Posted by: Brad Beaman | March 17, 2012

Photocycle Essay: Pune to Panchgani

The bicycle ride from Pune to Panchgani is 100 Kilometers with three major Ghats to Climb; Katraj Ghat, Khambatki Ghat and Panchgani Ghat. I knew this ride would push me to my limits and it sure did.

“Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go”.         T. S. Elliot

Looking back on Pune from Katraj Ghat.

Riding through the Old Tunnel at Katraj Ghat really scares me. It is long enough tunnel that it is fully dark and I wonder if a vehicle comes will they see me and if I go too fast could I hit a hole in the road or not see something in the dark?

Katraj Ghat Tunnel

NH4 goes over Khambatki Ghat and all the heavy vehicles going from Mumbai to Bangalore get backed up here.  

Khambatki Ghat ahead

You can see the small dots in the distance in a line that are the big vehicles crisscrossing Khambatki Ghat. 

Khambatki Ghat road

At some point the traffic comes to almost a standstill on Khambatki Ghat. 

Khambatki Ghat

After descending Khambatki Ghat and turning off NH4 toward Panchgani the road becomes rural. A welcome change of scenery.

Panchgani Ghat last 12 Kilometers. Not bad except for the toll that the ride has already taken on my legs.

Panchgani Ghat

Every time I saw a patch of shade on Panchgani Ghat I stopped to rest my legs. The temperature drops 13 degrees fahrenheit from the bottom of Panchgani Ghat to the top but it still felt hot on the road without shade.

Some shade for rest on Panchgani Ghat climb

I had Panchgani in my sight and just a kilometer or two left, but I had to stop and recover and rest my hurting legs one last time.

Panchgani is in sight

On the Table Land, Panchgani is the second only to  Tibetan Plateau as the longest mountain plateau in Asia  

The view from the Table Land is fantastic.

View From Tableland

View from Table Land

Panchgani is the strawberry capital of India. The two guys that came and picked me up and I bought 46 pounds of strawberries all for 21 dollars. (21 kilos for 1,100 rupees)

I threw my bicycle on top of  the vehicle and drove the 100 kilometers home. Hats off to anyone who can cycle back to Pune after that difficult ride and all that climbing.

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Responses

  1. We have a travel website which is a Maharashtra travel Guide in which we have a page for Panchgani with lot of information regarding the place. We also have information regarding Panchgani Hotels for which we provide direct link to the hotel websites

    We also have a page for blogs on Panchgani. Do let us know if you would like to

    feature your blog in the Panchgani Blogs page in puneritraveller.com.
    Please write to puneritraveller at gmail dot com


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