A challenging and dangerous trek to Dhak Bahiri Caves
Dhak Bahiri is a popular trekking destination located in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra, India. It is famous for its ancient cave system and attracts adventure seekers and nature lovers. The caves are believed to have been formed by water erosion and are considered to be a religious site by local people. They are surrounded by lush green forests and offer scenic views of the surrounding hills and valleys.
The trek to Dhak Bahiri starts from the base village of Bhira and goes through the dense forests of the Western Ghats. The most common trekking route to Dhak Bahiri is:
- Bhira – The starting point of the trek, located near the Konkan region of Maharashtra.
- Dhak Bhairi Village – The first halt on the trek, where trekkers can rest and have some food.
- Dhak Bahiri Temple – A temple dedicated to Lord Hanuman, located near the caves.
- Dhak Bahiri Caves – The main attraction of the trek, where trekkers can explore the ancient cave system.
- Velhe Village – The last halt on the trek, located near the Bhira dam.
This trek is considered to be moderate to difficult and takes around 4-5 hours to complete. It is advised to undertake the trek with a guide and proper equipment.
The history of Dhak Bahiri Caves is shrouded in myth and legends. According to local folklore, the caves were formed by a demon named Bahiri, who lived in the caves and terrorized the nearby villages. The caves are said to have been discovered by a shepherd, who came across them while searching for his missing cattle.
The caves have also been associated with the Maratha warrior, Shivaji Maharaj, and it is believed that he used the caves as a hideout during his battles against the Mughal Empire.
In terms of its geologic history, the caves are believed to have been formed by water erosion over a period of several million years. The caves are a unique geological feature and offer insight into the processes that shaped the Western Ghats mountain range.
Today, the Dhak Bahiri Caves are a popular trekking destination and attract adventure seekers and nature lovers from all over India. They are also considered to be a religious site by local people and are visited by pilgrims during festivals.
Things to carry
While trekking to Dhak Bahiri, it is important to carry the necessary items to ensure a safe and comfortable experience. Some of the essentials items to carry include:
- Water bottle – It is important to stay hydrated during the trek, so carry at least 2 liters of water.
- Food – Pack light snacks like energy bars, dry fruits, etc. to keep yourself fueled during the trek.
- Clothing – Wear comfortable and breathable clothes. It is advisable to carry an extra layer of clothing for when it gets cold in the caves.
- Footwear – Wear sturdy and comfortable trekking shoes with good grip. Avoid wearing flip flops or sandals.
- First aid kit – Include essentials like band-aids, pain relievers, antiseptic cream, etc.
- Headlamp or torch – It is important to carry a headlamp or torch as the caves are dark inside.
- Rain gear – The Western Ghats can be unpredictable, so carry a raincoat or poncho in case of rain.
- Trash bag – Always carry a trash bag to keep the trail and surroundings clean.
- Camera – Capture the breathtaking views and memories of the trek.
- Cash – Carry enough cash as there are no ATMs near the trekking route.
Things to know before you visit
Before visiting Dhak Bahiri Caves, it is important to know the following:
- Permits – A trekking permit is required to visit the caves. These can be obtained from the Forest Department in Mumbai or Pune.
- Trekking season – The best time to trek to Dhak Bahiri is from June to February. The trek may not be accessible during the monsoon season (July to September) due to heavy rains.
- Difficulty level – The trek to Dhak Bahiri is considered to be moderate to difficult and takes around 4-5 hours to complete. It is recommended for those with some previous trekking experience.
- Safety precautions – The trek involves some steep inclines and slippery rocks, so be cautious and take safety precautions. It is advisable to undertake the trek with a guide and proper equipment.
- Respect the environment – The caves and surrounding forests are fragile ecosystems, so avoid littering and minimize your impact on the environment.
- Respect local customs – Dhak Bahiri is considered to be a religious site by local people, so be respectful of their customs and beliefs.
- Emergency services – Emergency services may be limited in the area, so it is advisable to be prepared for any eventualities.
- Altitude sickness – The trek takes place at a high altitude, so be aware of the symptoms of altitude sickness and take appropriate precautions.
How to reach
Dhak Bahiri Caves are located near the village of Bhira in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra, India. The following are the options to reach the trek starting point:
- By air – The nearest airport is Mumbai, which is around 140 km away. From Mumbai, you can take a taxi or a local bus to reach the base village of Bhira.
- By train – The nearest railway station is Mumbai, which is well connected to major cities in India. From Mumbai, you can take a taxi or a local bus to reach the base village of Bhira.
- By road – The base village of Bhira can be reached by road from Mumbai or Pune. You can take a taxi or a local bus to reach the village. The journey takes around 4-5 hours.
Once you reach the base village of Bhira, the trek to Dhak Bahiri starts from there. It is advisable to undertake the trek with a guide and proper equipment.
Best time to visit
The best time to visit Dhak Bahiri Caves is from June to February. During this period, the weather is pleasant and the trails are dry, making the trek easier. The monsoon season, from July to September, can make the trek difficult due to heavy rains and slippery trails.
Winter months (December to February) offer clear skies and stunning views of the surrounding mountains, making it an ideal time to visit. The temperature during this period ranges from 15°C to 20°C, making it comfortable for trekking.
It is important to note that the caves and surrounding forests are fragile ecosystems, so it is best to avoid visiting during the monsoon season to minimize your impact on the environment.
Dhak Bahiri Caves, located in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra, India, are a popular trekking destination. The trek to the caves involves a moderate to difficult 4-5 hour hike through the forests and along steep inclines. The trail offers breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and valleys, making it an enjoyable and scenic experience.
Once you reach the caves, you can explore the inside of the caves and marvel at the towering rock formations. The caves are considered to be a religious site by local people and are believed to be inhabited by spirits, adding to the mystique of the place.
In addition to trekking, visitors can also engage in activities such as bird watching, camping, and picnicking in the surrounding forests. The Western Ghats are home to a rich diversity of flora and fauna, making it a great destination for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.
It is important to note that trekking to the caves and exploring the surrounding forests should be done with caution and in accordance with local regulations to ensure the preservation of the fragile ecosystem.