Kalo Dungar or Black hill is around 50KM from the tent city in Dhordo where Rann Utsav is organized. On the Saturday morning after our early visit to the White Runn of Kutch we decided to head towards Kalo Dungar which gives a splendid panoramic view of the great Rann of Kutch. Kalo Dungar is located very close to Pakistan border and beyond here only military personal are allowed.
Kalo Dungar also houses the Dattatreya temple which is quite famous and very ancient. As with any other place in India this place also have some stories related to it. One of them is that Lord Dattatreya, who was walking along the areas of Gujarat,came across the hill and stopped at this place after seeing a group of hungry jackals. He then offered himself as a feast to the starved jackals. As the jackals tore him apart and ate him, the Lord’s body being building up again. As a result of honoring this story, even today and for the past 4 centuries, the local priest at the Dattatreya temple has been offering cooked rice as Prashad to the jackals every evening after the final pujas.
Another story behind this temple is that a holy person, by the name Lakh Guru, an ardent devotee of Lord Dattatreya was residing at Kalo Dungar and he had a practice of providing food to the wild jackals daily. One day, he noticed that he ran out of food and therefore he offered his body parts to the jackals, shouting out “Le Ang” meaning take my body.
Well the temple and stories is not what you should visit Kalo Dungar for, It also provides a panoramic view of the great Runn of Kutch and the Runn of Kutch Lake, where you can clearly see the lake then solidifying and thus creating the White sand desert Runn of Kutch spreading across miles. Its an hour ride from Tent city to Kalo Dungar and worth visiting if you are already in Kutch. We reached at Kalo Dungar at around 1 PM as it was December the sunlight was more of a comfort.
Its a 10 min walk to the top of the hill alternatively you can hire a camel from the locals for Rs 50 and they will drop you at the end point. The salty water of Rann of Kutch lake setting and converting onto the Rann of Kutch and expanding for miles then merging with the horizon give you a breathtaking view and the felling of gentle wind touching your face with the warmth of sun-rays is just extra ordinary. It becomes really difficult to separate the horizon from the White desert and i think that makes it a place to for. The whiteness of Rann merges with the grey of sky, you might have experienced the ocean merging with the horizon but this is the first time where you will experience the same phenomenon with the land. I am really not sure yet why is it also called as the Black Hill, some people say that the color of the Hill is black which i don’t agree with.
There are also rumors that there is something magical or magnetic beneath the slopes of Kalo Dungar at pushes vehicles hurtling down at unusual speeds of 80Km per hour even when the ignition is off. Though these claims have been proven false by the experts of IIT Kanpur and ISR Gandhinagar. Our trip to Kutch kind of concluded with the visit of Kalo Dungar leaving some of the places in Bhuj like Aina mahal, Swaminarayan temple after which we will be back to our work waiting for next year to come and plan another get together trip.