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Old 4th June 2011, 11:44   #61
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

Quote:
Originally Posted by VindyWheels View Post
Congrats to you and your family and ofcourse to your Safari. I am going to sit and read all your previous travelogues aswell. Keep going Rgds VW
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajay0612 View Post
Outstanding pictures and nice writeup! The tlog is going to be a useful reference for all who want to avoid the seasonal madness at popular tourist destinations.
Thanks to both of you. The maps though collected by me are from different sources and members over here - quite a bit of effort has gone into those and for that a huge thanks goes to them.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jaysmokesleaves View Post
Makes me wish, October happened in August
Now dont you think too much, whatever month just grab it for Ladakh - you gotta go this year.

Last edited by adc : 4th June 2011 at 12:07.
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Old 4th June 2011, 12:13   #62
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

Jispa should be the preferred place to stay as one goes from Manali to Leh. It has the same height as Keylong but with a beautiful valley and a pristine river.

Jispa-Leh to road/track just brings out the reason for why we still prefer to travel to Leh via Manali, but of course the weather and conditions are much more unpredictable by this route. From valleys to pristine rivers, to high passes to absolutely weird mud landscape architecture to gorges to dusty high altitude plains and what not. This is the day of big vistas, what you will see will leave a mark on your mind forever!

The road from Jispa to Leh, of around 350 km was covered in 16 hours - we were that slow and deliberate on this road - hurrying on this road is a crime.

This was also the day I felt fully liberated - no Safari EMIs, a great relaxed ride, high plains, absolute silence and desolateness - just wandering around.

Of course as a result of that we reached Tanglang la around 6 pm, and it was fast becoming dark and of course cold, and reached a sleepy Leh at 930 pm in the night. From Upshi to Leh, parts of roads were washed away and driving in the dark also took its time to reach. Also couple of times around Sarchu, we just went drove back again just to see that we have not missed out on any view!

So you all know the drill, so just images -- Jispa -> Baralacha la -> Sarchu -> Pang -> More plains-> Debring -> Tanglang la -> Upshi -> Leh.

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Two oil tankers are absolutely dwarfed by the rough and high landscape of the Manali-Leh Road
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contd...

Last edited by adc : 4th June 2011 at 12:17.
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Old 4th June 2011, 12:31   #63
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

Jispa -> Baralacha la -> Sarchu -> Pang -> More plains-> Debring -> Tanglang la -> Upshi -> Leh. -- images contd.

Barren Colour: Meandering north-flowing Yunam river cutting through the Sarchu plain, India. Wind-eroded gravel bed projects as pinnacles as the dramatic landscape unfolds along the high plains of Sarchu to Pang
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contd...

Last edited by adc : 4th June 2011 at 12:33.
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Old 4th June 2011, 13:23   #64
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

Quote:
Originally Posted by adc View Post
Jispa -> Baralacha la -> Sarchu -> Pang -> More plains-> Debring -> Tanglang la -> Upshi -> Leh.
Marvellous pics! Is it possible to have a break & stay at a place in between Jispa & Leh? If so, which one do you recommend?
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Old 4th June 2011, 13:37   #65
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

Quote:
Originally Posted by ajay0612 View Post
Marvellous pics! Is it possible to have a break & stay at a place in between Jispa & Leh? If so, which one do you recommend?

Yes of course, and the next time we are going to spend another day in between. Stay in Sarchu or Pang. In October no luxury camps are there, only some very basic camps manned by the locals/nomads for the truckers.

We thought of staying in Sarchu in one such camp, but the truckers themselves told me to move as weather changes rapidly in October - and in highways always listen to seasoned truckers plus due to the couple days for Chandrataal, we were already behind the schedule.

We had clear skies from Jispa and by the time we reached Tanglang la and late also, there was threatening clouds and winds. A group of Sumo taxis carrying locals were going full speed, just like a convoy, they just stopped for a few seconds to tell me - move on, dont take chances this side of Tanglang la at a late evening in October.

IF you are going in October, a bit of luck is needed for the trip to be done.

Last edited by adc : 4th June 2011 at 13:47.
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Old 5th June 2011, 01:36   #66
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

Jispa -> Baralacha la -> Sarchu -> Pang -> More plains-> Debring -> Tanglang la -> Upshi -> Leh. contd..
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contd...

Last edited by adc : 5th June 2011 at 01:45.
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Old 5th June 2011, 02:48   #67
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

Jispa -> Baralacha la -> Sarchu -> Pang -> More plains-> Debring -> Tanglang la -> Upshi -> Leh. contd..

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contd...
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Old 5th June 2011, 16:14   #68
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

All that i can say is Amazing....
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Old 6th June 2011, 20:02   #69
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

Jispa -> Baralacha la -> Sarchu -> Pang -> More plains-> Debring -> Tanglang la -> Upshi -> Leh. contd..


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It was late evening [6 pm] by the time we reached Tanglang la and then entered a sleepy Leh at around 9:30 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agspins View Post
All that i can say is Amazing....
Words still fail to describe, all adjectives are still an understatement for this geography.




That ends the photologue of the Jispa - Leh Road.

Last edited by adc : 6th June 2011 at 20:08.
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Old 6th June 2011, 20:57   #70
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

wonderful.

So you got no landslides or water crossing between Jispa-Leh in october
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Old 7th June 2011, 02:07   #71
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Originally Posted by rkbharat View Post
So you got no landslides or water crossing between Jispa-Leh in october
No, absolutely surprised to see such clear weather.

