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The Complete Guide To Mahindra Peak Trek

Mahindra Peak is one of the highest peaks in the Eastern Ghats. It is situated at an altitude of 5,315 ft from the sea level. 

It is at the base of Sunkarametta Baptist church which is one of the oldest churches in that region. This church was built in the Gothic style of architecture with no sand used for the construction. It was built by Britishers between 1936 to 1939 who were confident of victory in World War II.

The Mahindra Peak trek remains an unexplored trek in that region. There is no proper marked trail to the peak. Hence, you can not do this trek without a GPX file or a local guide. 

The trail passes through mango trees and coffee plantations. The huge bushes on the trail challenge you throughout the trek.

➤Table Of Contents

Just like you, we love trekking! And this is a trek we’ve documented in great detail to help you do it on your own. Drop-in comments at the end of the page if you need any help!  You will get all the information required to do the Mahindra Peak on your own.

To navigate through the documentation easily, use this section of the Table of Contents

  • What To Watch Out For
  • Trail Information
  • GPX File Of The Trek
  • Best Time To Do Mahindra Peak Trek
  • How To Reach Mahindra Peak Trek
  • Difficult Sections On The Trek
  • How To Get Fit For The Trek
  • Things To Take On Mahindra Peak Trek
  • Permission, Water Sources, and Other Finer Details About The Trek
  • Nearby Places To Visit After The Trek

What To Watch Out For

1. Trekking in the midst of the coffee plantations

The initial trail of Mahindra Peak trek passes through the coffee plantations. These are maintained by many tribal farmers of the surrounding villages. 

You trek for around 500 metres between these plantations. The flowery aroma of the coffee keeps you excited throughout!!

2. Fascinating view from the top of Mahindra Peak

From the top of the Mahindra peak, you can see the lush green Araku valley and Galikonda valley on the other side. You can also see the villages between those valleys that look very tiny from the top. 

Trail Information

The Mahindra Peak trek that starts from Sunkarametta village can be divided into three sections. Each section has a different type of terrain. A detailed description of each section is given below. 

  1. The starting point from Sunkarametta village to the stream: 15 minutes
  2. The stream to the meadow: 1 hour 30 minutes
  3. Meadow to the top of Mahindra Peak: 20 minutes

Trail Map of Mahindra Peak Trek. Source: Google Earth. Picture Courtesy Nayana Jambhe

Section I: Starting point from Sunkarametta village to the stream

Trek Distance: 500 m
Trek Duration: 15 minutes
GPS coordinates of the starting point:  18°16’7.37″N, 82°57’44.61″E
GPS coordinates of the Stream:   18°15’57.33″N, 82°57’51.79″E

Mahindra peak trek starts from Sunkarametta village. From the church, you need to walk inside the village for around 300 metres. Walk till you get a sharp right bend. The trek starts from the trail on your left side. 

Since the base village is at an altitude of 4,326 ft, you can see the lush green fields and other villages below you while crossing through the Sunkarametta village.

Initial walk from the Sunkarametta village. Picture by Sridhar Vaddi

The trail from here to the stream is straightforward. There are around 300 steps made from stones that lead to a small hut near the stream. You pass through huge mango trees and coffee plantations.

It will take around 15 minutes to reach the stream. There is also a small hut constructed by villagers just before the stream. 

The initial section that leads to the stream. This picture is taken while descending down. Picture by Sridhar Vaddi

This stream is the last source of water. It will have water throughout the season. Make sure you fill your water bottle here. 

| Tip: If you are not comfortable with having water from outside carry purification tablets or life straw bottles to purify the water.

Section II: Stream to the Meadow

Trek Distance: 1.6 km
Trek Duration:  1 hour 15 minutes
GPS coordinates of the stream:   18°15’57.33″N, 82°57’51.79″E
GPS coordinates of the meadow:   18°15’23.35″N, 82°57’45.66″E

From the stream, the trail becomes steeper. It can be slippery during the monsoon season. 

There is a steep rock patch that has to be climbed up very carefully. It can be slippery during monsoon or immediately after the monsoon season. In the below image, a rope is used as safety equipment for climbing as there were few first-time trekkers.

| Tip:  Wear proper trekking shoes. Carry a pair of trekking poles as well. These two trekking gears will help you while trekking. Here is a link to choose the best trekking shoes for you.

