The Shindawane Ghat - A Forgotten Paradise

This photo feature will take you on a virtual tour across the Shindawane Ghat, starting from the bottom and ending at the top.

By Rail Enthusiasts' Society

Author: Apoorva Bahadur

Vasco-bound Goa Express powers out of Shindawane by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

A 'ghat' is a mountain pass or a steep incline on the face of a mountain or hillside. In the Indian Railway parlance, a “ghat” section is a line climbing up a hill or escarpment, where the ruling gradient is far higher than the usual norm. The first two ghat sections built in India were both out of Bombay (now Mumbai) going into the hinterland. Starting at about 32 km from Pune on the single, non-electrified line to Miraj, Shindawane Ghat is around 10 km long and climbs approximately 80 meters into the Bhuleshwar range of the Sahyadri mountains. 

The ghat section starts at the idyllic Shindawane station by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

The ghat section starts at the idyllic Shindawane station.

Shindawane station nestled amongst the mountains by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

At the bottom of the ghat, the track moves out of Shindawane station in the easterly direction to climb along the flank and go around the majestic Shri Dhawaleshwar mountain.

A straight, gently climbing section leads to the major gradient of the ghat by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

A straight and gentle climbing section leads to the major gradient of the ghat.

The 1 in 100 gradient starts as soon as the Shindwane station yard ends by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

The one in hundred gradient starts as soon as the Shindawane station yard ends.

Shri Dhawaleshwar mountain lords over the Shindawane ghat by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

Shri Dhawaleshwar mountain lords over the Shindawane ghat.

A passenger train crosses the 1st viaduct by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

Above: A train crosses the first viaduct.

In the ghat section, the track crosses the deep gullies on eight tall viaducts.

A freight train approaches the 80-meter long Tunnel 1 by (photos from web)Rail Enthusiasts' Society

Above: A freight train approaches the 80 meter long Tunnel no. 1.

The track goes through protruding hills using three short tunnels. The raw, stark beauty and the uncontained desolation make this an amazing place to visit.

A fuel train in the Shindawane Ghat (2010-05-06)Heritage Directorate, Indian Railways

Krishnarajapuram shed'd WDG-3A No.13030 leads a tanker rake through tunnel no.1 in Shindawane.

Some more distance to reach the portal of Tunnel 2 by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

The route towards tunnel no. 2.

The guard watches his brake van enter 108-meter long Tunnel 2 by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

The guards watches his brake-van enter the 108 meter long tunnel no. 2.

A passenger train crosses the 1st viaduct by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

A passenger train crosses the first viaduct.

Near Viaduct 2 and Tunnel 1 on the Shindawane Ghat by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

A short distance away is the viaduct no. 2 and tunnel no. 1, seen here with a ballast rake.

On the other side of tunnel 2 is the viaduct 3 by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

On the other side of tunnel no. 2 is the third viaduct.

Viaduct 4 from the lofty Shri Dhawaleshwar mountain by (photos from web)Rail Enthusiasts' Society

Viaduct no. 4, as seen from the lofty Shri Dhawaleshwar mountain.

The grandest structure of all, the Viaduct 4 by (photos from web)Rail Enthusiasts' Society

Viaduct no. 4 is the grandest structure of all.

At the end of Viaduct 4, is the 107-meters long Tunnel 3 by (photos from web)Rail Enthusiasts' Society

The 107 meter long tunnel no. 3 is at the end of viaduct no. 4.

Shindawane Ghat's Viaducts 6 and 7 are spectacular structures by (photos from web)Rail Enthusiasts' Society

Viaduct no. 6 and no. 7 are smaller but equally spectacular structures.

Ghat with series of deep cuttings by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

The ghat shows off its series of deep cuttings.

A passenger train climbs the ghat, rolling over the Viaduct 7 by (photos from web)Rail Enthusiasts' Society

A passenger train climbs the ghat, rolling over viaduct 7.

Viaduct 8 is the second longest on the section by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

At the end of the cuttings is the second longest viaduct of the section - viaduct no. 8.

Approaching the crest of the ghatRail Enthusiasts' Society

The end of the penultimate cutting opens into curved section, while approaching the crest of the ghat.

Ambale halt station, in Shindawane Ghat by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

Exuding the charm of a rural halt station is Ambale, which is situated at the top of Shindawane ghat.

Some deep cuttings through the tunnel by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

Some deep cuttings through the tunnel.

End of the gradient, only a cutting away from Ambale by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

The end of the gradient is only a cutting away from Ambale.

Near Ambale halt station by Apurva BahadurRail Enthusiasts' Society

The last cutting into Ambale, as seen from the station end.

Credits: Story

Author: Apoorva Bahadur

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The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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