Pagara is perhaps our most visited location. We have seen it in summers, winters, mornings, evenings and night, taking in all the shades of this beautiful place. Of course, its vicinity to Gwalior helps in making it a goto choice when it comes to a short enjoyable ride, but its also its being a good combination of remote, reachable, vacant, non-commercial, beautiful, raw and notorious.
Pagara is approachable from Gwalior via 3 routes, the usual one via Jaura which we normally take. That’s the easiest way to get there with tarmac all through. The second is from Tighra via Lakhandpur, which is the one we tried out today. And third via Basota, Pahadgarh road, which is yet to be completely explored. The third route could have been a good choice to return today, but as there is no bridge over the Asan river between Basota and Nirar, we probably not have been able to cross it, considering the monsoon.
Today’s route via Tighra turned out to be great. As it goes through the Son Chiraiya( Great Indian Busturd ) Sanctuary its gravel all through even though the width of the road is adequate for a four wheeler at most places. Once at Tighra, we took the road towards Lakhandpur. This is the same road which also leads to Nalkeshwar, although that is just halfway to Lakhanpur.
On the way we get a glimpse of tighra from atop the plateau, go through the short climb up the ghati to the plateau, go through fields and rocky flats. Although, surprisingly, there are no Son Chiraiya’s to be seen here. In fact I have never seen that bird even after exploring the area several times.
Once at Lakhanpur, we take a right towards Pagara. After a few kilometers of riding, the Pagara reservoir can been far away on the left. As we get closer to it, the road gets narrower and rougher.
As Pagara, like Tighra is surrounded by rocky plateaus. The trails around it, including this one are rocky. The last few kilometers get through slowly, as we tread through the trail ultimately leading to the village on this side of the reservoir. The reservoir is connected to the village by a narrow bridge. By narrow, I mean really narrow. But sturdy.
Once on the reservoir’s dam wall, we settled to relax, soaking in the view of the reservoir and the river Asan. We did not cross the dam wall, as have seen the other side of the dam several times. Although, crossing that would have required some effort, there being a flight of 10 stairs at the end of the wall, which we would have to ascend in order to get to the other side.
The return was via the same route. And we were back home by 11am. We had started at 5:45 am so it took a bit more than 5 hours to complete this breakfast ride. Overall, a very good ride. Now, looking forward to get done with the Basota route on one of these Sundays too.