This fort is not unknown to us. We have seen it many times on our way to Warangal, and during our many trips on spiritual sojourn to Yadagiri gutta, recently renamed Yadadri. It would stand high up on the huge rock/hill as a mute witness to the world of humanity moving back and forth on a highway, which in itself saw many changes. From being a route that had its ups and downs literally, it became a well maintained highway that takes travellers from Hyderabad to Warangal in less than three hours on an ideal day. I have always wanted to see the fort, but for many reasons – one of it being that the fort was abandoned by the government and unpleasant elements have made it their home, and hence, was deemed unsafe – I had never visited Bhongir fort, which is otherwise only less than 50 km from Hyderabad.
So here I was waiting at home, all ready, to hit the road by 6.30 am and reach Bhongir Fort in time to climb when it was still pleasant, and then I realized that the rain that decided to descend upon us showed no respite. It continued raining, in the process clogging every main road in Hyderabad. It was fine enough that we were headed outside the city (albeit a little late) braving the downpour – the rain continued to lash mercilessly on the windowpanes of the car throughout the drive. Hopefully, it will stop by the time we reach Bhongir, we thought; but it was not to be.
Within no time, despite the careful slowed down driving, we reached Bhongir Fort fast enough, and it did look even more beautiful from far with fog covering the top most part of it like a halo. Water was rushing down the steps that were carved out of the hill to ease climbing, and it looked a dicey situation – lest we slip and fall if we tried climbing. However, it was as if the fort that has always stood still without seeking any attention until now, was finally beckoning at us with a promise to reveal the centuries-old stories that it has embedded within itself.
We decided to brave the rain after an energising breakfast of mokka butta nicely roasted
The oval structure made of monolithic rock with an impregnable moat encircling it, underground chamber, trap doors, stables, ponds, wells – has various attractions. Above all this 12th century fort – The fort of Bhuvanagiri or Bhongir – built by Chalukya ruler, Tribhuvanamalla Vikramaditya, is associated with many strong rulers – one such Goud ruler, Sardar Sarvai Panappa, who has apparently built an army on his own and held the fort for long before waging a battle with the Golconda Nawab and losing his life in the ensuing fight is a legend of sorts in these parts, and his statue is aptly displayed at the entrance. The fort is also associated with Kakatiya rulers, Rudrama Devi and Prataparudrudu and the Bahmani Sultans.
While we took the stairway making our way as far ahead as the rain allowed us, we hoped next time we probably could enroll in a few rock climbing training sessions being conducted near the fort, before we take up a trek along a steep track. By then, hopefully, the government too will be ready with the rest rooms that they are in the process of building and parking space being planned at this beautiful tourist and adventure spot, not very far from Hyderabad.
Our ascent up the picturesque Bhongir fort was cut short by rain, but we left the place with a few experiences and revelations accentuated by the beautiful weather, while the city of Hyderabad reeled under water logging and traffic jams, here we were a group of journos on a work assignment enjoying an unusually pleasant experience that will surely give way to many more visits in future.
Wear comfortable shoes to aid climbing
Take water and something to eat as the climb can stress you out
For Rock Climbing School Call: 9666088821
PS: Do not litter