The steep section that has to be negotiated very carefully. Picture by Sridhar Vaddi

Once you reach the top of this rock patch, you see a narrow trail that connects to the other hill. This stretch has thick vegetation. 

The narrow trail after the rock patch. Picture by Sridhar Vaddi

After this section, there is no proper trail marked. You need to depend completely on the GPX file. 

If you are going with the local guide or any organisation, make sure you follow their guidance. Chance of getting lost here is high as there are thick bushes all over the trail. 

The detail of one such trusted organisation is given under FAQs section. You can contact them for any guidance related to this trek. 

You start to see palm trees of 3 to 4 feet height once you continue on the trail. This is uncommon to witness so many palm trees on a trek. Generally, the edges of the palm leaves are very sharp. So, be careful not to come in contact with them. 

| Tip:  Wear a proper trekking pant and full sleeves T-shirt. These help you trek comfortably. Here is an article on selecting the right trekking pant. 

The trail passes through palm trees of 3 to 4 ft height. Picture by Sridhar Vaddi

Once you are on the top of this hill, there is the 3rd hill you need to climb. It has a huge meadow on it. 

The trail that connects to the meadow has a valley on the right and the hill on the left. You get the splendid view of Araku valley from here. 

View of the valley while crossing from one hill to the other. Picture by Sridhar Vaddi

After around an hour and 15 minutes of a trek from the stream and crossing two hills, you reach the huge meadow. This lush green meadow is surrounded by many other small hills. You can see the Mahindra peak from here. 

Trek on the meadow with endless blue sky on one side and a series of hills on the other side with a cool breeze makes you feel content!!

The huge meadow on the third hill. Picture by Sridhar Vaddi

Section III: Meadow to the top of the Mahindra Peak

Trek Distance: 800 m
Trek Duration:  20 minutes
GPS coordinates of the meadow:   18°15’23.35″N, 82°57’45.66″E
GPS coordinates of the top of Mahindra Peak:   18°15’8.79″N, 82°57’26.42″E

From the meadow, you can see the Mahindra peak. There is a ridge that connects to the Mahindra peak from here. While trekking on the ridge, you can see on your left Galikonda Valley and on your right is Araku valley. Do not forget to click some photos here. 

After around 800 metres of a gradual ascent, you reach the top of the Mahindra peak. 

You need to be very careful on the top as it is surrounded by deep valleys. Sometimes, it can be extremely windy. So make sure you do not go to the edge of the top.

Spend some time on the top enjoying the view. View of the lush green valley with a cool breeze is the perfect reward you can get after a continuous ascent. 

Follow the same route while descending. Be very careful while getting down as there are many steep sections that can be slippery. It will take 45 to 60 minutes to reach back to the Sunkarametta village.

Best Season To Do Mahindra Peak Trek

The best season to do this trek is from August to January. During these months you can see the lush green hills of eastern ghats. You can have a pleasant experience with a clear view from the top. 

During peak monsoon season, the trail becomes slippery. You can also expect high wind on the top of the hill. Hence, we do not recommend peak monsoon season for this trek.

Summer season is not suitable for treks in the eastern ghats as extremely high temperature can spoil the entire experience.

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How To Reach Mahindra Peak Trek

Mahindra Peak trek starts from Sunkarametta village near Araku valley. You can reach the base village using public transport as well as your own vehicle. 

Reaching the starting point by your vehicle

Sunkarametta village has roads wide enough to allow cars. Use this link to help set up navigation in google maps. 

From Visakhapatnam, get on to Araku-Visakhapatnam road. The road is straight till you reach Shivalingapuram. From there the road goes through sharp bends all the way to the Sunkarametta village. The entire journey takes around 4 hours for 100 km distance. 

Reaching the starting point by Public Transport System

Sunkarametta village has bus connectivity from Visakhapatnam. Get into any bus that goes towards Araku Valley. Get down at Sunkarametta village. The starting point of the trek is a few minutes away from the bus stop.

You can also take a train from Visakhapatnam to Shimilguda or Karakavalasa and from there take an auto to the starting point of the trek. 

Return option

You can follow the same route while returning. You get buses from Sunkarametta village to Visakhapatnam. 

