Camping Date – August 23rd 2014.
While going through various ideas on how to spend my birthday, I was aware of the two facts:- It’s monsoon; We live just few hours away from the mountain ranges. The obvious conclusion? Let’s drive to an isolated place, camp at a scenic location with the whole cliche of BBQ, bonfire, tent and starry skies.
Although we had been to a lot of treks, this was our first time camping all by ourselves. We went shopping to Decathlon and invested a fortune in various camping gears, quite sure we’re gonna be doing this quite often.
We shortlisted various locations and finally zeroed down on Naneghat based on two parameters:
1. We can drive all the way till the top, no need carry the heavy luggage in the rains. Also having your car next to the camp site means you can carry all sort of useless things (read: beach volley ball, extra clothes, board games) with you.
2. Naneghat offers an excellent view of the valley from the top-most point in the ranges. One can pitch a tent at the edge of a cliff, right next to a deadly 3000 ft. fall. What trill!
Naneghat is a mountain pass located near Kalyan, a 4 hours drive from Bombay. It was used as a trade route for merchants to get to the other side of the valley and explore new markets. The mountain pass still has a pot that was used in the 15th century for toll-collection from the said merchants. The road till the mountain is spotless and full of scenic locations. But that joy ride doesn’t last long; once you reach the base of the mountain, there’s practically no road. It’s a 1.5 hours of off-roading at 5kmph.
Drive to Naneghat
Our LOTR poster.
On the top of Naneghat, time to set our tent.
Hah, not so tough.
So we had taken salads, aloo patty and breads to make burgers for the supper and had prepared a marinade with veggies and paneer for our barbecue dinner. (No meat because weather. Next time we take a mini-fridge.)
Not a paneer fan but the experience made this the best paneer kebabs I ever had in my life.
By the time we were done hogging down and cleaning up, it was time for bonfire because the morning sky was just about to appear. We sat by the fire enjoying the array of single malt miniatures that I had handpicked from various locations.
Quite a successful first camping experience. This definitely tops the list of our favourite camping spots. One may come across trekkers and locals coming here occasionally. If you’re like us and prefer not having any human race around, it’s best to go in the weekdays.
Do share your feedback in the comments below. Would love to hear your opinion and answer any queries.