This Fort , Peb Vikatgad, lies in the Matheran Range , and is approachable from Neral, which is a junction on Central Railway, for those wishing to travel to Matheran which s a hill station.
The Peb Fort is named after the Goddess "Pebi" and is also called Vikatgad, because at the top it is said to resemble the head of the elephant headed God, Ganesha. These are matters of faith , and local nomenclatures are always honored.
About 2100 feet above sea level, this fort is famous for a temple dedicated to Swami Samarth at the peak, as well as built in meditation chambers in the mountain, which are well maintained by disciples of Swami Samarth. Footwear used by the saint in kept at the peak. The climb is relatively easy except for a rocky patch where almost vertical ladders have been installed .
We climbed from the Neral side, and the descent was via two different ladder systems and rocks o the Matheran side, with a trek on the railway tracks. At a point along these, one reached the motorable road, which then took us to Neral to catch a train back to Mumbai.
The trekkers depart
The Villagers going about their daily chores as we pass through
A little further up , the residents of the village
This clump of palms smack in the middle along our path
A typical settlement a bit higher along the road to the Fort.
You can tell we are at a decent elevation on our way up the fort.
This was in the hottest part of summer . Note the brown grass .
Another Panorama shot of the Valley
Samarth Temple en route, mantained by his devotees.
Traveling along narrow ledges and sheer rock face
Some locals who climb almost daily, know the best protective nooks and corners and even cook .
The sheer steep rock face at a height
All smiling as they approach closer to the top
And she finds some structures of old at the Fort to sit on
Some structures at the top
A temple under construction but they all gather for a final group photo.
She was not in the group photo, because she clicked it :-)