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Old 19th December 2011, 14:57   #1381
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

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Was fuel available there?

When we went, it was dry, people were waiting for last 12 hours to fill up, they were expecting a tanker any time. However, we got BSNL refils from the shops there.

==Ramky
========
NO diesel was available, but petrol was.
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Old 19th December 2011, 14:59   #1382
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NO diesel was available, but petrol was.
Not surprised!!!

Our guest house in Nubra said they can arrange for Diesel if needed, seems the Diesel pumps / gensets need diesel, they stock it plenty and sell for a profit.

--Ramky
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Old 20th December 2011, 15:32   #1383
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

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Day 16
27th August 2011
Leh to TurTuk Drive

Jeep Captain's Photologue


Those are jawans at the Siachen acclimatiation camp at North Pullu. This is where they apparently spent some time preparing to go further towards Siachen.



That is the Diskit Gompa on the hill adjacent to the hill where the Buddha Statue is located. Both of them overlook the Valley where the Diskit town is located on the banks of the Shayok River.



The petrol pump keeper live sin that small building, and he said that we could wake him any time in the night for fuel. The run-down pump can be operated - like all pumps - without electricity by hand-cranking them



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This is the first time I am seeing a pic of Khardungla Top devoid of any snow. Is it because of the time of the year or is the snow line generally receding in the area???
There was no snow when we went and there had been no snowfall lately. But from my past experience, I find that snow melts very fast at K la and even had it snowed the previous day, snow would have melted in the heat.


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Not surprised!!!

Our guest house in Nubra said they can arrange for Diesel if needed, seems the Diesel pumps / gensets need diesel, they stock it plenty and sell for a profit.
I understand many guest houses do sell fuel. When we planned this long 1300 km long circuit (without petrol pumps), I was contemplating having the hotels where we stayed at in Turtuk to stock up fuel for us, and also heard of someone in Nyoma who does that.
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Old 23rd December 2011, 09:18   #1384
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

I guess the IPHE team members are on another trip no more updates , anyways Merry Christmas to the team & Happy New Year!
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Old 23rd December 2011, 09:54   #1385
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I guess the IPHE team members are on another trip no more updates , anyways Merry Christmas to the team & Happy New Year!
Yes, you are right We are slowed down because ace team members like Lalu KS and JC are travelling through X'mas & New Year's eve.

But don't worry, I will entertain you with some videos of the drives and further analysis of some aspects of the Ladakh Drive.

Thanks for your wishes, my own wishes to all the patient IPHE Ladakh drive travelogue readers!
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Old 23rd December 2011, 11:33   #1386
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

Dear Kumar Sir & IPHE Team,
I have been following the write-up on a regular basis, but one small observation. My brother a Major in the army who has done a stint at Siachen is surprised that photos of THOISE air-strip is available on public forum. He muttered something about " layout & approach landmarks" being compromised. Would request to your collective judgement to take a call on whether pics of such strategic importance be put up on TBHP. Maybe Akaush can give us an inside info on the thought-process over at Command HQ or even the Divisional HQ.
Thanks for the wonderful write-up and the brilliant photos.
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Old 23rd December 2011, 11:36   #1387
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Dear Kumar Sir & IPHE Team,
I have been following the write-up on a regular basis, but one small observation. My brother a Major in the army who has done a stint at Siachen is surprised that photos of THOISE air-strip is available on public forum. He muttered something about " layout & approach landmarks" being compromised. Would request to your collective judgement to take a call on whether pics of such strategic importance be put up on TBHP. Maybe Akaush can give us an inside info on the thought-process over at Command HQ or even the Divisional HQ.
Thanks for the wonderful write-up and the brilliant photos.
We had kept the photos out till akaush himself requested for it!
But I guess photos taken from a public road - and we did not see any signboards saying that photography was prohibited - are fine. The Thoise airport is clearly visible from the road - and the road itself goes past it!
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Old 23rd December 2011, 11:45   #1388
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

Sir

Thanks a lot for the clarification.I am sure as more and more people travel to these parts of the country, better will be the road infra and more civilian travelling to these parts will also open up the economy and create a stronger sense of "One Country, One People, Many Cultures"in all of us. No amount of military strategy & muscle-flexing on our recalcitrant neighbour`s part can beat the sight of a group of civilians standing around taking photos and kids in woolens playing in the lake-shore. I feel opening Nathu-La to civilian visits has actually been a great boon to India.
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Old 23rd December 2011, 12:32   #1389
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

HVK Scorpio
Aug 27, 2011, Leh-Turtuk, 241 kms


Drive from Leh to Khardung la

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Old 23rd December 2011, 12:40   #1390
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

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Originally Posted by Yamahead View Post
Dear Kumar Sir & IPHE Team,
I have been following the write-up on a regular basis, but one small observation. My brother a Major in the army who has done a stint at Siachen is surprised that photos of THOISE air-strip is available on public forum. He muttered something about " layout & approach landmarks" being compromised. Would request to your collective judgement to take a call on whether pics of such strategic importance be put up on TBHP. Maybe Akaush can give us an inside info on the thought-process over at Command HQ or even the Divisional HQ.
Thanks for the wonderful write-up and the brilliant photos.
Really appreciate your concern with regards to safe guarding things related to national Security!!

But dont you think with sites like google earth which give you a better and more accurate picture in 3D of such places are a much bigger threat than just an airport strip photograph posted on the net? Search for Thoise on Google map and you know what I mean!!

I feel general photographs wont cause much harm untill and unless the photos show what kind of aircrafts, how many aircrafts, types of weapon, amount of vehicles visible, type of artillery, which unit, which battalion etc etc are mentioned.

But I do agree that discretion is always good and the team here has been pretty carefull on that respect!!!