What I have noticed for the last 2/3 years is that mid September around there is always some snowfall - this most probably that takes down the precipitation and thus a chance can be taken till October 15.

However, after around 19/20 October the weather began to "deteriorate" quite rapidly.
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Old 7th June 2011, 07:59   #72
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No, absolutely surprised to see such clear weather.

What I have noticed for the last 2/3 years is that mid September around there is always some snowfall - this most probably that takes down the precipitation and thus a chance can be taken till October 15.

However, after around 19/20 October the weather began to "deteriorate" quite rapidly.
Infact when we crossed it in Sep 2009 around 22 Sep, all stretch was dry, Brandy and Whiskey nallah were all dry, not even a drop of water, forget about Brandy & Whiskey

Please carry on wonderful pics
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Old 7th June 2011, 09:02   #73
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

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Originally Posted by rkbharat View Post
Infact when we crossed it in Sep 2009 around 22 Sep, all stretch was dry.
And let 2009 Sept 3rd/4th week conditions prevail this year too! Zanskar is calling and Kyun Tso has become an obsession!
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Old 7th June 2011, 11:29   #74
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

Quote:
Originally Posted by rkbharat View Post
wonderful.

So you got no landslides or water crossing between Jispa-Leh in october
Quote:
Originally Posted by adc View Post
No, absolutely surprised to see such clear weather.

What I have noticed for the last 2/3 years is that mid September around there is always some snowfall - this most probably that takes down the precipitation and thus a chance can be taken till October 15.

However, after around 19/20 October the weather began to "deteriorate" quite rapidly.
Quote:
Originally Posted by rkbharat View Post
Infact when we crossed it in Sep 2009 around 22 Sep, all stretch was dry, Brandy and Whiskey nallah were all dry, not even a drop of water, forget about Brandy & Whiskey

Please carry on wonderful pics
Quote:
Originally Posted by adc View Post
And let 2009 Sept 3rd/4th week conditions prevail this year too! Zanskar is calling and Kyun Tso has become an obsession!
I have done this in september 2009. After 20th august, to till about 20th september, you can be almost 100% sure that you will not get any landslides or water crossings. Its the easiest time to drive to leh, but since the nights start getting very cold, tourists start vanishing, leading to cheaper hotels all over leh. Infact, after the 1-5sept leh festival, leh town wears quite a deserted look, and the customer rush at the permit office is also absent.

for somebody going in a non SUV, 20th aug to 20th sept are the best times.

As for Kyun Tso, I think it may be doable by 2WD if you know which spots to avoid. There are some hidden sandy patches on the main track. If there are no guiding tire marks, it can get ugly. Stuck in a swamp at 5100mts above MSL is very ugly, not something you would welcome.

Best in case of 2WD is to have two vehicles following at 10-20 meters distance of each other.

In case one does find a sand trap, the other vehicle can rescue, and then alternate track can be chosen.
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Old 7th June 2011, 13:00   #75
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Default Re: Self-Drive Expedition Travel-Ladakh and cold desert Changthang in "off-season" Oc

Around Leh and the amazing experience at Saboo


Reaching Leh at 9:30 pm, we got a good hotel, Shanti Lodge, and it is good place to stay. Opposite the only 3-star hotel, Grand Dragon, it would be costly for budget traveller. We took the hotel by chance as it was the only with doors open and with lights on, and what a luck! Run by a fantastic couple, a Ladakh woman and a Bengali husband [miracle #3!], this is the place we stay whatever days we spent in Leh. Seeing us all worn out from the journey with from Jispa, a hot food was soon made for us. Almost all of the rooms were empty with only few outstation govt. officials around.


This was the first proper day of rest from our start of journey on Oct 1 night. A good night sleep and moved around the Leh town, firstly to the permit and later evening went to Leh Palace and Shanti Stupa. Nothing much was done this day.
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Second day also in Leh and this is monastery roundup tour day. But then something happened and was an experience in itself.

As we left Leh, we soon stopped for a middle-aged lady for a lift till the Saboo village diversion from the highway. As we chatted up, she invited us to her village and to come up and see their house - her husband is ex-pradhan of Saboo panchayat. And what follows was one of the best memorable events from Ladakh, we were so much welcomed and will be one of our cherished moments of our travel to Ladakh. We were going for Hemis, but we got an experience that was priceless!


Saboo Village Completely Flattened by Cloudburst

Quote:
It was a model village for the entire district, a pride for its residents but the cloudburst changed everything. Being developed under the Prime Minister's reconstruction programme for Jammu and Kashmir, Saboo village was selected by the local administration to be a role model.

A model village meant proper drinking water supplies, electricity, tarred roads, and cleanliness among others, which other villages lack. But on the intervening night of Aug 5 and 6, everything changed.

According to the local administration officials, the village was badly hit by the cloudburst. What was earlier a village of pride, has now been completely flattened. Smashed cars and a heap of rubble can be seen in all corners of the village.

Saboo village was affected a lot by the floods and the waters came through this nullah till it flooded and swamped the complete area.
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And soon we were at their gates, strikingly brilliant fall colours welcome us!
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And then we were showed around the house and the different moments during our stay there are captured in the following images. A photologue will follow of a most authentic Ladakhi house and kitchen.
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contd..

Last edited by adc : 7th June 2011 at 13:03.
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