Rajmachi, one of the finest weekend excursion/trek, is not unknown to those living between Mumbai to Pune. Settled in 5B province zone of Western Ghats, Rajmachi (c. 826 mtrs above MSL) is little above to Lonavala`s altitude. , and is little less to its neighbouring tourist attraction Bhimashankar (c. 1005 mtrs.) and half of Kalsubai (c. 1646 Mtrs.) . Being at the high elevation, Rajmachi is blessed with enriched flora and fauna of Sahyadri, including species which are endemic to this biodiversity hotspot, called Western Ghats.
The flora and fauna of Rajmachi (Which is proposed by Wildlife Institute of India as Wildlife Sanctuary of apprx 70 Kms) comprises almost similar to that of Bhimashankar WLS , difference being that later having more evergreen patch of forest, being at higher altitude, impacted by the cloud gathering at hilltops. Nevertheless, the forest of Rajmachi is in continuity to not only Bhimashanker but also further north towards Harishchandragad and Kalsubai WLS, all falling in Western Ghats.
The reported species of Rajmachi are Crested serpent eagle, Changeable hawk eagle, Indian scimitar babbler, Brown headed barbet, Eurasian (Indian) Blackbird, Oriental honey buzzard, Gold fronted Chloropsis, Emerald dove, Black eagle, Shaheen falcon, Vernal hanging parakeet, Malabar grey hornbill, Grey junglefowl, Common kestrel, Oriental dwarf kingfisher, Scarlet minivet, Plum headed parakeet, Yellow footed green pigeon, Shikra , Heart spotted woodpecker, Stripped hyena, Barking deer, Indian Giant Squirrel, Brook`s gecko, Rock gecko, Bombay shield-tail, Bamboo Pit viper, Russel`s viper , Green Vine Snake, Blue Mormon, Blue Oakleaf, Common Map, Malabar spotted flat, Tawny Rajah and several floral species endemic to WG.
To observe and document the rich flora and fauna of this fort trail, a nature trek is organised on 10th to 11th September, 2011. The trek is actually a plain and slight uphill walk, literally 18-20 Kms. The nature trek is self observe and self identify oriented programme. Please note that none among the above sightings are guaranteed.
Remember, it is two days outing; hence Participants would have to bring additional cloths, sleeping bag/mat and some packed food (for breakfast and lunch on first day). Wear camouflaged, full sleeves T-shirt/Shirt and Cargo/Denim (no three-forth and no short pyjama) with good gripped trekking shoe.
This trek is sharing based expedition and expenses would be shared collectively, with nominal trek fee (all inclusive to be around Rs. 500 apprx). This doesn`t include the travel charges from Mumbai/Pune to Lonavala and from Karjat to Mumbai/Pune. Those willing to participate can send a confirmation SMS/Call to 9890255616 with their name and details of travelling. RSVP on Facebook event won`t be considered for registration for this event. Don’t forget to carry rain cover (for you and your camera/rucksack), mosquito repellent and umbrella. Smoking during the trek would be deemed as an offence.
The event is restricted to specific number of participants (based on first come, first registered) and is for those who are into nature photography, only.
Schedule of the Nature Trek:-
Saturday 10th September, 2011
Reach Lonavala station by 8.30 AM
Tea Breakfast upto 09.00 AM
Start the trail at 09.15AM
First break at 11.00 AM
Second break at 02.00 PM
Reach at Rajmachi (Udavane village) at 5.00 PM
Freshen up and evening tea at 06.00 PM
Night walk around the village 08.00 PM (subject to conditions)
Dinner at the village restaurant at 10.00PM
Discussion about the sightings of the day and some gossip at 10.30 PM
Go for sleep at 11.00PM
Sunday 11th September, 2011.
Wakeup at early at 06.00 AM
Visit the forts at 07.00 AM
Back to village restaurant at 08.30 AM
Breakfast at 09.30 AM
Leave for Kondavane caves at 10.30 AM
Reach Kondavane cavess upto 01.00 PM
Leave for Kondavane village upto 02.00 PM
Reach Kondavane Village upto 04.00 PM
Bus for Karjat station upto 05.00PM
Reach at Karjat Station upto 06.00PM
Catch the earliest train back for Mumbai/Pune.
End of expedition
Checklist of things to carry
Additional cloths for nightwear and following day
Cap or scarf
Sleeping Bag/mat or chadder
Binocs / Camera / Field Guide
Trekking Shoe with Socks (2 pair)
One Plastic Bag for used clothes/ waste
Rain cover for self/Rucksack and umbrella