Regards

EDIT: And with this post I realise I have completed 1000 posts!! Mainly thanks to the travelogue section or else I guess I still would have been a newbie!!

Last edited by deky : 23rd December 2011 at 12:45.
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Old 23rd December 2011, 13:47   #1391
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Congrats on completing 1000 posts. Only thing that prevents me from posting/commenting more often in this wonderful forum is the almost CIA/ FSB spec Firewall and realtime content protection software my company runs.
On a serious vein, google earth images I thought were not so dynamic, but then again my idea of imaging & geo-spatial technology is pretty outdated.
Fully agree with your observation that "if Google Earth has it, then whats the point of hiding? ". My brother( the Major) just told me "let the chinks come to Diskit in 2013, we will feed them idli, poran-puri & maacher-jhol baaht from the various touristy hotel in that area.Someone will definitely look at their trucks and SUVs n remark "kitna deti hai? ".
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Old 23rd December 2011, 14:08   #1392
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

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Congrats on completing 1000 posts. Only thing that prevents me from posting/commenting more often in this wonderful forum is the almost CIA/ FSB spec Firewall and realtime content protection software my company runs.
On a serious vein, google earth images I thought were not so dynamic, but then again my idea of imaging & geo-spatial technology is pretty outdated.
Fully agree with your observation that "if Google Earth has it, then whats the point of hiding? ". My brother( the Major) just told me "let the chinks come to Diskit in 2013, we will feed them idli, poran-puri & maacher-jhol baaht from the various touristy hotel in that area.Someone will definitely look at their trucks and SUVs n remark "kitna deti hai? ".
In just 2 years, NUbra Valley is a transformed place.
While Khardung la has all the makings of a Rohtang Pass (near Manali) - with the day tripping crowds - NUbra still remains secluded, but when I compare with my earlier drive there in 2009, I can see many tourist vehicles going there now, Diskit & Hunder being the main draws, and happily, Turtuk is not everyone's cup of tea.

Since the Chinks don't have Google - but must surely be reading team-bhp - maybe they will be heartened by the fact that they can eat masala dosa at army canteen in Hunder! (Mondays they are closed)
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Old 23rd December 2011, 16:19   #1393
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

HVK Scorpio
Aug 27, 2011, Leh-Turtuk, 241 kms


Descending from Khardung la 5375 mtrs to Hunder Sand Dunes at 3100 mtrs


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Old 24th December 2011, 00:32   #1394
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

HVK Scorpio
Aug 27, 2011, Leh-Turtuk, 241 kms

Driving from Hunder to Turtuk, the northern most point in India

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Old 24th December 2011, 09:52   #1395
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Default Re: HumbLeh'd II (Indo Polish Himalayan Expedition to Ladakh & Himachal Pradesh)

What if my car breaks down in Ladakh?

Having seen some of the most treacherous-looking roads in all these videos and photos, one question everyone is asking is - what will I do if my car breaks down in the middle of nowhere?

There are no service centres or workshops except in Leh & Kargil.
For all except the most popular Tata, Mahindra & Maruti, parts may be difficult to get anywhere in Ladakh.
There are hardly any puncture shops to repair punctured tyres.
There is no mobile connectivity, who will I call if in distress?

What if.......?

Have you prepared your car well before the trip?
Are you checking frequently during the drive under the hood and under the body if all is OK?
Do you have your car's Owner's Manual?
Do you understand your car beyond the wax polishing and ICE?
Are there some essential spares like fuses, puncture kits & tools in your car?
Is there someone you can call as a technical troubleshooting helpline - other than silly girls manning service centre desks in your service centre back home?
Will you dirty your designer jeans by going under the car & bruise your fingers tightening that bolt - or prefer to sleep in your broken-down car through a sub-zero temperature night in an inhospitable pass?

If the answer to all the above questions is "NO", then you should not be driving to Ladakh - better to stick to a MakeMyTrip itinerary instead!

There is no need to run scared of possible break-downs in the midst of nowhere - they will definitely happen! You have to be ready with a suitable response, it is impossible to go through such a long and arduous drive without some niggling issue or the other.

I always keep extra food and water to combat such emergencies. I have been broken down 36 hours in the middle of the Himalayas and have survived on my rations.

The Army guys are always around in Ladakh, ever willing to help out. But ensure that if you do break down, do so in the middle of the 1-laned road so that they have no choice but to haul you out to clear the road (joking, of course). They have towing trucks and will help if in dire need, but don't bank on it, it is all a relationship game. I remember reading in this forum that one of our friends whose Esteem's clutch plate gave up even got a spare clutch plate (it was apparently the same as the Army Gypsy's) from the army workshop nearby and got them to repair it too. Our own KSM-vTEC broke a accelerator wire on his way up Barlacha la, but got a army mechanic to help him fix it again (he had a spare wire, of course). The taxi guys plying on the route are harried people, in a hurry, with customers in their car, don't feel bad if they don't stop to help. Construction vehicles & crew (repairing roads, other work) are omnipresent and invariably the best guys for the job - and also the most willing to help (as you saw when my Scorpio had to be recovered from the quicksand in Suru Valley some days ago!).

Be wise when you choose the car you want to drive to Ladakh in - definitely not your city sedan, but definitely your small car or any decent SUV. Popular cars - YES - especially if they are one of the trio of Maruti, Tata or Mahindra. Niche cars which sell a few '000s a year - NO. Complex cars - like those with 4WD automatic transmission - is a Bigger NO (Remember how Pramod Singh had to ship his 4WD Automatic Scorpio by truck back to the plains after it broke down near Leh?).

So don't worry - be prepared, get your hands dirty and trust in God.

Last edited by hvkumar : 24th December 2011 at 09:59.
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