Katraj to Sinhagad (K2S)
Grade : Difficult
Region : Pune
Base village : Katraj Old Tunnel
Landmark : Katraj Old Tunnel
Number of Routes : 1
Highest Altitude : 4304 Feet (1312m)
Trek Duration : 7-8 hours
Surrounding Peaks : Sinhgad, Rajgad Fort, Purandar Fort and Torna Fort.
Ideal Season : December to March (Night Trek on Full Moon is an ideal time to visit)
Major Attarction of K2S :
Night View of Pune Outskirts, Moonlight Trek, Sunrise from Sinhagad
Sinhgad Fort Attractions :
Pune Darwaaja : From Pune, via Aatkarwadi village, we reach Pune Darwaaja we come across three consecutive entrances, of which third one was built during the era of Yadavas. We can see fine sculpture on it. On the way here, we notice an entrance through a distance, which is called Dhondse Darwaja. To reach this there is a tar road.
Khand Kada : After entering Pune Darwaaja, we come across this peak from where we can observe the region of Purandar fort and the rivers Mula and Mutha.
Kalyan Darwaaja : This is the entrance to the fort for those who come via Katraj Ghat. In older days, this door was used for communication between Sinhagad and Raigad.
Daru Kothar : On entering Pune Darwaaja, on the right we observe the building, which was ancient storage for grains.
Kondhaneshwar : When we follow the way rightwards along the Rajsadar, we reach this ancient temple of Lord Shankar.
Amruteshwar Mandir : This temple of Bhairav is located leftwards to the Konadhaneshwar temple, at a few minutes walk.
Statue of Tanaji : On the way behind Amruteshwar temple, after going upwards for few minutes, we can see this admirable monument. Every year, in his memory, one day is celebrated here.
Zunjar Buruz : This bastion lies to the left after entering Kalyan Darwaaja and comprises the westernmost point of this fort. From here, we can have a glimpse of Rajgad, Torna, Lingana and Raigad and Purandar on the west.
Tanaji Kada : This pinnacle is quite thrilling and lies beyond Zunjar Machi. It is a great attraction for hikers.
Western point : This point, as it is named, is the westernmost and is the place to keep the watch.
Kadelot point : This peak lies at a few minutes walk from the western point, and is the most suitable place to keep a watch on the extensive Pune city.
Bungalow of Lokmanya Tilak : The bungalow of Lokmanya Tilak is situated on the fort. He used to come here many a times. His works like Geetarahasya were completed here. In 1915 Gandhiji and Tilak met here. Whenever Gandhiji visited Pune, he drank only the waters of Sinhagad. Once Netaji Subhashchandra Bose had come here. He was at the second entrance of the fort, which was the main one when Shivaji ruled. He stopped here and lost into his Shivaji’s memories, while chanting Tagore’s words. This place is really very inspiring.
Water Sources :
No water source on the trail, you will get water only at the end of the trail i.e. at Sinhagad Fort.
Special thing about structure/route :
The Sinhagad (Lion's Fort) was strategically built to provide natural protection due to its very steep slopes. The walls and bastions were constructed only at key places. There are two gates to enter the fort, the Kalyan Darwaza and Pune Darwaza which are positioned at the south east and north-east ends respectively.
History Info :
Ancient Name & Meaning (if any) :
This fort has been referred to as ‘Kundhana ’in a Persian poem named ‘Shahanama-e-Hind’, dating back to 1350 A.D. It was called ‘Kondana’ after Sage Kaundinya.
The Kaundinyeshwar temple, the caves & the carvings indicate that this fort had probably been built two thousand years back.
Brief War History :
This fort, built around 2000 years ago, was seized by Muhammad bin Tughlaq from the Koli king Nag Naik in 1328 AD.
Shivaji Maharaj’s father Shahaji, as Adilshah’s commander, was entrusted with the control of the Pune region. Shivaji Maharaj, however, refused to accept Adilshahi & initiated the arduous task of setting up Swarajya. In a clever move he gained control of Kondana in 1647. He bribed Siddi Amber, the Adilshahi Sardar who controlled the fort and captured it. But, in 1649, it had to be handed over to Adilshah for Shahaji Maharaj’s freedom. Shivaji Maharaj soon captured it back. Unfortunately, through the Treaty of Purandar it went into the hands of the Mughal army chief Mirzaraje Jaysingh, in the year 1665.
In 1670, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj reconquered the fort for the third time through his Subedar, Tanhaji Malusare & then it stayed under Maratha rule till 1689. After Sambhaji’s death the Mughals gained its control. Again in 1693 the Marathas captured it. Rajaram died on Sinhagad on the 3rd of March 1700 & in 1703 Aurangjeb conquered it. In 1707, it once again went into the hands of the Marathas & remained with them till 1818, when the British conquered it. The British, however, took 3 months to capture this fort, which was longest it took them to win any fort in Maharashtra
Battle of Sinhagad -
Of all the important events associated with this fort, the fort is most well known for the legendary climb by Tanaji that helped the Marathas to conquer the fort in March 1670. Since then it has come to be known as Sinhagad.This part of the Maratha history is quite interesting. Tanaji had arrived in the court to invite Shivaji Maharaj for his son’s wedding. Shivaji had escaped from Agra and reached Rajgad. Tanaji was assigned the job, and he accepted without any hesitation. He reached the base of the fort in the night. Strong people amongst them climbed the difficult rock-patch of the fort. It is said these people used an iguana or Ghorpad to locate suitable climbing sites in that dark night. There were 500 soldiers guarding the fort. The Marathas attacked with full vigour. After a fierce battle between Udebhan and Tanaji, Tanaji was killed and became a martyr. In such a situation, his brother Suryaji controlled the army and fought bravely to win the fort. This was the end of a great legend.
There is an anecdote that upon hearing of Tanaji's death, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj expressed his remorse with the words, "Gad aala, pan Sinha gela" - "The Fort is conquered, but the Lion was lost".