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Photo Courtesy : Vikram & Suhas

Dudhsagar Waterfalls Trek

Trek to one of India’s tallest waterfalls

  • Stowed away on the border between Goa and Karnataka is Dudhsagar, one of India’s tallest waterfalls. Most trails boast of rich flora, fauna and sceneries and so does this one. However, this trek has an added highlight – something that few treks in the world do – a good old railway track!
  • This trek to the waterfall  accessible through the Indian Rail Network and jeeps operated by private tour operators. The waterfall especially comes alive during monsoon, when it plunges down, as white as milk, from a height of 310 m.
DIFFICULTY:

Easy - Moderate

TRAIL TYPE:

Pebbles, gravel and railway track

DURATION:

2 days

ROAD HEAD:

Castle Rock

BASE CAMP:

Dudhsagar Railway Station

BEST SEASON:

June - August

Dudhsagar Waterfalls Trek Offbound:

Here’s a quick update. Due to restrictions imposed by the Indian Railways, the Dudhsagar Waterfalls Trek will be ‘offbound’ for a year. The Dudhsagar Waterfalls will be accessible via jeeps operated by local travel agencies. However, the trek will remain inaccessible until further notice.

Excerpt from Indiatoday:

“The Dudhsagar Falls, located at the Goa-Karnataka border, has always been one of the most popular landmarks for tourists visiting the region. Most of us have seen it in photos and movies, and have immediately desired to visit the place at least once. After all, to see the waterfalls from the window of a train would be an experience a traveller would want to remember forever.

But unfortunately, the Falls have become inaccessible owing to restrictions imposed at the nearby railway station by Indian Railways. In order to enable tourists to get a glimpse of this glorious waterfall, the tourism department of Goa has urged the Railway Ministry to improve connectivity to the spot.

Goa Tourism Minister Dilip Parulekar has requested Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu to intervene and request Indian Railways to operate trains from Vasco to Dudhsagar on a daily basis without “unreasonable restrictions.”

Read the full article here:

http://indiatoday.intoday.in/story/dudhsagar-falls-goa-dilip-paruleka-indian-railways-travel-lifetr/1/699830.html

Alternative Monsoon Trek: 

Gorakhgad Trek, located in Maharastra is a terrific alternative because of its enchanting forests, hidden waterfalls and caves.

About Author

VAIBHAV CHAUHAN

Vaibhav is associated with Indiahikes as a Writer & Chief Explorer. He is an avid traveler with a passion for trekking in Indian Himalayas. With his roots in Shimla district of Himachal Pradesh, the love for the mountains is in his blood. When not travelling he likes to spend time interacting with like-minded trek enthusiasts and read books on travel and mountaineering.

How to reach the base camp

Dudhsagar Railway Station is 570 km from Bangalore. Board the Mas Vasco Express (Train number: 17311) from Bangalore. The train runs only on Fridays.

One can also trek to Dudhsagar from Kulem, which lies in Goa. However, the trek from Dudhsagar station is more promising in terms of beauty and an overall experience.

 

Series of tunnels on the way

 

How to do Dudhsagar Waterfalls Trek

From Karnataka: Get off the train at the Castle Rock station. Castle Rock is the last station that lies within the border of Karnataka. There are a series of rail tunnels, the longest one being Tunnel 2, which stretches a distance of 2.4 km.

The trek from Castle Rock to Dudhsagar is 11 km long. Follow the railway track all the way to the waterfall. It passes through dense forests and smaller waterfalls within Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary. It takes around 6-7 hours to complete the trek. One can camp at the Dudhsagar Station, as camping is allowed here. It is advisable to carry your tents and sleeping bags along.

Cascading waterfalls on the trek

 

Trek Photographs

 

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From Goa: Trek 26 km from Kulem to Castle Rock (Karnataka). Stop at the waterfall, which falls in between the beginning and the end of the trek. Since it’s a long day of trekking, a break at the waterfall is well-deserved.

The trail also passes by a fire station on Karnataka-Goa border. Start early in the day. Walking on pebbles and gravel alongside the railway track can get tiring. A good trek shoe is recommended.

Do’s:

Enjoy your travel (monsoon is the Best time)

Carry efficient monsoon gear (raincoat, poncho), shoes, torch and sufficient food.
During monsoon, there are many streams to fill your bottles. During other seasons, carry enough water to last you the entire trek.
Confirm train tickets.

Trekking alongside Rail track

Don’t’s:

Respect Nature, do not dirty this beautiful place.
In case of an approaching train, walk away from the track to a safe distance.
Do not walk in groups inside a tunnel. Walk one behind the other.

Clean and carry your trash at the camping site of Dudhsagar. Dispose it at the designated disposal provided by the Indian Railways and the Forest Department.

