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Chauragarh, Chhota Mahadev

Introduction “ It’s always further than it looks. It’s always taller than it looks.  And it’s always harder than it looks .”  ~ The three rules of mountaineering Chauragarh, Chhota Mahadev (Pachmarhi, MP) An ancient temple dedicated to Lord Shiva located on top of Chauragarh, the second  highest peak of Satpura ranges in Central India, Pachmarhi (Madhya Pradesh). The shrine is also popularly known as Chhota Mahadeo Mandir . After Mahakal and Omkareshwar shrines in Madhya Pradesh, Chauragarh Chhota Mahadev temple witnesses the largest gathering of devotees during Mahashivratri and Nag Panchami. Mostly the devotees come from the adjoining states of Chattisgarh, Maharashtra and Gujarat. Originally built by the King of Gond Dynasty, Sangram Shah (1488-1541 CE).  The shrine of Chhota Mahadev is unique in that there are thousands of Trishuls (Tridents) placed in a cluster inside the temple courtyard. During the festivals, devotees carry these huge tridents along the steep uphill tracks t

In the line of duty

“What is a lifetime adventure for you is a daily routine for us.” ~ Sign board on Leh-Ladakh  highway (Indian Army) "जो आपके लिए जीवनभर का असाधारण रोमांच है, वो हमारी रोजमर्रा की जिंदगी है।" - लेह-लद्दाख राजमार्ग पर साइनबोर्ड (भारतीय सेना) In today's highly competitive world of individual goals and individual achievers, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find role models to inspire and remind us of the forgotten ideals & values of duty, loyalty, working without supervision, dedication to the assigned job & responsibilities. What we instead find tons of these new age social-media ‘influencers’ and ‘mentors’ who preach & lecture the young ones on cheap-tricks, life-hacks and crooked smartness. But as always stated in several earlier posts, and once again drawing from the legendary Bob Dylan… “The answer, my friend, is blowin' in the wind The answer is blowin' in the wind”.  We don't really have to go too far seeking such inspirations as they mi

Down Memory Lane: Satpura National Park

Memory … is the diary that we all carry about with us ~ Oscar Wilde This one is a sequel to the earlier post: Story of Satpura , where we introduced and talked about the person, Shri K. S. Saxena (Retd IFS), who was at the centre of creation of what we know today as Satpura Biosphere Reserve.  We pick up where we had left with the concluding remark: “And he looks forward to visiting Satpura National Park sometime …” Satpura National Park After three successive COVID-19 lockdowns and all the trauma, it was only in October’21 that we could conclude the most awaited trip down memory lane to Satpura National Park, exactly forty years after it was inaugurated. Calling it mere ‘nostalgic trip’ for Shri. K.S. Saxena (ex-IFS) on his 86th Birthday would be nothing short of an insult to his passion and love for the jungles of Satpura.  Sharing here few pictures of the trip from our personal archives, please feel free to ‘click to enlarge’ pictures for better views.  The planning for the trip was