Stay options

There are many hotels near Araku valley or Anantagiri. If you want to book a stay here, refer to this link

Nearest Railway Station

Shimiliguda railway station:  5 km

Nearest International and Domestic Airport

Visakhapatnam International Airport: 94 km

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Difficult Sections On The Mahindra Peak Trek

Mahindra peak trek can not be done without a GPX file. If you are a beginner, you need a local guide. The reason is not only for the direction but also for the difficult sections on the trek. 

After crossing the stream, there is a steep rock patch. During the monsoon season or just after the monsoon season, it becomes slippery. You need to keep your foot very carefully. 

Using rope while descending is not compulsory but if you are a first-timer or have kids of age below 12 in the group, you can take the help of a rope.

A trekker, rappelling down from the rock patch. Picture by Sridhar Vaddi

The trail from meadow to the top of the Mahindra peak is between two valleys. You need to be very careful while ascending and descending here. 

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How To Get Fit For Mahindra Peak Trek

The Mahindra Peak trek is considered Easy-Moderate as it requires a good amount of stamina to reach the top. 

The reason why we focus on fitness is that, when you complete the trek without any difficulty, you can have the best experience on the trek. The trek is truly enjoyable when you complete it without much struggle. 

However, local treks are usually planned last minute and hence we understand that you might not specifically train for the same.

If you are a trekking enthusiast and want to have a wholesome experience of any trek, here’s a fitness guide that you can follow and turn it into a way of life.

Training yourself for an Easy-moderate grade trek:

Here’s a guide to help you get fit for the trek in 4 weeks.

➤ Cardiovascular Endurance

In case you’re just starting with a fitness routine, start slow and increase your pace every day in the following manner –

  • Target completing a jog of 5 km in 40 minutes when you begin.
  • Gradually increase your pace by running 5 km, 4 times a week.
  • As you become more comfortable, introduce another day of running in your routine. 
  • Progressively increase the distance you run in a workout until you can complete 5 km in 35 mins.

If you prefer cycling over running, target covering 18 km in 60 minutes when you begin.

  • Progressively increase your pace to cover 25 km in one hour.

➤ Strength Training

This is an important area you need to work on.

Strength training is equally important to trek comfortably. Work on your glutes, calves and knees. Additionally, work on strengthening your core.

You must strengthen your core muscles. For strengthening your core muscles, holding a plank and it’s variations (elbow, side planks) are the best exercises to go about doing it.

Also, try these exercises for strength:

Target 4 sets of squats with 20 in each set.

– Squats (Mix it up with sumo squats)

– Lunges (Forward, backward and lateral lunges)

– Planks

➤ Flexibility

Flexibility determines the amount of movement your bones can make in any direction around joints such as shoulders, elbows, hips and knees.

It is an aspect that will help you trek comfortably. Carrying a backpack, however-light, can become a strain. Stretching your hamstrings, quadriceps, hip flexors and lower back muscles regularly, promotes relaxation in the tissues reducing the strain on your back.

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.

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What To Pack For Mahindra Peak Trek

  • Basic First Aid kit*
  • Identity Card
  • Cap/ Scarf/ Bandana & Sunglasses
  • Water (Minimum three litres)
  • Lemon and salt OR Electrolyte Powder/Drink (Electral/Gatorade/Glucon D, etc.)
  • High-calorie snacks (Nuts & dry fruits, home-baked cake, etc.)
  • Safety Pins, Rubber bands & Whistle (Useful in emergencies.)
  • Quick Dry T-shirts are preferable over cotton tees.
  • A warm layer (Pullover, sweater or a jacket)
  • Poncho, only during post-monsoons
  • Plastic sheet to wrap electronic devices, only during monsoons
  • Sunscreen (SPF 50+)
  • Tent (3-Person or 2-Person – Depending on the number of people sharing)
  • Sleeping Bag

❖First aid kit:

  • Scissor
  • Band-aids (Regular & Waterproof)
  • Analgesic spray (Relispray, Volini, etc.)
  • Antiseptic Liquid (Savlon, Dettol etc.)
  • Antiseptic powder (Povidone-Iodine based powders like Cipladine, Savlon, etc.)
  • Cotton roll & Bandage
  • Crepe Bandage
  • 1-inch wide medical tape (paper or cloth.)
  • Micropore tape
  • Tablet for motion sickness (Avomine), Acidity (Gelusil, Digene, etc.).
  • Mild pain relief tablet (Crocin)

| Note: Always consult a doctor before taking any medicine.

