rickshaws outside the station.
- Nearest Airport: Mumbai Airport & Pune airport are 2 closest airports to this location.
Eating Stuff: There are no hotels available in the Sandshi village. Therefore, it is advisable to carry your own food & water with you. Alternatively, you can request local villagers for food arrangements. They happily provide food & shelter at a reasonable price.
Staying Options: If you are planning to spend a night at the top, then there are 2 caves at the top of the fort. They can accommodate about 50 people at a time. Otherwise, you can stay in the base village and start the trek early in the morning.
Dhak Bahiri Map:
Dhak bahiri trek will certainly give you some extremely thrilling moments to cherish for the lifetime! If you are an adventure enthusiast then this place is waiting for you!