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Monday, 1 June 2009

Treks in Summer - Karnala

In my so many years of trekking as passion, I have never trekked in the summers. It was a mental block that I wanted to get rid of.

I had attempted Karnala twice and had returned without reaching the top. Now Karnala was special. It was my first trek and it is a relatively simple one. I took it as a challenge to complete this. It was totally unplanned. It was a saturday evening. My friend Hem and me have been planning to trek together for a really long time but we have not been able to do so. We bumped into each other and he requested some support in preparing for his MBA entrance interviews. We were both free the next day and we jumped at the idea of a small trek. We plumped for Karnala as it was nearby and also relatively simple as I mentioned earlier. Plus Hem had never been to Karnala.

We set out very early. We targeted the 455 am train from CST and left home at 415. We reached quite early and saw the 423 am train waiting for us. We ran and caught it just in time. It reached Panvel station at around 540 after which we engaged a rickshaw and asked him to halt at any open restaurant as both of us were feeling quite hungry. After a sumptuous breakfast of omlet and bread, we started the trek at around 640. It was quite early and just about day break. In fact it was a bit dark when we started the trek. Now Karnala is a bird sanctuary and we could hear the chirping of birds early in the morning.

I was feeling quite low due to the sweat but I really wanted to complete the trek this time. It helped that Hem is a physiotherapist and he gave me tips on how to pull myself through. On the way we stopped around thrice to enjoy the beautiful sunrise, to dwell on the chirping of the birds, to meditate on the scenic beauty of the mountains.

We reached the top at around 840 which was a decent time to complete the trek. We had our snack and looked around the place. Finally at around 940 we started the return journey. We made this in one continuous walk and we were down at 1035 am. We got a bus to the station but we were surprised to note that the trains were not running due to some maintenance work on the tracks. So we made our way to the bus stand and took a bus home. We were home for lunch by 1 pm

Finally I had completed Karnala. In my third attempt this year.

Karnala is a relatively easy fort but it was quite another thing to trek to the top in the peak of summer. What a trek. What an experience. What fun!!

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