Torna Fort, also known as Prachandagad, is a large fort located in Pune district, in the Indian state of Maharashtra. It is historically significant because it was the first fort captured by Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj in 1646, at the age of 16, forming the nucleus of the Maratha empire. Wikipedia
Ways To Reach :
From the Village of Velhe :
Starting from Pune, preferably early in the morning is the best option. From Swargate Bus stand in Pune board any bus to the village of Velhe. The way to Torna starts from here and is quite straight. A walk of couple of hours leads to the “Bini Darwaaja”, the main entrance to the fort.
From Rajgad to Torna :
The route starts from “Male Darwaaja” of Rajgad, descending along the left side of “Sanjeevni Machi” and proceeds through a few houses. It continues through the woods and is about 5-6 hours walk. The road ends in front of ” Budhla Machi”. Here one has to climb a small rock patch. A walk of 15-20 minutes eastwards leads to the temple of “Mengai Devi”. This temple serves as an accommodation facility.
पोहोचण्याच्या वाटा :
पुणे जिल्ह्यातील वेल्हे हे तोरणा किल्ल्याच्या पायथ्याचे गाव आहे. वेल्हेला जाण्यासाठी मुंबई – बंगलोर हायवे (NH-4) वरील पुण्या पुढील नसरापूर फाटा गाठावा. पुण्या पासून नसरापूर ३६ किमी वर आहे. नसरापूर वरून वेल्हे गावात जाण्यासाठी जीप मिळतात. नसरापूर ते वेल्हे हे अंतर २९ किमी आहे.
It’s better to go till the parking spot (even though the road is not very good) on your vehicle. Parking it at the base near the police station is also an option but that will cause you to walk for a further two kilometres. iPhone displays an elevation equal to that of a modern day 73 floors within a distance of 4.6 km. Few shops at the top of the fort.Difficulty level 3 out of 5.For camping you can stay inside the Mengai Devi Temple or there are some hostel like Houses. Velhe is the base village of Torna fort. We can go to Velhe by bus as well, there are direct buses from Pune,Swargate.Not recommended to climb in the afternoon during summer.The few risky points are:- Zunjar Maachi ( dangerous cliff n trek ) better to avoid, Budhala Machi- No proper route to reach there but those have high gut on their
????trekking shoes , 2-3 hrs trek for novices from parking lot. Carry lot of drinking water as there is no potable water during summer season.The first half from parking point to the rock patch with railings is simple amounting to 50% of the trek. The second half, from rock patch to fort top is slightly steep climb. The railing helps a lot. One can stay overnight at the small temple with an enclosure.A couple from the village near by will be at the fort during weekends. They will provide tea, snacks like Poha, Noodles and Junka bhakari (jowar roti). The return journey will take more time. Try to start early mornings 6am avoid afternoon’s.If you are not super fit and young this hike can take 3 hrs one way.And don’t forget to eat Veg/Chicken Thali at the restaurant at the base village.Moderate for trekking. Railings make it easier..Parking is free. It is quite away and is at some height from parking. So one needs to trek to the fort. There are grills installed allover in support of trekkers.Another rout to Torna is from Rajgad. It is4 to 5 hrsof walk from Sanjivani machi of Rajgad to Budhla machi of Torna.For public transportation facilities it has MSRTC Buses from velhe to swarget.The road till Velhe village is broad enough, but after that till the parking spot (maybe last 3-4 kms), it’s just a single lane with sudden snake-like turns! So better to be careful while driving the car. Bike will be fine.
The trekking is not risky as such, but you need to be very careful at times (for at least 2-3 spots) where the elevation is higher and steps (rather rocks) are quite bigger to climb.
The trekking route is naturally built hence one should not expect artificial steps, although hand-rails are provided through some rough patch.
It took us 3 hours to reach the top from bottom parking area, which obviously included some rest time as well.
At the top, there is a temple around which we could sit and had our home-packed lunch since food facility is not available there.
Lemonade, Water Bottles and Butter Milks are available there at regular charges.
The return journey was also not a cake-walk since the same difficult spots took our careful attention and time, although rest of the journey was comparatively easy.
One thing to note here that, this trek becomes quite difficult in rainy season because rain makes the entire route slippery.
So better to plan in late monsoon or in winter so as to avoid rains. (our return journey was rainy which made it difficult but it was still fine!)
And yes, better to prepare your body for such a trek by doing some light workouts 2-3 days before the trek so that you don’t get exhausted very soon
If you are planning from Pune it’s 2 hr journey by road. prefer the satara road highway rather than khadakwasla sinhgad road as the road is narrow and not built properly.
There are 2-3 places to eat at the temple.Must try Pithla bhakar and Taak there.
Preferable Time : 7 am to 5 pm
Preferable season : June to dec
Preferable day : sat ,sun
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