Trek information and pictures submitted by Vikram Ramachandran and Suhas Saya. Have you done this trek? If you have more information, write to us at ajay@indiahikes.in

About Author

VAIBHAV CHAUHAN

Vaibhav is associated with Indiahikes as a Writer & Chief Explorer. He is an avid traveler with a passion for trekking in Indian Himalayas. With his roots in Shimla district of Himachal Pradesh, the love for the mountains is in his blood. When not travelling he likes to spend time interacting with like-minded trek enthusiasts and read books on travel and mountaineering.

Cardiovascular endurance

The secret to ascending any trail lies in building your cardiovascular endurance. You can begin by jogging everyday. Ideally, you should be able to jog 4 km in 20 minutes before the start of the trek. It takes time to be able to cover this distance in the given time. Start slow and increase your pace everyday. Swimming, cycling and stair climbing without too many breaks in between can help too. Strength This is another area you should work on. You will need to build strength in your muscles and in your core body. You can do some squats to strengthen your leg muscles. Do around 3 sets of squats, with 8 squats in each set. Apart from this, you can add planks and crunches to your work out.

Flexibility

Another aspect that will help you trek comfortably is flexibility. For this, you can do some stretching exercises – stretch your hamstrings, quadriceps, hip flexors, lower back muscles and shoulders regularly. Carrying a backpack, however light, can become a strain after a while. These exercises will help you to be in good shape before the trek. Working out indoors


If you can’t go out and jog because of time and space constraints,
here’s a video you can use to work out indoors.

backpack

No, stuffing it all in isn’t the right way to do it Packing a backpack correctly saves precious time that you might waste trying to find your things later. It is wise to spend some time on learning what really goes into packing a backpack.

What should I pack? On a trek, you only get what you take. Something as simple as a forgotten matchbox can cripple your cooking plans throughout the trek. So, it’s essential to prepare early and prepare well. To begin with, make a checklist. While shopping, remember this thumb rule – keep it light. “Every item needs to be light. This ensures that your backpack, on the whole, stays light,” says Sandhya UC, co-founder of Indiahikes. Balancing out heavy items with light ones isn’t going to have the same effect as having all light items. “Always opt for good quality, light items,” says Sandhya.

How much should my bag weigh?

“Your backpack for a weekend trek should weigh between 8 and 10 kg,” explains Arjun Majumdar, co-founder of Indiahikes, “To break it down, your tent should weigh around 2.5 kg, your sleeping bag, around 1.5 kg, and the ration, stove and clothes should constitute the other 5 kg.” The best way to plan is by concentrating on the basic necessities – food, shelter and clothes. Gather only those things that you’ll need to survive. Do not pack for ‘if’ situations. “That’s one of the common mistakes that people make – packing for ‘if situations’. It only adds to the baggage that you can do without on a trek,” says Sandhya.

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Trekking hack

One good way to go about it is to prepare a list of absolute essentials. Start with the most essential and end with the least essential. That way, when you feel you are overshooting the limit, you can start eliminating from the bottom. Another tip is to be smart while packing clothes. Invest in light. wash and wear fabrics. “Replace a sweater with two t-shirts,” adds Sandhya. Layering is the mantra when it comes to trekking. Refer to Sandhya’s clothes list to pack smart.

How to pack The thumb rule for this one is to eliminate air spaces. Make sure that everything is packed tightly, especially clothes and jackets, as they tend to take up maximum air space. Put in all the large items first. Then squeeze in the smaller ones in the gaps. This ensures minimum air space. A good way to pack clothes is by using the Ranger Roll method.

 

Where to pack Bottom Sleeping bag: Make this your base layer. Sleeping bags tend to be voluminous, but do not weigh much. They’re perfect for the bottom of the bag. Tent: Just like the sleeping bag, even tents are voluminous and light. Keep the tent poles separately and place the fabric at the bottom of the backpack. Middle Heavy jacket: Roll up the jacket in a tight ball and place it in the middle of the backpack, close to your back. The middle region of the backpack should always have the heaviest items. You can store other things like ration or mini stoves in the middle. Other clothes: Roll other clothes and place them in the remaining space, to fill air gaps.

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Backpack essentials

Top Water: Water, although heavy, needs to be easily accessible. So put it in the top most region of your backpack. Medicine box: This is another component that you wouldn’t want to be scavenging for when in need. Poncho: It could rain at any time in the mountains. So, ponchos should be accessible easily. Also, having a waterproof poncho at the top of the backpack provides additional waterproofing to items in the bag.

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Vaibhav Chauhan

Vaibhav was associated with Indiahikes as a Writer & Chief Explorer. He is an avid traveler with a passion for trekking in Indian Himalayas. With his roots in Shimla district of Himachal Pradesh, the love for the mountains is in his blood. When not travelling he likes to spend time interacting with like-minded trek enthusiasts and read books on travel and mountaineering.