Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Climbing Kanheri

Went this weekend on a trekking and rock-climbing trip at the Kanheri caves at the Borivali National Park here in Mumbai. We started off from dadar early on Sunday morning and reached the caves around 9. After an initial warm-up session to scale a 10-ft boulder rock-face, we moved on to the actual 60-70 ft rock-face near the actual caves. Climbing up was really hard. This is the first time I've tried my hand (and every other part of my body :|) at rock-climbing. As I struggled to find a hold in the rocks, I kept wondering why anyone would ever get crazy enough to try such a thing. The rappelling down was, however, awesome fun - its like walking backwards on a vertical wall. Now as I recover from pains all over, I understand why the rock-climbers I've met have such great physique and mental stamina - nothing less can withstand such a hobby. In retrospect, it was an experience of a lifetime - to be scared to death as you hang on to a small protrusion on the rock-face, daring not to look down, stretched to your limits - its something to treasure for ever.

The climb was very well organized by a company called 'Wildlife escapes' for the Manhattan card. The Kanheri caves are situated about 7 kms from the entrance of the Borivali National Park. The buddhist caves (in particular, the main Vihara) are really impressive and deserve a visit by themselves.
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