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Frequently Asked Questions on Mahindra Peak Trek

1. Do we need permission to do Mahindra Peak Trek?

Mahindra Peak Trek does not require permission from the forest department. You can do this trek without any permission. 

2. Do we need a guide for the Mahindra Peak Trek?

Mahindra Peak trek does not have a marked trail. There are high chances of getting lost in the bushes. You can only do this trek with the help of the GPX file. 

If you are not comfortable using a GPX file, you can go with the trusted trekking organization.
Here is one such trekking organisation who can take your group to this trek. Name: Sridhar Vaddi,  Contact number: 9000812348, 9052612348

3. Is camping allowed on Mahindra Peak Trek?

There are no restrictions on camping. You can camp anywhere on the trek. However, due to the heavy wind, you may not have a pleasant experience.  

There is an option to camp in the Sunkarametta village. There are enough places near the Church as well.

4. Are there any food and water sources available on Mahindra Peak Trek?

There are no restaurants in Sunkarametta village. You only find small stalls that sell water bottles and snacks. 

Araku valley or Anantagiri is the nearest place where you can find good restaurants. You can pack your food from there. However, we recommend you to pack your food from your hometown for a better experience.

There is a water stream on the trail. It will have water throughout the season. You can fill your water bottle from there. You can also get water from the houses in the village.

5. Who can do the Mahindra Peak Trek?

Mahindra Peak trek has few sections that require good stamina and endurance. Only a fit trekker can complete this trek while enjoying the beauty of nature. 

If you are a beginner and would like to do this trek, you can attempt this after working on your fitness. Here is a guide to preparing yourself for the trek. 

6. Emergency contact for Mahindra Peak Trek 

Hospital: Community Health Center Government Hospital is the nearest hospital to Mahindra Peak Trek. It is 13 km from Sunkarametta village. 

Police Station: Araku Police Station is the nearest police station to the Sunkarametta village. It is 12 km from the village.

ERSS: For any kind of emergency help, you can contact the Pan-India Emergency Response Support System (ERSS) number- 112

7. ATMs and Network on the trek

ATMs: There is a State Bank of India ATM in Araku. It is 12 km from Sunkarametta village. However, we recommend you to carry a minimum of Rs 1,000 from your starting location.

Mobile Networks: There are networks at the base village. On the trek, BSNL and Jio network providers catch the signal in some places. 

Places To Visit After Mahindra Peak Trek

There are many viewpoints, waterfalls and churches near the villages. After the trek, you can visit a few of them based on the time available in your hand. 

❖ Sunkarametta Baptist Church:

This church is situated at an altitude of 4,236 ft above sea level. It has a historic and geographic significance that dates back to the 1930s. 

Built-in the Gothic style of architecture, no sand was used in the construction of the church. It is built completely using lime mortar and local rocks powdered by bullocks. 

During the Christmas and new year time, the church comes alive with the prayer services and hundreds of visitors. 

❖ Borra Caves:  

It is in the Antaragange hills of Araku valley. These caves are considered as the deepest cave in India. There are several legends the tribals who inhabit the villages around the caves narrate. 

These caves are full of stalactites and stalagmites. You can visit the caves after completing the trek. 

❖ Katiki Waterfall:

This is situated close to Borra caves. This waterfall originates at River Gosthani. You need to trek for 20 to 30 minutes to reach the waterfall. 

There is a small pond below the waterfall, you can spend some time enjoying the ice-cold water. 

❖ Araku Valley:

This place is referred to as Ooty of Andhra Pradesh. It is inhibited by different tribes. Coffee plantations have been developed here by Andhra Pradesh Forest Department after Independence. 

The Araku valley you see from the top of the Mahindra Peak is different from what you see here. You must visit this place to get the entire picture of the Araku valley.

 Trek Contribution

Trek done and documented by Sridhar Vaddi
Banner Image by Sridhar Vaddi

The trek was written by Nayana Jambhe